31 Aug 2017 Ultimate Maldives Honeymoon Guide
If there is one place in the world to take the most epic honeymoon ever it’s the Maldives. A Maldives honeymoon can not be topped. Think over water bungalows, the craziest shades of blue ever, vibrant marine life, and much more.
We’ve put together this guide to help plan your honeymoon in the Maldives. Everything from how to get to the Maldives, best resorts for a Maldives honeymoon, what to pack for the Maldives, weather in the Maldives, and much more. We’ve been to Maldives twice and spent 5 weeks island hopping in the Maldives so we can speak from a first-hand experience.
Maldives Honeymoon |Everything You Need To Know
How to get to the Maldives
Don’t let the long flight scare you away from a honeymoon in the Maldives. Flights aren’t as bad or as expensive as you may think. You’ll probably have 1-2 layovers depending on where you are coming from. When searching flights you’ll want to look for flights to Male (MLE), but it may be cheaper to fly into Colombo Sri Lanka and buy a flight to the Maldives from there. If you are coming from the USA it will probably take 16-24 hours to get to the Maldives, but it will be so worth it. Common layover stops are Abu Dhabi UAE, Dubai UAE, and Colombo Sri Lanka. Click here to search flight prices to the Maldives.
On our trip to the Maldives, we flew from Chicago O’hare to Colombo spent a few weeks exploring the best of Sri Lanka before getting on a flight to the Maldives. For $250 round trip we then flew to Maldives on Sri Lankan air. After our 5 weeks in the Maldives was up we flew Air Asia direct to Bangkok for under $300. Airlines we personally have flown and recommended for long-haul flights to the Maldives, in order of our favorites: Korean Air, Etihad, Emirates, Qatar, Air Asia, Turkish Air, and Air Berlin. We flew Korean Air to our honeymoon in Thailand and Sri Lankan Air & Air Asia to the Maldives.
How to get to Maldives Resorts
All flights land at the Male International Airport (MLE) and from here you will board a seaplane or speedboat/ferry to your Maldives resort. Some Maldives resorts are only accessible by flight and some offer a speedboat & flight option if you opt for the speedboat we highly suggest the flight for at least one way the views from a seaplane in the Maldives is out of this worth. There are public ferries in the Maldives but they don’t go to any of the private Maldives resort islands so your only option will to be a book a speedboat or flight with your hotel. The hotel will book all this on your behalf (and bill you), they work with the airline to coordinate flight times and everything. We took 4 seaplanes in the Maldives and a Maldivan airlines flight to GAN the furthest southern island in the Maldives.
If you come in on a late flight you may want to consider staying at Hotel Jen Male for a night to catch up on jet lag and then heading off to your honeymoon hotel the next day.
Maldives Honeymoon Experiences
A honeymoon in the Maldives is going to be epic no matter where you stay or what you do during the day. The Maldives has tons of different options to fit every honeymooner’s budget and travel style.
Stay in an Over the Water Bungalow in the Maldives
When you hear the word Maldives what’s the first thing to come to mind? Over water bungalows! A few nights in an over bungalows in the Maldives is a must. Your honeymoon dreams come true in an overwater bungalow. Breakfast in bed with epic ocean views or look down through your fish window in the floor. You can literally just jump off your balcony into the ocean or possibly have the choice of your own private pool or ocean. There were a few days where we never left our room except for meals.
There are Maldives water villas ranging from $200 – $30,000 a night. If you think you can’t afford water villa in the Maldives you might be shocked how low prices during low season can be. If you can’t splurge for one your entire honeymoon consider upgrading to a water villa for at least two nights. We personally stayed in four overwater bungalow resorts in the Maldives, all of which were under $500 a night. Below prices are for September 2017.
Budget Maldives Overwater Villas Under $500 a night
- Ellaidhoo Maldives by Cinnamon less than $200 a night, we’ve spent 3 nights here loved it | Hotels.com | Orbitz | Expedia
- Summer Island Maldives, our personal favorite we’ve spent 11 nights here | Hotels.com | Orbitz | Expedia
- Kandima Maldives | Hotels.com | Orbitz | Expedia
Mid Range Maldives Overwater Villas $500-$1,000 a night
- Gili Lankanfushi Maldives | Hotels.com | Orbitz | Expedia
- Centara Grand Island Resort & Spa Maldives All Inclusive | Hotels.com | Orbitz | Expedia
- Six Senses Laamu | Hotels.com | Orbitz | Expedia
Luxury Maldives Overwater Villas Over $2,000+ a night
- Soneva Jan | Hotels.com | Orbitz | Expedia | starting $7,000 night
- One & Only Reethi Rah | Hotels.com | Orbitz | Expedia | TripAdvisor Reviews
- Cheval Blanc Randheli Maldives | Hotels.com | Orbitz | Expedia
Swim With Whalesharks in the Maldives Year Round
If swimming with whale sharks is on your bucket list like our’s then you should head to South Atoll. These magical creatures can be found year-round in South Ari Atoll. Being able to swim alongside the largest fish in the sea that can reach lengths of 40 feet is definitely a bucket list honeymoon item. Best hotels to stay at to swim with the whale sharks in the Maldives:
- LUX* South Ari Atoll | Hotels.com | Orbitz
- Lily Beach Maldives Resort | Hotels.com | Orbitz
- Vilamendhoo Island Resort & Spa | Hotels.com | Orbitz
A Week on a Catamaran Sailing in the Maldives
Spend a week sailing through the Maldives on a catamaran. This is not only the best way to island hop in the Maldives but also the cheapest. For only $1344 a person you’ll have a private cabin and all meals covered and you’ll wake up on a different island every day. For those that love the water, you’ll have unlimited snorkeling & kayaking in some of the sickest places in the world. Have private islands and beaches all to yourself. Here are some of the highlights are South Ari Atoll, Meerufenfushi, Dhigghiri, Guraidoo local island, for the complete itinerary click here. When we go back to the Maldives this is the #1 on our things to do in the Maldives list.
