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There are no overwater bungalows in The Bahamas itself sadly, as they are specialist buildings which need certain conditions to be structural viable – conditions that are not so easy to find in The Bahamas.
But, by traveling just a little more south, you will find the Caribbean has plenty of tremendous overwater bungalow resorts – some of the world’s very best in fact.
With that in mind here are our choices for, and in-depth reviews of, the best overwater bungalows nearest The Bahamas in 2023. All of them can easily be reached via direct flights from most major US cities.
If though you have your heart set on a vacation in The Bahamas, and are prepared to forgo the novelty of an overwater bungalow, head to wereviewresorts.com for a round-up of its best all inclusive resorts in 2023, or try Booking.com for more general vacation accommodation.
Address: Aruba Ocean Villas
ArubaUpdated on October 4, 2022 Why We Like it: The Aruba Ocean Villas Resort, home to Aruba’s only overwater bungalows, occupies a slice of tropical paradise in the southwest of the island near Oranjestad and the international airport. This adults only resort is a luxury oasis with a gorgeous location, good facilities, top class food, drink and excellent service all round. It’s also small, intimate and friendly, and has none of the anonymous, almost industrial atmosphere of many of the large Caribbean resorts. They have only three over water bungalows at Aruba Ocean Villas, and they are extremely popular, so you’d be advised to book your stay well in advance. Overwater Bungalows & Other Accommodation: They have some fantastic, individually designed choices at Ocean Villas, all except one being doubles. The three coveted over the water choices – listed on the booking page as LouLou, Isla Alistaire and Dushi Sue are opulent, spacious and very well furnished and equipped. They are also all very beautiful but Dushi Sue is our favorite – a tremendously stylish 1000 sq ft oasis. They may not have the classic glass floor panels that are a feature of many overwater bungalows but they are homely, and extremely comfortable and stylish. If the overwater bungalows are booked out you will absolutely not be disappointed by the other beachfront choices at Aruba Ocean Villas. They are slightly smaller but also beautifully designed, furnished and equipped and have a nice cosy feel. All of the above are doubles but for larger groups/families there is the Sunset Villa which is a private villa about 5 minutes away from the resort center. It can sleep up to eight people over four spacious bedrooms. It is a gorgeous property and has tremendous views over the ocean. Overwater Bungalow Prices: Check out all the details – prices, reviews & more photos, on the booking page here. Resort Facilities & Things to Do: As mentioned above, Aruba Ocean Villas is a small, intimate resort with a laid back, familiar atmosphere, so you shouldn’t expects too many fancy facilities. There is no spa here (yet) for example but they do offer a range of READ MORE
Category: 5 Star Luxury Overwater Bungalows, Adults Only Overwater Bungalows, All Inclusive Overwater Bungalows, Overwater Bungalows for Honeymoons, Overwater Resorts with Spa, Overwater Bungalows with Glass Floor, Overwater Bungalows with Private Pool, and Resorts with Private Butler ServiceAddress: Sandals Cay
JamaicaWhy We Like it: The couples-only Sandals Royal Caribbean, near Montego Bay and just minutes from Sangster International Airport, was the very first overwater bungalow resort in Jamaica and indeed the first in the entire region. The concept was an immediate success and the Sandals company soon followed it with more bungalows at Sandals South Coast (also in Jamaica) and in their branch in St. Lucia. Sandals Royal Caribbean though was the ground breaker, or well…water breaker, in this region and its standards have been extremely high from the beginning. It is a high end luxury, all inclusive paradise with a private island (where the overwater bungalows are to be found), top of the range facilities, superb food and drink, and consistently excellent service. It also has a tremendous location: getting to most overwater bungalow resorts usually involves a fairly long journey from the nearest airport but here you are, tantalizingly, just minutes (via the resort’s private shuttle) away. Overwater Bungalows: They have a great range of accommodation to choose from; hotel rooms, suites and over the water accommodation offering varying levels of space and luxury to suit most budgets. Their beautiful overwater bungalows, attached to a gorgeous little private island, have set the standards high from the very beginning. They have a tangible sense of luxury, are sleek, modern and spacious (just over 1,100 square feet), and come with outdoor terraces, infinity plunge pools, large glass floor panels, romantic spa style bathrooms with bathtubs, a wealth of modern facilities and 24 hour room service with an exclusive in-room dining menu. Those with the infinity plunge pools will cost you quite a bit extra but they are also more spacious. Prices & Availability: Check out all the details and compare prices at the resort’s own website (Sandals) here, at Expedia.com here and at Booking.com here. Note: Like most luxury overwater bungalows in the Caribbean the overwater bungalows at Sandals Royal Caribbean are incredibly sought after – you should really reserve your stay as soon as possible. You are allowed free cancellation on most bookings. Last Minute Deals? In order to fill gaps in occupancy (if they have any) due to cancellations READ MORE
