The Maldives is an archipelago comprising over 1,100 islands, which are scattered across 26 picturesque coral atolls. Here, you'll find turquoise crystal lagoons brimming with vibrant marine life and dazzling coral formations, creating an ideal setting for snorkeling and diving enthusiasts. The pristine, secluded white sand beaches are a hallmark of this paradise, and many resorts provide special packages for honeymooners, birthday celebrations, and anniversaries. There is a range of exquisite resorts, accessible via a boat ride or a short float plane transfer from Male, the capital.
Every resort in the Maldives is its own private island, and with over 100 options to choose from, the only challenge is deciding where to stay. Here are a few of our favorite resorts:
Gili Lankfanfushi: The mantra is simple: "No news, no shoes." This is a place where your biggest concern will be the whimsical presence of dolphins during your diving adventures. Embracing relaxation as a serious affair, the resort offers the enchanting services of 'Mr. Friday' assistants, a serene spa experience, and exquisite dining options.
Joeli Being: Emerges as the youthful and wellness-oriented sibling of the vibrant Joali Maldives. It retains the quintessential elements for a sophisticated island retreat in the Indian Ocean, yet it ventures further, tapping into your very own genetic makeup. Here, you have the liberty to select from a variety of custom-designed programs that foster profound connections with yourself, your partner, and the surrounding nature. Alternatively, you can immerse yourself in the tranquil ambiance of the island with morning yoga, evening pilates, and an overall sense of serenity. In true Maldivian style, time here is dictated not by the ticking of a clock but by the soothing rhythms of the sea and the bliss of salt-kissed sunset gatherings (which, it's worth noting, are mostly alcohol-free, in line with the island's predominantly dry ethos). Our verdict? A haven of undisturbed tranquility and relaxation.
Patina: Redefines the concept of a Maldivian resort with its pioneering approach to eco-conscious luxury. This resort stands out with its commitment to zero-waste, energy-positive initiatives and its unique biophilic, Brazilian-Modernist architecture. Here, traditional thatched roofs and opulent gold taps give way to contemporary marvels like a James Turrell-designed art pavilion, soothing earth-toned palettes, and subtly integrated in-villa control panels. The resort's ultra-modern marina and the Studio MK27-designed Beach Club exude an urban chic vibe, yet the essence of your stay – immersion in nature and luxury – remains at the heart of the experience. Every aspect, from the carefully selected Bassam Fellows, Vitra, and Paolo Lenti furnishings to the spa's tranquil sensory deprivation tanks, and the innovative window systems that open the spacious two-storey villas to the natural surroundings on three sides, has been meticulously crafted for your utmost comfort and relaxation.
Six Senses Laamu: Situated in the Laamu Atoll, deep in the Indian Ocean, Six Senses Laamu is the sole resort in this area. A short inter-island plane trip from Malé International Airport followed by a brief boat ride transports you to an island paradise where dolphins play. The resort features a blend of on-land and over-water villas constructed from sustainable materials, all set amid the palm-fringed serenity of the Maldives.
When to go / useful information
When to go
The Maldives is a year-round destination, but its weather is significantly influenced by the monsoon seasons, primarily from May to October. The best time to enjoy sunny weather with minimal rain is during the dry season, which spans from December to April. It's worth noting that this period is quite popular, so accommodations may be in high demand.
Currency Rufiya (Rf)
Language Maldivian Divehi – and English is widely spoken
What makes it special: Everything about the Maldives is captivating, from the eternal summer days on pristine sandy beaches to the luxury provided by the remarkable resorts. The Maldives offers some of the world's finest snorkeling and diving experiences with its crystal-clear waters, abundance of marine life, and exquisite over-water bungalows, such as those at Soneva Gili & Six Senses Spa, offering a truly heavenly stay.
Weather: Weather in the Maldives is consistently warm throughout the year, with little variation in daily temperatures. April is typically the hottest month, while December is the coolest. The weather is mainly influenced by the monsoon seasons, with February being the driest month and May and October experiencing the highest average monthly rainfall. The southwest monsoon, known as "hulhangu," occurs from May to September and is considered the wet season. During this period, rough seas and strong winds are common.
Social customs: In Maldivian society, women have historically played a significant role in both the community and family life. At one point, the republic was believed to be a matriarchy, with women frequently serving as rulers. Today, women continue to hold various positions in government and business, showcasing their importance in the society. One interesting social quirk is the "No shoes" rule. Upon arriving at your beautiful island resort in the Maldives, you can leave your shoes behind and enjoy walking barefoot throughout your entire stay. What's even better is that no one will think twice about it, allowing you to fully embrace the island's relaxed atmosphere.