3 BEST Moorea Overwater Bungalows & Resorts

Looking for a guide on the best overwater bungalow in Moorea?

Moorea is an idyllic destination for travelers seeking elegant beaches, epic hiking trails, and the most incredible views you’ve ever laid your eyes on.

There’s no shortage of luxury resorts and overwater bungalows on Moorea, perfect for a special or romantic holiday in French Polynesia. We’ve had the opportunity to stay in two of the three overwater bungalows in Moorea: Sofitel Kia Ora Moorea Beach Resort and Hilton Moorea Lagoon Resort & Spa.

And since 2020, we have spent three months in Moorea, allowing us to fully understand the island and all it offers.

Let’s jump into the best overwater bungalow resorts in Moorea, from the most luxurious to the most affordable option.

Best Overwater Bungalows In Moorea

Moorea has three luxury resorts with overwater bungalows. Four resorts on the island offered these types of villas, but InterContinental Resort and Spa Moorea closed in 2020 due to managerial issues.

For a quick guide, here is a rundown of bungalows on the island:

Best Overall Overwater Bungalows in MooreaHilton Moorea Lagoon Resort & Spa
Best Overwater Bungalow Resort For Families & SnorkelingSofitel Kia Ora Moorea Beach Resort
Cheapest Overwater Bungalow in MooreaHotel Manava Beach Resort & Spa

Of course, you should consider a few more things before booking your stay on Moorea, such as locations, amenities, and price.

We’ll break down each resort in our list below so you can choose the right overwater bungalow for your holiday.

1. Hilton Moorea Lagoon Resort & Spa – Best For Couples & Honeymooners

The  Hilton Moorea Lagoon Resort & Spa is a world-class, 5-star resort that offers a once-in-a-lifetime experience for travelers in Moorea. We were blown away by our experience at the Hilton Moorea, and we know you will be, too.

Looking for a romantic stay for your honeymoon? This is THE resort you must add to your French Polynesia itinerary. After staying in both Sofitel and Hilton, we can confidently say the Hilton is geared more toward couples, honeymooners, and adults.

The Hilton is located on the island’s northern side between Cook’s Bay and Opunohu Bay. We love this location because it is close to restaurants, shopping, and gorgeous beaches like Ta’ahiamanu Beach (our favorite).

Hilton Moorea Lagoon Resort & Spa: Pros

Here are a few more things we loved about the Hilton Moorea Lagoon Resort & Spa:

  • The views of the island are absolutely spectacular here. If you want the most epic sights of the island at your doorstep, book your stay at the Hilton.
  • The staff are friendly. We spent much time chatting with the man managing the pool/towel area and the kind server who delivered us drinks directly to our beach chairs on the shore.
  • The hotel gives back ($2 per person per night) to marine diversity and ocean preservation efforts.
  • You can even learn how to plant coral (I had no idea this was a real thing) right at the Hilton Resort. They team up with Eco Reef, a nonprofit working tirelessly to protect the reefs around French Polynesia.
  • They regularly update their resort; the server at the Hilton was telling us that they were about to give the pool area a facelift (not that it needed it, in our opinion).
  • It’s very private. While all luxury resorts on the island are “private,” the Hilton feels particularly private because it sits on a short peninsula.
  • The food is amazing. We always test out the restaurants at any resort we go to. Mike tried the lamb chops, and I had the pesto pasta. Both meals were clearly prepared by a talented chef. The attention to detail was superb.

💡Pro Tip: Enjoy dinner for two in your bungalow. Room service can be ordered for a small surcharge from any of the restaurants onsite.

Hilton Moorea Lagoon Resort & Spa: Cons

Here are some things we didn’t especially like about the resort (this will be a short list):

  • It is the most expensive resort on the island. You will shell out a lot of money if you plan to stay at the Hilton on Moorea. But is it worth it? We think so!
  • The snorkeling at the Hilton isn’t nearly as good as the snorkeling at Sofitel Kia Ora Moorea Beach Resort. But you can visit Tema’e Beach, directly next to Sofitel, and snorkel there while still staying at the Hilton.

Note that slightly cheaper garden bungalows are available at the Hilton, but you simply can’t visit Moorea without staying in one of their impressive overwater bungalows. Here are your overwater bungalow options at the Hilton:

All three overwater bungalow options are similar in price, ranging from $1,200-$2,000 per night.

We recommend the King Overwater Bungalow with panoramic views because it is further out on the dock for a more complete lagoon view and additional privacy. Some bungalows were directly in front of the beach. And although the beach is private for Hilton guests, other guests are still there.

Additional notable amenities include free snorkeling gear and kayaks, a tennis court and fitness center, a day spa, a pearl shop, private terraces with direct lagoon access, a large swimming pool, and plenty of cabanas (if you’re anything like me, you like to be outside but out of the sun).

2. Sofitel Kia Ora Moorea Beach Resort – Best For Families & Snorkeling

Sofitel Moorea Kia Ora Resort & Spa is our second recommendation for overwater bungalows in Moorea. We stayed at the Sofitel Kia Ora Moorea in 2020 and loved it.

