The Maldives for honeymooners and couples

Whether you are on your honeymoon or just a couple in search of a romantic getaway I am sure that the Maldives is high on your list of places you would like to visit, if not then put it in there dammit because its downright amazing!

As you learnt from my previous post I had the pleasure of staying at Anantara Dhigu for our honeymoon last December. You will also know that Dhigu is a “family friendly” resort island (which we were not aware of when we booked the accommodation). In fact we were not aware that there was another island offering accommodation whatsoever, last time I use a travel agent that’s for sure! The other island was made aware to us on our arrival, we were simply told that we were free to use its facilities, be it the pool, bar, restaurants and the like. It wasn’t until we started a conversation with another couple also on their honeymoon that we found out that Veli is a couples only resort island,       that’s right my friends…NO KIDS! Just you, your loved one and the sweet sound of peace. I was somewhat outraged at the discovery of this piece of information, how could my travel agent who knew it was our honeymoon fail to inform us of an island MADE for honeymooners/couples. Also there was quite a large bunch of kids roughhousing in the pool, screaming, singing and making all sorts of noise continually for hours without the reprimand from their parents whom were in a very close proximity. Our nice relaxing, peaceful and romantic honeymoon had been extirpated by this family and I was not happy.

Safe to say, we jumped straight on the pontoon that ferries guests between the islands at regular intervals over to Veli to check it out, they also have an infinity pool overlooking the ocean, albeit half the size of Dhigu, and we were told the sunset was a must see, we were not lied to. The bar served the same menu and there was a pool table to learn, play or, in my case, lose on. On offer is a Japanese restaurant which has available a chef to cook and serve your food at your table. You do need to turn up at you scheduled time for this however, because as they say the show does go on. There is also a spectacular Thai restaurant over the ocean, on the jetty between Veli and the private island (there are 4 islands in total) which you can also book out for lunch/dinner for 2.

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In my readers best interest I thought I better go the extra mile and check out the rooms, that way I could make a truly informed decision about which island is better. Our over the water villa at Dhigu was larger, more luxurious and romantic. The water surrounded us was crystal clear and shallow which made swimming and activities a breeze. The villas at Veli (all of them are over the water) were smaller, lacking in privacy and girt by a lot of coral. Both islands had the option of upgrading to villas that had private pools on the deck, Veli, on the other hand, had select villas where you had a private Butler on hand.

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All in all, my above comment about the noise at the pool was merely nothing in the whole scheme of things, we had plenty of places to escape to, our villa being one of them which was quiet, tranquil and remarkable all in one, we also had a number of activities to do on Dhigu also, many of which if you stayed at Veli you would have to boat over to Dhigu to do anyway. My vote is Dhigu, the rooms are much better and everything you need is on that island anyway, plus you have the option to go over to Veli and enjoy their facilities whenever you wish. The opposite is also true should you decide to stay at Veli instead.

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The Maldives for families and water enthusiasts

It seems fitting that today being the last day of 2014 I write about one of the most significant and important trips of my life…my honeymoon. When I booked this trip to the Maldives I was in between teaching contracts and we were living off one income. It is safe to say we definitely could not afford it but I was determined to have my Honeymoon, even if it was only for a week. Luckily once I returned to work the trip was much less stressful trying to pay off, and we even had enough money gifted to us at our wedding to upgrade to an over the water villa. Booking early also gave us the advantage of incredible discounts. We managed to save 50% off our room costs paying only $1000 a night for that villa instead of the regular $2000.

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To say that the Maldives is paradise feels inadequate as it is more than that, but due to a lack of an appropriate adjective paradise will suffice. Any place that has an airport island is OK in my books. The photos that you see, whether mine or someone else’s, are not photshopped…it really is that blue. The water ranges from a turquoise so clear you could read a book through it, to a darker blue in the sporadic deep spots. One could walk out 500m in the ocean with the water only touching their waist. There are a number of islands that make up the Maldives, the one I had the pleasure of spending my honeymoon at was Anantara Dhigu, half an hour south of the capital Malé, and boy did they deliver.

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First things first though a few important things you should know about the Maldives. It is completely forbidden to bring in any alcohol whatsoever, so that bottle of wine you plan on smuggling is best left at home. It is virtually cashless as most hotels own/run the entire island so all you need to do is sign the cheque for every purchase and pay the final bill at the end. Which leads me to probably the most important bit, EVERY SINGLE ITEM (yes every individual item) has a service charge AND tax added to it. So make sure there is plenty of room on your credit card before you go. You can pay the final bill with cash though and although all major currencies are accepted, US dollars is the preferred currency.

Anantara Dhigu is a 5 star resort, it is expensive to stay here, as all places in the Maldives are, but you actually get a hell of a lot for your money. There are two resort islands in this particular atoll, Veli and Dhigu. The latter is more family oriented and has a lot of activities to keep the kids entertained ranging from sporting activities such as Volleyball, bocce, giant chess, table tennis and a crèche. The island also has free bikes situated all over the island for you to explore with.

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Dhigu has a spectacular and well equipped pool and bar with playing cards and board games. We also discovered some of the best shisha here too.

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Along with all this they run cooking classes and many water activities ranging from the free kayak guests can borrow for up to 2 hours per day, free snorkelling gear (not to mention an island dedicated entirely to snorkelling equipped with an ocean pool, bar, hammocks and lounges), to stand up paddle boarding, kite surfing, parasailing and fishing trips. On the east side of the island is an ocean swing set, on the west (adjacent to the pool) is an ocean hammock.

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I think it is well know how much kids love the water, get them in a pool and often you will have a hard time getting them out. Luckily the infinity pool is built on the sunset side of the island which offers for a spectacular view shared with loved ones and a few drinks. Happy hour is from 5-8pm and the Paradise mojito is to die for, you can thank me later.

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http://dhigu-maldives.anantara.com