Of late, all that the who’s who of Hyderabad have been talking about is unwinding in the Maldives. The pristine beaches, the rich blue waters, the fresh seafood and the hospitality are all big impressors.
With the last couple of years already being so tough on people, an urgent break from the pandemic talk and unpredictable lockdowns had got many looking for a place far away from the Covid chaos. And, they found Maldives — the island-nation where they can put up their feet, take a deep breath and soak in some nature.
The neighbouring country, known for its atolls and lagoons, has probably been the most trending vacation spot recently, thereby even drawing in the paparazzi. Right from actor Kajal Aggarwal and hubby Gautam Kitchlu spending their honeymoon here last October, her contemporary Rakul Preet spending time with family to Telugu anchor and Bigg Boss season 5 contestant Ravi making priceless memories on the beaches with his loved ones, Maldives seems like the go-to place for our celebs who want a break from the mundane.
“I had promised my family that as soon as I get out of the Bigg Boss house, I would take them to the Maldives. My daughter loves greenery and the sea, that’s why we decided to vacation here. It was lovely to finally relax, spend time on the beach and eat together. We made some good memories there,” says Ravi, who can’t get over how good the seafood was. “We love eating non-vegetarian food and are always looking to try out different cuisines. The variety in seafood and continental food in the Maldives was unbelievable,” he tells CE.
Merlyn Maladicta, a city-based architect and interior designer, recently checked the Maldives off her bucket list for real after her third visit. “It is paradise on earth. We are so much in love with the place that my husband and I ended up jetting off to the country thrice already. We were there just two months ago, in October, to celebrate our tenth wedding anniversary,” says Merlyn, as she goes on to tell us all about the ‘‘jaw-dropping” scenery which begins as soon as one lands at the airport.
“As soon as you touchdown, you see the alluring blue lagoons and islands in the midst of the ocean — this should get you excited for starters. There’s a lot more that follows. You are welcomed at the airport by your resort representatives and are taken either by speedboat or seaplane to your resort. But, you might have to wait longer for a seaplane. There are a lot of island resorts that you can choose from, based on your budget. People usually book their stay on just one island resort,” says Merlyn, who recommends splitting your stay in a beach villa and a water villa at the same resort.
Both are beautiful options and are one of a kind — the beach villa is a room situated on the beach itself, while the water villa is a few metres away in the middle of shallow waters. The water villa gives you direct access to the lagoon from your room. Now, isn’t this reason enough to go for a quick swim in the ocean?
Here’s a disclaimer: the Maldives isn’t for people who want to go sightseeing and visit historical monuments. It’s a place that wants you to simply lay back, relax, rejuvenate and admire nature. Businessman Vineel Vastav, who recently went there with his wife, did just that. They spent a week at the Atmosphere Kanifushi resort. “Most places in the Maldives are private islands converted into resorts. For us, it was all about experiencing the resort. I guess that’s why most people head there,” says Vineel, who works in the real estate sector.
Avinash Singh, another Hyderabadi who has fallen in love with the island-nation, was blown away by the continental spread. “There was also a variety of bread and cheeses. The food had a Sri Lankan touch to it,” he says. The best part, according to him, is that one can book an entire island to themselves.
The Maldives is also popular for its adventure sports, and stand-up comedian Utsav Dixit could not miss out on those: deep-sea diving, jet skiing and finally the sunset dolphin tour. The country rose to popularity as a tourist destination during the pandemic as it was the only holiday destination that was open to visitors.
According to K Vijay Bhaskar, the director of operations at travel site Holidaz.com, the country turned the pandemic into an opportunity and kept its doors open while the rest of the world sealed its borders. Now, because of the Omicron variant, a lot of European bookings have got cancelled. “However, it is open for Indians with travel restrictions which include a mandatory negative RT-PCR test report,” he says.
A four-night stay starts from Rs 60,000 and goes up to Rs 10 lakh. It depends on the property you choose.
Things to do in Maldives
Snorkelling is a must-try as you will get to see the beautiful reefs along the lagoons up close
- Scuba diving
- Dolphin watching at sunset
- Water sports n Kayaking
- Catamaran boating
- Stingray feeding
Foods to try
Maldives is a seafood lover’s paradise
The local dish, Mas Huni, is a must-try. It is shredded smoked tuna with grated coconut and onions, and is had with roti. #HydTravel #hydnews