At Male, the Maldives only international airport, we were bussed across to the waiting air taxis. The first thing than I noticed was the blue of the water was a richer shade than I had seen anywhere else. Within half an hour were in a a twin-otter seaplane flying above the fantastic vacation islands and reefs of the Maldives, heading towards the island of Meedhupparu. There were free earplugs at the air-taxi reception desk. Do not forget to grab a pair for the return journey back to Male too, because the maldives air taxis are not quiet aircraft.
Meedhupparu is classically beautiful from the air. There is a wide sandy beach around 90% of the island of Meedhupparu and tropical palms covering the interior. It lies on the east of the Raa Atoll, 40 minutes flight-time north of Male.
Facilities on Meedhupparu are of a good to high standard. The resort is roughly equivalent of 3 to 4 star in the UK. The Fine Dining Restaurant on Meedhupparu provided buffet-style food of exceptional quality. The Lunchtime Curried fish was almost always exquisite.
We were glad we had chosen the all inclusive option for our holiday, because there is no other choice about dining and basic spirits, beer and soft-drinks are included. Prices on Meedhupparu for t-shirts and sarongs were about 10 dollars each.
For sports there is a well equipped gym, table tennis and a swimming pool, but the sea is always going to be a better option for exercise.
For our vacation we were given one of around 200 rooms dotted around the coast road which encircles Meedhupparu. Every room has its own balcony and although the buildings were a bit industrial in design they were clean and comfortable.
The staff on Meedhupparu were all excellent. They were a mixture of local Maldive islanders and Sri Lankans. Not a single reason to complain about any aspect of the service we received. I can honestly say they make the holiday and can teach ANY european in the hospitality trade a thing or two.
Italians! The truth is that Meedhupparu is first and foremost an Italian vacation resort so non Italians could feel a little excluded from some of the organized entertainments during their holiday on meedhupparu.
On the island of Meedhupparu itself are crows, fruit bats and geckos. The bats and crows in the trees on meedhupparu fight constantly which provides great entertainment. The Bats always seemed to have the upper hand, but the crows were a darn sight more belligerent and noisy. At sunset you can watch the bats swoop down to the swimming pool to take a drink. Meedhupparu has lots of beautiful tiny geckos sitting on the flat walls awaiting an unwary insect. They are again, a great enjoyment to watch and learn the Meedhupparu way of life... sitting very still doing nothing at all.
When we had had enough of the stillness, then swimming was very safe within the Meedhupparu island reef was great, but with stonefish and stingrays in the bay I recommend wearing footwear in the water. The coral is recovering well but slowly following the disastrous warm el nino current that decimated the maldives surface coral in the late 1990s. Below 10 metres it is all still as lush as it ever was.
(photo from meedhupparu of a stingray resting just below the surface)
The diving on meedhupparu was adventurous, with strong currents ripping us around tillas (submerged islands) or past reefs like the astounding Maa Faru. where there was a legendary encounter with Manta Rays.
The ends of the two piers on Meedhupparu Island are lit at night and they attract a host of marine life. On a calm evening you can sit and watch an underwater ballet being performed by all manner of strange characters. The big napoleon wrasse come out and everyone else runs for cover, except the relaxed turtles who are afraid of nothing. I was totally enchanted.
Stunning beauty, good diving, rest and relaxation on the beach, no mosquitoes.
Long flights, small island can feel a bit too small for some