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Do you recommend a holiday in Tonga

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Sydney
posts: 10
reviews: 25
Do you recommend a holiday in Tonga

We are thinking of visiting Tonga - with our 17 & 20 year old daughters. What is the best time of year to visit and Is there much to do in Tonga ? Is it expensive , does anyone have any recommendations for accommodation, tours, flights etc

14 replies to this topic
Hastings, New...
posts: 38
reviews: 112
1. Re: Do you recommend a holiday in Tonga

Depends on what you expect from a holiday - if you like a sanitised touristy experience with everything laid on for you Tonga probably isn't your cup of tea. If you prefer a real sense of getting away from it all, and a chance to truly unwind, you'll love it. Accommodation is very reasonable (assuming you don't stay in Nukualofa, which I wouldn't recommend anyway...)

The people are amazing - Tonga is the only place I've ever been where I've received a big hug when leaving each resort!

We stayed at the Heilala on Tongatapu, and Matafonua Lodge in the Ha'apai group and can highly recommend both (see reviews here on TA). It's well worth catching a flight to Ha'apai if you have the time - the most unspoilt, laid back place I have ever had the pleasure of visiting, and whale watching was an experience I will never forget.

As you may have guessed, I'm a huge fan of Tonga!

Sydney
posts: 10
reviews: 25
2. Re: Do you recommend a holiday in Tonga

Thank you - sounds perfect. Other than whale watching what else would you recommend seeing, visiting while we were there ? What time of year did you visit ?

Hastings, New...
posts: 38
reviews: 112
3. Re: Do you recommend a holiday in Tonga

Just got back last week :-)

We visited the markets in Nukualofa (and a few cafes) and there are island tours of Tongatapu at around $50 for a full day. You can also do day trips ex Nukualofa to some of the tiny islands just off the coast. There's a fair amount to do on Tongatapu if you're that way inclined - this website gives you a pretty good idea of what's available : thekingdomoftonga.com/index.php/…

We spent most of our time either snorkeling , bike riding, lazing on the beach, reading, snoozing or eating. I'm usually one to plan activities of some description every day, but Tonga slowed me right down and I really enjoyed starting each day with 'nothing' to do (apart from a leisurely breakfast and a wander down to the beach to see if any whales were passing by).

Sydney
posts: 10
reviews: 25
4. Re: Do you recommend a holiday in Tonga

Really does sound like my type of holiday - Thank you for all the info.

Hastings, New...
posts: 38
reviews: 112
5. Re: Do you recommend a holiday in Tonga

You're welcome - I'm sure you'll have a fantastic time!

Wellington...
posts: 1
6. Re: Do you recommend a holiday in Tonga

Just wondering, did you book all your accommodation in Tonga in advance? I fly to Ha'apia on Saturday and have a week booked there, but afterwards am on Tongatapu from a Saturday til a Wednesday. And I haven't booked anywhere to stay yet. Do you reckon I need to do it in advance? Or is it a kind of turn up and see what happens place?

Thanks!

Hastings, New...
posts: 38
reviews: 112
7. Re: Do you recommend a holiday in Tonga

We booked in advance but probably didn't need to - there are several nice places on Tongatapu and there's bound to be one with a room available. I know the Heilala was pretty busy when we were there, but the Vakaloa up the road seemed reasonably quiet, it also looked like a nice place to stay.

Where did you end up booking in Ha'apai? I'm a tad envious.....!

Auckland New Zealand
posts: 1
reviews: 7
8. Re: Do you recommend a holiday in Tonga

Sandy Beach. Haapai. Paradise on Earth...and no kids....Bliss. End of October for 7 days....see T A.

Kona
posts: 1,598
reviews: 36
9. Re: Do you recommend a holiday in Tonga

Tonga is a very special place to visit - it's unique in the Pacific, as it's the only one of the island nations that were never conquered or colonized, and the Kingdom and monarchy has remained intact to this day. Tongans are rightfully very proud of this distinction.

You'll be in Tongatapu for a few days - it's not a very big island and doesn't have a lot of visitor "attractions," but you'll find plenty to do. Wherever you do end up staying, the proprietors will be able to point you in the right direction.

I would book accommodations before getting there; otherwise, you'll be running around with no clear idea of what the choices are.

I don't know why there are no reviews on TA for Captain Cook Apartments, but it's where I always stayed in Nuku'alofa before my apartment at a friend's house was ready. It's ultra-conveniently located on Vuna Road and every apartment has a beautiful ocean vista. These are small 2-bdr units; nothing fancy but equipped with everything you'll need. It's a 10-minute walk to town along the waterfront, and there are a number of nice little restaurants right close by. Here's their page on the Tonga tourism site:

thekingdomoftonga.com/index.php/…

Since you'll have already done the beach thing in Ha'apai, a town stay in Nuku'alofa will give you a more complete view of what Tonga is all about.

Zurich
posts: 2
reviews: 23
10. Re: Do you recommend a holiday in Tonga

I've lived in Tonga for several years and from my experience there seem to be two types of "palangis" (the white people) who live there. The ones that think Tonga should be like the rest of the world and the ones who take the country for what it is. My advice is not to expect it to be anything like you think it will be like. It is not a paradise, but a place that is really different from the rest of the world.

The Tongan language is a challenge. There is only on textbook in the world that teaches Tongan. But if you do master it, you will have an insight to the mysteries of the Tongan way of thinking.

There are very few "palangis" who have managed to learn Tongan, but why shouldn't you be one of those? Good luck and have fun.

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