When I tell people that I travel around the world for work, the first question that I get asked is always “where’s the best place you’ve been?” and to be honest I find it so hard to name just one, so I usually opt for the one that I think people would want to know most about, and that’s the Maldives. So here I am, telling you about my island experience that I embarked on to review a resort for Perfect Wedding.
Landing at the airport in the capital, Malé is a strange experience as the runway is literally right next to the sea! EEK! But it does mean that as soon as you step out of the airport, you can see that turquoise ocean that you’ve been dreaming of.
Most hotels in the Maldives are on their own private islands (also know as atolls) and they are usually accessible by seaplane or speedboat. We opted for the speedboat option that I thoroughly regretted as soon as I stepped on-board (it’s safe to say that I do NOT have sea legs!). After a 40-minute bumpy ride with me clinging on to a sick bag (not the glamorous start I envisaged) we arrive at the island.
The horror of the journey soon dissipated as soon as I saw the staff out on the jetty to welcome us with cold towels and refreshing drinks. This was just a taster of the luxury that was yet to come…
Our hotel, Coco Bodu Hithi was ever inch the island paradise I had imagined. It turns out there really was no photoshop trickery involved in their brochure images!
We checked into our huge Island Villa and didn’t quite know what to do first – soak up some rays beside our private pool, have a soak in the jacuzzi-like bath or run outside to back garden area that opened straight onto the beach. This was when I actually had to pinch myself. Wow – this is heaven!
A lot of people view the Maldives as a ‘fly and flop’ destination where you just sit on the beach all day. Of course, you can easily while away the days upon the golden sands staring across the azure waters, but if you’re after a little adventure, that’s possible too. During our stay, we were spoilt with activities.
One day we headed out with the resident Marine Biologist to spot manta rays and turtles in the deep. Another day we took advantage of the free kayak hire and paddled around the entire resort (shout out to my boyfriend, Arthur who put up with my moaning about my arms aching – who knew it was such hard work?!).
One evening, the concierge organised a private sunset cruise for just the two of us and it was the most amazing experience. We were served champagne and canapés while we watched the sun go down from the top deck.
For the second half of our stay we moved rooms to the Coco Residences. This is a exclusive part of the hotel with those over-water villas that the Maldives is famed for. I literally felt like an a-lister looking around our immense villa with plunge pool, steps into the ocean and our own pillow menu. It was just a whole new level of luxury.
Spending a week in the Maldives is like stepping into a whole new world – one that’s calm, tranquil and endlessly beautiful and writing this blog post has made me re-live the magical experience all over again.