We spent 4 nights at Palm Bungalows at the start of our honeymoon and it was perfect. We were in bungalow 42, in the middle of the 'top row' of renovated bungalows, with a nice outlook to trees from the deck. We wandered past the old style bungalows, that all appear to have now been gutted and in the process of being renovated as well, and it looks like the renovated bungalows are much nicer than the original style were. The bungalow was spacious and the bed comfortable. There was a kitchenette, but we never used it as there are so many wonderful dining options on the island. The bathroom has a separate toilet and, although the bathroom was a tiny bit on the small side, the shower was a decent size. We loved the deck and had our own little "cocktail hour" every evening as we watched and listened to the birds. Would have loved to have used the hammock on the deck as well but we were on the go the whole time we were on the island so we ran out of time.
Catseye Beach is about a 3 minute walk from the bungalows, as well as the main resort pools - and we appreciated the separate pool/beach towels provided in the room so we didn't have to use our bath towels. Our package deal allowed us to have breakfast at any of 3 options - Reef Hotel, main resort restaurant or breakfast with the koalas at the wildlife park. The wildlife park was the most interesting but had the most limited choice of food, while the Reef Hotel breakfast options were the most varied I've ever seen at a hotel buffet! There is a free shuttle bus that runs between the Reef Hotel (3-4 mins walk from bungalows) and the marina/town area - but we only ever used it once as it was a pain having to wait for the shuttle bus (despite how often they run) and the walk was only 5 or 6 mins, albeit over a short sharp hill in either direction.
It was a little strange that the rooms weren't serviced until quite late in the afternoon - although this didn't affect us as we were usually out all day but we did come back to the room a couple of times around lunch time and it still hadn't been serviced. And we did have to trek up to the Reef View Hotel reception in order to pay a deposit to be able to get the key for the in-room safe, which is a bit strange. But the deposit was refunded when we checked out and if these are the only 2 minor faults I can find with the bungalows, it was a perfect stay over all.
We did seem to be on Hamilton Island at just the right time of year (early Feb) as it wasn't deserted but the island, restaurants, tours & accom were not crowded. The benefit of the bungalows over a regular hotel room (such as at the Reef View) are that they are very private and separated from each other by a nice garden. Even when we were sitting on our deck, it was very rare to have anyone walk past so you very much get the feel of having your own space.
As for things to do on the island, the wildlife park is pretty small but the tours held in the morning and afternoon are really informative. We also did the Denison Star dinner cruise which was amazing - fantastic food and we were so full by the time we got back to the marina. As well as the On The Edge twilight sail - the drinks just kept flowing! We'd recommend the half-day trip to Whitehaven - the morning trip is much better than the afternoon one as the sun isn't quite as fierce at that time. And the Great Barrier Reef trip was well worth it also.
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- The Palm Bungalows comprise 49 freestanding island bungalows situated in a tropical garden setting,each with its own balcony and outdoor furniture. Rooms are spacious and specifically designed for couples or small families. ... more less
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- Also Known As:
- Palm Bungalows Hotel Hamilton Island
- Palm Hotel Hamilton Island