Category: 5 Star Luxury Overwater Bungalows, Adults Only Overwater Bungalows, Overwater Bungalows for Honeymoons, Overwater Resorts with Spa, Overwater Bungalows with Private Pool, and Resorts with Private Butler ServiceAddress: Carretera Federal Cancun - Playa del Carmen Km 298
MexicoWhy We Like it: One of three overwater bungalow resorts near Cancun, Mexico – the others being the nearby Banyan Tree Mayakoba and Palafitos El Dorado resorts – Rosewood Mayakoba shares the same serene Caribbean coast setting along with high quality accommodation, service and facilities, in particular its award winning spa. It is a sophisticated resort and though it attracts a very much high end clientele, there is little in the way of snootiness. The atmosphere is relaxed and friendly throughout. Overwater Bungalows & Other Accommodation: The resort has 129 sleek and modern suites and villas of varying sizes from 780 sq. ft. to 1500 sq. ft, all of which come with an array of luxury facilities and the very finest interior design. They have a sleek and classy modern design, and a real sense of luxury. Features include private plunge pools, spacious open plan bathrooms with bathtubs, indoor and outdoor showers, walk in closets and a separate lounge area with seating and dining space. Facilities include WiFi, Satellite TV, DVD player, iPod docks, Bose music systems, personal butlers and 24 hour room service. The bungalows are adults only, though the rest of the resort is family friendly, they have a maximum occupancy of two and feel very spacious indeed with 977 sq. ft. of interior space and 498 sq. ft. of private terrace outside which includes an infinity style plunge pool (that can be heated, rather unnecessarily perhaps). Prices & Availability Check out all the details at Trip.com here or at Expedia.com here. Resort Facilities & Things to Do: Though the overwater bungalows at Rosewood Mayakoba, like in most places, are adults only, the resort itself is family friendly, there is in fact a kids club, and children can be accommodated in the other suites and villas. There are a number of fantastic restaurants to choose from here; Caso del Lago serves Italian with a Mexican twist, Agave Azul mainly does Asian influenced seafood dishes. Punta Bonita is a Mexican bistro while the cool Aqui Mi Quedo serves Mexican and Caribbean street food, has a casual bar like atmosphere, and is adults only. La Fondita is a Mexico City READ MORE
Category: 5 Star Luxury Overwater Bungalows, Family Friendly Overwater Bungalows, Overwater Bungalows for Honeymoons, Overwater Resorts with Spa, and Overwater Bungalows with Private PoolAddress: Banyan Tree Mayakoba
MexicoWhy We Like it: The newest of only three overwater bungalow resorts in Mexico, the other two being the nearby Palafitos El Dorado Resort and the even more nearby Rosewood Mayakoba, Banyan Tree Mayakoba is another very much exclusive resort near Playa del Carmen. It wins consistently great reviews for its eco friendly principles, its choice setting, its luxury accommodation and facilities, which include a Greg Norman designed 18 hole golf course and an award winning spa, and gourmet food & drink. Their overwater bungalows are more European chalet-like than rustic Polynesian. The interiors are sleek, modern and plush but with plenty of some nice earthy, back to nature touches. They are set over two floors and offer a far greater sense of privacy than most. Overwater Bungalows & Other Accommodation: The above mentioned over water villas are all doubles with king size bed and are very spacious indeed – over their two floors they cover a full 2400 square feet / 222 sq. meters. They have a heated plunge pool on the private terrace which has views over the lagoon. Their bathrooms are particularly nice with spa baths as standard. As with the resort in general, though they have a sleek modern design, the overriding philosophy with the overwater villas is harmony with nature. The decor and furniture are generally of wood or other organic materials and the many native Yucatan potted plants add an extra earthy, jungly vibe. These overwater villas are an extremely popular choice, and there are only 6 in total, so you can be expect to be disappointed unless booking well in advance. If they do happen to be booked out though the Banyan Tree has a tremendous choice of luxury accommodation, all with private pools, some of the finest in the Cancun region in fact. Prices & Availability: Check out all the details at Booking.com here at Expedia here. or at Trip.com here. Resort Facilities & Things to Do: Banyan Tree guests have access to the Greg Norman designed El Camaleón Golf Course right next door and the resort’s top of the range spa facilities have won many plaudits and awards. It has a READ MORE
