Maldives – Honeymooning in the Paradise

 

Honeymoons are always special. Honestly, for someone like me, who is smitten by the travel bug, planning the honeymoon was more important than laying my finger on the perfect lehenga. So, when the wedding was scheduled for April 2018, my honeymoon research began around 6 months in advance. Deciding a destination was one of the biggest challenges. Though secretly I always wanted it to be the Maldives, the fear of running down the cliched road also had me a bit restless. So, two months of speaking to travel agents, spending endless hours on sites like Booking, Trivago, Agoda later, Maldives did come to be a true winner.

And that, for a lot of reasons. One, we were travelling in the month of April so it was the last leg of the on-season for visiting this tropical paradise. Two, we had only 5 days so cutting short the travelling period by choosing a destination closer to India made sense. Three, it just happened to have fit smoothly in the budget. Four – 😀 I ALWAYS WANTED TO GO TO MALDIVES FOR THE HONEYMOON!

Once the destination was finalised, I thought the rest of it would be a piece of cake. But no, there are so, so, so many resorts that it took about two more months before I made the reservations (I have to mention that I absolutely love to plan, research and basically armchair travel before making a final call).

It was only after I was sure that the resort was ideal and that I was receiving the maximum bang for my buck, I moved ahead. It did take me calling up several local travel agents, looking up on popular travel portals, listing out resorts and sending them emails, going through almost a dozen of quotes and online reviews, before I made up my mind.

So, here’s the story of my first visit to this magical paradise, Maldives.

Day 1

Since Chandigarh does not have direct flights to Male, the capital of Maldives, we chose to board the flight from Delhi. It was an early morning flight so we chose to leave for Delhi at about 9 PM the previous day. At 1 AM, we were at the airport. The check-in and other formalities took us about another hour and a half, so we chose to kill time at an airport restaurant and of course, how can you miss the Delhi duty-free.

We chose the Air India flight, which had a technical halt for 45 minutes at Trivandrum. The journey started at about 5 AM in the morning and we were at our destination by 10:30 AM.

When you’re going to the Maldives, you have to, have to make sure that the window seat is yours. The country treats you with some of the most exotic views that you will never want to forget. I had only seen something like this in the Hollywood movies before this.

Once our flight landed, the transfers to the resort were next. This is the part, which we did not enjoy as much. I mean, it was a new experience but we could have saved more time.

Here’s what went down:

So, after landing, the resort representative took down our names, confirmed our details and escorted us to a premium lounge where we had to wait for about 4 hours before boarding the domestic flight to our destination. Though the lounge was comfortable with the luggage check-in, buffet, and WiFi service, we ended up wasting some time here. The 45-minute domestic flight started at about 2 PM and took us to another island from where we had to board the speed-boat, which took another 45 minutes. All of it was a new experience and we were at the peak of all the excitement so the travelling did not really bother us. (In case you want to escape this, it is recommended that you choose a resort that is closer to the Male mainland or if you have some extra moolah to spend, book a private seaplane. Also, cross-check about the transfer time from the resort or the travel agency. This one part of the planning to which I lost the score).

We reached our resort, Sun Aqua Vilu Reef, at about 4 PM (Now, Male is 30 minutes behind India and our resort was 30 minutes behind Male, so overall, we were at a time difference of 1 hour from India – I thought that was interesting).

One glimpse of this resort and all the wait seemed worth it.

The staff was super-friendly and warm. The check-in did not take us more than 15 minutes, which was awesome!

(Money-saving tip: If you are visiting the Maldives and do not want to break your bank, the wise thing to do is to spend half of the stay in a Beach Villa and half of it in an Overwater Villa. You save money plus there are two different experiences to enjoy).

We had booked the Beach Villa for the first two days. I don’t want to be yapping at this point, because there are no amount of words that can explain how gorgeous this resort was. Here are pictures to do it for me:

The Beach Villa at Sun Aqua Vilu Reef

Beach Villa at Sun Aqua Vilu Reef

 

 

Relaxing evenings at the beach.

View this post on Instagram

Dear child, Lay down and watch the skies unravel the mystery of life. Let the cool sea breeze cleanse your heart and nourish your mind. Trace the ripples in the sea and count the leaves of that huge palm tree. Dear child, for once, for a while, just lay down and breathe. – Mother Nature . . #naturephotography #nature_good #maldivesislands #maldivesparadise #sunset_pics #sunset_vision #sunset_stream #remoteyear #luxuryescapes #traveltagged #iamatraveller #happyfeet #itchyfeet👣 #dailytravelette #dametraveler #ifoundawesome #nature_sultans #allnatureshots #wanderlust_tribe #iwanderwhy #stayvacation #honeymoondiaries #maldivesisland #beautifuldestinations #staycation #seaporn #sea_sky_nature

A post shared by Teesha (@whosthathippie_) on

Breathtaking open showers.

Maldives Beach Villa Shower

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

A private piece of beach.

Sundeck of our beach villa looked like this.

Sun deck Beach Villa Sun Aqua Vilu Reef

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Once we had absorbed in the comfort of our room, exploring the first part of the resort was next. Since it was already 7 PM by the time we set our feet out, we headed straight for the lounge. There couldn’t have a been a better way to flag off the honeymoon than a poolside round of drinks followed by a lavish dinner on a dock overlooking the primrose expanse of the Laccadive Sea.

