6 Things to Cross Off your Bucket List in the Maldives

This beautiful country is all about the turquoise water, white sandy beaches, and tropical sea life. You’ll love all the adventures in the Maldives you can find. Many people consider it their dream vacation destination, imagining days laying around the white, sandy beaches and turquoise water.

While some only see this as a luxury honeymoon location, staying on the local island is altogether a different experience and one that is more affordable and perhaps cultural. I stayed at Mirian Sky and through them, got to try all these incredible adventures that I’ll always remember.

Tips Before You Go:

Adventures in the Maldives at Mirian Sky Hotel

1. Turtle Snorkelling

Sea turtle in Maldives near Gaafaru

Can you spot the turtle? They do camouflage well!

Turtles are one of the big three, along with shark and mantas, that people want to see in Maldives. And these adorable green mammals are much easier to find. We were brought to one of their frequent sighting spot to snorkel and saw a total of four turtles during our hour-long snorkel. They were friendly enough to let you swim alongside them.

Turtle coming up for water near Gaafaru, Maldives

A still extracted from one of my video – the turtle coming up for water!

Turtle spotting aside, there are some wonderful fauna and corals to be seen at the spot. Picnic Island and its surrounding sea are brimming with sea life and we saw a turtle there, too (as well as an octopus!).

2. Dolphin Safari

A pod of dolphins, Gaafaru, Maldives

A pod of dolphins swimming alongside our speedboat

By luck, we stumbled into a pod of Sharp Tooth dolphins on our way to a shipwreck and they cruised with us for a while. Though we didn’t manage to snorkel with them as they swam too fast, we got very close on the speed boat. Smaller, darker with a pointier beak than the bottle-nose dolphins, there were almost twenty in this pod. During one of our attempts to swim with them, we heard their sonic communication – which was an experience in itself.

3. Sand Bank Visit

One of the things that I had seen of Maldives before my visit was a drone video of the couple on a deserted sand bank. Needless to say, I was excited to visit one. A natural body of sand that congregated by the way of waves and currents, the sand bank we visited was made of broken corals. Combined the white sand with azure and turquoise water and you have paradise!

4. Shipwreck Snorkelling

Anchor point shipwreck near Gaafaru, Maldives

Anchor point shipwreck!

There are numerous shipwrecks around Gaafaru Island and Anchor Point is the closest one that happened 150 years ago. The only visible sign of it above the water is a single metal rod that reaches above the sea level, but the underwater world is something else entirely.

Claimed by nature, the shipwreck is now a haven for fishes and other sea creatures. You can still make out the top part of the ship and its rough shapes, though in many parts it’s already overgrown. I was surprised at how many sea lives there are – nature will always find a way!

5. Sunset Dinner by the Beach

Sunset dinner, Gaafaru, Maldives

Nightly sunset view from the bikini beach

Given the romantic setting as well as the beautiful sceneries, it would be a shame if you don’t enjoy a sunset beach dinner. A surprise by our lovely host at Mirian Sky Hotel, the eight guests were treated to a sunset dinner at the bikini beach of Gaafaru. With the sun setting behind us, I shared one of the most romantic moments in my life with two German sisters and our lovely host.

sunset dinner, bikini beach, Gaafaru, Maldives

Buffet dinner by the beach!

Served buffet style, we had some fish from the line fishing as well, which leads to my last item on this list…

6. Line Fishing and Eating Your Catch

sunset speed boat to fishing, Gaafaru, Maldives

Speeding off to the sunset to fish!

If you have never fished before, you must try line fishing! I had very little faith in my fishing abilities, however, aside from failing to cast the line, I was able to catch two fish by myself. Done in the evening and twilight hours, line fishing is a delicate act of knowing how much you should release the line and play tug-of-war with the fish.

Freshly caught fish cooked in Mirian Sky Hotel, Gaafaru, Maldives

Freshly caught and cooked by the chef at Mirian Sky

We caught eight in total, not counting an accidentally nurse shark (we let it go, of course). Which was cooked for dinner that night!

