The Maldives is an exquisite far-flung Island nation resembling scattered emeralds floating in the Indian Ocean, southwest of the Indian subcontinent. For many travellers it’s a once-in-a-lifetime destination, a honeymoon hotspot, while surfers dream about its barrels and long fun waves.
Konotta, a Private Island in the Gaafu Dhaalu Atoll is 340 kilometres south of the Maldives capital city of Male. The surrounding Gaafu Dhaalu Atoll is home to what is considered some of the best hard coral fields in the world and it’s a virgin atoll for diving. There are only five resorts in the atoll, and the new Outrigger sits somewhere in the middle, surrounded by turquoise sea punctuated by uninhabited islands. It’s so near the equator (a mere 50 kilometres north) that the water temperature hovers around 30C. There are lots of plankton, and marine life is abundant around the small island. You will be amazed at the amount of species that is found: whitetip and zebra sharks, guitarfish, schools of eagle rays and much more. The corals are in pristine condition and extremely colourful in this part of the archipelago.
The area is also famous for surf breaks, most notably Divana Point and Diva Giri, with both small waves for beginners and breaks of about five metres high. The resort has six brand new surfboards.
Days on Konotta start with a la carte breakfasts served poolside at Blue Salt overlooking the ocean. Wait staff Sadiq and Izam, local Maldivians, deliver a freshly squeezed juice of the day and dishes cooked to order.
Aside from the excellent wining and dining, there’s also yoga or reiki sessions on offer at the fitness centre, a gorgeous Asian-themed spa and a schedule of activities ranging from sunset cruises and dolphin-watching, to night snorkelling. A terrific kid’s club focuses on island and marine activities. Kids are issued with a coral watch card they can take in the water to identify marine life.
FIVE MORE THINGS TO DO
All tours, except the cooking class, are run by Best Dives Maldives.
Take a local island tour to see how real Maldivians live. The four-hour tour sometimes visits the local island of Thinadu with its beautiful coral stone houses and paddy fields.
Join a two-hour dolphin spotting tour in a traditional dhoni boat to spot pods of spinner, bottlenose and Risso’s dolphins.
Take a speedboat to a remote uninhabited island or sandbank for the ultimate in romantic picnics. Guests can snorkel, swim, relax or fish during the “Robinson Experience”.
Charter the resort’s luxurious yacht and sail across the equator to the Southern Hemisphere on an “Adventure Journey to the Centre of the Earth”. Enjoy a three-course set bento lunch, and be welcomed back with bodubra drumming and dancing.
Learn how to make sushi, masroshi (savoury snacks) and other local delicacies in a private Maldivian cooking class taught by the resort chef.
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