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10 Places Around the World for an Overwater Bungalow Experience

(That aren't in The Maldives!)

One of the most iconic images of luxury holidays in the Maldives is of a luxurious overwater bungalow perched over the tranquil turquoise waters of the Indian Ocean.  An overwater bungalow is on the bucket list of many holidaymakers and the Maldives is considered one of the best places to experience their charm.  But there are some other fabulous destinations in the world where you can enjoy a wonderful overwater escape, and we have listed our top 10 below.

1. Rosewood Mayakoba, Mexico

Nestled within lush green jungle alongside a stunning stretch of Caribbean coastline near the resort town of Playa del Carmen, Rosewood Mayakiba is considered one of Mexico’s most luxurious resorts. The accommodations are designed to blend sympathetically with their surroundings and to showcase the natural beauty of the area. The resort offers a selection of 129 luxurious suites offering plunge pools, private decks and outdoor showers, including 18 deluxe overwater lagoon suites with tranquil views across the lagoon which can be enjoyed from your own private terrace.

Ideal for: Destination weddings and secluded honeymoons
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2. Sandals South Coast, Jamaica

Nowhere does all-inclusive, adult-only luxury in the Caribbean quite like Sandals.  The all-new Sandals South Coast Resort in Jamaica offers the signature Sandals experience in a truly stunning beachfront location where the over-the-water theme is embraced to its full potential – there is even a romantic over-the-water Chapel available for the most incredible marriage setting!  The spectacular new Butler Honeymoon Bungalows are laid out in a perfect heart shape over the crystal Caribbean Sea and designed with modern luxury in mind.  Each overwater villa has its own private patio equipped with an extended sun deck, outdoor shower and a private bistro set for two.  The Bungalows also offer choices of glass floors with backlit water for instant underwater views, and a signature Sandals Tranquillity Soaking Tub for two – not forgetting your own personal Butler!

Ideal for: Caribbean weddings, ultimate Caribbean honeymoon luxury
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3. Four Seasons Resort, Bora Bora, French Polynesia

Jet away to a private island paradise in the heart of exquisite French Polynesia.  With uninterrupted mountain views, tranquil desert island surroundings, and endless turquoise waters teeming with tropical fish, the Four Seasons Bora Bora is a must for every wanderluster’s bucket list.

Exclusivity and luxury ooze from the resort’s stylish overwater bungalows. The larger Speciality Overwater Bungalow Suites are equipped with their own private plunge pools and are ideal for young families or honeymoon couples who enjoy their own private space, there are a further 3 Overwater Water Bungalow Suites which are traditionally styled with teak-wood furnishing and are adorned with a private terrace overlooking the majestic Mount Otemanu.

Ideal for: Young families and couples in search of a castaway experience
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4. Likuliku Lagoon Resort, Fiji

An untouched island paradise of lava and sand, surrounding an unbelievably beautiful turquoise lagoon – Likuliku Lagoon Resort is an adults-only Fijian haven that literally translates to ‘Calm Waters’.

This is a wilderness island retreat where the overwater bungalows are situated directly over a protected marine sanctuary.  Styled to perfectly complement its natural surroundings, the Likuliku Lagoon Resort upholds traditional Fijian values and extends warm Fijian hospitality to its guests. Described as a unique, luxury escape for couples, this is a magical sanctuary for luxury lovers.

Ideal for: Couples in search of tranquillity and natural surroundings
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5. Song Saa, Cambodia

An ethical luxury paradise island in Cambodia, Song Saa is all about reconnecting with the environment and sustainable luxury.  Song Saa was created with its natural surroundings in mind, and this wonderful private island resort is a stunning reflection of its peaceful surroundings. Visitors will adore the tropical surroundings, emphasis on wellness in the sanctuary spa, and access to a pristine private beach. 

Here, the overwater villas are perched over the protected reef which you can enjoy through the portholes in your private villa. Gaze out over uninterrupted views of the lagoon, and cool off in your own private pool.

