Epic might be an understated description for this collection of thatched-roof bungalows built on stilts over crystalline waters of the Bora Bora lagoon. This luxury resort is nestled in the dreamiest of settings: wooden walkways link palm-dotted islets fringed in white sand, while the craggy green peaks of Mount Otemanu loom in the distance. Guests can alternate between milky sands at the beach and the palm-skirted infinity pool with oversized thatched cabanas. There are plenty of activities to sample, from stand-up paddleboard yoga to shark-feeding to snorkeling adventures with the resident marine biologist. The luxurious spa offers an extensive menu of treatments, some based on native ingredients like monoi and vanilla. As for the bungalows, chic honey-hued teak interiors are peppered with Polynesian touches, and indulgent soaking tubs sit beside shuttered picture windows that open onto the sea. Large decks with swoon-worthy views have step ladders down to the water—a good way to test out the snorkeling gear that’s supplied. Airy beachfront villas are also available for those who prefer to stay on land.
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Who’s it for: Undoubtedly a stellar choice for honeymooners and those celebrating special occasions, but the resort also sees plenty of families who appreciate the great kids' and teens' clubs. Our favorite rooms: Any of the overwater bungalows with mountain views are an excellent choice, but for a true splurge, opt for one of the Specialty Overwater Bungalows, which have private plunge pools. Sundowner snack: Head to the Sunset Bar for enchanting views with a tasty side of sushi and Asian tapas. Good to know: The resort’s weekly Polynesian evening, complete with traditional dancing and a buffet of local fare, is a fun and popular night—but advanced reservations are recommended. Reservations are also suggested for the hotel's signature restaurant, Arii Moana, which serves French Polynesian fusion fare accompanied by a great wine list.
Four Seasons Resort Bora Bora
It's hard to beat the setting of the Four Seasons Resort in Bora Bora – it is on a private motu in one of the world's most gorgeous lagoons and feels completely secluded and honeymoon perfect. Although you can choose from over-water bungalows or beachfront villas, we recommend splurging for the bungalow. These boast high ceilings, thatched roof and floor-to-ceiling glass panels, including one covering a portion of the floor (so you are looking down at fish). The decor is sexy but tasteful with lots of teak furnishings and neutral colors that don't distract from the colorful natural environment surrounding you. We love the decks with stepladders leading directly into the gin clear water and there's no need to bring snorkeling gear since it comes with the room. Beyond the bungalows, the resort is home to four restaurants and a lovely bar and there is a stretch of gorgeous white sand beach for sunbathing as well as swimming pools and a spa. All this surrounded by Bora Bora's signature craggy green velvet mountains rising out of the turquoise lagoon.