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Choosing a Villa in the Maldives: Beach, Overwater or Underwater?

overwater, underwater and beach villa in the Maldives
For your holiday in the Maldives, should you choose an overwater villa, beach villa on an underwater villa? Find out which one suits you.

It’s not the first time someone asked this question. Every traveller visiting the Maldives raises the question to choose between an overwater villa and a beach villa. But, not everyone considers the option of spending their holiday in an underwater villa.

For many, the obvious choice is choosing an overwater villa for their holiday as it’s not something one can find at every resort. Meanwhile, other holidaymakers prefer beach villas for their ease of access to the beach. Thus, being an option more families choose. The next option is spending your holiday in an underwater villa. A once-in-a-lifetime experience that would leave anyone speechless.

So, should you choose an overwater villa, a beach villa or an underwater villa for your Maldives getaway?

Overwater Villas

Overwater villas can be perfect for millennials and the photogenic travellers wanting to show off their holiday moments. And of course, these villas offer direct access to the house reef of any resort as they do to the lagoon.

Many might argue overwater villas are located further away from the resort facilities. But, unless the villas are located on a separate island, it’s simply a quick walk or a bicycle ride away. Other than that, overwater villas offer the following.

The largest overwater villas in the world at Soneva Fushi, Maldives
Image: Soneva

1. Easily Accessible to the Lagoon

This is probably the reason why most people choose an overwater villa. They’re convenient to jump right into the ocean and take dip. At the same time, when you want the full ‘Vitamin SEA’ experience, choosing an overwater is the obvious choice.

Also read: Soneva Fushi Opens the ‘World’s largest’ Overwater Villas

Some resorts in the Maldives (such as Soneva Jani) elevates the experience as a slide comes with the water villa for more fun.

2. The Scenery

Perhaps, one would choose an overwater villa just to take in the beautiful natural surroundings. Most villas offer either Sunset or sunrise views. Although, with some villas, you can experience both. Additionally, villas feature glass bottoms which gives you a view of the lagoon below you.

3. Privacy

Mostly, honeymooners would prefer overwater villas just for the unparalleled privacy they offer. In Maldives resorts, privacy is rarely an issue with the unique one-island-one-resort concept. So, this does not mean beach villas offer much of ‘less’ privacy than overwater villas.

Vommuli resort's overwater villas surrounded by beautiful lagoon
John Jacob Astor Estate at St. Regis Maldives Vommuli Resort
Image: Marriott International

Beach Villas

A beach villa in the Maldives, on the other hand, isn’t a bad choice for your holiday either. If you’re sticking to a tight budget or want a holiday with the littles ones, this may be the better option.

1. Convenient Access to the Beach

Who would not want to play with the snow-white sand in the Maldives? Little ones would especially go crazy to play in the sand. Besides that, a walk on the beach is also quite romantic if you’re on a honeymoon.

The lagoon and sea are also just a few steps away for you to take the dive in.

2. Cheaper

It’s not a secret. Beach villas are the cheaper option compared to overwater villas. And this could play in your advantage if you’re not much of a swimmer or someone who has a profound love for the sea and ocean. Besides, it does not compromise on the facilities available to you (at least in most cases).

Beach Villa from Above
Beach Suites at Mövenpick Resort Kuredhivaru Maldives from Above
Image: Mövenpick Hotels & Resorts

3. Better for Families/Kids

Overwater are not a good option if you have kids. In fact, most resorts do not even allow kids to stay in overwater villas. They’re built on deeper depths (and even if it is shallow for you, it totally wouldn’t be for your 5-year-old). Besides, choosing a Beach Villa would give kids much better convenience to play in the sand.

Also read: Raffles Maldives Meradhoo’s Royal Residence

Underwater Villas

If you want to take your experience way above (actually below literally speaking), you can choose an underwater villa. It’s not a myth! Two resorts in the Maldives currently offers underwater accommodation options. While this is the ultimate experience, it’s not for everyone as the underwater experience comes with a hefty price tag.

However, The good news is you can get the same thrill and views at an underwater restaurant as well.

1. Views of Creatures & Corals Upclose

Seeing the spectacular view of the majestic creates in the Indian Ocean up close is not something you can do every day. The one-in-a-lifetime experience is truly like no other. The views are like a movie; unscripted, endless and just magnificant.

Pullman Maldives Aqua Villa
Submerged master bedroom in the Aqua Villa at Pullman Maldives Maamutaa
Image: Pullman Hotels & Resorts

2. Unparalleled Service

When you spend 50 thousand dollars for a 1-night stay, the service that comes with it is also another perk. When you choose to holiday at an underwater residence in the Maldives, you’re also paying for the top-notch service as well. Expect your very own private host, private dinners, and even private seaplane journey to your holiday home.

3. The Pinnacle of Privacy

Well, the fishes are gonna see you. Other than them, there are no humans living below the sea level. However, you can experience the same level of privacy at other luxury resorts as well. Although it’s still incomparable to living on the seafloor.