Day 2

This was my first beach destination so witnessing a sunrise was something new; fiercely beautiful too! Day 2 was all about indulging in the goodness of the sea and the sun and good wine and oh, the food! The highlight of the day was the Dolphin Tour that was scheduled for the evening.

Hopping on the top berth of our charter, I saw one of the best sunsets ever. So this is actually when I was the sun, sinking into the sea (like you see in the movies), an astounding view to soak in. Though Dolphin spotting only happened for a brief moment, it was worth the time. The day was finished off with a romantic candlelit beach-side dinner.

Day 3

View this post on Instagram

You don’t have to hunt down inspiration. Quit everything and stop your desperate search for inspiration when it is right there in front of you, hiding in plain sight. That’s what I had to repeat to myself over and over again trying to pen down my 400th post on Instagram. Such pressure! Sometimes I think I push it too much; both small and big things in life. May it be finding inspiration to write a new piece, maintain the work-life balance or pick up someone’s dampened spirit; I like to push it to all corners. And, not always does this work in my favour. Many times I lose interest, people, and myself in the process. It is now that I know that one must push the limits only to the edges where sanity isn’t lost. *A beautiful sunrise from Maldives to complement my uncalled for rant.* #maldivesislands #earthpix #sunrise_madness #morningsun #beautifulplaces #tripotocommunity #lonelyplanet #visitmaldives #maldivesparadise #sunaquavilureef #happytimes #ifoundawesome #inspireland_ #inspiroindia #pushinglimits #lifequotes #lifeisbeautiful #writersofig #writersofinstagram #postcardplaces #luxuryescapes #remoteyear #prettylittletrips #athomeintheworld #traveltagged

A post shared by Teesha (@whosthathippie_) on

New day marked our exit from the Beach Villa and entry to the Overwater Villa. We checked into our new room at 10 in the morning after a sumptuous breakfast. The rooms were far beautiful than what I had imagined.

If you are in the Maldives for your honeymoon, an overwater villa is something you should not miss. You’ll experience the low-tides and high-tides, the crack of the dawn and dusk, and the beautiful marine life up close. Since I don’t swim, (right, what was I doing in the Maldives?) my day went by absorbing the goodness of the sun and the sea, of course, a glass of wine and good book were my companions throughout.

Day 4

View this post on Instagram

Raw and real side of life in Maldives is very different from what we see at the resorts. For people who belong this paradise, life is simple, slow and serene. These shots are from the Bandidhoo island. Here, people grow tropical vegetables, coconuts and bananas. There are only 2 or 3 stores to fulfil the daily needs of the population of a thousand of this island. Children live a real life where they go cycling outside and have peaceful smiles on their faces. Women make roofs and sell them for a living while men catch fish. Life is really that simple. #maldivesislands #honeymoondiaries #storiesuntold #storiestotell #maldives #localislandlife #localisland #bandidhoo #world_shotz #travelworld_addiction #igworldglobal #ig_shutterbugs #wanderfolk #asiatour #neverstopexploring #postcardplaces #livefolk #peoplecreative #womenwhotravel #visualsoflife #visualsofearth #earthpix #lifeisjourney #travel_captures

A post shared by Teesha (@whosthathippie_) on

Fourth and the last day saw us visiting a local island near our resort. Here, we got a chance to witness the real life that often receives very less attention and gets subdued behind all the glamour that the Maldives has to offer. Local life in the Maldives is very simple. Most of the lanes were deserted. Small houses line up at both sides of the street, where you can see kids playing with their toys (and no mobile phones or TVs). Each island has one or two odd small stores, which they refer to as supermarkets. There is a community water tank, a mosque, a police station and a health clinic in every small island in the Maldives. So, overall, life is very simple, something like you would imagine in the early 1960s in a south Indian coastal village. It was an interesting experience.

After a day at this local island, we chose to spend a quiet evening back at the resort.

Day 5

5 days are not enough to soak in all the goodness of Maldives. We were supposed to check out of the resort at about 12 PM. As we still had a half a day in our kitty, we spent it very wisely by waking up early and witnessing one of the most gorgeous sunrises ever. After a hearty breakfast, we bid adieu goodbye to our resort with happy memories and the zeal to come back someday soon for a longer duration.

It was a short, relaxing trip that put us back on our feet after all the wedding madness that has happened over the last 10 days.

Quick Tips for a Maldives Honeymoon

  1. If you are flying from Delhi, take the early morning Air India flight that has a 45-minute half at Trivandrum. (Quick, comfortable, and pocket-friendly)
  2. Get in touch with local travel agents, sites like Booking, Expedia and travel portals like PickMyTrail and TravelTriangle, while booking a resort. Look out for as many quotes as possible, weigh them in and pick the one that suits your pocket. Always insist on a package inclusive of airfare. (My take: TravelTriangle got me the best – just saying, not sponsored)
  3. An All-inclusive package combined with a Honeymoon package can help you score maximum bang for your buck.
  4. Don’t over pack. (I’ll do a detailed article on things to pack very soon)
  5. If you do not have more than 5 days, choose a resort that is not too far away from the airport (Just saves you time).

Booking a honeymoon well in advance can save you a lot of money and stress – that’s what I did and you should too. Keep everything from your resort booking vouchers, passport, airport transfers and visa documents all set so that you don’t have to fret about it later.

I hope you enjoyed reading this piece. I would love to hear your experiences too. Drop in your comments below.

xoxo

Comments (3)

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *