If you wish to reward yourself after your tour of India, you can do what my husband and I did – luxuriate at one of the island resorts on The Maldives. These are as close to paradise as you’re likely to find on Earth.
Just off the Coast of India: Though on the other side of the world from the United States, The Maldives is a short hop for travelers in India, Sri Lanka, or Dubai.
An archipelago of islands: The Maldives is an archipelago consisting of over a thousand coral islands stretched out over 600 miles in the Indian Ocean. After landing in Male you will take a boat or small seaplane to your island destination. Flying over the atolls offers views of rare beauty.
Delicate eco-system: Visiting The Maldives brings into sharp focus the ecological issues of the planet. The Maldives are coral islands. Coral results in brilliant white sand beaches that are cool to the feet because the coral sand does not get as hot as ordinary quartz sand. But coral reefs are an endangered species. The snorkeling on these islands is spectacular but the damage to coral reefs of warming ocean temperatures can be seen here first-hand. Remediation efforts have successfully begun to restore damaged reefs, but more must be done. Also, the rising ocean level is threatening to submerge this sea-level island nation. Hopefully rising seas will never obliterate these island gems.
Local culture: One of the joys of these islands is the local culture. The Maldivians are justly proud of their island nation. The local school we visited was both charming and clearly dedicated to serious learning. The children were neatly dressed and well behaved.
Four Seasons resorts – an island onto yourself: We stayed at both Four Season Kuda Huraa and Four Seasons Landaa Giraavaru, each unique. There were only a couple hundred guests on the island, and we often had one of the many beaches almost entirely to ourselves. The accommodations were extravagant. The basic room category is the Beach Bungalow, upgrading to a Sunrise or Sunset Bungalow (with or without a plunge pool). Our Sunset Beach bungalow’s plunge pool was divine for a rinse after an early morning ocean swim. Whether or not you book a Pool Bungalow, each accommodation is a very private, detached cottage, with outdoor covered patio and lounge bed.
The resorts organized many activities to enrich our stay. We visited the town on the neighboring island, met locals, and saw their homes, shops, schools and daily life. We went snorkeling and swam with turtles, millions of brilliantly colored fish, (surprisingly more plentiful that Hawaii!), and dolphins too. Four Seasons offers a wide range of daily activities; you can enjoy fishing excursions, skiing, parasailing, and of course, the spectacular beaches and pools. There were classes in scuba diving. Each guest at FS Landaa Giraavaru is given their own cruiser bicycle to get from place to place, a very practical and fun way to get around the island!
The dining at each resort was wonderful with a range of dining options, beautiful ocean views, and cuisines from around the world. Locally caught fresh fish was at the top of our list. Dinner was often accompanied by live music. Our favorite dining experience was at Blu, at Four Seasons Landaa Giraavaru. We just could not get enough of Blu, where we often enjoyed all three meals!
If you dream of getting away from it all and relaxing in your own villa with endless ocean views, there is no better place! Four Seasons Resorts Maldives offer an incentive to combine a stay at both properties, with complimentary transfers to and from the resorts and airport (transfers usually incur an additional charge, so you save a lot).
If you plan to travel this far, plan to stay for six or seven nights and split the stay between the 2 resorts. Begin at Four Seasons Kuda Huura, an easy 30 minute speedboat transfer from Male International airport. Then take transfer by sea plane to Four Seasons Landaa Giraavaru for the remainder of your stay. The sea plane flight is an experience in and of itself! Imagine flying low enough to see over a thousand tiny islands within the 26 atolls that make up the Maldives. I was constantly looking out the window, noticing the many brilliant shades of blue that come with varying ocean depths. For the more adventurous and amphibious, how about the Four Seasons Maldives Explorer, a 22 guest catamaran with a 3 night Northward cruise or a 4 night Southward cruise?
Whatever your plans, the Maldives is a perfect destination for anyone, including families traveling with young children.
As a Preferred Partner Agency, our clients receive:
- Daily full American breakfast for two people per bedroom, served through In-Room Dining or in the hotel restaurant (including buffets)
- Spa credit of USD100 once during stay (not applicable to products)
- Upgrade of one category, based on availability at time of check-in (excluding signature suites and villas)
- Complimentary Basic Internet (up to 2 devices) in all guest rooms, Complimentary Premium Internet (up to 4 devices) in all