Maldives, how do I unlove thee? You are beautiful, breathtaking, astounding and you definitely won my heart.
I am still in awe while writing this entry. Maldives has been my dream destination since 2012 when I first learned about it. Fast forward six years, My dream finally materialized.
The Flight to Colombo
It all started with my flight from Dubai to Colombo through Sri Lankan air. The duration is approximately four hours and thirty minutes. The flight was smooth and on time. Sri Lankan air employees were accommodating and very hospitable too. The in flight food was tasty. The only downside are the seats which I thought was a little too close to each other, I had a hard time sleeping.
From Colombo airport, all passengers took a bus towards the arrival area and I went directly to the gate of the next flight.
It was through the same airline, but this plane has better seats. We were served with drinks and snacks and after an hour and ten minutes we finally arrived to Male Airport.
The Male Airport:
The airport is quiet small. Though It has everything that passengers would need. Fast food chains like Burger King, KFC, Pizza Hut are located near the pick up point. There is also a shop for souvenirs and groceries.
I asked around and found the kiosk where the hotel’s staff was waiting for us. We waited for the rest of the guests.
Right outside the airport is the port where the speed boat was waiting for us. I was blown away right there. The water was nothing like those I have encountered before.
Imagine being greeted by this blue waters, you’ll know for sure, there’s more the island can offer.
The Speed Boat Ride:
The hotel is located 20 minutes speed boat ride from the airport. It is not as far compared to other islands. The ride was fast and scary at times. But the view was superb. We had a peek of the other islands nearby.
The Paradise Island Resort and Spa Lankanfinolhu Island:
At last, after almost eight hours of traveling, I finally arrived at the resort. We were greeted by the staff at the port. Our luggage has been taken cared of while we walked over a bridge overlooking the turquoise water. The place is stunning. It is more beautiful in person than in photos. This photo does not even justify its radiance.
The beach is enchanting. It’s calmness added more charm into it. Dreamy, superb and captivating, yes, those are the words to describe it. I cannot believe my eyes. I was in my dream destination. All the hard work finally made it all worthwhile.
I was all smiles while walking towards the reception, which I must say, was huge, airy and will give you that beach vibe! We were welcomed by one of the employees and we were briefed about the Hotel’s restaurants, facilities and activities. Guests were given cold towels and refreshments. Such a nice hospitality gesture after a very long journey.
The Superior Beach Bungalow:
I arrived a few hours earlier than the check in time, but was given a room at 10:30 am. I was very pleased, and was really looking forward to relax after a long journey. For this trip, I booked a Superior Beach Bungalow. It is located five minutes away from the reception area. All Beach Bungalows has beach front locations, and Paradise Island is the only resort that manages the island, talk about privacy in a private beach in a secluded island. Deserted, remote, solitary just how I like it (Introvert mode on).
The Superior Beach Bungalow is a very spacious room. Definitely worth the price. It features an in room safe for valuables , a mini bar, huge cupboards and a television. The beds are very comfortable and clean. I love the outdoor private shower, definitely a new experience.
And for the best part, in front of the beach bungalow is my own private beach. No one was even there that day. It’s like I rented the whole place.
I have been to several beaches like Blue Lagoon, Boracay Island, El Nido Palawan, Tanjung Aru, Tunku Abdul Rahman Park Borneo, Ajman, Dubai, Abu Dhabi and Ras Al Khaimah and for me, this beach is incomparable. The sand is pearly white in color combined with the crystal clear water with the sky’s reflection made it a perfect combination.
The Water Villa:
Paradise resort features water villas near the bungalows. Such an Instagram worthy scenery. It is majestic on its’s own and is beyond any doubt, a perfect holiday home.
During my stay, I was offered to upgrade to a water Villa for 280 USD per night. It was a great deal. I tried to book the upgrade during my second night, but unfortunately the water villas were already full for the next day.
The Hotel Amenities and Facilities:
This resort made sure that the guests are having the time of their life, there’s just so much to do.
There’s a medium size pool near the reception area where guests can have their cocktails and listen to good music.
For those who love physical activities, there’s so much that can be done during your idle time. There’s a Badminton court, Billiards table and a fully functional gym.
The options are endless.
For the kids, there’s also a huge playground.
The Hulhangu Bar:
Whenever I’m on a holiday, I want a chill and feelgood vacation. I’m not into sports whatsoever, but I like having a drink, while listening to music and appreciating the view. I’m a laid back traveler, and always will be.
Most of my time were spent in Hulhangu bar. Its ambiance is perfect and the music is bomb. The bar is also beach front so I also hangout here to watch the sunset.
You think just because it’s a secluded island, it can be boring, but it’s not. There are different activities that guests can participate in like water sports, diving, fitness classes like zumba and gymnastics are only some of them.
There’s also a spa that offers services to pamper you. I recommend the full body scrub. It’s so refreshing after sun bathing for almost the whole day.
Every day at 6:30 in the evening, the staff feeds the sharks, just towards the end of the water villas. It is a really cool new experience for everyone.
Around 7:00 there’s Stingray feeding near the bar. The stingrays are huge and unexpectedly friendly. They come in groups and feed on raw fish, and did I say guests can feed it themselves?
You can also rent a bike so you can tour the whole island. You can rent it for a few hours or full day if you wish.
Here’s the activity I have enjoyed most. I opted for the Foam party, they had me at Unlimited Alcoholic Drinks! It is only held during Saturdays. I was lucky enough I was there during the weekends. It’s a two-hour event where they set up an inflatable pool and fill it up with bubbles! Hence, foam party! I recommend this to everyone. Young and young at hearts can really enjoy this. I met a few (drunk) guests and had a chance to exchange stories with the employees too.
The Hotel has different activities everyday. You will surely find something fun to do. Night life is also not a problem since the bar conducts parties during the late evenings everyday.
I opted for the half board package which includes buffet breakfast and dinner. Both meals are served in Bageecha restaurant. The restaurant serves a wide range of food with dishes from different parts if the world (mostly asia). I was not expecting for the food to be that good at all. But to my surprise, it exceeded my expectations. Everything was tasty and delectable.
I didn’t even feel the need of having lunch due to the heavy dish options. So if you are not a big eater, just skip the full board package (which includes lunch).
I will give a five star for the service I received in this facility. The employees are very polite and pleasing, they will greet you every chance they get making guests feel welcomed and entertained.
The “Entertainer staff” who facilitates the events were all engaging and they encourage everyone to join the activities.
The rooms are being cleaned every day. They made sure that everything is orderly. They refill the mini bar with items that were consumed. The in room dining was fast and exquisite. I cannot complain about anything.
The hotel provides one liter of drinking water per person on a daily basis. I love that they are using reusable bottles instead of the plastic. I also love that they refill toiletries instead of throwing away the plastic containers. The management definitely prioritize the environment.
Overall, for me, this place is captivating, world-class and breathtaking.
I feel really blessed to have seen the beauty of this island. It was between Europe and this beach getaway I am glad I chose the latter and will definitely choose Maldives, always.
Here’s a short video of my trip