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Mandala Resort

Fetoko Island between Mafana and Ofu Islands, Vava'u Island Group, Neiafu Tonga
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Mandala Resort is an idyllic private island luxury Tree House and handcrafted beach bungalow accommodation experience in a tranquil beach setting. Situated on the eastern side of the Vava'u Island Group, Fetoko Island has a pleasant breeze and is virtually mosquito free. Mandala offers 6 unique handcrafted eco-bungalows that form a symbiotic ambiance with the environment. En-suite seaside bungalows with private, over the water verandas and spectacular views are equipped with king beds, French doors, and cozy bay window day-beds. A quick 10-minute boat ride from Neiafu. Complimentary kayaks and snorkel gear. With a convenient 30-minute trip from the island to the Vava'u domestic airport. WiFi, full and half board gourmet meal plans, and airport transfers are available. Ideal for your adventure vacation, romantic getaway or retreat. Whale watching and adventure tour packages available from the island.
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Property amenities
Bar / lounge
Bicycle rental
Airport transportation
Foot massage
Currency exchange
Paid wifi
Paid internet
Special diet menus
Game room
Full body massage
Hand massage
Head massage
Neck massage
Gift shop
Mosquito net
Non-smoking hotel
Private check-in / check-out
Laundry service
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Room features
Bridal suite
Non-smoking rooms
Family rooms
Private balcony
Bath / shower
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Popular mentions
Mandala is a very small, remote, private island. Super small, hand built by the owners. Relaxing and inspiring this is one of the most special places on earth. Go adventuring with local guides, snorkeling, swimming with humpbacks, hiking. Enjoy delicious meals, bonfires, beach hammocks, and the dogs (woof! Higgs and Boson are the best!)
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Wow, what a place!! That’s what my partner and I both exclaimed as we neared the island on the boat that whisked us there from Vava’u. I mean, seriously!! Like something from a picture book. But it really only got better from there... and we felt even more wow’d every day across our 7 day stay. The room we had was amazing. Sitting a short walk from the arrival spot and resort restaurant, but feeling like we were alone in our own place on our own island. If you are looking for the most idyllic setting, in the most beautiful and relaxing spot in the Pacific... then this might just be it! Anna and the team were amazing. They could not have wanted us to enjoy every moment more. They all take great pride in making sure that everything is ‘just right’ and from breakfast through dinner, you couldn’t find a warmer more attentive team. We mixed a couple of days chilling on the island, snorkelling around the island or enjoying a drink in the bar. The rest of the time was spent being amazed by whales and / or the most amazing dive sites. To come ‘home’ at the end of a day on and in the water to Mandala was like returning to a paradise within a paradise, with all of the comforts you could want from a 5-star resort. My partner and I could not have been happier, and couldn’t rave enough about Mandala. If you’re coming to this part of the world... make this a ‘must stay’!!
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Response from mandalaresort, General Manager at Mandala Resort
Responded Oct 1, 2018
We are so very happy that you two enjoyed yourselves. Thank you so much for coming to stay, we really enjoyed having you here, it was a pleasure meeting you both! Fair winds and grand adventures :-)
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What an amazing surprise! We stubbled across this gem of a place on booking.com. We hadn’t looked too much into it before we arrived. As soon as we stepped out of the boat we felt like we had walked into a gold mine. The staff were incredible! We felt everybody went above and beyond to make our stay as comfortable and carefree as possible. The food.. amazing! We were provided with breakfast, lunch and dinner. Each meal was always very fresh and super tasty. (homemade bread everytime.. delicious!!) We stayed in a one bedroom treehouse. This was not only spacious/beautiful but always kept very clean. We particularly enjoyed the view of the bright blue water everytime you walked outside. The resident animals have to get a mention! It was a super nice surprise to have Bozen, Higgs (dogs) and Benzini (cat) on the island. They are beautiful animals that are very friendly and just made the whole experience that little bit sweeter. Overall our trip was very special and it is a real credit to all of the staff involved who made it that way. Thanks to Lisa, Ben and Anna for all of your help. It’s a beautiful place and we really hope we come back again in the near future.
