Luxury Overwater Villas vs Beach Villas in Maldives – which are better? vacations

Overwater Villas vs Beach Villas in Maldives – which are better?

Should you stay in a Maldives on water villa or beach villa?

Most hotels in the Maldives offer both overwater villas and beach villas (sometimes called overwater bungalows and beach bungalows). While people tend to dream of staying in an overwater villa, beach villas can be a great choice as well and indeed are rising in popularity for return visitors to the Maldives.

The amount of accommodation on offer in the Maldives can be overwhelming. Even if you find a particular hotel you’re drawn to, you may be struggling to decide between the different rooms and villas on offer. Let’s take a look at overwater villas and beach villas in the Maldives and find out which is best for you.

Naturally, overwater villas are the major draw in the Maldives. You’ll wake up every morning with the clear water of the lagoon all around you. You’ll be able to have your coffee on your private deck with sweeping views of the Indian Ocean and the lagoon. It’s just a few footsteps from the deck into the lagoon itself. It’s a fabulous way to start your day: you can even have your breakfast delivered to your overwater villa by boat or enjoy a floating breakfast in your very own private pool. At night watching the sunset over the lagoon is very atmospheric. Overwater villas in the Maldives are one of the most popular honeymoon choices for obvious reasons. This type of accommodation is very much geared towards romantic trips. Read More: Weather in the Maldives.


If it’s your first trip to the Maldives staying in an overwater villa is probably the best option. It’s a major bucket list experience so it’s one you don’t want to miss. That being said, beach villas are in no way a second-tier option. There can even be advantages to staying in a beach villa. Not least having your own private beach. You’ll also be able to take a short stroll down the beach to access the lagoon. Also, a beach villa can be preferable if you’d like to experience round-the-clock sunshine – sometimes you find that overwater villas can be a little shaded as the terrace space may be limited. They also have advantages if you’re traveling to the Maldives in a larger group.

Beach villas are also the better choice if you’re planning a family vacation. For small children, a water villa really isn’t appropriate as there are safety considerations. So if you are traveling with children to the Maldives, choose a beach villa instead of an overwater villa which could have steep drops into the ocean below.

If you’re really torn between staying in an overwater villa or a beach villa you can stay in both. You can extend your trip to around ten days and combine both types of accommodation. You can even stay in two different resorts: you can easily transfer between resorts by speedboat or by seaplane. You’ll be met at your new resort and escorted to your new accommodation. Combining resorts will also expand the range of cuisine you try.

Some resorts make great companions for each other. For example, staying in a beach villa at Soneva Fushi is ideal before hopping a short speedboat ride to its sister property Soneva Jani which is known for its iconic overwater villas. Read More: Soneva Jani vs Soneva Fushi – which is better?

The Maldives is geared towards luxury and relaxation. The Maldives is comprised of around 1,200 islands. Each resort is like a private fiefdom with its own island. Some of the bigger islands may have more than one hotel, but most islands have just the one. You don’t really have any museums to explore and The Maldives is sparsely populated outside of its capital Male. Your vacation will be built around your accommodation. That’s one of the reasons in-villa dining is so popular. Having your own private plunge pool or beach means you won’t leave your accommodation all that often, aside from trips to the restaurant or spa.
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