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“Idyllic pacific island resort with easy access from airport/mainland” 4 of 5 stars
Review of Fafa Island Resort

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Fafa Island Resort
3.0 of 5 Resort   |   | PO Box 1444, Fafa Island, Tonga   |  
Hotel amenities
Ranked #1 of 1 hotels in Fafa Island
Christchurch, New Zealand
Senior Contributor
23 reviews 23 reviews
10 hotel reviews
Reviews in 16 cities Reviews in 16 cities
10 helpful votes 10 helpful votes
“Idyllic pacific island resort with easy access from airport/mainland”
4 of 5 stars Reviewed October 1, 2013

Beautifully designed fales with amazing outdoor bathrooms, private hammocks and deck chairs, white sandy beach nearby, good snorkelling and swimming at high tide, great food, lovely gardens and lots of birds, well managed - in warm sunny weather can't fault it! No choice but to simply relax and enjoy it.

The draw backs if you are inclined to find them...limited activities, low tide swimming or snorkelling difficult, expensive food and drinks, slow and overpriced boat out, little 'real' Tongan experience.

Room Tip: Fales are beautifully designed and private
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  • Stayed August 2013, traveled with family
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
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240 people have reviewed this hotel

Traveler rating
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Rating summary
  • Location
    5 of 5 stars
  • Sleep Quality
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Rooms
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Service
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Value
    4 of 5 stars
  • Cleanliness
    4.5 of 5 stars
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (59)
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • French first
  • German first
  • Italian first
  • Japanese first
  • Swedish first
  • Any
English first
Melbourne, Australia
Top Contributor
129 reviews 129 reviews
18 hotel reviews
Reviews in 47 cities Reviews in 47 cities
55 helpful votes 55 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed September 29, 2013

We had a lovely stop of 5 nights on Fafa and given that you cant really do much it throws you into island time....lovely. We swam, snorkelled, walked around the island at low tide, walked the little bush walk, read a book, ate drank and did it all again the next day...wonderful.
While it can be a bit confusing on how to pay for you meals, you have the choice of a la carte in Tongan currency or you can go on a meal plan in Euro, the meals are lovely, so dig in.
The cocktails are really expensive so we only had one on our last day.
We absolutely loved our Fale, especially the outdoor shower and bathroom, very private and a little liberating.... We also, as did everyong have our own private yard and access to the beach and hammock and lounges, really very nice.....loved the thermos of hot water in the wee hours of the morning to make our coffee and the lantern late afternoon, nice touches, thanks for a nice holiday.

  • Stayed September 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Contributor
14 reviews 14 reviews
6 hotel reviews
Reviews in 9 cities Reviews in 9 cities
4 helpful votes 4 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed September 27, 2013

We travelled as a family (5 in all) as a graduation celebration trip. Having paid well in advance of our stay, a family emergency had us questioning our ability to make the trip. We made the right decision to follow through with our travel plans. The German owners were very accommodating and sympathetic to our situation and showed us so much compassion and understanding. Our Fale was perfect situated for our 3 children and us. The bathroom was a fun surprise, being outdoor and open to the air, yet very private and relaxing. Our oldest son was kept very busy learning about the sea creatures found hidden in the shallow waters of the low tide, by one of the cooks on his downtime. And was given a tour of the kitchen as he has an interest in becoming a chef. The restaurant and bar staff spent time talking with our kids, sharing their island way of life with them. Our youngest spent time with the owner's daughter exploring the island and sharing their similar interests of playing board games, cards and stories. We had private trips arranged for us, to explore Malinoa island and a chain of other small uninhabited islands where we enjoyed our wonderful boxed lunches, snorkeled and explored a sandbar together as a family. The time we spend on FaFa helped us heal as a family and return to the states ready to handle the loss of our loved one. I cannot begin to explain how special this place is to us and how it will forever be remembered in our hearts. (Our trip was actually in June of 2008, yet my previous review never posted...so finally took the time to rewrite.)

Room Tip: All of the fales are lovely
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  • Stayed June 2013, traveled with family
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Wellington, New Zealand
Senior Contributor
36 reviews 36 reviews
25 hotel reviews
Reviews in 22 cities Reviews in 22 cities
14 helpful votes 14 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed September 23, 2013

If you go to FAFA you can sit in the sun, swim in the sea, reads books and, to be honest that is about it. However, in the above cases FAFA does them all very well (as long as the weather holds). This is the third time we have been to FAFA and I am afraid it is the last. The Falles are fun and quaint, the staff are lovely, the food is good but once you have dived the reef and done all of your reading it gets a little on the boring side. However, to put its good side foreward, I counted 8 species of flower in the bathroom (outside) alone, the scent of frangipani as you walk the island at night is lovely, the birdlife is facinating, the snorkling is great, but the tidal range does tend to mean you swim at high tide mainly as the coral gets very very close at low tide. Down sides are if the weather is poor it gets claustraphobic, it can get cool at night, the humidty is very high and the sheets can sometimes feel damp and wet clothes and towels don't dry as quickly as you would like. Overall, its worth doing once, the staff are lovely, the german managers are charming and as a deserted island experience its good.

