Imagine falling asleep to a fresh, salty breeze while listening to the waves rolling right outside—or underneath—your bedroom. With the ocean just steps from where you’ll sleep, these overwater bungalow resorts are as close to the water as you can be without actually getting wet.
Often located in some of the most remote parts of the world, these villas and bungalows seem to float over the planet's most attractive lakes, lagoons, and seas. Each property, whether it's on a popular stretch of Playa del Carmen in Mexico or the largest lake in Switzerland, has taken a unique approach to their overwater rooms and suites. Sometimes, they're thatched-roof structures that float, held together by ropes; occasionally, they're two-story cabanas with dramatic canopy beds.
If what you're really seeking from your next getaway is a chance to unwind, your best bet is getting as close to a body of water as possible—and these overwater bungalows will ensure a quick transition to island time. So don't limit your overwater experience to just one massage in a waterfront spa, or a romantic dinner on the shore (though you should do those things, too). Bedding down on the ocean (or lagoon, or lake) is perhaps the world's most immersive beach vacation.
Even if you're not planning to book an overwater bungalow vacation, consider these photos a daily dose of wanderlust.