Overwater bungalows are a wonderful experience that many people want to make a lifelong memory. You can book amazing overwater bungalows using points, even though the price can be high if you pay cash.

We’ll be diving into the best overwater villas that you can book using points. Also, we’ll discuss what to look out for when booking an overwater bungalow.

What should you look for in hotels that have overwater bungalows

These are the four most important questions to ask when you are considering booking an overwater bungalow.

  • Is the bungalow private enough to be kept from others? If so, we recommend that you look at photos online and read reviews on TripAdvisor. The St. Regis Bora Bora Resort, for example, is very private and it’s difficult to see inside the villa from the outside. However, the Conrad Bora Bora Nui, on the other hand, has overwater villas facing each other with limited privacy.

  • Is there a sunset view from the overwater bungalow? Sometimes, you’ll need to pay more for a guaranteed sunset look.

  • Do you plan to visit during the rainy seasons? If so, make sure to check the weather forecast before booking. It rained almost the whole time I was on the Conrad Maldives Rangali Island, November 2019. Although I avoided sunburn, it would have been much better to book during the dry season.

  • What is the cost of food at your resort? To get an idea of the cost of food on your trip, make sure you look online or ask at the resort for a sample menu. It’s often cheaper to order room service than to eat at a restaurant in the hotel.

Top places for overwater bungalow vacations

1. Waldorf Astoria Ithaafushi Maldives

The Reef Villa with Pool is the ultimate overwater bungalow that you can book with Hilton points. It will cost you 150,000 Hilton Points per night.

The 3,077-square foot overwater bungalow has a private infinity swimming pool, an outdoor terrace with many sitting areas, and a hammock. The bungalow can accommodate up to four people, including two adults and two children. This bungalow is available for as high as $2729 per night, after taxes. You get an average value of 1.8 cents per Hilton Point. This is 3x the average value, as determined by NerdWallet. It’s a great redemption value.

2. The St. Regis Bora Bora Hotel

Bora Bora hotels that offer overwater bungalows are a delight. Lucky guests will have the opportunity to stay at one of the most luxurious overwater villas in French Polynesia at Regis Bora Bora Resort. These villas offer guests separate bedrooms, living areas, and an outdoor terrace perfect for enjoying morning coffee and sunbathing.

The St. Regis Bora Bora Resort Beach at The Iridium Spa. Photo courtesy Josh Garber

For Marriott loyalists looking for hotels with overwater bungalows, this is an acceptable option. You can book a Superior Overwater Villa starting at 265,600 points per night, although the required number of points varies depending on when you book it. The cash value of the villa, measuring 1,549 square feet, is approximately $1,930. This means that you can get a value around 0.7 cents per Marriott point. This meets NerdWallet’s baseline value for Marriott Points.

3. Conrad Maldives Rangali Island

Our list of top overwater bungalows is complete with the Conrad Maldives Rangali Island Sunrise Water Villa. The villa measures 925 square feet and comes with an outdoor jacuzzi that guests can use. This can be particularly fun on clear nights when you can stargaze.

View from the Conrad Maldives Rangali Island pool. Photo courtesy Josh Garber

This villa can be booked for as low as 120,000 Hilton Points. With a cash rate close to $3,060 that is about 2.6 cents per Hiltonpoint, it’s worth 2 cents more than NerdWallet’s baseline value of 0.6c points.

4. The Ritz-Carlton Maldives and Fari Islands

The 1,614-square-foot Ocean Pool Villa at The Ritz-Carlton Maldives Fari Islands can be rented for just 120,000 Marriott points per person. The villa has unobstructed views over the Indian Ocean, a private swimming pool, and an overwater hammock.

The cash rate at $4,910 per person per night means that you get around 4.1 cents per point for every Marriott point spent here. This is nearly 6x the baseline value.

To book an overwater bungalow

There are many wonderful overwater bungalows that you can book using points. However, we love the following four — they offer great redemption value for your points.

Be sure to think about how private your villa is, what the sunset views will be, when the resort is open, and what the food costs.

Maximizing your Rewards

A travel credit card should be able to prioritize what is most important to you. These are our top picks for the top travel credit cards in 2023, as well as those that work best for: