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Tonga Travel Guide

Accommodations

The upscale Tongan Beach Resort is near 'Utungake village on 'Utungake, about nine km from Neiafu via a paved road. The beach here is fairly good and the 12 duplex bungalows are comfortable.

If you book from abroad and pay in U.S. dollars, your costs could be about 25 percent higher than what you'll pay locally in pa'anga.

The rooms cannot be locked, but a safety deposit box is available at the office. There's a three-night minimum stay, and children 12 and under are accommodated free if sharing with their parents.

Scuba diving, game fishing, whale-watching, snorkeling tours, and yacht charters are offered. Snorkeling gear and sit-on-top kayaks are provided free and bicycles and a sailboat are for rent.

One drawback is the cost of eating in their fancy thatched restaurant—it'll take some effort not to run up a daily food bill equal to the cost of your room. Drinks at the bar are also expensive, so bring something along to put in your fridge (day-trippers from Neiafu are welcome to use the resort beach if they buy a few drinks). There's a Tongan show once a week.

If there are two or more sharing, it's cheaper to take a taxi from the airport than to use the resort's transfer service. A water taxi leaves the resort for Neiafu most mornings at 0930.

Next door to the Tongan Beach Resort on 'Utungake Island, medium-priced Mystic Sands offers five motel-style units with cooking facilities. Mystic Sands has a wharf on its white sand beach with sit-on-top kayaks loaned free. Six-night fishing packages are a specialty.

Budget-priced Lucky's Beach Houses is in Talihau village on 'Utungake Island, at the south end of the road about three kilometers beyond the Tongan Breach Resort. It offers two Tongan fale with shared bath and two self-catering beach houses with private bath starting (two-night minimum stay). Breakfast, dinner, laundry, and airport transfers are extra. You can also cook your own meals in a common kitchen. Whale watching and fishing trips are arranged.