A Memoir of The Maldives

Two weeks post-Maldives and I’m a far cry from the view that I woke up to for nine days. As I drew back the curtains of our beach villa every morning and opened our french doors I was greeted by the sound of waves toing and froing just a few feet from our veranda.

New Zealand in winter this year has been bleaker than I ever imagined. From the day we landed back in Wellington the rain hasn’t eased. To be frank, it was the one thing I was craving on the last day or so in paradise, the heat became too overwhelming. But it didn’t take me long to wish I was right back there, sat at the Sunrise Bar with my feet up, my only worry in the world what my next cocktail would be.

The Journey

Note to self: Don’t ever underestimate the journey to get ANYWHERE from New Zealand.

If you ever look at a map and come to the conclusion that the Maldives is half way between the UK and New Zealand, think again. It took roughly 34 hours door to door and went something like this:

Wellington – Auckland (1 hour)

AucklandDoha (17 hours)

Doha – Male (5 hours)

Male – Meedhupparu Island (50 minutes)

Cost of flight per person = $2,295 (NZD)

As one might expect, the journey to get to the ultimate dream destination would have to be more painful than any other, because the reward is pretty spectacular, and it was.

The Hotel

To say you’re spoilt for choice when choosing an island in the Maldives is an understatement, you have over 105 resorts at your feet.

Being first timers and on a slight budget (if you can even count the Maldives as a budget location) we opted for Meedhupparu Island.

It ticked all the boxes, the reviews were great, they offered an all inclusive package and there were options to upgrade if we felt like it.

Cost of hotel = $3200 (NZD)

Sea plane return per person = $480 (NZD)

Needless to say, we made the most of the cocktails that were on hand pretty much from dawn until dusk. How else could we have kept cool in the 33-degree heat?

There are four bars scattered around the island. We loved our local, the Sunset Bar. Not least because it was near our villa but it was intimate, right on the water and had a wooden boat carved bar. Cafe Mass was another favourite, it had a breeze to die for and served snacks all day.

We ate at the Prestige Water Villa restaurant twice during our stay. It was a nice change to the all inclusive buffet and the meal was faultless, all four courses for $40 (USD) per person.

The Maldives is without a doubt a very special place and if you’re considering it, I wouldn’t hesitate. Despite what you might think, it’s definitely affordable and even if you’re not staying in a water villa, the experience is still one of a kind.

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