Who can resist the allure of overwater bungalows?
Honeymooners have been lusting after them forever, and now travelers of all ages are clamoring for these romantic, floating escapes. If you’re looking for a true escape from the every day, it’s hard to beat an overwater bungalow. Located just above the water, these bungalows offer the perfect combination of privacy and luxury. From outdoor showers to private infinity pools, as well as a personal butler to take care of your every need, an overwater bungalow resort is the perfect getaway. Get up close and personal with the area’s natural environment, whether that means gliding over turquoise waters or strolling barefoot on pristine beaches.
While overwater bungalows first appeared in Tahiti back in the 1960s, it’s the Maldives that has become synonymous with the dreamy accommodations. Of course, the Maldivian standards for hospitality are world renowned, attracting celebrities and honeymooners alike to a Maldives resort. However, there are dozens of resorts NOT in the Maldives where you can make your overwater bungalow dreams come true.
While some destinations may be more easily accessible than others (we’re looking at you, Tahiti), they are all well worth the journey. From French Polynesia to Fiji, here are ten dreamy overwater bungalows NOT in the Maldives.
Our first overwater villa feature is the gorgeous Four Seasons Bora Bora. The French Polynesian island of Bora Bora has long been a favorite honeymoon destination for newlyweds. Indeed, this island is the quintessential South Pacific paradise, with lush and dramatic landscapes that rise to a sharp emerald peak surrounded by a turquoise lagoon. Famous for its beautiful beaches, incredible crystal clear water, and luxurious hotels, Bora Bora is the pinnacle of romantic luxury.
To get to this gorgeous resort, you’ll take a private yacht across the South Pacific waters to your secluded overwater bungalow. Once there, you’ll never have to leave the privacy of your thatched-roof retreat. Instead, indulge in a private meal delivered by canoe for the perfect romantic breakfast on your outdoor deck. Enjoy direct access to the private lagoon, just a stepladder’s distance away.
Next, we have Likuliku Lagoon Resort, home to Fiji’s only overwater bungalows. A dream vacation destination, Fiji is famous for its crystal waters, white-sand beaches, and lush tropical rainforests. But it’s not just the land that’s worth exploring. Venture out into the sea to discover another world entirely. Famed for its astonishingly diverse marine life, Fiji is also home to some of the most spectacular diving sites in the world. Whether you’re looking for an idyllic honeymoon or an exciting adventure, there’s something for everyone in Fiji.
Likuliku Lagoon Resort is an adults-only resort set amidst a pristine environment, designed according to Fijian cultural values. This resort is a champion of sustainable tourism and is 100% Fijian-owned. Notably, Likuliku is an island reserve surrounded by a protected marine sanctuary with a beautiful coral reef ecosystem. For your stay, we recommend splurging on a Deluxe Beachfront bungalow. This option offers direct ladder access to the lagoon, a freestanding bath, a lounger-strewn deck, and a private plunge pool. Transports yourself to paradise with an overwater bungalow stay in Fiji.
Of course, we had to feature a resort in Mauritius. A beautiful island paradise in the Indian Ocean, Mauritius is one of the most popular honeymoon destinations in the world. The white sandy beaches, turquoise waters, and palm trees are postcard-perfect and provide the perfect backdrop for relaxation and rejuvenation. If you’re looking for a luxury vacation filled with fantastic food, history, and adventure, an overwater bungalow in Mauritius is your destination.
Serenity, style, and seclusion are yours at Constance Le Prince Maurice. This 60-acre resort is on a private estate on the unspoiled East Coast of Mauritius. While these accommodations aren’t entirely overwater, these thatch-roof villas offer all the luxury you could desire. Constance Le Prince provides the ultimate romantic retreat with heated private pools, romantic outdoor baths, and Feng Shui-inspired interiors.
Located on the island of Motu Piti Aau, The InterContinental Bora Bora Resort & Thalasso Spa is the perfect honeymoon retreat. This five-star resort is optimally positioned facing the majestic Mount Otemanu on a gorgeous blue water lagoon. Stay in one of eighty-four spacious overwater villas with glass-bottom cabins connecting guests to the surrounding marine life. With your own private pool, spacious outdoor deck, and direct lagoon access you won’t even have to leave your water villa!
Inspired by Marlon Brando, The Intercontinental Bora Bora is the first hotel to produce air-conditioning from water extracted from the ocean. Furthermore, the InterContinental Bora Bora offers a one-of-a-kind culinary experience from fine French dining to full American breakfasts. The resort’s restaurants and bars offer exquisite international cuisine with an authentic local flair in a range of elegant settings. Polynesian culture is brought to life by themed dinners that showcase the region’s traditional food, song, and dance. Finally, take advantage of the 24-hour room service and sip champagne under the stars in your gorgeous overwater bungalow. Overall, The InterContinental Bora Bora Resort & Thalasso Spa offer overwater accommodations that would impress even the most discerning traveler.
Of course, we had to mention the gorgeous Sofitel Moorea la Ora Beach Resort in Tahiti. Rising out of the cobalt blue waters of the South Pacific, Tahiti is home to iconic black-pearl farms, world-class surf spots, and jaw-droppingly beautiful lagoons. The perfect place to escape the real world and recharge your batteries, Tahiti is an ideal honeymoon destination.
