It’s no secret that the Maldives are a dream holiday destination.
In fact, you’ve probably already seen those white sand beaches, swim-friendly waters and incredible villas all over your social media feeds.
But it’s not just the beautiful settings that make them a bucket-list favourite; there are some seriously luxurious resorts in the Maldives, and they offer up some once-in-a-lifetime experiences.
We’re talking everything from underwater rooms and restaurants, to submarine rides, dolphin watching and even your own private island stay.
We take a look at some of the most amazing experiences on offer at some of the Maldives’ most luxurious resorts – get ready for a major dose of wanderlust…
1. Stays in over-the-water villas
These breathtaking villas are synonymous with the Maldives, and each resort boasts some seriously swanky villas with their own private pools, glass bottom floors and heaps more features.
However, top of our bucket lists are the new villas at Soneva Fushi. The resort has opened the world’s largest water villas, each one boasting a private pool and slides that take you from your room directly into the ocean. Not bad!
The vilas measuring 584 sq m, and offer a double bedroom, a separate dining area and kitchen, a living room, and of course your very own private deck. (You can take a sneak peek inside one here ).
2. Have dinner in an underwater restaurant
Guests at the Conrad Maldives Rangali Island can have a dinner unlike any other – right in the heart of the ocean waters.
That’s because the Ithaa restaurant sits under the sea, with glass walls and glass ceilings so diners can take in views of the marine life and colourful coral gardens while they tuck into some gourmet dishes.
3. Sleep on a deserted private island
Couples staying at at Coco Palm Dhuni Kolhu can opt for a romantic two-night stay on a private, deserted island.
There’s just one rustic hut (still with all the comforts you’ll need including a huge double bed), a hammock and a dining area for a Robinson Crusoe experience.
Except that, unlike the famous castaway, you won’t be left fending for yourself. Chefs will prepare you some delicious picnics, and there will be a barbecue dinner served up for you on both nights, before the team leave you in complete seclusion on the island.
4. Take a submarine ride
If you’re not a seasoned diver but you want to explore the ocean, then a submarine ride could be just the thing – all you need to do is sit back and take in the views.
There are Whale Submarine rides on offer from the main island of Male, but guests staying at the Four Seasons Landaa Giraavaru will have access to Deepflight Adventures, which take you into the Baa Atoll where you can look out for marine turtles, manta rays and sharks.
5. Relax in an underwater spa
Looking for a spot of pampering? The Huvafen Fushi Maldives offers a spa eight metres below the surface of the water, with spa treatment rooms offering windows that look out into the serene blue ocean and beautiful coral reefs.
For those who prefer to be above the ocean, there are spa treatment ‘pavilions’ complete with glass floor panels so that you can take in views of the water below while enjoying a massage.
6. Go dolphin-watching
The waters in the Baa Atoll are filled with a wide array of marine life – including dolphins.
These creatures can often be seen from the islands or on a snorkeling trip.
For something special, a lot of the resorts offer the option to go on a sunset cruise, where you can take in views of the islands bathed in the pink and orange sunset hues, a cocktail in hand.
This is also one of the best times for spotting dolphins, and it can make for a pretty magical pre-dinner experience.
7. Sleep in an underwater room
The Conrad Maldives Rangali Island resort doesn’t just have an underwater restaurant (see above) – it also has an underwater villa.
Yep, guests can sleep under the sea in the suite with glass ceilings and walls, so you’re surrounded by the dreamy waters and colourful marine life (think colourful fish and even turtles and sharks).
8. Take a dip in a huge infinity pool
The Fairmont Maldives offers up 200 yards of infinity pools, meaning you’ll never struggle to bag a sun lounger in a prime spot.
For incredible views, the pool at the end of the stretch directly overlooks the white sand beaches and turquoise waters – no wonder it’s such a hit with the Instagram crowd.
9. Take a ride on a traditional Dhoni boat
A boat trip can always make for a fun day out, but if you’re after something a little extra special, then a trip on a traditional Dhoni boat.
These fishing boats are an ideal way of taking in views of the various islands and the crystalline waters, with plenty of opportunities for excursions or snorkeling adventures.
10. Private beach dinner
The Maldives is renowned for being a romantic destination – and a private dinner on a white sand beach surrounded by lanterns or candles sounds pretty romantic.
Most of the luxury resorts in the Maldives offer an experience of this nature, be it a full three-course gourmet deal or a laidback barbecue for two.