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Despite a rather strong current, Temae Beach is one of the best snorkeling spots in Moorea. Its shallow depth (↕2 to 10 ft/0.5 to 3m), its crystal clear water, along with its diversity of reef fish and its visiting whiprays make for good reasons to visiting this location.

Snorkeler observing a stingray in Moorea
Encounters with pink whiprays are quite common at Temae Beach.

How to get to the Temae Beach snorkeling spot

Temae Beach is located at the eastern tip of Moorea Island. If you get to the beach from the pier, the access road is just down the descent, after the viewpoint over Tahiti and the Sofitel lagoon. It is easy to park along the beach.

Temae Beach snorkeling map, Moorea
Temae Beach snorkeling map.

Water entrance for snorkeling Temae Beach

Temae Lagoon, most of the time, is crossed by a north/south current. This is left to right when you are on the beach, facing the ocean. So it is preferable to get into the water at the northern tip of the beach, then let yourself drift with the current before getting out of the water at the other end of the beach. If you wish, extend your session by drifting to the overwater bungalows of the Sofitel. The lagoon is free to access but the beach is private.

Temae Beach snorkeling exploration tips

Temae Beach is edged by a shallow, sandy lagoon. Some 30 to 40 yards from the beach, the seabed starts to be covered with scattered coral.

Sand and coral beds Plage de Temae
The seabed at Temae Beach.

In the sand, even though a relatively poor environment, you can observe interesting species. Just make sure you give yourself the time to explore them (↕2-6ft/0.5-2m). Most of the fish, camouflaged in the sand, are harder to spot here than in the coral areas.

Among the species that are easily encountered on sandy bottoms are the peacock flounder, the longhorn cowfish, as well as the white-spotted pufferfish. Occasionally, you may also encounter pink whiprays in the shallows.

Longhorn cowfish at Temae Beach
A longhorn cowfish noted in a sandy area.

About 40-50 yards from the shore, larger coral patches cover the seabed (↕3-10ft/1-3m). Fish are more abundant here, including huge schools of convict surgeonfish that are constantly crossing the lagoon.

Butterflyfish, wrasse, lemon angelfish and damselfish of all kinds are all very easy to see around the corals. Sometimes it’s a titan triggerfish or a yellowmargin triggerfish that shows just the tip of its nose. They will watch snorkelers sideways before heading towards the barrier.

Yellowmargin triggerfish in Moorea
A yellowmargin triggerfish.

If you continue south beyond the area shown on the map, you will enter the Sofitel Moorea snorkeling area. Beautiful patches of branching coral can be seen here. The lagoon is open to everyone, but the beach is private. Check the Sofitel Moorea snorkeling report here.

Restaurants and accommodation nearby

There is no hotel on Temae Beach, but it is easy to walk there from the Sofitel. Food trucks are sometimes present on the back of the beach, at the edge of the track, but bring your own food and water to be on the safe side.


  • Level required Intermediate
  • Maximum depth10ft/3m
  • Water entranceFrom a sandy beach
  • Potential DangersSlight current
  • LifeguardNo
  • Visitor numbersLow
  • Access costsFree

MAP Spot

These spots are accessible to anyone with basic snorkeling skills, and feeling comfortable in the water and with his snorkeling gear. You will enter the water from the shore (beach, pontoon, ladder, rocks) or from a boat. The water height in the sea entrance area is reasonable, but you will not necessarily be within your depth. Moderate currents can occur in the area, even when the sea conditions are good. The distance to swim to reach the most interesting snorkeling areas of the spot does not exceed 200 meters.

This level only apply when the spot experiences optimal sea and/or weather conditions. It is not applicable if the sea and/or weather conditions deteriorate, in particular in the presence of rough sea, rain, strong wind, unusual current, large tides, waves and/or swell. You can find more details about the definition of our snorkeling levels on our snorkeling safety page.