The longtime dream of New Zealanders Allan and Lyn Bowe, this resort sits beside a wraparound beach of white sand on Mounu ("Bait Fish" in Tongan), a flat, 2.4-hectare (6-acre) islet near the southern end of the Vava'u lagoon. Cruising yachties moor their boats near the colorful corals and row ashore to imbibe and dine on freshly caught seafood in the Bowes' main building, a mat-lined Tongan fale right on the beach. Their widely-spaced guest fales are rustic but charming, with futon beds covered with mosquito nets (a necessity, as the windows aren't screened), rattan easy chairs, bathrooms with hot-water showers, and front porches facing the lagoon. Solar power generates the electricity, and rain provides the fresh water here. You can swim, snorkel, kayak, fish, go on village visits, and observe seabirds at a nearby breeding colony. This is a popular retreat during the June-to-October whale-watching season, when Allan operates Whale Watch Vava'u. It's a fine place to unwind any time of year.
- © Frommer's 2013
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- Highly Recommended 2010