The Maldives…. let’s face it, no one can deny the dreamy magic of the Maldives as soon as you see it. The pure white sand across the thousands of scattered islands, pictured against the crystal blue sea which glistens in the uninterrupted sunshine. The group of Maldives islands is a gem within itself and not in any way disappointing upon first (second or third!) sight.
Whether seeking a romantic trip as a couple (well why else would you head here?), a family holiday, or a chilled trip away with friends (say that again?) – you can find what you are looking for hidden amongst this array of beautiful islands.
Nearly 2000 islands form The Maldives which are separated into atolls. There are over 100 resorts scattered across the atolls and prior to my first visit to The Maldives, many can look pretty similar when performing that all-important pre-booking research, causing you to have… well, something of a mind-fart! Spending your ‘hard-earned or otherwise’ cash on a holiday that let’s be honest is fairly stonkingly expensive by most normal people’s standard – it’s important to get it right.
My first-time impression when reviewing websites, reviews and travel agents, was that all resorts would be similar in terms of the offering. Yet having had the pleasure of visiting this stunning destination more than once, I can tell you that this is not necessarily the case. As a result, I’ve started to build an understanding that actually the Maldives can offer much more diversity in a get-away experience than I had once originally assumed… Here’s what I’d like to share with you.
My first experience… a super intimate, romantic holiday with not a care in the world for anything but the now. It was so idyllic, I thought at one point a unicorn was going to appear to serve my next drinks! Seriously I’m kidding, what do you think they laced the water there with?! But in all seriousness, it was an entirely proper perfect couples getaway.
Second experience… a family-friendly resort – not entirely suited to our needs necessarily, but for families would deliver a fantastic all-round holiday. I’ve heard so many parents say to me when coming back “oh those days for us are gone”. They’re not. This resort is the one to try. Do it.
The third… a resort offering entertainment (actually decent, no cheese!), a less expensive option by Maldives standards – yup, it does exist! Yet still offering the relaxation and privacy we needed for a cosy, romantic… yeah, maybe I’ll stop there!
Now pay attention, here are some key considerations you might want to consider when looking at resorts here:
- Resorts vary in size, which can have an impact on the level of privacy, intimacy versus a bustling and busy vibe – depending on which you are looking for
- All inclusive packages are the way to go having stayed once without (much to the damage to wallets for many moons to come!). Yet these packages can vary HUGELY in terms of what is included i.e. some will be offered standard menus or upgrade versions at your own expenditure; whether a glass(es) versus a bottle of wine can be had during (or outside) of meal times. Some packages will also entitle you to eat only at the buffet-style restaurants, so if you want this al la carte, you may have to pay in addition at the time
- Do not put be put off by a slightly more expensive resort, as if you are looking for the opposite of the above i.e. access to all restaurants, menu items etc. – this may provide the better overall value
- Water villas – mixed reports on whether it’s worth it. If you’re a couple wanting privacy or just love the ocean with direct access, I would 100% tell you it’s worth every penny
Resorts I have visited have all consistently delivered on the quality of food and wine choices (where applicable), which is fantastic given the remoteness of some of these islands. Service is a little slow in general if you’re used to city vibes, but you’re on holiday – so what the heck?!
I consider myself lucky, each resort has delivered an unexpectedly, completely different experience. Given my initial view, this truly surprised me. Some places actually offer decent entertainment where you could get together with friends and have a good giggle. And certainly, when I eventually getting round to having a family (coughs nervously), the Maldives would definitely still be in the destination list.
For more information on my specific resort experiences in the Maldives, you can take a look at the individual reviews listed below… and happy hunting!