Thank you very much for the info. Maldives is on our shortlist for honeymoon, although my personal preference is for bora bora/French Polynesia. Drawback with FP over Maldives is flight time and cost. Although I've also heard snorkelling can be better in maldives(not that its bad in FP).
I have been to the maldives 15 times, so you might realise how much I like it. Local islands dont appeal to me apart from the price. My favourite island was fesdu [now W' retreat] so I wont be back there. I have found the main reason I like an island is the reef. Fancy rooms dont matter, I would much rather go to Biyadhoo or Embudu as islands like Vilamendhoo which is like a boutique hotel. I liked Angaga but the price is now too much for me as I will only go december - march which is high season as I am not going all that way for rain. The prices just get dearer and dearer with the usual arradan - chaaya islands being the cheepest. I am on the internet most days looking for new sights to no avail. If anyone knows a good booking site please let me know, i'd be glad to help with island choice.
Sit on a beach for 2 weeks,nah.
Wish I could drop everything and do this!
The Island was called Komandoo, we went end of May (running into June) last year. It was a last minute thing and that was the best I could find at short notice, thankfully it was very good: Positives: - Relatively small (when we went most guests spent time in the communal areas, so didn't see many people outside those areas, making it really feel like your own island sometimes). - Excellent food (and they do reasonably priced FB/AI packages. The cocktails on AI were poor IMO, so if you will be drinking those heavily consider AI gold. Personally I would just go FB/AI and pay for the one or two drinks we had in the evening). The ala carte restaurant was also reasonably priced (equivalent prices to high street chain restaurants). - Large shallow lagoon with rays and small reef sharks. Good for poor swimmers. Also given the orientation of the island one side appears to stay calm, even if the other is rough. Just inside the protection wall, by the beach bar, we saw a large turtle every day around 4 (give it a try if you go, I assume he's "resident" lol). - You can get to the other side of the reef in about 5-10 mins swim, where theres a large drop off and its teaming with life. We dove and snorkelled both sides. Inhabited island side (more on this in negatives) had several turtles, some very large eels, reef was probably prettier, but the sea was rougher when we went. The other side was absolutely calm, still a nice reef, saw some larger reef sharks, but no turtles this side. Lots of schools of fish/etc. - All the rooms appeared to be nice, well appointed. Beach bungalows aren't too densely packed (although it seemed empty when we were there, as everyone hung around the infinity pool). Water villas were large, well appointed with nice decks, although most of them the sea was too rough to swim comfortably off the decks. - Staff and service was very good, with some really nice communal areas and they had entertainment most evenings if you fancied some noise. - Seemed to attract a lot of repeaters and generally seemed to attract a nice type of guest (friendly, prepared to chat, but also knew when to leave you alone). Negatives: - One side has an inhabited island in view. Ask for the other side when booking (may not bother you, but I'd rather not find out it does when you're there), or a water villa facing the other side. - When we were there on some days the sea was quite rough on the inhabited side. However, from speaking to the repeaters, reading reviews, at least one side will be sheltered due to the orientation of the island (and adjacent islands). So when we went the side facing the inhabited island was rough (but had the turtles so we ventured out whenever possible), while the other side was completely calm (like a different island). - From reading forums, the reef is average, density of sea life is average and your unlikely to see large sharks/rays here. (Average against some other places in the Maldives, so still excellent compared to other places you've likely been). We were impressed, but we haven't been to some of the other places I've read people advise (yet :)) and also perhaps we were lucky when we went. - Theres a stone wall about 15-20m out to protect the island from erosion. Depending on tide, one side it will pretty much be submerged (meaning you can't really see it and get the picture perfect view), but the other you will see it poking out. May ruin it for some, but it does mean it keeps a reasonable beach and the lagoon within the wall is calm. My overall impression was the place is excellent and i'd happily return (although so many islands to try). Having read forums, TA, etc I get the impression the inhabited island on one side holds the price down, otherwise given the quality of service/food/island/reef/lagoon/density of rooms it would probably be priced higher (not that its particularly cheap). IMO the four factors to consider when choosing an island are: Food/Service, Reef/Dive sites/sea life/lagoon, Island/proximity of other islands, quality of island itself and how densely it is packed (in terms of rooms). From my research if you want to tick all four 100%, your easily looking at £1200+/night (HB if you're lucky), probably a lot more in peak season. Hope that helps