Maldives is a byword for luxury, tropical beauty and pure romantic bliss. This cluster of small islands scattered across the Equator in the middle of the Indian Ocean makes for the ideal honeymoon destination where you can discover your new spouse amidst natural splendors and delicious privacy.
Paradise by the sea
As a group of islands surrounded by the Indian Ocean, Maldives is chiefly famous for its exquisite beaches and marine beauty. Almost every island is blessed with miles of palm-fringed, sparkling white beaches and clear warm waters. Other than these, lagoons in every shade of blue and coral reefs teeming with marine flora and fauna are only a few of the delights what honeymooners can expect from this tropical paradise. Among all the 1120 islands that make up Maldives, the Sun Island perhaps best typifies the natural splendors of this destination. Located in the South Ari Atoll and some 62 miles from the Maldivian airport of Male, it is named Nalaguraidhoo in the local language. The Sun Island is blessed on one hand with silvery white beaches where you can walk, swim or simply laze around with your beloved. On the other, the very shape of the island lends itself to a grand lagoon with beautiful coral reefs tantalizingly close. In fact even if you don’t feel like going into the water, you can admire the marine beauty for hours from your lanai in an overwater bungalow. Just a tip you can keep in mind – since Maldives is a strictly Sunni Muslim country, nudity is not allowed on the beaches.
Marine adventures galore
The country's 26 natural atolls offer an immense variety of nautical delights ranging from night-fishing trips, windsurfing to snorkeling and scuba-diving. Many islands embrace enormous lagoons, with different depths and infinite shades of blue and green which hide dazzling underwater coral gardens in their depths. Snorkeling thus a great way to discover the beauty of this vacation spot. The Sun Island again offers great snorkeling opportunities where fitted with a mask and fins, you and your sweetheart can lose yourselves in an underwater paradise. But for the best diving places, head for the Veligandu Beach. This has one of the cleanest beaches with fine-grained white sand and tinged only with a fleck of gold to give it a warm, welcoming look. But more that that it offers the amenities for major water-sports like scuba-diving, snorkeling and surfing. And even after a hectic day on the waters, the island has still something else to offer. While in the Maldives, don’t forget to go on one of the nighttime fishing trips which are organized just a few hours after sundown and which usually end with a delicious dinner of fried or baked fish on the beach and under the stars. However if you want to make water sports the focus of your honeymoon vacation, at Maldives you can choose to opt for a safari cruises. This will give you the opportunity to indulge in a whole range of water sports at some of the completely uninhabited islands of the Maldives.
Your Maldives honeymoon could be all about the sun, sand and sea. Or it could include a discovery of the vibrant culture of the land. Most of the historically and culturally important places in Maldives are located in and around the national capital, Male. One of the first places you can include in your cultural itinerary is the National Museum which houses historical artifacts, pre-Islamic antiquities and royal treasures but whose highlight is definitely a statue of Lord Buddha sculpted in coral. Yet another attraction is Hukuru Miskiiy, the oldest mosque in Maldives and also known as the Old Friday Mosque. The main attraction of the building lies in it’s beautifully carvings, many of which are made from coral stones. The Presidential Palace is another imposing building that Maldives boasts of even though the country’s President does not live there but only hosts important social functions. And if you feel like spending some time with your beloved amidst verdant scenes, head for the Sultan Park which though small is filled with exquisite varieties of flowers, shrubs and other ornamental plants.
While enjoying your honeymoon in Maldives, don’t forget to sample the delicious cuisine of the island. Maldivian food includes three basic ingredients – coconut, sea-fish and a variety of starchy items. You can tuck in the traditional delicacies at any of the numerous beach shacks or local eateries. Luxury resorts and the bigger bungalows on the other hand offer you greater variety in your choice of food and spirits. However a candlelit dinner on the beach for you and your sweetheart is an experience that you should not miss on your Maldives honeymoon. And after you finish the main courses, you can round off the meal with a dessert made from any of the heavenly tropical fruits of the islands.
Where to Stay
Maldives offers a vast range of accommodation options to honeymooners from around the world. Of the 200-odd inhabitable islands, almost all have their own beach resorts. Some of the best in the luxury category include the Four Seasons at Kuda Hura, Angsana at Velavaru, Banyan Tree Maldives, Hilton at Rangali, Taj Exotica and the Rania Experience which is a five-star yacht with its own island. Other than these there are also hotels and cottages in a more affordable range. However almost all the honeymoon resorts are located on the beach so that newlyweds have their own access to the sea. Then there are the overwater bungalows which expose you to a fantastic marine world right at your doorstep.
How to get there
The capital city of Male has the only international airport on the island nation. Qatar Airlines, Singapore Airlines, Sri Lankan Air are some of the scheduled airlines flying to Male. This means that foreign visitors need to arrive at major cities like New Delhi, Colombo, Doha, Singapore, and Macau and then take a connecting flight to Male. However recently many chartered flights like First Choice, My Travel, Monarch, Edelweiss and Volare have started flying into Male from European countries like UK, Switzerland and Italy.