Where to Stay in the Maldives:
Mirian Sky Hotel on Gaafaru

Mirian Sky Hotel exterior, Gaafaru, Maldives

The exterior of the hotel!

I spent a week at Mirian Sky Hotel in the Maldives. A three and a half hour ferry from the capital Male or an hour on a speed boat, Gaafaru is a small, unspoiled fishing village with a population of just over one thousand.

If you want to experience a local island in peace and quiet with friendly staff and excellent service, then you are in the right place.

The two-floor hotel is modern, clean and has all the basic amenities. The hotel isn’t very big, which is nice and peaceful, and the reception area is the same as the dining room. There’s a small outdoor patio with a place to wash sand off your feet.

Here’s a quick video of the hotel as well as my room:

The air conditioning works perfectly, the room is clean and well equipped with a mini-fridge, LCD TV, wardrobe, vanity table and chair, double bed. The bathroom, standard of many South-East Asia countries, consist of a shower with no curtain or stand.

Mirian sky hotel room, Gaafaru, Maldives

The room is spacious and nice!

There’s also a fan if you aren’t cool enough! I enjoy my room so much that I end up staying in and watching a movie from my hard-disc in the evening. I am anti-social, I know.

Mirian sky hotel room balcony, Gaafaru, Mldives

View from the balcony

While the room has a balcony that does face the sea, you won’t use it much as it’d put you in direct sight of the mosque.

lunch at mirian sky hotel, Gaafaru, Maldives

My welcome lunch!

The food, prepared by the chef Mohammed, exceeded my expectations. I had pancake, omelet, and toasts for breakfast, there’s also tea, coffee, and cereal, too. He will literally make you anything you want and does the best salad! Lunch and dinner usually consist of salad or pasta with chicken or fish. Though you can get authentic Maldivian food, fried rice or noodles etc as well.

Everyone at Mirian Sky is friendly and did their best to take care of me and make sure my stay was great, as they do with all the other guests!

Now that I’ve finished gushing, here’s some nitty gritty info:

  • Shower gel and shampoo are provided, as well as towel and beach towel.
  • You have free use of bikini beach and their sun bed and umbrella. However, the beach is not on the doorstep and requires a five-minute walk or so. You will have to cover up your bikini or swimsuit as well since it is a local island.
  • The WiFi is very weak and glitchy. It only works on one device at a time but does work all over the island. I recommend that you get a SIM card if the internet is essential to you.
  • Its proximity to Male is a huge bonus. The choice of cheaper daily public ferry if needed is a superb option. However, the fact that it’s opposite a mosque opposite means you’ll hear it every morning at 5 am.

Pin “Adventures in the Maldives” for later!

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About the Author:

Nam Cheah is a third culture millennial who spent half her life in Hong Kong and the other half in UK. Planning to make the most out of life, she documents her passion to laugh, travel and eat on her suitably named blog: Laugh, Travel, Eat. When she’s not doing any of that, she’s either catching up on TV while online shopping or writing her novels.

4 Comments

  1. Nitin Khanna May 15, 2017 at 5:47 pm - Reply

    After reading your blog on Maldives, I would like to say, it’s the place where we all have to visit at once in our life. All the pictures are beautiful and Sunset scene is just blow my mind. Thanks for sharing your experience. It helps me a lot to do all the things you mentioned in your blog.

    Great Read!

  2. Lauren Melnick May 17, 2017 at 1:49 pm - Reply

    While I personally wouldn’t do the line fishing, the turtle snorkeling and dolphin safari looks amazing!

  3. Charlie Alf May 24, 2017 at 7:19 pm - Reply

    I’m so jealous! The Maldives look like paradise – I wouldn’t have been able to come back! The dolphin safari seems like it’s something out of a dream; it wasn’t on my bucket list before, but it sure is now! It’s incredible how close you got to the turtles! All the photographs of the food are also getting me ready for vacation!

    • Rachel Jones May 25, 2017 at 1:19 pm - Reply

      I know, I’m so jealous that Nam got to go in my place!! WAhhhhh

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