We spent an unforgettable week on the Independence sailing around the amazing islands of Vava'u in search of whales last October. Besides the islands revealed to be well beyond our expectation in beauty we could not have chosen a better arrangement to discover them.
The boat is really perfect for 4 people ( though it fits confortably also 6) and if you count hotels, regular whale watching days and food cost is not even particularly more expensive. We had a week of actually not great weather, with rough sea making it hard to spot whales but being on the boat and enjoying the sailing through the landscape still made it one of the best trip of my life.
Otis, the owner and skipper of the boat, is an amazing host completely devoted to giving the guest the best experience and he's also full of amazing stories and a pleasure to sit and chat with. You cannot sit on the front deck a minute that hes' going to get you a pillow ora drink to get more confortable, being super attentive while never intrusive. As it was hard to spot whales he would sail around for hours really trying hard to cover any possible spots and tryng to take to as many beautiful snorkeling spots as possible - and the reefs are really amazing, not much big fish but incredibly well preserved hard and soft corals.
The food was outstanding with our Tongan chef Mele preparing absolutely delicious dishes at every meal, as she is trained as a chef, and entertaining us with her bubbly personality and local stories.
Christy from Melinda also helped us book all the local flights and connections, so you can fully trust her to help with the holiday setup from he moment you set foot in Tonga.
Honestly don't think twice this is the way to see Tonga.
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.