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Hotels in Maldives

The Maldives Introduction

Pristine beaches nestled between leaning coconut palms and the impossibly blue waters of the Indian Ocean give the Maldives quite the reputation, not to mention some seriously impressive just-married credentials. This tropical nation's outdoor appeal lends itself perfectly to vacations spent lazing on soft, white sand, cocktail in one hand and the latest beach read in the other, but travelers with a little more oomph find ample adventures await. After all, with more than 1,000 coral islands, this archipelago is one of the world's best spots for underwater jaunts.

Hotels in the Maldives

The Maldives is no stranger to luxury, In fact, it's the perfect place to indulge and enjoy the vacation of a lifetime. Lavish 4- and 5-star resorts pepper the nation's reef-ringed atolls, serving up a mix of stylish rooms, beachfront pads, and trademark stilted over-the-water villas. In addition, guests often enjoy a host of upscale amenities, not least sparkling infinity pools, sleek spas, personal butler services, and even house reefs. There are options for budget travelers, too, with family-run inns and guesthouses among the small selection of discount hotels offering classic rooms, friendly service, and priceless locations.

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Where to stay in the Maldives

Haa Alifu Atoll is a top pick for water babies, with this picture postcard-perfect spot boasting over 40 stunning dive sites where snorkelers encounter Spanish mackerel and blackfin barracuda, and those happy to dive deeper come face-to-face with leopard sharks and blue mantas, as well as the Maadhoo Wreck. South Ari Atoll boasts deserted shores dotted with the ruins of ancient Hindu settlements. It's made up of around 50 small islands, about 20 of which are home to exclusive resorts. To the north, the Lhaviyani Atoll is known for its rejuvenating spas, carefully crafted golf courses, and exquisite local handicrafts.

Things to see in the Maldives

Near constant gorgeous weather means that beach days are always on the menu in the Maldives, though there's plenty of scope to enjoy a change of scenery or pace. That might mean a soothing ride aboard a dhoni – a traditional wooden sailboat, or perhaps a sunset champagne cruise – an ideal opportunity to watch dolphins play in the crystal-clear waters as you raise a glass with your other half. Meanwhile, dive sites like the HP and Banana Reefs, both located at the North Male Atoll, offer ample reasons to explore underwater, too. For a spot of culture during your stay, you might enjoy an excursion to Male, the capital of the Maldives and home to attractions like the 17th-century Grand Friday Mosque and Sultan Park's National Museum, as well as the treasure-filled Esheji Art Gallery and the bustling Maldives Fish Market.

How to get to the Maldives

When you travel to the Maldives, you'll fly in to Velana International Airport, in Male. There are no direct flights from the US. Popular routes take you via Dubai or Singapore and some travel options allow for a few nights in your chosen stopover destination before flying on to your island paradise. Depending on where you are flying from, somewhere in Europe might also be a good option for a stopover. From Male, internal flights take care of the hop to resorts and hotels in the Maldives, though the option to travel by seaplane or in a speedboat often proves a tad more tempting.

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