Where to Stay in Ha’apai
What is the picture of resorts in Ha’apai? Think of a tiny group of free-standing beach houses, locally known as “fales”, located steps away from the beach. Some resorts have a central communal area where meals are served – not that all resorts necessarily have a restaurant – and experiences can be booked. There are a few hammocks around, soft sandy beaches, and a hell of a lot of watersports. Check out the range of resorts on Ha’apai available in this list, from the more upmarket offerings to the ultra-budget resorts.
Note that Tonga is an ever-changing country. With that, accommodations often change or upgrade services. Although we try to keep our listings up-to-date, feel free to reach out with any updates.
Plus, while you’re here, be sure to plan your trip with The Complete Guide to Ha’apai.
1. Matafonua Lodge
Scattered with elevated wooden beach fales (huts) and offering a huge array of experiences, Matafonua Lodge is the go-to for jam-packing your getaway with adventures. After a hard day’s swimming with whales, scuba diving with their PADI dive shop, doing a cultural tour on a nearby island or perhaps sports fishing, retreat to either a double or family fale nestled in beachfront vegetation. Bathroom facilities are in shared blocks with rainfall showers and attractive tiling. Dine at the on-site cafe open for breakfast, lunch and dinner or use the complimentary bikes to ride across Foa and Lifuka islands to get food in town. See more accommodation like this in our 7 Best Family Accommodation in Ha’apai.
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2. Serenity Beaches Resort
A tranquil retreat on Uolevu Island, Serenity Beaches Resort is an idyllic choice in Ha’apai. Stay in one of the open-air beachfront fales or more private concrete fales with a twin/double layout with shared facilities. Alternatively, there is a private ensuite fale available. Either way, guests spend their time here doing yoga in the pavilion, dining on healthy meals made from fresh local ingredients, making use of the kayaks and snorkelling gear to explore the wonderful underwater world straight from the beach. The resort also operates whale swimming tours in the season, but your most frequent encounter with the whales will most likely be seeing them from the beach! We also list this accommodation in the 5 Best Honeymoon Accommodation in Ha’apai.
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3. Sandy Beach Resort
Ha’apai’s only four-star resort, Sandy Beach Resort is the best choice for the discerning traveller who wants some modern comforts. Located on Foa Island, the resort has 12 bungalows just a few steps from an unspoiled beach. Enjoy the views from your private terrace, which leads into a spacious room with a double bed and ensuite with hot high-pressure showers. Being the sister resorts of the Matafonua Lodge (see above), Sandy Beach Resort offers all of the activities that Matafonua offers, from whale swimming to scuba diving… or you could simply find yourself a hammock and enjoy doing nothing at all. See more like this in our 7 Best Luxury Accommodation in Ha’apai.
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4. Sea Change Eco Retreat
Escape from the modern world and experience an alternative lifestyle at this off-the-grid resort on the uninhabited Uoleva Island. Sea Change Eco Retreat might be known across Ha’apai for its fantastic whale swimming tours, but it also offers a boutique resort experience staying in either safari tents with a comfortable double bed or a large wooden fale with an outdoor shower. Each accommodation is in its own little area of forest with a private pathway leading straight onto the beach. Then straight from the beach you can snorkel, kitesurf, kayak or paddleboard!
5. Taiana’s Resort
For something budget but utterly beautiful, stay at Taiana’s Resort on Uoleva Island. The resort has five traditional Tongan fales which are super simple but provide a real island adventure! Inside each fale are tapa paintings, a mattress, mosquito nets and a bedside table with a kerosene lantern. Families can stay in the larger fale with extra mattresses, while all guests use the shared bathroom facilities. What’s more, backpackers have the option to camp on the grounds. As for entertainment, it’s all about kayaking, snorkelling and lazying on the beach! Food is can be arranged with hosts, while there is also a central cooking area should you have your own supplies. Airport/ferry transfers to the island are also offered. See more accommodation like this in the 7 Best Budget Accommodation in Ha’apai.
6. Fanifo Lofa Kitesurf Tonga
As you might have guessed, Fanifo Lofa Kitesurf Tonga has a thing for kitesurfing, considering they have some amazing kitesurfing grounds right on their doorstep (bring your own gear). Nevertheless, the kitesurfing opportunities only begin to scratch the surface of what this resort has to offer. Here, you’ll be staying in one of the five timber fales set among coconut palms. You’ll have a few luxuries, including memory foam beds and an ensuite with hot solar showers. Snorkelling from the shores, making use of the stand-up paddleboards and kayaks, drinking kava and learning how to weave… It’s also all on the cards at Fanifo Lofa Kitesurf Tonga.
7. Ha’apai Beach Resort
Conveniently located on Lifuka Island, between the airport and Pangai, yet ideally located on the beachfront, Ha’apai Beach Resort is an affordable offering well worth considering. The resort has a snorkelling reef on its doorstep, offers SSI-affiliated scuba diving and whale swimming tours. Stay in one of the modern beach houses with either two double rooms with ensuites or four single rooms sharing bathroom facilities. Borrow the bikes to get into town or explore Lifuka, hit the water in the kayaks or relax in one of the hammocks on the beach.
8. Captain Cook Hideaway
Get back to basics at the Captain Cook Hideaway on Uoleva Island. This budget resort features 10 fales built on an unspoiled beach. Guests can make use of the snorkelling and kayaking equipment provided, while your host, Soni, offers island-hopping and fishing trips. There are single and double rates for these ultra-basic fales with shared cold-water bathroom facilities and one ensuite fale available. Fales have mosquito nets but no power points.
9. Billy’s Resort
Experience pure isolation on Lifuka Island at Billy’s Resort, also know as Billy’s Place. Stay in a basic fale in the midst of a banana plantation close to the beach. Enjoy your time snorkelling with the snorkelling gear provided or use one of the free bikes for the 10-minute ride into town. Bookings here can be organised through Evaloni at Evoloni’s Guesthouse (see the 5 Best Guest Houses in Ha’apai). Fales have a double bed with double and single rates with shared bathroom facilities using cold (or sometimes even no) water… There’s also no electricity. But breakfast is included and you will have to cycle into town to get food at the Mariner’s Cafe, as there are no kitchen facilities.
10. The Lolofutu Beach Barn
An all-inclusive eight-day glamping experience in a remote piece of paradise is offered at The Lolofutu Beach Barn. Run by Whale Discoveries, The Lolofutu Beach Barn is a package holiday including accommodation in a safari tent kitted out with lighting, a double bed and a private deck with a rain cover. It’s a truly off-the-grid experience where bathroom facilities are shared with cold showers and composting toilets. You’ll also get three healthy and sustainably sourced meals a day and spend four of your days swimming with whales. We also list this in our 10 Best Accommodation in Ha’apai for Foodies.