Scattered across the calm waters of the Indian Ocean lie over a thousand coral islands. This strikingly beautiful tropical paradise is commonly known as the Maldives. With so many fantastic options, travellers often ask, which is the best island in the Maldives?
A better question might be, which is the best island for me? As no two islands are the same, before booking your trip, it’s worth asking yourself what kind of holiday you’re looking for.
Typically, the northern atolls are made up of smaller, remote islands with lots of higher ground and breathtaking underwater reefs. These make for fantastic views and are ideal for snorkelling. In comparison, the southern atolls make for bigger islands that are surrounded by deep lagoons. These are ideal if you prefer to explore the abundant underwater landscape waiting for you.
As well as considering what sort of water activities you want to do, other factors that will affect your choice depend on the size of the island you’d prefer, what accommodation you’re looking for, who you’re going with, and the activities that you enjoy.
Some atolls are made up of soft white sandy beaches peppered with palm trees and stunning scenery surrounding your picturesque beach villa. Other resorts are made up of overwater bungalows with your own private oceanic entrance, complete with glass-bottom decking to gaze in awe at the stunning colourful marine life below. You can opt for a larger resort with plenty of entertainment and other guests to keep you company or one of the smaller, more remote islands for maximum privacy with your loved ones.
The variety of locations means that there’s something for the whole family. If you’re looking for somewhere that will accommodate the kids, there are plenty of resorts that provide hours of entertainment. This means relaxation time for mum and dad while the little ones are kept busy. If you’re on your honeymoon, or you would rather have a quiet adult-only stay, there are exclusive islands available too.
There are no two ways about it, the beaches and world-class views are just a few reasons the Maldives are ideal for honeymooners. And the incredible water clarity with colourful underwater life makes it a hit with divers. Arguably, the atolls make for the best snorkelling in the world.
However, you aren’t restricted to exploring the local underworld or lazing on a deck chair with the latest bestseller. Thanks to its sheer number of islands, the Maldives really does offer something for everyone, far beyond the wealth of diving and snorkelling available. Of course, given its fantastic location on the Indian Ocean, water sports are a must. Learn how to kite-surf or wakeboard. You could even turn your hand to a fun game of water polo.
If you love the water but want to stay dry, you could always rent a canoe or a yacht and admire the bustling sea life below in comfort and style. For something completely different, why not head out in a submarine for the day?
The entertainment isn’t limited to the water. On the shore, you can take part in a range of activities. If you’re a sports lover, there’s a myriad of games to join in. Tennis, football, badminton, the Maldives has it all. If you’d rather a more spiritual and laid-back experience, then yoga or Tai Chi will be perfect for you.
There’s no limit to the options available to you depending on the island that you choose. Why not try something for the first time? Where better to try archery, belly dancing, or you could take cooking lessons from the locals? There’s even chessboards in the whirlpools so you can expand your mind as you relax your senses.
Which is the best island in the Maldives for me?
Now you have a clearer picture of what the Maldives has to offer, it’s time to narrow down your search.
For a romantic couple’s hideaway, why not consider Gaafu Dhaalu Atoll? Your luxury yacht transfer will whisk you away to your own slice of heaven. Take in the surrounding beauty on your approach to this private haven.
For islands that perfectly blend idyllic settings with jaw-dropping dive spots, and restaurants that will tantalise your taste buds, the turquoise shores of South Malé Atoll, Kaafu Atoll, or South Ari Atoll are ideal for couples and honeymooners alike.
Food lovers should head to the culinary haven of Lhaviyani Atoll. Renowned for its delicious gastronomy options, foodies can relish a variety of seafood delights in the world’s largest underwater restaurant. With two daily sittings, you can dine with stunning underwater scenery as your backdrop. In the evening, clink glasses with your loved one to spectacular sunsets on one of the champagne pavilions.
No matter which island in the Maldives you choose, you’re guaranteed to be met with luxury and unparalleled serenity. We know you’ll love the atolls as much as we do.