Facts about overwater bungalows & water villas and where to find them

When we first had the idea to create a worldwide directory of every overwater resort in the world, we honestly assumed there were about 20 or maybe 30 of these places. It turned out we underestimated by quite a bit, and since new ones keep opening up, the number keeps getting higher and higher.

A couple months ago I wrote a post called where are overwater bungalows, which lists all the major spots in the world where you can find these things. However, continued research means that I've uncovered quite a few more places, so that original post will be updated very soon.

One small problem persists though, in that in some cases it's difficult to classify whether a place has real overwater bungalows or not. There are a few places with entrances on the shore but most of the room is over the water, and there are also places that have up to 6 rooms per structure, so they probably don't qualify as “bungalows” or “villas.”

Still, I thought people might be interested in exactly how many resorts and rooms are out there, so below are some facts I've collected. There might be a few more resorts that I've yet to uncover, but for the most part this list is nearly 100% accurate.

Countries with overwater bungalow/water villa resorts


75 resorts – 3005 overwater rooms

Bora Bora

11 resorts – 652 overwater rooms
(note: 1 resort is closed until 2012 for refurbishment)


5 resorts – 179 overwater rooms


2 resorts – 44 overwater rooms

Elsewhere in the South Pacific

12 resorts – 136 overwater rooms
(includes Cook Islands, Fiji, New Caledonia, Samoa, Huahine, Tikehau, Vanuatu, Tahaa)


5 resorts – 527 overwater rooms


5 resorts – 56 overwater rooms (many not technically bungalows)


3 resorts – 73 overwater rooms


3 resorts – 30 overwater rooms


3 resorts – 21 overwater rooms


2 resorts – 7 overwater rooms


1 resort – 24 overwater rooms


1 resort – 14 overwater rooms


1 resort – 13 overwater rooms (not all technically bungalows)


1 resort – 13 overwater rooms (closed until 2012)


1 resort – 11 overwater rooms

World total: 113 resorts

Total overwater bungalow rooms in the world as of February, 2012: 4965

Resorts with most overwater bungalows

#1 – Golden Palm Tree Resort & Spa – Malaysia: 392 overwater bungalows
#2 – Meeru Island Resort – Maldives: 106 water villas
#3 – Four Seasons Bora Bora – 100 overwater bungalows

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