“Good things come in small packages.” That famous English saying is actually about the gorgeous Maldives (or should be!).
A jewel in the Indian Ocean to the south-west of both Sri Lanka and India, the Maldives nation actually is a chain of 1,190 islands, although just a fraction of that are inhabited, and a further 80 islands developed for resorts. The largest island maintains the capital, Malé, which is just a few minutes boat ride from the International airport on Hulhule island. You don’t need to apply beforehand for a visa (one less thing to worry about in all the craziness of wedding planning!), and instead, visas for 30 days are granted to all nationalities on arrival.
While the total number of inhabitants barely number 400,000, you will still step onto the island and immediately feel how cultures have permeated through the ages as the country has experienced different peoples, religions, and languages passing through over time, culminating today into a cultural ethics that is entirely and uniquely Maldivian.
This sun-kissed pocket of the world enjoys year-round enviable temperatures of 23 to 30 degrees Celsius, and water temperatures are just as perfect. Hotels are abundant and all offer phenomenal views of white sandy beaches and nothing but sea all around, and many offer prime catering just for honeymooners. The great thing is that you both can have the unique experience of having practically an island to yourself, with a well-conserved and stunning natural eco-system surrounding you. Depending on which island atoll you’ve picked, you’ll be able to move around via the country’s efficient speed boat or sea-plane transfer systems to get you as quickly as possible to your island destination.
From secluded and intimate settings of private bungalows over crystal clear water, to long walks on paths where white sand meets water, there is an array of memories to be made together on this beautiful island. You can take a swim together near colorful coral reefs that the Maldives is well-known for, or, because there is little else that brings a couple closer together than trying out new things, take a step further in adventure and go diving together, as the country has one of the best drift diving spots in the world. For honeymooners, we recommend islands such as the Club Med Keni, Cocoa Island Resort, Veligandu Island Resort, the Angsana Resort & Spa, just a few of many that host charming private bungalows and water villas over turquoise waters. In fact, water villas have the distinct feature of having a connecting wooden staircase from the villa down to the water so that you can literally move from room to ocean in just a few seconds!
Of course those are just a few of many accommodations offered, and for those honeymooners making it a family affair and bringing little ones along, most resorts are also family-oriented, and many of the islands offer a wide range of outdoor and recreational activities to make the most out of every day.
For the honeymooning couple we highly recommend indulging in private spa treatments catered in your rooms, with actual ocean waves serenading you rather than a CD, as well as having a romantic dinner together out on the open verandas that overlook the Indian Ocean in the evening. There is also nothing like watching the sunset with a bonfire or barbeque going in front of you, perhaps even while watching local BoduBeru, which is a singing and dancing tradition with drum accompaniment rolling back from the 11th Century.
Dining together will be an experience of its own, as you can have anything from champagne dinners delivered straight to your accommodation, or feast at any of the Maldivian resort restaurants that offer the freshest of catches and watch as expert chefs cook over an open grill before you. When you and your beloved want to look for a bit of entertainment, you can head over to some of the bars and lounges built in with some of the resorts, have a couple of aperitifs and canapés, or have your first of many dances under the stars with live music playing just for you.
If you and your loved one are into sun, sand and sea, along with the serenity and intimate seclusion that is hard to find in the world, then the Maldives, the ‘Garland of Islands’ is simply the choice for you!