Room Tip: all rooms are on the beach and have hamocks, chairs for lazing and most have thier own bit of beach,
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  • Stayed September 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 3 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Auckland Region, New Zealand
Senior Reviewer
7 reviews 7 reviews
7 hotel reviews
Reviews in 7 cities Reviews in 7 cities
9 helpful votes 9 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed September 13, 2013

Beautiful resort with a very private feel. Not far from the mainland by boat, its a wonderful place to spend a couple of nights. It can be pricey but that is to be expected given that there are few places on Tongatapu or nearby that can rival Fafa. The Island itself appears to be very well kept and manicured. The restaurant serves a really nice dinner menu.

We have been twice and would love to go back.

  • Stayed January 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Nuku'alofa, Tonga
Top Contributor
101 reviews 101 reviews
31 hotel reviews
Reviews in 37 cities Reviews in 37 cities
52 helpful votes 52 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed September 8, 2013

2nd visit this year and still amazing. This time stayed for three full days, food and food sizing is perfect. Staff are lovely. Do not be thrown by the Euro pricing it is well worth it. Our room the superior fale was just perfect, it was rainy on one day and perfect the final two. The beds are to die for very very comfortable and. O need for mosquito netting this time of the year as the wind kept them away.

Suggestions for staff| please put nibbles to eat on the bar, this just makes it easy to snack ie nuts or chips etc.

Preempt what the guests want. Ask them what they want to do for the day instead of just letting guests guess at what is available, and if you have something make an announcement!

Staff a little complacent maybe time to have a staff bonding day.


Overall it is just awesome

  • Stayed September 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Melbourne, Australia
1 review
3 helpful votes 3 helpful votes
1 of 5 stars Reviewed September 4, 2013

We took a trip to Fafa to check it out, after being recommended to go from friends. The hotel we were staying at on the mainland stated that we could spend a day on the island including lunch and transfers for 70TOP. Our Tongan taxi driver also stated that it would cost 20 TOP each way if we didnt want lunch and having food allergies, my partner and i decided we would check out what was on the menu before commiting to anything. When we got to the wharf the boat had had some trouble and wasnt due for another three hours, well so much for lunch, so we ate locally. When the ferry finally did arrive the staff seemed annoyed and werent very helpful or friendly (to anyone). The trip itself was so slow I could probably have out-swam the boat, lucky we'd had lunch. I noticed there were no life jackets on the boat and at best, it was overloaded. Once we got there (by this stage after 12) we thought we could just go swimming and do our own thing but we were hauled up by a male staff member stating that we needed to enter the restaurant to pay for our lunch which was 92 TOP. Well, when we tried to explain to the woman behind the bar that due to the circumstances we had not come for lunch and to only spend the day on the island, all attitudes changed. In principal we had already lost four hours island time due to their boat running late and we'd already eaten, (luckily as the menu they were offering was a little uninspiring - fish and chips and a banana dessert). She told us in no uncertain terms that we needed to pay or take it up with mamgement and then proceeded to walk off, completely ignoring us to make drinks. All other staff behind the bar also completely ignored us and my partner and i were just left standing there, incredulous. We finally asked if we could talk to the manager and when she finally came out - a long time later, the exchange was nothing short of obnoxiously belligerent ( though barbaric does come to mind!) We explained the circumstances AGAIN, but were told that a day on the island was not part of their package. We should have informed ourselves and not have assumed we could just come and go as we pleased and we were to pay $92! She was completely unforgiving to the apparent misinformation we had received and was just as pig-headed when we told her what our taxi driver said and refused to accept that our hotel also had their island price displayed as $70, (despite the fact that i had a photo of the whiteboard displaying their price) she stated that they had advised all hotels and our taxi driver must be confused or not a local as "everyone" else knew!!!! There was no reasoning with this woman (or her husband, who also later came to bully us into paying) and we had no options, no alternatives, nothing! Our only vilification was the fact that when we got back to the mainland, the same bar staff member who totally ignored us on the island also knew our taxi driver who confirmed to her what we had been telling her all along! Ironically, when we got back to our hotel, lo and behold the price on the whiteboard had also been amended! Suffice to say we booked our next 10 nights at Atata island, who had a better equipped boat, faster with friendly staff and offered us a complimentary arrival drink! Having said that the Fales did look very nice, though the beach was completely unswimmable at low tide.

  • Stayed August 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 1 of 5 stars Value
    • 1 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 3
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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Additional Information about Fafa Island Resort

Address: | PO Box 1444, Fafa Island, Tonga
Location: Tonga > Fafa Island
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Children Activities ( Kid / Family Friendly ) Restaurant Room Service Suites Airport Transportation
Hotel Style:
Ranked #1 of 1 hotels in Fafa Island
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$$
Hotel Class:3 star — Fafa Island Resort 3*
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Also Known As:
Fafa Island Hotel Fafa Island

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