How Many People Live In Bora Bora? A Detailed Look At The Population

The idyllic South Pacific island of Bora Bora is world-renowned for its bright turquoise lagoon, swaying palm trees, and luxurious overwater bungalows. But have you ever wondered exactly how many people call this tropical paradise home?

If you’re looking for a quick answer, the main island of Bora Bora has a population of around 9,800 as of 2017. However, there’s much more to the story behind Bora Bora’s demographics and population details.

In this comprehensive article, we’ll explore everything you need to know about how many people live on Bora Bora.

We’ll start by giving an overview of Bora Bora’s total population across all of its islands. Then we’ll break it down by municipality to see how the population is distributed. We’ll also discuss some key factors that affect Bora Bora’s population size and growth.

By the end, you’ll have a deep understanding of the demographics and number of residents of this iconic Polynesian island.

Total Population of Bora Bora

Bora Bora, the picturesque island located in French Polynesia, is known for its stunning beaches and crystal-clear waters. But have you ever wondered how many people actually call this paradise home? In this article, we will take a closer look at the total population of Bora Bora and explore some interesting facts about its residents.

Quick Facts on Bora Bora’s Total Population

Bora Bora is a relatively small island, with a land area of just 29.3 square kilometers. Despite its size, it attracts thousands of tourists each year, drawn to its natural beauty and luxurious resorts. However, when it comes to permanent residents, the population of Bora Bora is quite modest.

As of the latest available data, the total population of Bora Bora is estimated to be around 10,000 people. This includes both locals and expatriates who have chosen to make the island their home. Compared to other popular tourist destinations, such as Bali or Phuket, Bora Bora’s population may seem small.

However, this is part of its charm, as it allows for a more intimate and exclusive experience for visitors.

Population Changes Over Time

Over the years, the population of Bora Bora has seen some fluctuations. At the beginning of the 20th century, the island had a much smaller population, primarily consisting of indigenous Polynesians. However, the arrival of European settlers and the establishment of military bases during World War II brought an influx of people from different backgrounds.

Since then, the population of Bora Bora has gradually increased. The island has also seen a rise in tourism, which has contributed to its economic growth. Despite this, Bora Bora has managed to maintain its unique charm and preserve its natural beauty, thanks to strict regulations and sustainable practices.

Population Density

Given its small size, it’s no surprise that Bora Bora has a relatively low population density. With a land area of 29.3 square kilometers and a population of around 10,000, the island has an approximate population density of 340 people per square kilometer.

This low population density allows for a more peaceful and uncrowded experience for both residents and visitors. It also means that there is plenty of untouched natural beauty to explore, from lush forests to pristine beaches.

Population by Municipality


Vaitape is the main town and administrative center of Bora Bora. It is located on the western side of the island and is home to the majority of the population. According to the latest census data, Vaitape has a population of approximately 4,000 residents.

This charming town is known for its picturesque views of the lagoon and its vibrant local culture. Visitors to Vaitape can explore its narrow streets, visit local shops and restaurants, and immerse themselves in the unique atmosphere of this island community.


Anau is a small village located on the northeastern coast of Bora Bora. It is known for its tranquil beaches and stunning natural beauty. The population of Anau is significantly smaller compared to Vaitape, with an estimated population of around 500 residents.

Despite its small size, Anau offers a peaceful and idyllic setting for those looking to escape the hustle and bustle of city life. Visitors to Anau can enjoy relaxing on the beach, snorkeling in crystal-clear waters, and experiencing the laid-back lifestyle of this charming village.


Faanui is another municipality in Bora Bora, situated on the western side of the island. It is a picturesque coastal village known for its stunning sunsets and pristine beaches. The population of Faanui is relatively smaller than Vaitape but larger than Anau, with an estimated population of around 1,000 residents.

This tranquil village offers a range of activities for visitors, including water sports, hiking trails, and cultural experiences. Whether you’re seeking relaxation or adventure, Faanui provides a perfect blend of natural beauty and local charm.

For more information on the population of Bora Bora’s municipalities, you can visit the official website of the Bora Bora government. The website provides detailed statistics and insights into the population dynamics of the island, allowing visitors to gain a deeper understanding of the local communities and their unique characteristics.

Factors Affecting Bora Bora’s Population Size


The geographical characteristics of Bora Bora play a significant role in determining its population size. As a small, isolated island located in the South Pacific, Bora Bora’s land area is limited. This means that the available space for housing and infrastructure development is restricted, which in turn affects the number of people who can reside on the island.

Bora Bora’s stunning natural beauty and idyllic surroundings also attract tourists from all over the world. While this brings economic benefits to the island, it also means that a significant portion of the land is dedicated to hotels, resorts, and other tourist facilities.

This further reduces the available space for permanent residents.

Economy and Jobs

The economy of Bora Bora heavily relies on tourism. The island’s pristine beaches, crystal-clear lagoons, and vibrant marine life make it a popular destination for honeymooners, luxury travelers, and adventure seekers.

The tourism industry provides numerous job opportunities for the local population, ranging from hotel staff to tour guides and artisans.

However, the limited number of jobs available outside the tourism sector can pose challenges for those seeking employment. This can result in a smaller permanent population, as individuals may choose to move to larger cities or more economically diverse regions in search of better job prospects.


The remote location of Bora Bora affects its accessibility, which can impact the size of its population. While Bora Bora has an airport and is accessible by air from major cities, the cost and logistics of travel can be a deterrent for some.

Additionally, the limited number of flights and the distance from other destinations can make it less convenient for individuals to visit or relocate to Bora Bora.

Furthermore, the high cost of living on the island can also be a barrier for individuals considering moving to Bora Bora. The price of goods and services, including housing, transportation, and groceries, can be significantly higher compared to mainland cities.

This can limit the appeal of living on the island, particularly for those on a tighter budget.


Bora Bora may seem like a remote and tranquil paradise, but there’s a thriving local population that calls it home. While the main island has under 10,000 residents, the greater Bora Bora islands have a population of over 10,500 by recent counts.

The population is clustered primarily in the main villages of Vaitape, Anau, and Faanui, with tourism and related industries driving much of the economy.

From its peak population decades ago, Bora Bora has seen a decline in residents due to its isolation and lack of jobs outside tourism. However, it remains a sought-after vacation destination and home for locals who cherish its natural beauty and relaxed way of life.

So next time you voyager thousands of miles away to this Polynesian oasis, keep in mind there’s a small but vibrant community that makes Bora Bora unlike anywhere else in the world.

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