Divers Paradise Liveaboard Dive Trip
This honeymoon experience is best for those who are divers. Some of the best dives sites in the world are in the Maldives and there is no better way to dive in the Maldives than getting on a liveaboard. For those unfamiliar with a liveaboard, it’s a boat that’s the main purpose is all about diving. Most liveaboards are three to four dives a day. Liveaboard prices vary based on the boat, room type, if you require equipment, etc.
Adam is a diver and I (Hannah) am not which is not a problem, non-divers can still go on liveaboards at a reduced rate. We suggest doing some research to decide what dive sites in the Maldives you’d like to visit and find a boat that fits your budget and bucket list. Check here for prices, you’ll be shocked to see how affordable a liveaboard in the Maldives is.
Related Article: More Than Beaches, Aruba Honeymoon Guide
Catch a Wave Surfing in the Maldives
You might not know this but the Maldives has some pretty epic surf spots. Like liveaboards, there are boat trips that cater to surfers bringing them to different surf breaks in the Maldives. However, there are some breaks that are private. Sounds strange but some resorts “own a break” and only their paying customers can surf on the break. We saw this at Cinnamon Dhonveli Resort if you’re a surfer definitely consider a resort that owns a surf break. It’ll not only guarantee you can surf it but there won’t be a ton of surfers due to it being private. Other great places to surf in the Maldives and resorts to stay at:
- BUDGET: Cinnamon Dhnoveli Maldives as low as $134 a night, owns its own private surf break.
- MID RANGE| Ayada Maldives luxury surf resort with 6 surf breaks within a 30-minute boat ride, book online here.
- LUXURY | Niyama Private Islands have surfable waves that break right on the island and if that isn’t enough for you they own other private islands for you to surf as well. It’s home to the only underwater night club in the world!
Head Down to Gan, the southern most island in the Maldives
We traveled to the Maldives in June & July during the wet season and found the best weather in Gan and the prices were way cheaper. Compare Gan hotels online here. There aren’t nearly as many hotels down here but there are still a ton of things to do in Gan: diving, surfing, snorkeling, and more. There is great diving especially at Manta Point, British Loyalty the largest shipwreck in the Maldives, and more.
- BUDGET | Equator Village is located on a local island so you’ll get to book online here for $87 a night.
- MID RANGE | Canareef (we stayed here) is a unique location as you can bike to the local village on the island but yet it’s considered a private island so alcohol is allowed. All the rooms are right on the beach, they have a sunset side & a sunrise side. During the wet season, you can book a room for $88 a night.
- LUXURY | Shangri-La’s Villingili Resort & Spa Maldives, For only $441 you can have a villa with your own private pool and epic ocean views, book online.
Things to know before planning a Maldives honeymoon
1. 1,192 Islands In The Maldives
There are 1,192 coral islands in the Maldives to be exact and they are grouped into 26 atolls which have 122 resort islands. There are two types of islands in the Maldives, private resort islands, and local islands. Up until 2009 tourists in the Maldives were only allowed to stay on private resort islands but now they can amongst locals on local islands. We spent 4 nights on the local island Thulusdhoo, it was great to get a feel of a local island however for a Maldives honeymoon I would stick to resort islands.
2. Alcohol in the Maldives
The Maldives is a strict Muslim country HOWEVER alcohol is permitted on resort islands. Do not purchase any duty-free alcohol and bring it into the Maldives, it will get picked up on the scanner and taken away when entering the Maldives. Almost all Maldives resorts offer an all-inclusive package that includes all the alcohol you can drink but in no ways like a Caribbean all-inclusive sloppy mess.
3. Dress Code in the Maldives
Bikinis and skimpy clothing are not allowed on local islands in the Maldives. If you do travel to a local Maldives island they may have a dedicated portion of the beach for bikinis. Please respect the local culture and cover yourself when on the local islands or in Male. We highly suggest even wearing pants & covering your shoulders when at the Male airport. Once you are your Maldives honeymoon island feel free to wear your bikinis and booty shorts.