Category: 5 Star Luxury Overwater Bungalows, Adults Only Overwater Bungalows, All Inclusive Overwater Bungalows, Overwater Bungalows for Honeymoons, Overwater Resorts with Spa, Overwater Bungalows with Glass Floor, and Resorts with Private Butler ServiceAddress: Sandals South Coast
JamaicaWhy We Like it: One of only two overwater bungalow resorts in Jamaica (the other being Sandals Royal Caribbean), Sandals South Coast is a 5 star luxury, adults only, all inclusive resort which offers Epicurean indulgence in a dreamy Caribbean beach setting. The resort is large and the amount, and quality, of facilities and activities on offer is very impressive. The food is a particular attraction – guests have nine great gourmet restaurants to choose from with food which spans the globe. Overwater Bungalows: They have a wide range of luxury accommodation to choose from, between rooms, suites and over water bungalows/villas, all offering varying levels of space, luxury and privacy. Their 1,100 square feet over water villas are suitably plush and luxurious, and come with outdoor sun decks with soaking tubs and overwater hammocks, internal glass floor panels, particularly nice, spa style bathrooms, personal butler service and an exclusive in-room dining and room service menu. Prices & Availability: Check out all the details and compare prices at the resort’s own website (Sandals) here, on Expedia.com here and at Booking.com here. Note: Like all luxury overwater bungalows in the Caribbean those at Sandals South Coast are incredibly sought after – you should really reserve your stay as soon as possible. You are allowed free cancellation on most bookings. Last Minute Deals? In order to fill gaps in occupancy (if they have any) due to cancellations etc., Sandals sometimes offers discounts on last minute stays, generally offering one free night on stays of 3 or 4 nights if booked up to a few weeks in advance. Check for any Last Minute Deals Here. Resort Facilities & Things to Do: Sandals South Coast is very large indeed with different European themed sections such as French Village, Italian Village, Dutch Village and Venetian Piazza. There is a lot going on around the resort though the overwater bungalow section is slightly away from it all and so very peaceful. You have nine gourmet restaurants to choose from which serve consistently excellent European, Asian and Caribbean cuisine, as well as eleven different bars with a range of musical, and other, entertainment, and a huge range READ MORE
Category: 5 Star Luxury Overwater Bungalows, Adults Only Overwater Bungalows, All Inclusive Overwater Bungalows, Overwater Bungalows for Honeymoons, Overwater Resorts with Spa, Overwater Bungalows with Glass Floor, and Resorts with Private Butler ServiceAddress: Pigeon Island, Gros Islet
Saint LuciaWhy We Like it: Sandals, fresh from their success with over the water accommodation in Jamaica, quickly turned their sights to St Lucia, and here at the all-inclusive, adults only, Sandals Grande St. Lucian resort you have the same levels of luxury and service.. Their overwater bungalows are a honeymoon favorite and with only nine of them they are generally booked out well in advance. They come with glass floor panels that allow you to peer into the Caribbean just below your feet, tranquility soaking tubs, private patios and over water hammocks amongst other special features. They also have a 24 hour personal butler service and the service throughout the resort is top notch – efficient and professional but also personable. Overwater Bungalows & Other Accommodation: They have an enormous range of accommodation at the resort, with the above mentioned overwater accommodation being absolutely the most popular. These have a spacious, luxurious feel with hardwood floors, vaulted ceilings, king-size beds with soft linens and plush pillows, smart TVs, sun decks, outdoor showers, swish bathrooms and 24 hour personal butler service. Many of the other choices well match, if not surpass, the style and sophistication of the overwaters though just without the novelty of having the ocean directly under your feet. The beachside suites in particular are extremely opulent and very much worth considering if the overwaters are not free. Prices & Availability: Check out all the price details on the Sandal’s website here. Note 1: The overwater bungalows at Sandals St. Lucian are only available to book via the Sandals official website. Note 2: Like all luxury overwater bungalows in the Caribbean the ones here are incredibly sought after – you really should reserve your stay as soon as possible. You are allowed free cancellation on all bookings within a certain time frame (check their site for full details). Last Minute Deals? In order to fill gaps in occupancy (if they have any) due to cancellations etc., Sandals sometimes offers discounts on last minute stays, generally offering one free night on stays of 3 or 4 nights if booked up to a few weeks in advance. Check for any Last READ MORE