Also read: Couple Reveals What it’s Like to Holiday at Paradise Island Resort Right Now

Choosing to holiday in an underwater villa is not for everyone. But, if you can afford it, it will surely be the experience you’ll remember for the rest of your life. Don’t expect any less from choosing an overwater villa or a beach villa in the Maldives though. Each resort features its own design and unique services. So, no matter which type of villa and how many times you choose it, any holiday in the island destination will surely be one you’ll remember for the rest of your life.

Feature images by: St. Regis Maldives Vommuli Resort, Mövenpick Resort Kuredhivaru Maldives, Conrad Maldives Rangali Island
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Is Maldives a Family-Friendly Destination?

Maldives might be popular as a romantic adventure destination. But did you know that the Maldives is the perfect place for an unforgettable family vacation as well? If you’re looking for a memorable getaway with your family, look no further. Picture this: turquoise waters, swaying palm trees, and endless opportunities for fun in the sun with your loved ones. Sounds like a dream, right?

Maldives has been popular among families for quite some time. Whether you’re looking for a small getaway or a luxurious retreat, there is no place like the Maldives to make some memories. If celebrities like the Beckhams and the Ramseys choose this destination over and over again, why shouldn’t you? Get ready to discover why this tropical oasis is the ultimate playground for families. The Maldives offers everything from kid-friendly accommodations to exciting activities for all ages. And we’ve got insider tips and tricks to ensure your Maldives getaway is nothing short of spectacular.

Where Can I Find Family-Friendly Accommodation Options in the Maldives?

Nothing says family-friendly accommodation like a cute little beach villa or even an expansive overwater villa. As the Maldives resorts offer everything from babysitting services to special inclusions in rooms for families, every resort can be a kid-friendly haven for your next Maldives trip. In resorts such as SAii Lagoon Maldives, rooms are set up thoughtfully for families travelling with babies with additions such as baby cribs at the property. You can always call ahead of your trip to the Maldives and request special add-ons to cater for the kids. Additionally, almost all resorts in the Maldives also come with a kids club, where kids can play, make new friends and learn something new over the summer.

If you’re looking for the best of the best, John Legend and Chrissy Teigen might recommend a family trip to Soneva Jani. Over the years, Soneva resorts have become a go-to destination for celebrities, especially those travelling with kids. But if that’s not in your budget, here are some more family-friendly resorts you can visit.

What Kid-Friendly Activities Are Available in the Maldives?

If you really want to book a trip to the Maldives, but you’re scared the destination might not be for your kids, don’t worry. Maldives resorts cater to guests of all ages. Whether you’re travelling with an infant or a teenager, there’s something fun to explore in all corners.

If the beach days get too boring, kids can always drop by the kids club where art, culinary and adventure make up a good time. Lately, resorts such as Conrad Maldives Rangali Island and Baglioni Maldives offer amazing kids and teens clubs. While younger kids can enjoy weekly activities like arts and crafts, teenagers can enjoy spa days, snorkelling & kayaking to movies under the stars through the kids and teens club.

What Do Other Families Say About Their Experience in the Maldives?

The feeling of a vacation in Maldives does not require a lot of words, you can see the joy through pictures and posts. Whether it’s Gordon Ramsay’s Christmas getaway with the family at Amilla Maldives or the recent trip by the long-time partner of Christiano Ronaldo, Georgina Rodríguez and their family at JOALI Maldives, you can just tell families have the best time in the Maldives. But if you want it from travellers just like you and I, here are some amazing reviews from families after their Maldives trip:

It was our second time in the Maldives and we chose again the Lux South Ari Atoll. We came in our honeymoon in 2020 right before the pandemic situation and we promised that we will come back as soon as possible. So, we did in April 2021! And we took our families and friends with us! We really loved the island, the food, the restaurants and the staff! We liked the experience even more this time. It was the perfect place for our family vacation, we felt very safe regarding the pandemic situation, the weather was perfect and the whole personal contributed to our best holiday says a guest who visited LUX* South Ari Atoll, on Agoda.

Another guest who visited Sheraton Maldives Full Moon Resort & Spa also shared their experience.

We celebrated my daughter’s 5th birthday in this lovely resort and their surprises were truly memorable.🥰 Our room was beautifully decorated and our bday girl was so happy as she got to do lots of fun activities including a magic show!🪄Very family-friendly resort! Special thanks to Vida who was so so approachable, had the initiative to take care of the kids, entertained them so the parents can have some peaceful holiday.😊

What Are Some Tips for Planning a Family Trip to the Maldives?

  1. Choosing a Family-Friendly Resorts: As the Maldives caters to a variety of travellers, there are family-friendly resorts as well as adults-only resorts. Make sure you’re booking a trip to a resort where kids can enjoy the vacation as much as you. Always look into the kids-club activities and the upcoming festivities for the holidays as well.
  2. Pack Wisely: Don’t forget to pack essentials such as sunscreen, hats, swimwear, and more, as the Maldives is a beachy and tropical destination. Don’t forget any necessary medications, as well as entertainment for kids during travel downtime!
  3. Plan Kid-Friendly Activities: Make sure to research family-friendly activities offered by your resort or nearby attractions. You can explore activities such as guided snorkeling trips, dolphin cruises, island-hopping adventures, and cultural experiences. Look for activities suitable for different ages and interests to ensure everyone has a fantastic time.
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