Staying in a Tahitian Overwater Bungalow

Experience the luxury island life in Moorea, French Polynesia

I’ve always lived close to the water most of my life, either by the ocean or by the lake, so in many ways it’s a vital ingredient I seek in many of the travel destinations when heading off on an adventure.

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Staying somewhere right on the waters edge usually means it’s a magic place, but when our home away from home sits literally over water, we would soon discover that what we we’re about to experience was to be one of life’s perfect moments.

From arrival at The Manava Beach Resort & Spa, the whole island vibe was starting show its appeal – it started with a glass of cool fresh juice to enjoy while we sat at the reception to complete check-in documents.

After arrival formalities were completed one of the reception staff led us to our overwater bungalow. We meandered a path out toward the bungalow that winded around the resort infinity pool with a waters edge that practically joined the lagoon.

As the main resort buildings faded into the background and the lagoon began to surround us, the anticipation grew with each step we took along the boardwalk that led us to our overwater bungalow.

Then that moment arrived, we took our first steps inside our piece of paradise over water. There are few moments in life that leave you pleasantly stunned with expectation that’s been exceeded beyond imagination, but those moments that followed were completely unforgettable.

Moving through the bungalow we were totally enamoured by the bathroom and other traditional Tahitian fixtures throughout the main room, but all throughout our introduction to the bungalow what kept stealing our attention was the area leading out to our own private deck that included a ladder that literally began within the lagoon itself.

In the middle of our room was a glass viewing window peering down to the lagoon below, a constant reminder life over the next three days would be spent over water.

So what does life in an overwater bungalow mean?

For us, each day began with a cup of coffee, pulling back the curtains and watching the glistening sun come up over the horizon while hanging out on the deck. This was rapidly followed by grabbing our snorkelling gear we’d been supplied by the activity centre – and jumping into the crystal clear Moorea waters to go and swim with a myriad of brightly coloured fish that weaved in and out of the coral reef regeneration project the resort had developed. What a totally rejuvenating way to kick off the day!

After a morning splash in the lagoon we usually ended up enjoying a late buffet breakfast overlooking the pool while tucking into locally sourced coconut, fresh tropical fruit and the most delicious crepes.

Late mornings were spent grabbing a kayak or paddle board that were freely available from the resort activity desk. We’d get further out onto the lagoon reef where we cooled off with swim and explore a pretty colourful underwater array of sealife.

It wasn’t hard to slow things down in the afternoon, lying around the pool reading a book and sipping on cocktails.

There is such a fantastic mix of things to do on the island and Manava Beach Resort & Spa was perfectly located to get out and explore the island, buy some basic provisions from the local shopping centre or just totally kick back at the bungalow or pool.

Evenings we really enjoyed mixing it up, with dinner at one of the local nearby outdoor seafood restaurants or grabbing a gourmet pizza at the resort bar. A real highlight of the resorts evening options was having a superb buffet dinner with a Traditional Tahitian show, a visual showcase of dramatic drumming and spectacular dance.

This is something that is on many bucket lists around the world – tick off this luxurious experience for a more affordable price at Manava Beach Resort & Spa. While it may be more expensive than a normal hotel stay, the views you wake up to each morning are worth it in itself. 

The resort have a number of other types of accommodation available to suit various budgets. From the Garden Pool Suites to Beach Bungalows, they are all amazing.

This was a stay that was high up on our bucket list and we are so stoked we have been able to tick it off.

Trip Highlights

  • Watching the stars from our private balcony, while dipping our feet in the ocean
  • The incredible breakfast, fresh fruits and seafood
  • Being able to go swimming, snorkelling, paddle boarding or kayaking right off your balcony

The Details

Website: www.spmhotels.com/resort/moorea
Location: Moorea, French Polynesia

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