4. Fridays in the Maldives
Friday is the holy day for Muslims and you should expect things to operate slightly different on Fridays (even at resorts) and especially Fridays during Ramadan. One of the biggest things you’ll notice is the lunch hour will most likely be slightly later.
5. Bacon at Breakfast
Most resorts will have pork sausages and chicken sausages. Pork products are another thing not allowed on local islands in the Maldives but are on resort islands.
Best time for a honeymoon in the Maldives
There are two main seasons in the Maldives, wet season and dry season. With that being said the Maldives is a great year-round destination. The dry season is typically January through March and wet season is May through November. We have been in the Maldives during June & July and yes there was rain sometimes but in no way did it ruin our vacation. We had more than enough hours of full sunshine.
With the weather, there is no guarantee but if you are after near perfect weather then plan your honeymoon in the Maldives to be during November to April. Peak season is December and March and prices will be at their highest. If you want to save some money consider the low season in the Maldives instead.
The Maldives has visa on arrival or visa-free for ALL nationalities for 30 days except for Indians which get 90 days without a visa and Bruneian residents which get 15 days. Just present your passport at immigration and you’ll get a free visa on arrival in the Maldives.
Traveling to the Maldives during Ramadan
We personally went island hopping in the Maldives during Ramadan and would recommend it. Ramadan is the ninth Islamic lunar month, so Ramadan dates change every year. For the entire month, Muslims abstain from eating, drinking, sexual relations during daylight hours. holy month for. They wake up early and have a large meal and after sunset, they break fast with a large meal. If you are in Male very few restaurants will be open during the day, we stayed at Hotel Jen Male which caters to tourists so we were able to get food all-day long. As a tourist, it best to respect the culture and not eat or drink on the street in front of those who are fasting. If you are thinking of taking a Maldives honeymoon during Ramadan it shouldn’t affect your honeymoon at all.
When is Ramadan?
- May 26, 2017 -June 25, 2017
- May 15, 2018 – June 14, 2018
- May 5, 2019 – June 4, 2019
What to wear in the Maldives
You can wear whatever you want on private Maldives resort islands but when on local islands including Male women should cover up and be respectful of the local culture. Women should wear pants and cover their shoulder, yes even during the summer months.
Maldives Honeymoon Cost/Budget
The cost of a honeymoon in the Maldives is going to vary based on which Maldives resort you stay at. Another big factory which meal package you choose, we suggest half board option if you aren’t big drinkers (breakfast & dinner). If you are big drinkers then you may want to consider the all-inclusive option so you don’t have to worry about how much drinks cost and how many you having.
If you are trying to take a budget honeymoon don’t be afraid of the Maldives, it can be done for under $3,000 for two people if you pick the right time of year and watch for deals. The typical Maldives honeymoon will cost around $5,000 for two people but if you ask us it’s definitely worth every penny.
One Week Maldives Honeymoon Cost Estimate
- $2,000+ return flights to the Maldives
- $200-$800 transportation to Maldives resort island
- $500+ activities in the Maldives (snorkeling, local village trip, diving, special dinners, etc.)
- $1,000+ accommodation in the Maldives
How much time do you need in the Maldives?
If you’re coming from the North America or Europe it’s going to be a long flight so we suggest spending at least a week in the Maldives. You’ll want a day to just relax and recover from jetlag. Once you land in the Maldives you won’t ever want to leave. We spent 5 weeks island hopping in the Maldives, as the Maldives is huge and every island is slightly different. If you have a few weeks considering visiting different parts of the country
Maldives Cell Phone & Data
The first thing we do when in a new country we pick up a local SIM card, sorry we can’t live without being connected. All of our resorts in the Maldives had free wifi and for the most part, it was really considering where we were. We, however, do still suggest picking up a local SIM card and data package. Right at the airport, there is a Dhiraagu location, the local cell phone provider. They sell “tourist packages” where you pick a set amount of data and pick how many days you need it valid for. Our plan was roughly $30 and worked on every island in the Maldives we visited.
Money in the Maldives
For most honeymooners in the Maldives, you’ll be staying at a resort in which you won’t need cash. Any charges should be charged back to your room and the credit card on file. The Maldives currency is the Rufiyaa, which is roughly $1 USD= 15. However, if you do want to tip the local stuff it’s best to give them Rufiyaa, USD, Euro, or GBP. You can exchange money at the Male airport or get local currency at the ATM. If you spend any time in the capital city Male or local Maldives islands it’s best to have Rufiyaa.
A honeymoon in the Maldives is easily the best place in the world to take a honeymoon. No matter where you stay or what you do you’ll be surrounded by the craziest colored water ever with your loved one by your side. It’ll easily the easiest decision you’ll make during all the wedding planning.
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