Ha'apai Islands, Tonga Ha'apai Island, Tonga – Image courtesy of creativelunatics.com

Ha'apai Islands honeymoon guide

Experience a slice of honeymoon paradise in the low-lying coral islands of Ha’apai, Tonga.

Blessed with a choice of secluded white-sand beaches fringed by swaying palm trees and lapped by crystal clear turquoise waters, Tonga's Ha’apai Islands offer couples an idyllic beach honeymoon, with good snorkelling and scuba diving above coral gardens teeming with tropical rainbow-hued fish.

What to do and see

On the main island, explore the quaint old town of Ha’apai and discover several picture-perfect beaches nearby.

Sunbathe on a choice of secluded palm-fringed white-sand beaches on Foa Island and neighbouring Lifuka Island that are joined by a causeway.

Beachcomb the 3.2km-long stretch of surf-pounded white sand on the east coast of Lifuka and enjoy a secluded picnic at the stunning Houmale'eia Beach on the northern point of Foa.

Peer into the crater of an active volcano on the island of Tofua or drop anchor for a day or two along the sheltered northern shore of the largely uninhabited Uoleva Island – a great location for a honeymoon cruise aboard a chartered yacht.

Here, you can relax on unspoiled white-sand beaches and discover excellent snorkelling above reefs on the west side of the island.

It was in these same waters of Tonga that in 1789 the mutinous crew of HMS Bounty overthrew Captain William Bligh; and from where he and his loyal men began their epic 6500km row to safety in Timor.

Previously, Captain James Cook also made stopovers in Tonga, at Nomuka Island in 1774 and 1777 and Lifuka Island in 1783.

Best beaches in the Ha'apai Islands

Play ‘Robinson Crusoe’ on tiny sugar-white coral atolls or sunbathe and create your own footsteps in the gorgeous white sands of Ha'apai…

Houmale'eia  Beach, Ha'apai

Houmale'eia Beach

Make your own footprints on the pristine soft white sand of this gorgeous palm-fringed beach that fringes the northern tip of Foa Island in the Ha'apai group.

Go swimming and snorkelling in the turquoise waters of the sheltered lagoon. Admire views across the lagoon to Nukunamo Island.

Go horseback riding along the beach, ponder the ancient burial mound at the southern end of the beach and look out for dolphins at any time of year and whales from August to November.

Come on a day trip with a picnic or stay longer at the beachfront 3-star Sandy Beach Resort.

Lifuka Island

Lifuka Island

This idyllic island offers a string of beautiful white-sand beaches that are accessed on foot or by bike across a causeway from neighbouring Foa Island.

Start by discovering the gorgeous white-sand beach on tiny Uoleva Island, easily reached by wading across the reef from the southern point of Lifuka.

The west coast of Lifuka offers an uninterrupted stretch of unnamed white-sand beaches that offer excellent swimming and snorkelling in the lagoon.

While currents along the east coast do make swimming dangerous, the 3km-long beach offers great beachcombing. A series of 16th century burial mounds can be found in the middle of the island.

Historical note: It was on Lifuka Island that Captain James Cook dubbed Tonga ‘The Friendly Islands’; and it was in the waters off nearby Tofua Island that the mutiny on the Bounty occurred in 1789.

Where to stay

Be spoilt with creature comforts at a choice of traditional honeymoon resorts in Tonga's Ha’apai Islands.

It’s easy to find honeymoon accommodation to suit every budget, from charming and less-expensive traditional beachfront fales to secluded island retreats, including the following…

Sandy Beach Resort

Sandy Beach Resort

Location: Foa island, Lotofoa, Ha’apai
Rating: 4-star
Prices: from AUD291 per person
Description: This tropical resort is set alongside a long, private white sand beach and is surrounded by palm trees. Each of the 12 bungalows are just steps from the beach and offer a private terrace facing the ocean. Guests enjoy an on-site restaurant and free WiFi. Each bungalow has a tiled floor, ceiling fans, refrigerator and clock radio. The spacious bathrooms offer a high-pressure, solar-heated shower. Beach towels, deck chairs and free drinking water are provided. The restaurant is open to the hotel's guests only and serves fresh fish and lobsters, delivered to the beach every day by the local fishermen. You can dine on the terrace, which features a bar overlooking the ocean. Facilities include 24-hour room service, free luggage storage and a fitness room. Guests have free access to all non-motorised water sports including snorkelling, kayaking and canoeing. Sandy Beach Resort Tonga is located on the island of Foa in the Ha’apai Island group. It is a 30-minute scenic flight to Ha’apai from Tongatapu. The town of Pangai is 15 km away.

Find the best deal, compare prices and read what other travellers have to say about these and more resorts in Ha’apai, Tonga at TripAdvisor.

Best time to honeymoon in Ha’apai

The best time to visit Ha’apai is during the dry season between May and October. Tonga’s climate is tropical, with a daytime average of 26°C (79°F) throughout the year.

Fresh sea breezes keep things pleasant and Tonga is slightly cooler than most tropical regions. The wet season in Tonga lasts from November to April with March the wettest month, especially in Vava’u.

For more climate info: Tonga Weather Guide

Getting there

Ha’apai is located at the geographical centre of Tonga; only 17 of the 62 islands in the group are inhabited. The Tongatapu group lie to the south while the Vavaʻu group lie to the north. Its highest point is Kao at almost 1,050 metres (3,440 ft).

Between islands: Air travel is quick and easy. Local ferries operate from Faua Wharf in Nuku'alofa to Ha'apai islands

On land: Buses, taxis and hire cars are all available. Traffic drives on the left.

Scattered over 7700sq km of ocean, the islands of Tonga are 775km south-east of Fiji, 1190km north-east of Auckland and 3220km north-east of Sydney.

Virgin Australia Airlines operates direct flights between Sydney and Nuku'alofa; Air Pacific operates flights from Sydney to Nuku'alofa via Nadi, Fiji; Air New Zealand operate flights to Nuku'alofa via Auckland with connections from all major Australian airports.

Information on how to get to Tonga
Ha’apai Map

Latest update: Where to Honeymoon in Ha'apai Islands: 8 April, 2019

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