Stay of the Week: Reef Resort Vava'u
Located in the pristine beauty of Tonga, this lush resort welcomes you to a tropical oasis — and will have you swimming with humpbacks.
May 12, 2023
In Stay of the Week, we explore some of the world's best and most unique accommodations — giving you a little inspiration for your next trip. In this instalment, we take you to the pristine beauty of Vava'u, Tonga and the lush Reef Resort. We love this place so much that we teamed up with the resort to offer an exclusive seven-night travel deal — including a discounted room rate, breakfast and lunch included and a magical five days of swimming with humpbacks.
WHAT'S SO SPECIAL?
If you've found yourself in the tropical paradise of Vava'u, Tonga, you're already set for a spectacularly lush holiday. Pristine natural surrounds, crystal clear waters and perpetually warm temperatures: all the makings of a standout time. But, if you've also found yourself checking in to the understated luxury of Reef Resort, your time here is only going to get better. There's sprawling grounds, friendly and knowledgeable staff, and Polynesian fine dining with a Euro twist.
The most special element here, though, is the chance to swim with mighty humpbacks. Big and gentle, the whales play right in front of the resort — pure magic.
There's only five fales (Tongan bungalows) in the resort so whenever you stay here you're guaranteed some secluded R&R. Each is self-contained and comes with a private deck — the ideal spot for a pre-whale stretch and early coffee in the morning light.
There are four deluxe bungalows dotted over grounds — two on the beach and two a short walk up the hill. Each of these fales boasts sweeping vistas over the lagoon, a king bed complete with lofty canopy and enough room for three. Then, there's the Honeymoon Villa. Nearly twice the size of the deluxe fales, there's a bigger deck, a second bedroom and a more modern feel in this one (so if you're a lovebird, you'd be silly not to).
FOOD AND DRINK
The onsite restaurant at Reef Resort will have you savouring the earthy, spicy and fruity flavours of Polynesia. Rich coconut milk curries and ocean-fresh fish, the freshest of produce straight from the markets and sweet treats that hero the juiciest melons and papayas. The kitchen here is always helmed by an expert, with this season welcoming Chef Jürgen who is bringing a wealth of experience from time in fine-dining institutions throughout Germany, Italy and Switzerland.
The restaurant and bar (pictured above) is easy breezy, with ocean views from every seat. You can expect a constantly rotating menu that features the likes of parrot fish, snapper and mahi mahi — all freshly plucked from the deep. It'll be here that you enjoy all your meals, including a three-course dinner to see out each day in the tropics.
THE LOCAL AREA
Vava'u isn't one island, but a group of 55. It's in this archipelago that underwater caves await for adventurous divers, pods of gentle giants swim alongside curious humans and nature-heads come to simply enjoy. Come and charter a sailing trip, go scuba diving, explore the abundant surrounds and hop from island to island before returning to your fale for a refreshing sleep in the tropics.
In case lazing by the ocean under the shade of a palm isn't relaxing enough, the team's made sure there's plenty of places to plonk yourself when you want to hit the chill zone. There are hammocks and a communal sundeck — where cakes are baked fresh and served every day, and cocktails are served each day to farewell the sun. Although you won't find all-out day spas or a smorgasbord of places to refuel, you don't head to Vava'u to luxuriate in this way. Come to enjoy the untouched perfection of the area and the whales.
Feeling inspired to book a truly unique getaway? Head to Concrete Playground Trips to explore a range of holidays curated by our editorial team. We've teamed up with all the best providers of flights, stays and experiences to bring you a series of unforgettable trips in destinations all over the world.
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