This overwater bungalow resort is on the eastern side of Moorea, near the ferry and airport. During our stay, we really liked the Sofitel’s convenient and private location.

Sofitel Kia Ora Moorea Beach Resort: Pros

Here are some additional features we liked about Sofitel Kia Ora Moorea:

  • The staff is exceptional. They generously upgraded our room without us asking, and we received nothing but smiles from everyone on the property. I will go as far as saying that the staff at Sofitel is even more friendly than the staff at the Hilton.
  • The snorkeling is the best on the island. If you want to spend most of your time exploring the reefs of Moorea, you must stay in an overwater bungalow at Sofitel Kia Ora Moorea. Mike loved our private terrace because he could easily access the reefs from our bungalow.
  • The prices here are slightly cheaper than the Hilton. You will still pay a lot of money to stay in an overwater bungalow at Sofitel, but you’ll likely pay less here than you would at the Hilton.
  • The views are also beautiful here. I don’t want to paint a picture as if the Hilton is the only resort in Moorea with fantastic views. The Sofitel Kia Ora also offers jaw-dropping views. In fact, you can visit Toatea Lookout Point for a birdseye view of the surroundings, which is just steps from the resort.
  • The Sofitel Resort is perfect for families. We found that more families stay at this resort than the Hilton. If you’re traveling with kids, this could be an excellent option for you.
  • You’ll be connected to Tema’e Beach. Tema’e Beach is one of the most elegant beaches on the island; it’s the only truly protected beach on the island. Note that this is a public beach, but it stretches far along the northeastern corner of Moorea, which means there’s plenty of room for everyone. We’ve never seen this beach “busy.”

Sofitel Kia Ora Moorea Beach Resort: Cons

There isn’t much to dislike about this resort, but we did find a few inconsistencies that you might want to be aware of:

  • The food is only okay. During our stay at Sofitel Kia Ora Moorea, we found that the restaurant food wasn’t the best. For a 5-star resort with overwater bungalows, we expected much more from the food. We were also disappointed with the serving sizes of many dishes and desserts. For example, we paid around $17 for a piece of cake, which only offered a bite and a half for each of us (Mike and me).
  • It wasn’t quite as private. Although there is technically a private beach at Sofitel Kia Ora Moorea, you’re still sharing it with Tema’e Beach. And while you’ll love Tema’e Beach, the resort didn’t feel quite as private because of this.
  • It’s far from other restaurants. If you’re staying at an overwater bungalow at the Sofitel Moorea, you’ll need to rent a car, motorbike, or hire a taxi to bring you to other restaurants or locations on the island. It is not possible to walk anywhere from Sofitel other than Tema’e Beach.
  • It’s located on a dangerous corner. The Sofitel is tucked in on a corner of the road leading away from the ferry from Tahiti. Though this is a great location to get to and from the ferry and airport, it is a potentially dangerous corner with many blindspots in both directions. This will only matter if you are driving yourself around the island, but it’s something important to consider.

The overwater bungalow options at Sofitel Kia Ora Moorea Beach Resort include:

If you’re determined to stay in an overwater bungalow on Moorea, I highly suggest booking the Luxury Overwater Bungalow. This option will give you a much larger room, a bigger terrace, and the best views on the resort property.

All overwater bungalows include a private terrace with direct lagoon access, air conditioning (a must on this tropical island), and free Wifi. We were impressed with the speed of the internet here. We noticed that other hotels and resorts on the island have very poor wifi.

In addition, all resort guests have access to free snorkeling gear, a full-service spa, a large swimming pool, and a private beach with plenty of sunshade cabanas.

3. Hotel Manava Beach Resort & Spa Moorea – Best Resort On A Budget

Staying at Hotel Manava Beach Resort & Spa Moorea is a slightly more budget-friendly overwater bungalow option in Moorea.

Each overwater bungalow’s nightly rate is $100-200 cheaper than similar rooms at the other resorts.

This luxurious 4-star resort is on the northeast shore of the heart-shaped island in a neighborhood called Maharepa. It is close to the airport and the ferry terminal, so you can easily catch a boat to Tahiti or get an early morning flight to Bora Bora.

Despite its central location, you will find that the resort is situated far enough from the main town to remain peaceful at all hours of the day.

Moorea offers stunning sweeping landscapes of mountains and ocean.

You’ll also have easy access to dining at the resort’s two French-Polynesia fusion restaurants and complimentary breakfast available with each overwater bungalow.

Hotel Manava offers an Overwater Bungalow and a Premium Overwater Bungalow.

While both bungalows are located over the water, the Overwater Bungalow faces the beach and the mountains, while the Premium Overwater Bungalow faces out to the lagoon.

Both bungalows options include:

  • King bed + additional bed
  • Private terrace with sun loungers
  • Direct lagoon access
  • Glass bottom table
  • Air conditioning
  • Ceiling fan
  • Mini bar

💡Pro Tip: Other than the view, the Premium Overwater Bungalow features a walk-in shower, and the Overwater Bungalow offers a shower or a tub.

Recommended Room: Premium Overwater Bungalow

Top amenities include:

✅ King bed
✅ Stunning lagoon view
✅ Private terrace with sun loungers
✅ Direct lagoon access
✅ Private beach access
✅ Snorkel gear
✅ Day spa access ($)
✅ Outdoor swimming pool

How Much Does It Cost To Stay In An Overwater Bungalow In French Polynesia?

There are a wide range of price points if you’re looking to stay in an overwater bungalow in Moorea or anywhere in French Polynesia.

Generally, staying in an overwater bungalow costs between $800 and $15,000 per night depending on the resort, location, etc.

Overwater bungalows in Bora Bora have a significantly higher price tag than Moorea. The base rates start around $1,200 per night in Bora Bora, and for the most luxurious bungalows, you could spend upwards of $10,000-15,000 per night.

But in Moorea, 5-star resorts such as Sofitel Kia Ora Moorea Beach Resort and Hilton Moorea Lagoon Resort & Spa offer guests the most luxurious experience and amenities for closer to $1,400-$1,700 per night.

You can also find overwater bungalows on other French Polynesian islands like Tahiti and Taha’a, but you can expect to pay around the same price as overwater villas in Moorea.

But no matter where you choose to stay in French Polynesia, spending a few nights in an overwater bungalow is a once-in-a-lifetime bucket list experience that’s totally worth the splurge.

💡Pro Tip: Most resorts will not offer complimentary transportation to/from Tahiti, but they will pick you up at Moorea airport/ferry terminal upon request for an additional fee.

And if you really want to save money on overwater bungalows, I’d check out the Maldives. We stayed at an overwater bungalow in the Maldives for $450 per night. Not bad!

BEST Things To Do In Moorea

Moorea is a must-visit destination island full of breathtaking scenery and exciting things to do for all types of travelers in French Polynesia. Whether you’re seeking adventure or relaxation, Moorea has something for you. 

Moorea offers so many activities for adventure lovers and those who just want to relax.

Adventure travelers will love joining one of the many snorkeling & diving excursions, hiking through the jungle, whale watching, and booking Jeep tours to the top of Magic Mountain. 

On the other hand, Moorea offers gorgeous beaches, relaxing catamaran sailing trips, pineapple plantation guided tours, relaxing overwater bungalows, and E-bike rentals for visitors who prefer to travel at a slower pace and relax in Moorea.

French Polynesia: FAQs

We want you to leave our ultimate guide equipped with all the information you need to enjoy your trip to Moorea. Here are some additional questions we had before staying in overwater villas:

Are overwater villas safe?

Yes, overwater villas are safe, and each bungalow has a separate entrance that is securely locked to ensure the safety of all guests.

Most of these luxury resorts also offer 24-hour security to give you extra peace of mind and have additional surveillance at the entrance and exit of the resort. 

Additionally, all the overwater bungalows in Moorea are sturdy and built to last even in harsh weather conditions, so you are not in danger while sleeping.

And finally, it’s important to know that Moorea is a very safe destination. There is absolutely nothing to worry about on this island.

Is Moorea worth visiting?

Absolutely! Moorea is one of our favorite places we have ever visited, and it’s an incredible destination for those looking for a luxurious paradise island getaway.

The island is home to some of the most beautiful overwater bungalows in the Pacific Ocean, stunning lagoons, the impressive Mt Rotui, and fun adventures like ATVing. Plus, the climate is almost perfect all year round!

Are there any cheap overwater bungalows in Moorea?

Yes, there are some cheaper overwater bungalow options in Moorea. For example, at Hotel Manava Beach Resort & Spa Moorea, you can expect to pay around or less than $1,000 per night at an overwater bungalow depending on the time of year.

Moorea is the perfect place to stay in an overwater bungalow for a romantic honeymoon or getaway.

If you are willing to sacrifice being directly over the water, the best resorts in Moorea have beachfront bungalows and luxurious bungalows with a garden view for around $400-600 per night.

You’ll still get all the amenities and comfort of a 5-star resort, giving you plenty of value for your money.

And some resorts even offer day passes, which is a fantastic option if you want to experience the resort, but you don’t have the funds to splurge on staying there.

The Wrap-Up: Moorea Overwater Bungalows

We’re sure it is obvious by now that we adored our extended stay in Moorea. It’s our favorite tropical island, and we know you’ll love it, too.

We sat down with a few Kiwis at Vai’are Pizza on Moorea the other day and they said, “we’ve been to so many tropical islands all over the world. The Cook Islands, Fiji, Vanuatu, and so many others. But this… this is the most beautiful of them all, by far.”

If you’re spending more than a couple of days, don’t forget to rent a car, roadster or eBike and explore the island of Moorea.

And if you still can’t decide, check out our deep dive into the Sofitel Kia Ora vs Hilton Moorea.

Enjoy your trip! You won’t regret it.