Honeymoon Travel Guide: Lti Maafushivaru, The Maldives

With its sparkling white sand beaches, snorkel-worthy crystal-clear waters and perfect weather the Maldives, in our humble opinion, has got to be most beautiful destination in the world for your honeymoon or once in a lifetime vacation.

The Maldives is a really unique country, an island nation made up of nearly 1200 islands, approximately 120 of which have resorts on them. If you’re dreaming of a relaxing post-wedding get away with unadulterated seclusion then this is the spot for you. The Maldives is one of the few places in the world where the reality will outlive your expectations. No picture can quite do justice to the colour of the sea, the beauty of the lush tropical greenery and the softness of the sand.

GETTING THERE

You can expect a 10-hour direct or 12-plus hour indirect flight from the UK followed by a speedboat (15-30 mins), seaplane (20-40 mins) or internal flight (30 mins – 2 hours) transfer depending on your chosen resort. We stayed at lti Maafushivaru, a quick 25-minute sea plane transfer from Malé; and don’t worry, the resort sorts it all out for you when you book! Transfers are an additional cost though, so do check the prices in advance.

COVID-19

At the time of writing the Maldivian government guidelines are that all guests entering the country (regardless of vaccination status) are required to take a PCR test 72 hours prior to departure. Your negative test will form part of the Traveller Health Declaration form (which can be found at imuga.immigration.gov.mv) which must be filled in within 24 hours of your arrival to the country. You must fill out this form before you return home too.

Guidelines related to Covid-19 can change without warning, so please visit gov.uk/browse/abroad/travel-abroad for the most up to date information before you travel.

STAY

Located in the pristine South Ari Atoll is lti Maafushivaru, where we were lucky enough to spend a glorious seven nights. Having welcomed their first guests in August 2020, lti Maafushivaru is a newly renovated 5-star resort complete with spacious, chic villas both on the beach and over the water.

Beach Villas feature an outdoor bathroom and a spacious ocean-facing sundeck for you to enjoy the picture-perfect seascape, while their iconic Water Pool Villas offer an open plan bedroom and bathroom complimented by the stunning views of the blue lagoon.

The stunning Duplex Pool Villas are the perfect choice for families or friends travelling together; built on two-levels, with each floor featuring a spacious bedroom comprising of a king-size bed, bathroom with rainfall shower and toilet, and a balcony on the first floor with amazing views of the turquoise lagoon.

EAT

Most Maldivian resorts offer a wide range of food options and cater to most dietary requirements (it’s best to tell them at booking if you have any dietary requirements so they can be prepared). At lti Maafushivaru you can enjoy an all-you-can-eat breakfast and dinner buffet at Cuisine Gallery, Moodhu Grill offers an array of flavours using regional produce and flavours from around South Asia and Umi is a Japanese Teppanyaki spot. Cielo serves pizza, pasta, burgers and salads during the day, and at night offers western cuisine imbued with Italian flavours for a Mediterranean twist.

Our favourite spot for an afternoon treat was the Library Lounge which serves a selection of teas, speciality coffees and hot and cold chocolate during the day (the Bounty Cooler; an iced chocolate with coconut cream and fresh coconut was incredible!) as well as cakes, desserts and sandwiches, and the tapas and cocktails at Water Bar were next level good!

MUST DO

lti Maafushivaru’s transformation has been fundamentally linked to its stunning surrounds and the conservation and protection of these have been at the forefront of the development. You can join the resident Marine Biologist on a snorkelling trip and go out to spot Whale Sharks in the open ocean. Other excursion options include a sunset cruise, visiting local island Dhangethi, or exploring the seascape with a range of water sports. Those looking for adventure can explore life below the waves with the Dive Centre, which offers PADI qualifications and courses for all levels from beginners to experienced divers.

For those looking to seriously relax, the Océane Spa at offers a range of treatments including couples’ massages. Afterwards you can relax further in the sauna and steam room and then cool off in the private infinity pool which overlooks a breath-taking, uninterrupted view of the Indian Ocean.

HONEYMOONERS’ BONUS

At lti Maafushivaru all honeymooners get a bottle of sparkling wine on arrival, bed turn down service and a private beach dinner! Just tell them you’re on your honeymoon when you book and they’ll look after you.

TRAVEL TIPS

♥ The high season runs from November-April. This is when the weather will be best (bright sunshine and 28-32 °C degrees every day). However if you travel out of season (May-November) you will get cheaper rates.

♥ Due to the island nature of the Maldives, you will likely not be travelling around to different islands too much; most tourists don’t visit the mainland (Malé) other than to transit through, or any islands were the locals live. You’ll be eating and drinking exclusively in the resort. It is therefore best to book the best food and drinks package that you can afford. You will end up spending more overall if you have to buy everything individually.

Half Board Plus includes breakfast and dinner at the Cuisine Gallery, Daily High Tea at the Library Lounge and a wide range of both alcoholic and non-alcoholic beverages. Other benefits offered in the plan include complimentary snorkelling equipment and non-motorised water sports. Half Board and Dine Around All Inclusive options are also available.

♥ Remember to pack everything you might need (sun cream, medication, cosmetics, toiletries). Resort shops are very small and extremely expensive!

♥ The Maldives uses the same plug sockets as we do in the UK so there’s no need to pack an adapter.

♥ Bring some US Dollars. You shouldn’t need much cash with you as you’ll settle your balance with the resort by card at the end of your stay, but do bring a few hundred US dollars with you for tipping housekeeping and any excursion staff.

♥ Don’t bother packing lots of fancy clothes or heels (OK maybe just one pair for outfit photos!) The resort’s pathways are mostly sand and you’ll probably spend most of your time barefoot.