Ideal for: Wellness retreats, and unplugging from reality.
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6. Pangkor Laut, Malaysia

Nestled amongst an ancient rainforest, Pangkor Laut is a private island resort that is fringed by pristine white sandy beaches on the incredible west coast of Malaysia.  Considered as one of the top luxury islands in Asia – and the rest of the world – Pangkor Laut is a nature lover’s paradise where the luxury is evident but elegantly understated. 

Pangkor Laut has a choice of villa accommodations, and the overwater villas are a firm favourite. Perched above the tropical waters and promising luxuries including oversized bathtubs, outdoor verandah and sumptuous bedding, they promise an overwater experience that is drenched in nature and beauty.

Ideal for: Nature-loving couples, looking for romance in a unique, natural setting
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7. Aitutaki Lagoon, Cook Islands

An adults-only private island resort in the breath-taking Cook Islands, Aitutaki Lagoon resort is as close to a luxury castaway paradise as you could get.  Here, the overwater bungalows (the only overwater bungalows in the Cook Islands) offer blissfully beautiful views across the picturesque lagoon and luxurious, stylish decor that stays faithful to the Polynesian surroundings.

The overwater bungalow experience includes wide, sliding doors that open onto a private decking and steps that lead directly into the heavenly lagoon waters below. Rinse off after your swim in the outdoor shower (set within a private walled garden style alfresco bathroom) and then take advantage of the complimentary stand-up paddleboard, kayak or bicycles that are included with every overwater bungalow. Explore the lagoon, or take a trip around the magical private island. 

Ideal for: Romance, secluded luxury and a true castaway experience.
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8. Six Senses Ninh Van Bay, Vietnam

Six Senses Ninh Van Bay describes itself as ‘the ultimate illusionist escape’ – the illusion being that you are cocooned on a remote island when in fact, this unique resort sits on a dramatic bay looking across the East Vietnam Sea – and it can only be reached via the water.

The untouched white sands and imposing mountains will take your breath away, and the resort’s incredible natural surroundings combine to create a truly special experience.  Ninh Van Bay is home to a rare troop of endangered monkeys who might grace you with their presence during your stay – just one of the many ways that this stunning resort paradise will captivate you with its natural appeal.

The overwater villas here offer a private garden terrace or tranquil sundeck. The Rock Retreat is a luxurious villa tucked away at the water's edge on the rock formations of a private bay.  These stunning accommodations are placed to face west into the setting sun and are accessed via a private wooden walkway. They come complete with steps leading directly into the water, and 24-hour access to your own personal GEM (Guest Experience Maker).

Ideal for: Luxury lovers who yearn to experience a natural sanctuary.
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9. Cayo Espanto, Belize

A world-class private island Belize resort in the Caribbean, offering a 5-star luxury experience in enchanting Caribbean surroundings.   

Cayo Espanto offers a truly gorgeous overwater experience in Casa Ventanas – a 1,100 square foot private bungalow at the end of a private dock and surrounded on all sides by the wonderful Caribbean waters.

Cayo Espanto oozes luxury and style, the private island spa is the ideal place to revitalise your senses, and there are endless opportunities to explore the surrounding waters with a private diving lesson, catamaran trip or private bird watching tour.

Ideal for: Couples seeking unrivalled luxury in stylish sumptuous surroundings.
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10. Banana Island, Doha

Banana Island is a unique private island getaway nestled on a golden sandy beach, accessible via a private catamaran near downtown Doha.  The resort’s luxury accommodations include a selection of large overwater villas that are ideal for families or small groups looking for stylish adventures overlooking the Middle Eastern Gulf.

This is an action-packed resort with a wide variety of exciting activities including surfing, diving, motorised water sports, and golf.  The island also boasts a revitalising spa and wellness centre which is nestled within lush botanical gardens.

The overwater villas offer a wide deck area with lounging and dining areas, ultra-modern amenities and a Villa Host.

Ideal for: Families in search of luxury, action, and adventure
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We are delighted to share our top 10 overwater villa locations outside of the Maldives! Perfect locations where you can enjoy a bucket list holiday experience in some of the world’s most beautiful destinations.

We can help you plan your own overwater bungalow experience anywhere in the world, simply contact us for a tailor-made quote.

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