13 Overwater Bungalows That Are Truly Like Paradise on Earth
As the winter weather takes over, you may begin to crave sunshine and sandy shores. Here are 13 of the most amazing overwater bungalows around the world.
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A true escape
Vacations don’t get much more tranquil than a miniature house that’s surrounded on all sites by water. Check out these stunning little slices of paradise that you’ll want to drop everything to visit right now.
Gili Lankanfushi in the Maldives
This incredible spot, filled with overwater bungalows, is currently under construction but is set to re-open on the first of December 2019. Located in the North Malé Atoll, just a 20-minute speedboat ride from Malé, Gili Lankanfushi is the epitome of an island paradise. The property boasts 45 villas—all overwater—that feature open-air living spaces, roof terraces, and decks leading directly into the lagoon below. Amazingly, the largest overwater villa in the Maldives is located at this property and has four bedrooms, a private open-air cinema, spa, air-conditioned gymnasium, infinity pool, and a two-story waterslide, directly into the lagoon. If you’d rather stay close to home, check out these amazing island vacations you can take within the United States.
Meeru Island Resort and Spa, Maldives
Don’t want to wait until December, when Gili Lankanfushi re-opens, to book a gorgeous spot in the Maldives? Consider Meeru Island. Located about 15-and-a-half miles from Gili Lankanfushi, Meeru Island has everything from a water sports center to garden views to glow parties. These overwater bungalows are not as minimalist as some of these others, so they’re a great place for families and visitors of all ages, perhaps rather than a totally checked-out, tranquil couples’ retreat. But make no mistake, those water villas are plenty peaceful!
Water Villas at One&Only Reethi Rah
The Maldives must just be the place to be when it comes to overwater bungalows. The One&Only Reethi Rah in North Malé Atoll is all about privacy: They offer overwater bungalows along a four-mile stretch that includes 12 powder-soft sand beaches. From the iconic Water Villas, you can sleep and even bathe with views of crystal blue waters or lounge outside in one of the wraparound hammocks that allows you to hover right over the lagoon.
Conrad Bora Bora Nui Resort & Spa
The stunning hotel in French Polynesia has all the makings of the dreamiest honeymoon. Sitting along Bora Bora’s longest stretch of white-sand beach, some overwater villas dot the shore. But the creme de la creme of bungalows is the Presidential Overwater Villa, the region’s first two-story overwater bungalow. At over 3,000 square feet, you get two bedrooms, a living room, well-being room, personal pool, whirlpool, and sundeck. It’s the definition of heaven.
The Manta Resort in Tanzania
Why rent just your average overwater bungalow when you can have your private floating island? That’s exactly what the Manta Resort offers their one-of-a-kind underwater room villa. The three-level bungalow is perched in the middle of the sea where a boat will drop you off at the start of your stay. You can lounge in one of the many rooms, but the best spot of all in the floating suite’s bedroom located 13 feet under the water’s surface. Yes, you can watch fish swim past while you fall asleep. Here are some affordable island rentals—and yes, you get the entire island.
Punta Caracol Acqua Lodge, Panama
These charming pastel-green overwater bungalows are as tranquil as it gets. In addition to being a slice of paradise where you can have your own private terrace and see frolicking dolphins, Punta Caracol also strives to be extremely sustainable and environmentally conscious. Everything from the solar panels to the pollutant-free sewage treatment strives to create as minimal an impact on the environment as possible so that people can continue to enjoy the natural beauty for decades to come. Find out where to go for the best all-inclusive vacations around the world.
Sandals South Coast in Jamaica
There’s no better way to experience the beauty of the Caribbean Sea than staying in the Over the Water Honeymoon Butler Bungalow. These floating palaces completely embrace the stunning natural backdrop with views from the bedroom, bathroom, and private sundeck. You can even bathe in the outdoor soaking tub without prying eyes or watch fish swim beneath your feet through your see-through floor. Oh yeah, and you get a dedicated butler to cater to your every need.
Cayo Espanto in Belize
You might never see a guest during your entire visit to this private island in Belize. The intimate property only has seven villas total, with Casa Ventanas being the only overwater bungalow. The one-bedroom suite is at the end of a dock and surrounded entirely by crystal blue water. You can see the sunset while lying in bed or sea life bustling below your glass-bottom floor in the living room. Belize is also one of the tropical islands you should visit over the holidays.
Disney’s Polynesian Villas & Bungalows in Orlando, Florida
Who says you have to travel outside the United States for an incredible overwater villa experience? Right in the heart of Orlando, Florida you can have a taste of Bora Bora at Disney’s Polynesian Villas & Bungalows. The two-bedroom overwater bungalows have everything you’d expect from an exotic getaway including a private deck, individual plunge pool, kitchen, and views of the Seven Seas Lagoon and Magic Kingdom Park. Did you know that Disney has its own private island, too?
Likuliku Lagoon Resort in Fiji
It doesn’t get better than a five-star resort on a small private island. That is until you add luxurious overwater bungalows called “bures.” With stunning Fijian decor, you can jump straight into the ocean from your private balcony perched over a coral reef. You can even lounge in your tub while taking in the ocean views. If you get bored in your little oasis, hop on over to one of the restaurants, spa, or gym for a break.
Sofitel Moorea la Ora Beach Resort Hotel in French Polynesia
Located a little ways from mainland Tahiti, this paradise boasts 113 overwater bungalows. You can experience the chic decadence of French-style cheese and wine with the vibrant culture of Moorea. And if an overnight stay is a little much, or if you’re taking a more varied vacation in that general area, there are day passes available.
Las Lagunas Boutique Hotel in Guatemala
Just because there’s no ocean doesn’t mean you can’t have an overwater bungalow. At Las Lagunas Boutique Hotel they have villas perched over a beautiful lake surrounded by ancient Mayan ruins. Each bungalow offers total seclusion, but the Waterfront Master Suites make you feel as if you’re just floating in the jungle. Take in the views from your bed, private deck, or outdoor dining veranda.
Hotel Palafitte in Switzerland
Overwater villas aren’t confined to tropical locales. Hotel Palafitte created an architectural masterpiece when they unveiled their modern 26 over-lake bungalows built on stilts. You can still partake in water activities like boating and kayaking, but won’t see any coral reefs. Not to worry though because the delicious food, sunsets, and Swiss landscape views certainly make up for it. Read on for more incredible island escapes that are worth checking out for your next vacation.