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Response from mandalaresort, Owner at Mandala Resort
Responded Sep 17, 2018
So lovely to have you all here! Thank you for coming to stay and for your kind words. We are so happy that you enjoyed your stay. Ofa lahi atu!
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The bungalows are great. we were in the island bungalow which looks out over the neighbouring island and sunsets. They are spacious with great views. the bed was comfortable and the day beds great to read on. The bungalows were spacious. We enjoyed the meals, but it would have been nice to have a choice of two options. I didnt feel like pizza one day but that was only option. One guest said they were dreaming of a steak or side of lamb. The freshly made bread at each meal was very nice. The staff were lovely and friendly, and very helpful. The public lounge and dining area were stunning. The hammocks, chairs, loungers provided were all comfortable and looked out over the water. it was a lovely place to rest. We enjoyed the sea scooter and caves trip. But prices are in AUD so the outings are definitely not cheap. AUD120 each for a two hour snorkel trip with 6 others (and that was discounted rate). i would have liked a locked cupboard or safe in the room, or somewhere we could secure passports and wallet. our bungalow was closest to the beach and public areas. its not that i didnt trust the staff, but there are other guests and by putting temptation readily accessible it does create a problem. i had nowhere to secure our passports or cash and the bungalows were left unlocked with no keys. Down sides - the weather wasnt great. Thats just the way it is. The wind restricted kayak and paddleboard use a couple of days and some rain and cloudy skies . The locals were all pleased after months of dry weather. There isnt a lot else to do on the island. you cant walk along a beach (not one longer than 10 metres) and at low tide you need to go out a bit to swim. The island is so small that its about a one minute walk. Snorkelling isnt great at all off the island. So unless you do an activity or go off the island you are limited to resting or reading, sleeping, eating or games. We arrived and our room wasnt ready so it was an hour wait, and we were couldnt access our luggage and were keen for a swim. a welcome drink would have been nice and we never saw the complimentary arrival drink on first evening. These little things are important. We were told snorkel trip was at 8am so got up early for breakfast and at breakfast were told it was now 10am. Dogs barking right near us about 8 times overnight one night. We were woken early every morning by the dogs barking at the staff arriving in the boat. i seriously could have throttled them. im allergic to cats and the resort cat freely wandered on the tables in the evening. its food bowl was on the counter in the kitchen. I like a cooler shower, hubbie likes a hot shower. But the shower water temperatures are preset so hubbie was happy with shower, but i found it too hot. And one sticky night we were both keen for a cooler shower, but after being out in the rain were we keen for a hot shower. However, we both like the semi open air shower. Sadly we arranged for me to do a snorkel trip in the morning as my partner did a scuba dive trip. It was all arranged the day before and then after dinner we were advised the snorkel trip had been changed to 2pm - after his diving and not at the same time as originally planned and advised. We did the trip but tides werent favourable and hubbie wasnt that keen after diving all morning. Fortunately we spent much time on our paddleboards, and found some great snorkelling spots between other islands. The kayaks are also popular and i recommend a paddle around the nearby islands, and take your snorkel gear. We appreciated the special dinner set up for a special occasion. While it is eco in the way of conserving water use and compostable toilets and solar power it would be great to see more sustainable food obtained locally, and grown by locals - It seems thats a big problem throughout greater Tonga with stores selling all imported stuff (chips, coke, and junk food) and you cant get a coconut or papaya or local taro chips to save yourself. Do wear reef shoes or water sandals as these need to be worn getting in and out of the transfer boat, and also when swimming. Thanks for having us and a much needed time away for us after a very difficult year.
