January 18 – 21, 2017
After returning from my Christmas holidays at home, a vacation was needed 😉 What was a plan in the rough before I left, was organized and booked two weeks before our departure.
The Maldives was a destination I had always dreamed of going, but never believed I would. Only a short four hour flight direct from Abu Dhabi, we used our Etihad travel points to save us some Dirhams to get there. We planned to spend four days on the white sand beaches and in the clear blue water and laying on our private water hut balcony … but we have learned by now that it is impossible for us to just sit still, even in paradise.
Now your next thought is probably, “isn’t Maldives a romantic couples destination?” and “didn’t you go with Tammy?”. Well the answer is yes to both. Most resorts are designed for couples and families, but we weren’t the only non-couple.
Accommodation : We stayed at Meeru Island Resort & Spa, it was recommended to us by both a friend and a patient. When you are traveling to the Maldives, the obvious choice for your stay is the water bungalow. You know those photos of the places on Pinterest or travel Instagram accounts with the water hut above the clear blue water with the stairways down to the fish filled sea? … yea you have only one choice. Our private water bungalow had direct ocean access, included its own jacuzzi with clear views out to the ocean from our bed. We opted for the all inclusive option. This is definitely the way to go for vacations like this!
Getting to the resort : The Maldives is made up of 26 atolls, our hotel was on the North Male’ Atoll which was approximately a 45 minute boat ride from Male’ (the capital city). If you remember my story from the Seychelles and my seasickness, you can understand my anxiety before stepping foot onto that boat. It was a quiet and quick boat ride to paradise!
Food : As mentioned above, our package included our three meals per day (set times) which were buffet and all of our beverages (yes alcoholic). There was a wide assortment of food and dinner each evening was a different countries cuisine. The easiest comparison is saying it was like a really expensive Mexican resort restaurant.
What to do : There were three top activities for the whole four days : 1. drinking 2. eating 3. tanning. Although we had intended to spend every waking minute under the sun and not doing a single activity except for reading and bringing the drink straw to our lips, we managed to keep ourselves busy.
1. Snorkelling. We rented equipment from the dive shop at the hotel for 24 hours. We went on a snorkel trip organized with the hotel (it was included in our package) out to the reef to snorkel for about an hour. What was more amazing, though, was stepping off our balcony into the water and seeing the fish, reef shark and manta rays swimming around us.
2. Sunset cruise : Also included in our stay with the hotel, we were invited to cruise along in the ocean drinking mocktails and stalking dolphins while the sun set. It was relaxing and nice to get us away from the resort for a little while. There were plenty of tears when we saw the dolphins (of course it was only me crying).
3. Stand up Paddle board / Kayak : We chose the windiest morning to venture out on the SUP, and instead of renting two separate paddle boards we thought it would be a good idea to rent one and share the paddling duty, while the second person relaxes and enjoys the ride. It was a lot of work and I think Tammy was trying to paddle us back to Abu Dhabi with the strength and direction she was working in 😛
After spending four days doing (basically) nothing it was time to head back to Abu Dhabi. It was the perfect true vacation of just relaxing with no worries and no alarms in the morning. It was back to the sand box to await the arrival of my 5 best friends!