Category: 5 Star Luxury Overwater Bungalows, Adults Only Overwater Bungalows, All Inclusive Overwater Bungalows, Overwater Bungalows for Honeymoons, Overwater Resorts with Spa, Overwater Bungalows with Glass Floor, Overwater Bungalows with Private Pool, and Resorts with Private Butler ServiceAddress: Five Islands Village
Antigua and BarbudaWhy We Like it: First opening its doors in May 2019, Royalton Antigua is an all inclusive resort that is home to Antigua’s only overwater bungalows. The resort offers opulence and luxury and has a choice setting on the clear, calm waters of Antigua’s Deep Bay, less than twenty minutes from St. John’s, and a half an hour from V. C. Bird International Airport. Having been recently (late 2021) acquired by the Marriott Hotel group, you can expect it, little by little, to become one of Antigua’s most sought after resorts. Overwater Bungalows & Other Accommodation: The accommodation choices are many, with of course the over water villas taking pride of place. They cover a full 1442 square feet and have king size bedrooms, lounges (with sofa bed), dining areas and gorgeous outdoor terraces overlooking the Caribbean. They are also sleek, sophisticated and luxurious. Expect private infinity plunge pools, jacuzzis, glass floor viewing panels, private butlers and 24 hour room service as well as in-room aromatherapy, satellite TV, top of the range music systems, complimentary IPTV movie selections, twice daily re-stocked minibars and a pillow menu for example. The other accommodation choices are a mixture of suites in different locations around the private beach and all of them share the same sleek interiors and modern luxury features. They can all sleep up to four but are generally smaller than the overwater bungalows which have over 1,100 square feet (106 square meters) of space. Note: Children (under 13) are not allowed to stay in the overwater bungalows, hence we have placed The Royalton in the Adults Only category. In all the other accommodation though children are welcome. Prices & Availability: Check out the details at Trip.com here, Expedia.com here or on the resort’s own website (Marriott) here. Note: Like all luxury overwater bungalows in the Caribbean those at Royalton Antigua are extremely sought after – you should really reserve your stay as soon as possible. You are allowed free cancellation on most bookings. Resort Facilities & Things to Do: The resort has seven restaurants in total, with complimentary in-room private dinner and drinks service also available. The choice of food is enormous READ MORE
Address: Thatch Caye Island
BelizeWhy We Like it: Thatch Caye is a private island paradise in the Caribbean with overwater bungalows 25 minutes by speedboat from mainland Belize. It is eco-friendly and has a kind of rustic, barefoot chic vibe. It caters for no more than 30 people at any one time too so also feels relatively intimate and exclusive, but with a friendly, communal atmosphere. Numerous activities are offered at Thatch Caye and your days can be as busy or as peaceful and relaxed as you may wish. Overwater Bungalows & Other Accommodation: You have a choice of beach cabanas and overwater bungalows. The latter are divided between Standard and Premium with the standard units being three bungalows sitting practically right beside each other just off the shore. Thus they’re really not ideal if privacy is what you’re after. But for a group of friends, if booked together, they could be perfect. The premium overwater bungalows on the other hand offer a huge amount of privacy. Though they are pretty much the same internally as the standard bungalows they have their own private walkway so feel very secluded indeed. They don’t cost all that much more so we think an upgrade to these premium bungalows will make sense to most people, especially those seeking a romantic getaway. Both have 320 sq. ft of nicely furnished and very comfortable space, including an outside terrace, so they’re not enormous but are certainly cosy and romantic. On shore you have a choice of beach cabanas, divided into Standard, Premier and Penthouse, with the Penthouse being the most desirable and most expensive. It is the largest at 441 sq ft and offers views over the open ocean from the terrace. In line with the island’s back to nature, modern-life detox philosophy none of the accommodation has Wifi (or TV) but you can find WiFi in the common areas. Prices & Availability: Check out all the details – prices, reviews and more photos, on the booking page here. Resort Facilities & Things to Do: Between its three restaurants/cafes/bars the food at Thatch Caye is well received by guests, with much of the ingredients coming from their own organic READ MORE
Category: Adults Only Overwater Bungalows, Overwater Bungalows for Honeymoons, and Overwater Resorts with SpaAddress: St. George's Caye
BelizeWhy We Like it: The adults only St. George’s Caye is a scenic private island off the coast of Belize City near to the Caribbean’s largest, and the world’s second largest, barrier reef. It offers adventure and excitement on the one hand (it is a popular vacation spot for divers for eg.) and peace and tranquility on the other (honeymooners come here too). The food is generally highly praised, with breakfast, lunch and dinner included in the room rate, the service is great and the atmosphere relaxed, warm and friendly. It sells itself a luxury resort but if you are indeed expecting luxury the accommodation, though charming and very comfortable, may be underwhelming. Overall though the resort, the island and general atmosphere of the place make it a very enjoyable place to spend time in. Overwater Bungalows & Other Accommodation: You have a choice of broadly similar thatched roof cabanas, all doubles/twins in three different locations – Overwater, Beachfront & Garden, with the Oceanfront being the most expensive, the Garden cheapest and the Overwater in the middle price range. In the vast majority of resorts the over water accommodation is the most expensive choice but not at St. George’s – this is, we imagine, because they are quite closely huddled together, in a half circle facing the sea, and therefore offer less privacy than other cabanas. Some people may like this almost sociable setting but if it’s a relaxing romantic sojourn you’re after then you’d be far better off in a Garden or Oceanfront Bungalows, with the latter being our favorite. All the cabanas are pretty much the same size (roughly 380 sq ft.) and design, and are rustic, romantic and cosy with thatched roofs and lots of native wood furniture and fittings. There is air-con and a mini fridge but not much more in terms of modern facilities. Wifi for example is only available in the main building. Outside they all have nice verandahs with hammock and seating. The overwaters are just off shore and don’t have private access to the water, you can go for a dip though by just stepping out the front door. Prices & Availability: READ MORE
Category: 5 Star Luxury Overwater Bungalows, Adults Only Overwater Bungalows, All Inclusive Overwater Bungalows, Overwater Bungalows for Honeymoons, Overwater Resorts with Spa, Overwater Bungalows with Glass Floor, Overwater Bungalows with Private Pool, and Resorts with Private Butler ServiceAddress: Carretera Cancun Tulum, Km 55.3
MexicoWhy We Like it: This adults only, all inclusive near Cancun is home to Palafitos, the very first overwater bungalows in Mexico (there are now still just three: the other two being the very nearby Rosewood Mayakoba & Banyan Tree Mayakoba) and consistently hits world class standards for luxury all inclusives. It really is a tremendous resort – it has a fabulous location on Maroma Beach, Playa del Carmen – rated one of the Caribbean’s, and in fact the world’s, best beaches – the accommodation is wonderful across the board, their gourmet food and drink is of the highest quality, and the activities on offer are numerous. Overwater Bungalows: As mentioned, the Palafitos’ bungalows were the very first in Mexico and come with all the features you would expect from such a pioneering resort – glass floor panels, jacuzzis, private infinity pools, outdoor showers and direct access to the crystal clear waters below your feet. There are two types – the standard Palafitos are closer to the shore and have partial ocean, partial beach views. The ‘Elite Suite Bungalows’ on the other hand are farthest out, at the end of the pier, and have unobstructed ocean views. Thus they are more exclusive and peaceful, and give more of a at one with the water type feeling. You’ll be paying an extra premium for that privilege though of course, that’s if you are lucky enough to get one – The Elite Bungalows are, despite the hefty extra charge, extremely popular and get booked out much further in advance. Check them both out on the booking page here. Both are pretty much identical internally though – they both cover roughly 600 square feet and are incredibly luxurious. They come with extra large, terrifically comfortable double beds, a seating/dining area, sections of glass bottom floor, a jacuzzi, an infinity type plunge pool on the terrace overlooking the water plus an outdoor shower. Other facilities include WiFi, cable TV, air con, iPod docks, mini bar, 24 hour room service and private butler service. Prices & Availability: Check out all the details and compare prices at Booking.com here or at Expedia.com here. Note: Like all luxury READ MORE
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