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Response from mandalaresort, Owner at Mandala Resort
Responded Sep 8, 2018
Hi, Diane! It was lovely to have you both come to stay for your special occasion. I sincerely wish you had mentioned some of your issues to us! Our check in is at 2pm and you were certainly brought to your room prior to that. Your bags were available while you waited and our bathroom and outdoor shower were available for your use. As mentioned in the room check in, the shower temperature is adjustable if you just mention to us your preference. If you had wanted more than our welcome rain water to drink, we would have certainly accommodated and the welcome evening drinks were credited on your invoice. We apologize for delaying your tour by 2 hours, but the weather was horrendous and we thought it safer to wait until it cleared a bit. And yes, we did move the snorkel trip that you added at the last minute to better suit the tides, again for safety. We do have a safe on-site in the manager’s office, as our in-room compendium mentions, and wish you’d let us know your interest. We also apologize for the dogs barking those two nights that they did. There were fishermen off the island that were in the dogs ‘domain’ and that we were unable to get to move off of the island, lucky this very rarely happens. We thank you very sincerely for your feedback and for coming to stay with us, but suggest you let future accommodations know of your needs so they can be met, rather than reserving your commments for a tripadvisor review. Best wishes to you both for a better year to come! Be well and enjoy from all of us here at Mandala!
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First, we have to apologize to Ben and Lisa for the delay in posting this review. We’ve been stalling for a long time because it’s so difficult to capture our experience at Mandala in words, but it’s really time to stop stalling and start writing. We travel as a trio (me, my wife, and our daughter), and our favorite type of trip is an adventurous escape to a remote island. To give you a sense of our experience, some of our favorites have been La Digue in the Seychelles, Tikehau, Maupiti, the Maldives, the Galapagos, the Bahamas Out Islands, Barbuda, Namena in Fiji, Yap, Kosrae, Fakarava, Aitutaki, Uepi in the Solomon Islands, Malapascua in the Philippines, and Lady Elliot. Even in this illustrious list, our week at Mandala stands out as unique and truly special. ACTIVITIES: Mandala was already impressive eight months before our trip. We told Lisa that we liked to be very active on these trips. She explained that the popular whale swimming boats tend to fill up very early, and she took it upon herself to call all of her favorite companies to reserve 3 whale swimming days for us. She also scheduled for us to have two days of private adventure and exploration with her husband Ben. Lisa’s enthusiasm, welcoming attitude, and organizational skills set the tone for a flawless week. And all her advice was on target. The whale swimming boat that she said was best was in fact the best. When we arrived, Lisa had a handwritten plan with our activity for each day. We were nicely scheduled, but not overscheduled, which means we had enough time to relax, sit still, and enjoy the charms of their little island. As expected, each whale swimming day was excellent (extended snorkeling with mother/calf pairs at close range, males singing, individual whales surprising us with close passes while we were in the water, breaching close to the boat, and at one point, dolphins leaping over a humpback whale). Now here is the surprising part: while swimming with whales was a predictably amazing experience, our two days out with Ben were even MORE impressive! Ben is a truly special individual. His creativity and enthusiasm are inspiring, and he knows the unpopulated waterways and islands of Eastern Vava’u better than anyone else. I don’t want to be specific here because I don’t want to ruin the surprise, and I won’t name his secret islands because I don’t want anyone else finding these places. But I can say Ben took us places that shocked us with their combination of beauty, uniqueness, and adventure. It’s not easy to surprise us with truly new tropical island experiences after all the other places we’ve been, but that’s exactly what Ben did. One of Ben’s islands involved some physical challenges, and Ben personally ensured our daughter’s safety. Our family still remembers this day as perhaps the best single day we’ve ever had ANYWHERE (and I’ve been to over 100 countries). Our daughter even immortalized it in a third-grade writing assignment and art project the following year! I’ll keep the details a secret, so just go meet Ben and Lisa, and trust them when they have a recommendation. If you have an adventurous spirit, Ben will do his best to dazzle you. Other less dramatic activities were also great. We really enjoyed our Sunday visiting the local village and hearing the amazing multi-part harmonies in a Tongan church. The music night with kava at Mandala was very impressive. It seems like everyone in Tonga could