We may have just kicked off winter, but it’s never too early to start researching the next summer destination. From the Maldives and Thailand to India and Newfoundland, these are just a few of the world’s incredible waterfront cottages, just waiting for you to come hang your hat for a few days.
Crusoe Residences, Gili Lankanfushi, Maldives
One of the most luxurious beachside escapes out there, the Crusoe Residence—a resort consisting of seven villas stretched out over the Maldives crystalline waters—is a far cry from what most imagine when they hear the world “bungalow.” The overwater residences, located just a jaunt away from the private island of Lankanfushi in the North Male Atoll of the Maldives, are only accessible via boat. Palm trees, sugar sand beaches and a turquoise lagoon set the stage for this island getaway, while the resort’s staff provides beachside breakfast and a menu with a East-meets-West appeal that is sure to set any foodie’s heart afire.
Green Park Beach Hut, Goa, India
Situated on the Southern end of Palolem Beach in Goa, India, the Green Park Beach Hut Resort’s nine beachfront huts have a front row seat of the Goa sea. The cozy wooden cabins are simply constructed, with private balconies made for snoozing, reading or doing nothing much at all. And while these bungalows’ charm comes from their minimalism, they do include showers with hot water. Visitors come to enjoy Goa’s calm waters and often explore the area beaches by torch-light. Nearby, the Cotigao wildlife sanctuary offers views of one of the highest waterfalls in the world, the Dudhsagar Falls (meaning Sea of Milk), while others opt to rent a motorcycle to take in the coastal views of Palolem.
Fogo Island Inn, Newfoundland
Designed by Norway-based architect Todd Saunders, the 43,000 square-foot Fogo Island Inn is a contemporary waterfront getaway located on an island off the coast of Newfoundland. Visitors to the inn are immediately immersed in a centuries-old, rural landscape, comprised of brambles riddled with wild berries and mushrooms with a coastal scenery set against a community made up of generations of boat builders, fishermen and musicians. Highlights of Fogo Inn include stargazing in the rooftop hot tub, watching icebergs float by in the spring and summer, exploring the coastal terrain and Joe Batt’s Arm fishing village via bike, as well as hiking or snowshoeing against the dramatic backdrop of the Newfoundland sea.
Sai Thong Beach Hut, Koh Tao, Thailand
While most visitors to this area of Thailand are usually drawn to the nearby gulf islands of Samui and Phangan, others still enjoy the quiet appeal of the Sai Thong Beach Resort. From Bangkok, it is a relatively short airplane ride to the island of Koh Samui, followed by a 2-hour boat ride. While it’s a bit of a work around, the trek is worth it: Sai Thong is the picture of peace. The resort’s huts are rustic, made of woven materials and wood, and the tiny porches are dotted with brightly colored hammocks, shaded by palm trees. The seashore restaurant offers cuisine that blends Thai, Burmese and European flavors, while the nearby scuba shop offers all the necessary equipment for snorkeling, diving, kayaking and even mountain biking.
Cosmos Bungalows, South Sulawesi, Indonesia
Six wooden huts, decorated with driftwood, Indonesian art and beach-won curios, are nearly all that make up the Cosmos Bungalows, located in Bira, South Sulawsi, Indonesia. Situated on small cliff face, the rustic abodes at Cosmos offer views of Bara beach and Liukan island. The region’s jungle vegetation offers shade to the tiny retreats, while porch nappers can relax and soak in the ocean views from an ideally placed hammock. Although it takes some effort to get to Bira’s coastal locale, many would say the beauty of South Sulawesi is a worthy trade. The maritime village offers visitors a rich history, and to the delight of many, is also populated by a menagerie of wildlife, including monkeys, wild pigs and monitor lizards.
Mersea Island, UK
Although many don’t really visualize the UK when it comes to beachside excursions, the tiny estuary island of Mersea might just be a game changer. While it’s not tropical in any sense of the word, Mersea, which is located off the coast of Essex (just about 9 miles southeast of Colchester, if you know your English cities), offers a proper beach cottage experience that is not to be diminished by any flashy, south equatorial rivals. The Little Beach Hut Company supplies Mersea visitors with beach bungalows sweet enough to eat. The doll-house-like abodes, with their gingham pillows and quaint decor, are like drops of sugar in the tea cup of the British sea. Tourists can choose a favorite: Betty, Hattie, Kitty, Bertie and Percy, each including beach chairs and toys, windbreaks and, of course (with its countrymen in mind), a kettle and fully-stocked coffee/tea cabinet.