Maldives Wrap Up
The Maldives were the last addition to our trip (along with the corresponding transit stop in the UAE). I was pushing for some stops in Africa and Europe; Alyce reigned me back in and said enough…probably for the best.
Still, I had one last bullet left to fire…The tropical paradise known as the Maldives.
Alyce was resistant at first, like most things with the trip. But, she opened up to this addition relatively easily. Our final itinerary was set.
The Maldives are a chain of island atolls in the middle of the Indian Ocean. There are 1192 islands in the chain, 192 of which are inhabited. The entire country’s population is just over 300,000 people and about a third of the population resides in the capital island of Male.
We’re back home and still getting used to it, but it is great to get back to some normalcy. We do still have a bunch of stuff to post – including getting to the rest of my wrap ups and some other posts…I’ll probably try to do one on some of the tricks we used to book all the stuff. So keep checking back every now and then if you are interested in any of that.
In the Maldives, we stayed at the Park Hyatt (Hadahaa Island). It was incredible. Check out the pictures to get an idea of what it was like.
For our last full day in the Maldives (boo), we slept in (well, Justin slept in) and had a late breakfast. I haven’t been sleeping too well for the last few weeks. I think I just miss my bed at home. Maybe, I miss the sound of Moose snoring and Chunk whining to wake me up– just to pat him on the head and tell him he’s a good boy. God I miss my boys. I may complain about the dog hair, slobber, and messy house, but I wouldn’t have it any other way. I absolutely adore my dogs. Now that I’ve experienced life without them, I know that I am happier with them- without a doubt. They make me laugh and love us unconditionally (well, at least Moose does!). Although Chunk acts tough, he doesn’t let us out of his sight. It was quite a process to pack for this trip without him freaking out. Even though he never actually saw us packing, he could tell that something was up, and he didn’t like it. We even snuck the bags in the car while he wasn’t around.
Wow, I just realized that I started rambling. Did I say that I miss my dogs? It’s probably pretty obvious which posts are alcohol induced (oops). Right now, I’m sitting on the beach. Well. Not really ON the beach but on cabana sofa on the beach. It’s happy hour, and I’ve had a margarita, and I’m working on my daiquiri. This is the way I like to do the beach. They served me my drink with a cloth napkin. Yes, a cloth napkin. I am in heaven. I could stay forever if I didn’t have the best dogs and family to come home to. And I am ready to come home. No doubt about it.
Nope, that’s not another country that we added to the trip! It’s a wonderful, tropical fruit that we have tried and LOVE! Even Justin “I don’t like fruit” Ittmann has been really enjoying all the fresh tropical fruit. His two favorites are pineapple and mangosteen. He even ordered a plate of mangosteen with his breakfast (never thought I’d see the day when Justin ordered extra fruit instead of extra meat)!!
Mangosteen mainly grow in Southeast Asia. They have a purplely red outside and are white on the inside. It actually looks like a head of garlic. It’s sweet, a little tangy, and delicious. I’ve never seen them in the US. Although, if I would have seen them, I wouldn’t have known what it was until now.
We have also been having passion fruit, guava, dragon fruit, and papaya on a regular basis. I’m going to be pretty sad when I get home and get back to apples and bananas!
For whatever reason, I felt that this deserved a whole post. I think I’m running out of things to talk about!
Today, we did the 2 tank morning dive. We were really looking forward to these two dives. The afternoon dive yesterday was OK, although it wasn’t much different than snorkeling the house reef (but it was A LOT more expensive). The Maldives has some of the best SCUBA in the world, and we couldn’t wait to see some different things. There were 6 divers on the boat, plus 2 guides (a French couple, Swiss couple, and us).
Sidebar: One of the staff at the resort told us that they very rarely get visitors from the US. It would be an extremely long trip to solely visit the Maldives from the US (about 2 days travel each way). Surprisingly, everything is priced in US currency.
Anyway…… It was about a 45 minute boat ride to the dive site. During that time, they serve you water and make sure that all the equipment is ready to go. I don’t know what I would do if I ever had to put my BCD and regulator on my tank by myself. It’s pretty standard operating procedure that the dive shops do that for you. Although, this place went a step further and helped me into and out of my wetsuit!
I can’t believe that our time in the Maldives is over half way done! We have been having a great time! I think that this was the perfect ending to the big trip before we start heading home (6 more nights!).
We have been doing alot of snorkeling and hanging out by the beach. The snorkeling is incredible. We have seen tons of tropical fish, coral, and reef sharks. Unfortunately, I got sunburned the first day. The sun is incredibly hot. The Maldives is pretty much on the equator. Even though I put on ALOT of sunscreen and had on my swim shirt, the back of my legs and butt burnt! Now, I have to wear my wetsuit to snorkel, and I hate hate hate putting on my wetsuit. Ugggggghhhh!
We made it to the Maldives yesterday around 5am after 20 hours of traveling. As I was sitting in a boat in the middle of the night after three flights, I was thinking “this better be worth it.” To be perfectly honest, if someone told me that I could go to the Maldives or go home, I would have chosen to go home…..without hesitation. I just wasn’t sure that I had another long day of travel left in me. I was so terribly exhausted by the time we got here. We collapsed into bed and looked forward to seeing the beautiful beach and water in the morning.
When we woke up, all the hours of traveIing immediately became worth it! It looks like we stepped into a postcard: clear water, blue sky, and white sand. It’s hard to describe and better than it looks in the pictures.