be a professional singer anywhere else. And during the occasional rainy hours, we enjoyed relaxing on the extended couch in the Mandala outdoor covered “movie theater”. Ben showed us gorgeous films of his trip to Raja Ampat, which inspired us to plan a trip there for February 2019. And if you prefer to have more time for relaxation, this is a lovely island for reading in a hammock with a beautiful view while someone else makes you great food. You’re not expected to be as busy or active as we were. HOSPITALITY: Their hospitality at the “resort” was also exemplary. Our daughter loved Lisa, and they spent some quality time together on napkin origami to help beautify the dinner settings! When our daughter started getting mosquito bites at night, Ben rigged up a netting situation for her whole sleeping alcove. Another thing that highlights the hospitality of these people: When we were there, Ben had recently acquired a new drone for photography, which he brought with us on our adventures. At the end of our week, he provided us with beautiful aerial photos and videos (edited with music!) of all our activities. This was not something we expected or requested, and he did not ask for any payment. When you’re at Mandala, you don’t feel like they want to profit from you. You feel like a welcomed member of their little community, and it’s clear that Ben and Lisa want you to have a peak experience with great memories. THE BUNGALOWS: Our room was perfect with two large balconies, lots of storage space, a large stylish bathroom, a dazzling view of sparkling turquoise water, and total privacy. Each bungalow is unique, creatively designed, very comfortable, and in harmony with its environment. FOOD: The food was consistently excellent and surprising. It seemed like a magic trick to provide so much variety in such a remote location. THE STAFF: I’ve already told you about the owners Ben and Lisa. The rest of the staff is also excellent. We would like to offer a particular thanks to a woman named Andrea who was working there at the time (I think she was from Sweden, but all the other staff members were locals). Andrea’s vegetarian recipes were a great addition to the menu (I wish we knew how to make the lentil fritters), and she joined us with her go-pro on our favorite adventure with Ben. On our final night, she stayed up late trying to figure out how to transfer the photos and videos from her go-pro to my thumb drive. She really put in a lot of effort despite working all day, and of course, she did not expect any payment or tip for this. She was just being kind, which is the way things work at Mandala. CHILDREN: Our daughter was eight years old at the time. She loved every minute of her week at Mandala, and Ben and Lisa made her feel like a member of the family. Our daughter considers this one of the best experiences she’s ever had, but I’m not sure this experience would be suitable for every child. Our daughter loves nature, she is very brave in the ocean, and she can happily spend all her time with us. If your kids need structured activity or other children to play with, this might not be the island for you. OTHER STUFF: There were some mosquitoes, but not a lot. In August, there was no need for air conditioning. The weather was mostly sunny with some rain that never ruined an entire day, and the temperature was always pleasant. We recommend bringing wetsuits if you plan on doing a lot of snorkeling. So Ben and Lisa, thanks for so many great memories that have stayed with us, and thanks for creating this little island paradise so those of us who live back in civilization can spend a little time feeling at home in this amazing corner of the world. We’ll be back!
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Response from mandalaresort, Owner at Mandala Resort
Responded Sep 8, 2018
WOW! What a joy to hear from you guys! We so enjoyed having you come to stay with us and your review is so thoughtful and really warms our hearts, thank you so much! Your daughter is an awesome traveler and we still use her origami napkins on our dinner plates ;-) Thank so you very much for your kind works and enthusiasm. Looking forward to crossing paths with you all again! Best wishes to you. <3
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TongaVava'u IslandsNeiafu
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Frequently Asked Questions about Mandala Resort
Which popular attractions are close to Mandala Resort?
Nearby attractions include Ene'io Botanical Garden (4.5 miles) and Mt Talau (4.1 miles).
What are some of the property amenities at Mandala Resort?
Some of the more popular amenities offered include an on-site restaurant, a lounge, and airport transportation.
What food & drink options are available at Mandala Resort?
Guests can enjoy an on-site restaurant and a lounge during their stay.
What are some restaurants close to Mandala Resort?
Conveniently located restaurants include Bellavista Cafe & Restaurant, Mango Cafe, and Cafe Tropicana.
Does Mandala Resort have an airport shuttle?
Yes, Mandala Resort offers an airport shuttle for guests. We recommend calling ahead to confirm details.