On October 31st 2010, we checked into London Gatwick for what was to be our first trip to the Maldives. We were greeted by our Kuoni Representatives Martyn, Katharina and Tracy. We were very excited as we were lucky enough to visit 6 islands on our trip. As 7.30pm arrived we boarded our Monarch Airlines flights to Male, which approximately took 11 hours. This was the last flight operated by Monarch Airlines to the Maldives.
After a long flight, we landed into Male at 11am local time, we were raring to go and experience the beautiful islands of the Maldives, which are scattered through-out the Indian Ocean. After collecting our luggage, we eagerly made our way to the speed boat which would take us to Kuramathi, the first island of our stay. The speedboat took around 90 minutes (As the journey is lengthy, we would highly advise pre-booking a sea plane transfer which would cut the traveling time to 25 minutes)
Situated North Male Atoll. This is our most popular resort in the Maldives, a 4 star island offering excellent all inclusive options and a wide range of accommodation options ranging from Garden Villas, to the stunning Jacuzzi Water Villas (which we were fortunate enough to stay in!)
Suptious buffets in the three main restaurants plus six fabulous à la carte restaurants and six bars with regular evening entertainment. There are two swimming pools including a beachfront infinity pool, a floodlit tennis court, gym, table tennis, sauna, Jacuzzi, relaxing spa, a good range of water sports including excellent scuba diving, kids’ club, shops, library and numerous excursions. Snorkeling on the house reef is superb and possible directly from the beach, and a visit to the idyllic sand bank at the tip of the island is a must.
Sheraton Full Moon
After a long awaited rest, we took our speedboat transfer to the 5 star island, Sheraton Full Moon. This is a newly refurbished resort located in North Male that is ideal for couples and families. We stayed in a Beachside Cottage which are single storey facing the beach, featuring an open air bathroom.
Facilities include a charming freeform pool, sundeck, children’s pool, all day café, bars with beachside terrace, choice of four restaurants, in-room dining, three bars, live music, fitness centre, tennis, IT lounge/library, water sports, free supervised kids’ adventure club, excursions and a diving school (packages can be prebooked). The unique and luxurious spa is located on its own island linked by a small bridge.
After taking our speedboat transfer from Sheraton Full Moon to Kurumba, as the island is situated only 10 minutes from Male airport we were there in no time! Positioned North Male Atoll, we would recommend this resort for families and couples who prefer an island with more activities and entertainment, offering quality and great value. We had a private villa for our 2 night stay, which was very spacious, and featured a separate sitting area and jacuzzi.
Dining options include an all day dining café, buffets at the main restaurant and six speciality restaurants – enjoy barbecue and seafood dishes at the fantastic Ocean Grill or opt for Chinese, Indian, Italian, Japanese or Lebanese cuisine. There are two bars, plus live music and karaoke, as well as two pools, a children’s pool, fitness centre, tennis courts, The Spa, water sports and diving centre. Excellent snorkeling opportunities on the house reef are just steps from the beach.
Our next port of call was Maafushivaru which can only be accessed via sea plane transfer which takes roughly 40 minutes. This is an amazing experience, and is a perfect opportunity to take photo’s from a birds eye view of the many islands. Also the spectrum of blues from the Indian Ocean was picturesque.
The Cuisine Gallery restaurant offers Mediterranean cuisine infused with local flavours, sumptuous buffets and outdoor dining, and à la carte and private dining options are also available. For an authentic Crusoe-esque experience, couples can take a boat across to the nearby uninhabited sister island for romantic picnics, candlelit dining or luxurious lobster dinners in picture-perfect surrounds. The beachfront infinity pool is conveniently next to the bar which also has seating on the beach. Facilities include a lounge, wine cellar, library, overwater spa and gym, yoga pavilion, children’s swimming pool, dive school and watersports.
A small 5 star luxury island, reached by a 20 minute speedboat. This is a popular choice for honeymooners as children under 8 years are not permitted. Consisting of 75 rooms and just 5 room categories this stunning world class island is where style meets simplicity, and you can therefore see why stars such as Penelope Cruz and Piers Morgan have stayed here!
Circled in a ten minute stroll, this stunning, world class island is where style meets simplicity. Hemmed with dazzling sand and with contemporary, elegant facilities, Baros Maldives is a place perfect for honeymooners, and a member of the Small Luxury Hotels of the World.
Dine at three stylish dining options including the unique overwater Lighthouse Restaurant – one of the island’s highlights, offering superb cuisine and panoramic views, and the Maldives’ only Satay Bar. A range of private dining options are also available on request, from a beachfront barbecue to a romantic picnic on a sandbank. Enjoy other facilities including an atmospheric bar, boutique, fitness centre, Aquum Spa, watersports and marine centre. Glide through the lagoon with its excellent house reef that is superb for snorkelling .
For our final day we were up bright and early for our sea plane transfer to Male airport. We then took a speedboat transfer to Velassaru where we were greeted by the staff with refreshing cold towels and champagne. This is a 5 star luxury resort, having also had a complete refurbishment it now offers a ultra stylish design. The island has 5 different room categories all of a modern finishing. We stayed in a beach villa which are brand new cottages facing the beach which had fantastic views.
Velassaru Maldives is a contemporary resort with a picture-postcard ‘wow’ factor. Impressive in every way .
Elegant facilities include a stunning oceanfront infinity pool, a variety of dining outlets including the main restaurant, Mediterranean dining, a Japanese overwater restaurant, oceanfront Grill and a range of private dining settings. There is also a bar, beach bar and sundeck, fitness centre, overwater yoga pavilion, tennis, snorkelling, windsurfing, diving and the Aquum spa with eight overwater treatment rooms. Snorkelling is possible directly from the beach.
After spending seven nights in the Maldives, it was clear why it is a popular choice for keen divers, honeymooners, and couples after a week of true relaxation. With islands ranging from boutique, to family friendly, and relaxation to active, you are sure to find something to suite everybody taste here in paradise that is the Indian Ocean.