Everything you need to consider when planning your trip…
Me and my husband just returned from a trip of a lifetime to the Maldives, celebrating our 10th wedding anniversary. This place was truly paradise, like nothing we had ever seen. We started planning for this trip back in October, so we had a little time to really decide what we wanted to get out of it. We knew that we did not want to have a jam packed itinerary while we were there. We wanted to relax and really be in the moment. That is exactly what we did.
Traveling to the Maldives is quite the journey. The flight from Atlanta is 18 hours long, so we decided to break the flight up with two, day long layovers so that we could explore a new city and take advantage of being on the other side of the world. We were able to connect in Istanbul. We had visited another city several years ago near the Mediterranean, but have always wanted to explore Istanbul. We were not fearful of exploring the city, but we always prefer to take layover tours with a guide so that we have transportation and maximize our time. I will give you all of the deets on the company in my next post about Istanbul.
So when planning your trip to the Maldives, the biggest decision will be where you will stay. Check out the Lonely Planet guide, it will list most of the resorts available with a list of their amenities. Not all resorts offer a pool, they don’t all come with over water bungalows and they don’t all have all inclusive plans. Here are a few things to consider and put on your must do list when visiting the island.
You have come all this way and you may not get the opportunity to come again, so splurge and stay in an over water bungalow.
Get the all inclusive meal plan. We had unlimited alcoholic beverages, breakfast, lunch, dinner and snacks each day. On the last night, we were over the buffet and ordered fries, a personal pizza and a drink to share that was not offered in the all inclusive plan and it was $27. A meal like this at home would be no more than $10.
Get a spa treatment! Most resorts offer Balinese spa treatments that are much cheaper than what you would pay in the states.
Take a ride on a Doni.
Make sure that your transportation costs to and from the airport is included in your package. The only way to get to each resort is by speedboat or seaplane and cost $150 per person roundtrip.
Make sure that you have an early arriving flight. The speedboats and seaplanes do not run after sunset for safety reasons, so if you arrive after 5pm, you will need to stay overnight in Male.
Have breakfast in bed. At our resort, room service was offered for guests staying in the over water bungalows. We were able to chose from a made to order menu and pick the time that we wanted to be served.
Take a shower outside. Our bathroom had open views of the ocean and there was also a shower and changing room outside.
Don’t overpack. We did not wear half of the clothes that we brought. We were in swim clothes all day, had quick dinners and back in our bungalow by 8pm each night.
Take pool/ beach shoes. There is a lot of coral on the island and in some areas, the beach can be rocky.
Don’t take the latest flight out. The last speedboat and sea plane returning to the airport leaves at 4:30pm. If you have a flight that leaves at 11pm like ours did, you will have to wait at the airport that has no air conditioning in the holding area for hours. You are not allowed to go into the terminal until 2 hours before your flight departs.
Download movies on your iPad from Netflix to watch at night. We only had the BBC and HBO to watch on the television, but we download about 10 movies and that entertained us when the jet lag would not let us sleep.
Buy a sim card from the airport! I paid $22 for an unlimited data package that last for 7 days, so I was never without wifi. Our resort offered a plan for the week for $37, but you only had wifi access in the room, the restaurant and at the reception desk. You did not have wifi at the beach.
We had the time of our lives in the Maldives! We relaxed, enjoyed just doing nothing and being in each others company. Add the Maldives to your list.