If you feel like the flight to the Maldives or Bora Bora, where the largest amount of overwater bungalows and villas exist, is too far – then rest assured, there are options available just a short flight from the continental USA.
Overwater bungalows tend to be a type of luxury accommodation that are built on stilts over the water, providing guests with a special vacation lodging that not many places offer.
In the Caribbean, there are several resorts that offer overwater bungalows or overwater villas, each with their own unique features and amenities.
In the last decade, but more so the last two-five years, the demand for an overwater bungalow vacation has risen drastically. Which can cause the availability to be scarce. However, people cancel their trips all the time for various reasons.
On any given day, I can go to a resorts website that has overwater bungalows as a lodging option and find some sort of availability. It may not be the dates you want, but if you remain flexible or are willing to book into the future, you can take your dream trip.
One thing I want to note, the overwater bungalows and villas I am going to share here are at all-inclusive, luxury resorts. If you were to go to Bora Bora, there are no all-inclusive properties. There are less than 10 resorts in Bora Bora with overwater villas.
In the Maldives, there is well over 100+ resorts to choose from, giving you access to a large variety of options. There are about 10 or so all-inclusive options there.
While you will have the most options for an overwater bungalow vacation in the Maldives, it will take a day or more to get there from the USA just due to travel time and layover(s).
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Prettiest Overwater Bungalows close to the USA
Sandals Royal Caribbean
Sandals Royal Caribbean is an adults-only, luxury, all-inclusive resort located in Montego Bay, Jamaica.
One of the resort’s standout features is its overwater villas and overwater bungalows, which provide guests with a luxurious experience just one and a half hours from Miami!
Yes, paradise is closer than you thought!
The overwater villas at Sandals Royal Caribbean are built on stilts off a private island, offering stunning views of the Caribbean Sea and direct access to the water via a private swim-up platform.
Each villa is spacious and well-appointed, featuring a king-size bed, a spa-style bathroom with a freestanding tub, and a large balcony with an outdoor shower, private pool, several seating areas, and stairs with direct access into the ocean.
The villa is in three sections when you walk in. You have a bistro table and butlers pantry, which you can close off. Then the biggest room is the bedroom with TV, desk, and seating area. This room can also be closed off completely to the bathroom.
The bathroom is very large with a tub, shower, dual sinks, and a walk-in closet.
Each room provides guests with access to the outside deck, which is the full length of the villa.
Sandals Royal Caribbean also has overwater bungalows, which are not the same as the overwater villas. This is the only property currently where Sandals offers the villas.
The main difference is the size between the rooms and the pool. The villas are substantially larger and have a private pool. All of them face the ocean.
The overwater bungalows, built the same as the ones at Sandals South Coast, are smaller, some face the resort and the beach, the deck is about one third the size of the overwater villas, and there is no pool.
There is a big price difference as well.
Both of these room categories require a quick three minute boat ride from the main property to the private island. They do not jet out the way most do at other resorts.
On the private island there is also restaurants, a pool, beach, swim-up bar, and more. Other guests can come to the private islands from any of the three resorts.
However, there are two docks for dropping passengers off. One is where the guests staying go, there is a concierge there and the other is over by the beach and restaurants.
In addition to the luxurious amenities in the villas, guests staying in the overwater villas at Sandals Royal Caribbean have access to a range of exclusive services and facilities.
These include butler service, 24-hour room service with a special menu exclusive to the overwater rooms, a personal hammock, and a private infinity pool.
Guests can also enjoy the resort’s many other amenities, including several pools, gourmet restaurants, bars, a spa, and a fitness center. The resort also offers a range of water sports and activities for guests to enjoy as well.
One additional perk of staying at Sandals Royal Caribbean is the “Stay at one, plat at three” option the resort has. You are free to visit the other two Sandals Resorts in the area and utilize their restaurants and facilities.
There is a shuttle that runs between the resorts all day.
Sandals South Coast
Sandals South Coast is an adults-only, luxury, all-inclusive resort located on the south coast of Jamaica.
You will likely fly into Montego Bay, Jamaica at Sangster International Airport, where on arrival you will check in with Sandals Resorts, then you will be whisked away in a private, luxury sedan, equipped with prepared snacks and beverages. The drive is about 60-90 minutes away depending on traffic.
The resort offers a variety of amazing room offerings, including overwater bungalows in the shape of a heart from above, which provide guests with a unique and luxurious experience just a short flight from the United States.
The Overwater Bungalows at Sandals South Coast are located on a pristine stretch of beach, overlooking the turquoise waters of the Caribbean Sea.
Each bungalow features a private patio with an outdoor shower, a tranquility soaking tub, a bistro table, and a lounge area with sun loungers.
Inside, the bungalows are designed with a contemporary Caribbean style in an open floorplan, with plush furnishings, hardwood floors, and modern amenities such as air conditioning, flat-screen TVs, and a fully stocked minibar that your butler will set up with whatever you like.
The spacious bathrooms feature double vanities, walk-in shower, and designer toiletries (Molton Brown).
Guests staying in the Overwater Bungalows at Sandals South Coast also have access to a range of exclusive amenities, including a personal butler service, private entry area for the overwater bungalows, private beach area with cabanas, 24-hour room service – which this specialized menu is far superior than any of the other room categories on property, including butler rooms, and you get a private luxury transfer from the airport.
In addition to the Overwater Bungalows, Sandals South Coast offers a range of other accommodation options, as well as a variety of dining options, bars – including an over the water bar, and activities, including water sports, tennis, and golf.
The resort also has several pools, a swim-up bar, nightly entertainment, as well as a full-service spa and fitness center.
Palafitos at El Dorado Maroma
Palafitos El Dorado Maroma is a luxury all-inclusive, adults only, resort located in Riviera Maya, Mexico.
The resort features a unique and stunning accommodation option, the overwater bungalows, known as Palafitos.
Please note, there are three styles overwater bungalows on this property, included a two bedroom presidential overwater bungalow which can accommodate four adults.
The Palafitos at El Dorado Maroma are built on stilts over the turquoise waters of Maroma Beach, with some rooms providing guests with unobstructed views of the Caribbean Sea.
Each bungalow is spacious and well-appointed, featuring a king-size bed, a living area with a sofa and glass-bottom floor, and a bathroom with a freestanding tub and a rain shower.
The bungalows also have a private terrace with a heated infinity pool, a daybed, and direct access to the water.
Guests staying in the Palafitos at El Dorado Maroma can also enjoy a range of exclusive services and amenities, including a personalized butler service, 24-hour room service, and private check-in and check-out.
In addition, guests have access to the resort’s many amenities, including several restaurants, bars, a spa, a fitness center, and a variety of water sports and activities.
One of the unique features of the Palafitos at El Dorado Maroma is the “Aguas del Amor” outdoor shower, where guests can enjoy a shower with views of the ocean.
The Palafitos at El Dorado Maroma offer a luxurious and unforgettable vacation experience in a breathtaking setting, making it a popular destination for honeymooners and couples seeking a romantic getaway.
The combination of modern luxury and natural beauty makes this resort a truly special place to stay.
Sandals Grande St Lucian
Sandals Grande St. Lucian is a luxury, all-inclusive, adults-only resort located on the island of St. Lucia in the Caribbean.
The resort features a range of accommodation options, including overwater bungalows, which offer a unique and luxurious experience for guests.
The overwater bungalows at Sandals Grande St. Lucian are located on a pier that extends out over the Caribbean Sea, offering stunning views of the water and the surrounding scenery.
Each bungalow features a private patio with an outdoor shower, a tranquility soaking tub, and a lounge area with sun loungers.
In addition, you can get right into the ocean with steps to help you get in and/or out, and a raft to float in.
Inside, the bungalows are decorated in a contemporary Caribbean style, with plush furnishings, hardwood floors, and modern amenities such as air conditioning, flat-screen TVs, and a fully stocked minibar.
The spacious bathrooms feature double vanities, walk-in showers, and designer toiletries by Molton Brown.
Guests staying in the Overwater Bungalows also have access to a range of exclusive amenities, including a personal butler service, 24-hour room service, and a private transfer from the airport in a luxury vehicle!
The drive is about an hour and a half away from the airport and you will get a luxury sedan with snacks and beverages!
In addition to the overwater bungalows, Sandals Grande St. Lucian also offers a range of other accommodation options, as well as a variety of dining options, bars, and activities, including water sports, tennis, and golf. The resort also has several pools, as well as a full-service spa and fitness center.
Royalton Antigua is a luxury, all-inclusive, family friendly resort located on the beautiful beach of Deep Bay in Antigua.
One of the resort’s most popular features is its overwater bungalows, which offer guests a luxurious accommodation option. But note, there are only six on property and these are the only overwater bungalows in all of Antigua!
The overwater bungalows at Royalton Antigua are situated on stilts over the turquoise waters of Deep Bay Beach.
Each bungalow is spacious and well-appointed, featuring a king-size bed, a sitting area with a sofa bed, and a large bathroom with a rain shower and a freestanding tub.
The bungalows also come with a private balcony featuring an infinity plunge pool, as well as a hammock and lounge chairs for guests to relax and enjoy the stunning views.
Guests staying in the overwater bungalows at Royalton Antigua also have access to a range of exclusive services and amenities, including 24-hour room service, personalized butler service, and VIP check-in and check-out.
In addition, guests can enjoy the resort’s many other amenities, including several restaurants, bars, a spa, a fitness center, and a variety of water sports and activities.
There are a lot of great things to do in Antigua – the island has 365 beaches!
One of the unique features of the overwater bungalows at Royalton Antigua is the Glass Floor Observation Panel, which provides guests with a fascinating view of the marine life below.
Guests can also swim and snorkel in the crystal-clear waters directly from their bungalow’s private terrace.
Speaking from a price perspective alone, visiting the Maldives can be more budget friendly because of the large amount of resorts there. Of course you will still have to travel there.
But overall, the cost to stay in any of these overwater bungalows in the Caribbean, Maldives or Bora Bora, all end up costing about the same.
You are going to pay more upfront at the Caribbean locations, and possibly overall, because these are all-inclusive and high in demand. When you visit Bora Bora, there are no all-inclusive resorts, so you will be paying per meal, unless you find a package deal.
Aruba Ocean Villas
This boutique property is the only hotel in all of Aruba that offers overwater bungalows!
With the recent expansion of the penthouses, no details were missed in the creation of these beauties.
The newest addition, the Penthouse Potcho Potcho, the bungalow is the only two-story villa. Complete with a wide open floor plan: living space, dining room, full kitchen, expansive deck to include a bed, hammock, dining area, bar, full bathroom, a unique bathtub, access to the ocean, and your own private plunge pool!
On the second floor, there is a full bedroom with multiple seating areas, an expansive outdoor deck with seating areas, a massage table for in room spa treatments, another bathroom with a stunning tub, hammocks, a formal dining space, and so much more!
This villa truly is a work of art!
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