In addition to the mountain ridges views, cliffs, and dramatic waterfalls, this romantic island retreat also offers incredible culinary delights. Take in the views from your overwater bungalow’s deck while relaxing in a deep soak tub.
Only nine miles from the airport, The St. Regis Bora Bora combines seclusion with easy access to the mainland. With 90 rooms and overwater bungalows, guests will have plenty of choices for accommodations in paradise. A variety of activities are accessible for guests to enjoy at their leisure. For those looking to bask in the gorgeous blue waters, enjoy stand-up paddleboards, kayaks, canoes, and snorkeling equipment.
Stay on the beach or suspended above the dazzling lagoon for ultimate romance. With bungalows starting at 1,550 square feet, the lavish accommodations at The St. Regis Bora Bora are the largest in French Polynesia. With expansive private decks, glass floor panels, and decor that embraces the islands natural materials, these water villas are a sight to see. But it’s not just size that sets these lush bungalows apart. This resort is breathtakingly eye-catching, blending minimalist Polynesian decor with 21st-century luxuries. Notably, this resort includes a spa on a private island, a fitness center, and five restaurants. Additionally, there is a shuttle service to the main island, making it easy to explore Bora Bora. With world class service, and water activities to wow, the overwater villas at this luxurious resort are sure to please. So hop on a bike and explore the spacious St. Regis resort in Bora Bora.
Move over, Maldives. Mexico has their own overwater bungalows, and they are stunning! As a vacation destination, Mexico is hard to beat. This country is rich in culture, history, and of course, an endless supply of sun-soaked paradise. Plus, with the Caribbean’s best crystal-clear waters, this natural setting is the perfect spot for a luxurious villa resort. Both easily accessible from the United States and relatively affordable, Mexico is a wonderful option for those looking to experience an over water villa stay close to home.
El Dorado Maroma is an adults-only enclave with 30 overwater bungalows on a secluded stretch of the Riviera Maya. Not only do these accommodations feature a glass-bottom floor, private infinity plunge pool, and outdoor shower, but also a 24-hour butler. We love that this resort offers a variety of activities such as Spanish lessons, yoga, aqua aerobics, Latin dance lessons, and cooking classes!
Song Saa Private Island is Cambodia’s best-kept secret. A Southeast Asian nation, Cambodia spans plains, mountains, and the Gulf of Thailand coastline. This country has a lot to offer both culturally and historically, from ancient temples to sprawling beaches and turquoise waters. Once you visit, you’ll want to return again and again. So if you’re looking for a luxury overwater bungalow vacation, Song Saa Cambodia should be at the top of your list.
Set on two private islands along the Gulf of Thailand, Song Saa’s 27 overwater bungalows offer a perfect secluded getaway. Lush rainforest, pristine beaches, and colorful reefs are just some of the reasons we love this Cambodian getaway. Overall, the hardest choice you’ll have to make at this intimate resort is how to best split your time between the resort activities, your private infinity pool, and snorkeling sites.
Sandals Grande St. Lucian Spa & Beach Resort is ideal for a sophisticated and luxurious escape in the exotic Caribbean. From the majestic twin peaks of the Pitons to palm-fringed beaches and crystalline waters, this splendid all-inclusive resort offers a glorious blend of scenery, personalized service, and a romantic ambiance.
Sandals Grande St. Lucian resort features overwater bungalows with panoramic views of the Atlantic ocean. Relax on your private patio equipped with an extended sun deck, outdoor shower, sun loungers, and a bistro set for two. Additionally, glass bottom floor panels ensure you can enjoy undersea views from your master bedroom. Take a dive at anytime, with direct lagoon access from the water villas. Guests can enjoy unlimited fun activities, including kayaking, snorkeling, and windsurfing. Finally, enjoy gourmet dining at 11 distinctive restaurants sure to delight the most discerning palate.
Last but certainly not least, we have Aruba Ocean Villas! Aruba is a small island located in the southern Caribbean, just off the coast of Venezuela. The island is a beautiful place with stunning beaches and gorgeous nightlife. The beaches are made up of white sand and crystal clear water, making them perfect for swimming, snorkeling, or just relaxing and enjoying the view.
Aruba Ocean Villas is a small boutique resort in Aruba that caters exclusively to adults. This resort cultivates a quiet, tranquil, natural, and beautiful atmosphere with eight unique overwater bungalows. Furthermore, the accommodations at this resort are stunning. Relax on your overwater bungalow’s wrap-around deck, with daybeds, outdoor rain showers, and direct ladder access to the ocean. Overall, this location is the perfect romantic getaway with an exquisite view of the ocean.
Contact one of our Idyllic Island Specialists to get started on your once-in-a-lifetime Overwater Bungalow Escape!
Looking for other luxury vacation destinations? Check out the following resources.
Dubai Luxury Travel: Everything You Need To Know | The Top 10 Luxury Resorts In The Maldives | Lake Garda: Everything You Need To Know | Beautiful Bora Bora: The Complete Guide to the Perfect Honeymoon | Majestic Elegance Costa Mujeres: Luxury All-Inclusive Review | Mauritius: The Best Luxury Travel Guide | Puglia Italy: The Ultimate Guide to Luxury Travel | Cartagena, Colombia: The Best in Luxury Travel Guide | 8 Hidden Luxury Travel Gems You Must See | Top 15 Honeymoon Hotels In The World
This post was updated on February 17th, 2022