Luxury In The Maldives At The COMO Resorts

We all dream of going to the Maldives, but for the Maguire’s there was another added wish.. the opportunity to dive with a whale shark!  Today Sally shares tips from her amazing Maldivian holiday of a lifetime this past May.  Not doing anything by halves, they stayed with their 3 kids (age 8, 6 and 3) in two of the most luxurious Maldives properties out there, COMO Maalifushi and COMO Cocoa Island.

How did you book your trip?

We booked the hotels directly with COMO. We got various different quotes and they eventually suggested 2 nights on Cocoa Island and 3 nights + 1 free night on Maalifushi. The adults had half board.

For flights from Hong Kong to Male, Maldives we used Daryl at Jebsen Travel.

COMO Cocoa Island

After we landed at Male Airport, we paid for our visa on arrival. We then headed to the speedboat and it was about 40 minutes till we reached Cocoa Island.  Here we had a Loft Villa, a water villa overlooking the Indian Ocean.  Upstairs in the main bedroom is a King size bed. Downstairs is a daybed and COMO added in two extra fold out beds, free of charge.

The setting is beautiful, when you walk along the pontoon at night, you can see baby reef sharks and sting rays. Cocoa Island has the added bonus of good quality reefs that you don’t have to boat to.

Cocoa Island is very small, you can walk around it in 10 minutes. There is 1 restaurant, 1 bar and a small swimming pool.  There is no Kids Club. We spent two nights here which was absolutely perfect.  We spent the majority of our time snorkelling the beautiful reefs, the best I have ever seen.

The food is lovely, with a small buffet although it is extremely expensive (2 kids spag bols for $40!).

Be warned that you aren’t allowed to bring alcohol into the Maldives and it will be confiscated on arrival!

COMO Maalifushi

We got a sea plane (more $$) from Cocoa Island to the second resort, Maalifushi and it took about 50 minutes. It is the only hotel in Thaa Atoll and has a higher chance of seeing the whale sharks.  This time we were in another Water Villa although it felt a bit less rustic and more slick than Cocoa Island.

Maalifushi has a fantastic Kids Club with a whole timetable of activities e.g. sushi making.

The kids did an aqua safari ($35) and went off with a marine biologist snorkelling on the house reef.  There’s also a huge playground and football pitch.  Kids age 4 and over are allowed to stay unaccompanied although they did let my youngest stay.  The Kids Club is open 9 to 5pm and they hand the kids back at meal times.

You also get free bikes and it was great to cycle around the island. There’s a large pool and lots of lovely outdoor areas. Paddle boards, kayaks and snorkels are all free.

Maalifushi operates a ‘whale shark alert’ for the chance to see/snorkel with them at night. You get given a mobile and wait to be notified (if local fishing boats spot them, they notify Maalifushi between 7 to 11pm).  It does however come at a price, $250 to snorkel with them and $150 to stay on the boat.  It’s even more expensive to scuba dive with them and you will need to do an initiation dive in advance.  We also did a sunset fishing trip and saw dolphins. Maalifushi is a good location for surfing in season and they have instructor/surf center as well as a dive centre.

In general the food at the resort is good with lots of healthy options.

The Como Shambala Center has some complimentary classes and the spa is good, albeit pricey.

What you recommend this trip to those seeking a luxury Maldives adventure?

6 nights was perfect and I’m pleased we split our stay between the two COMO properties. We were somewhat limited by sea plane times which meant that we had a lot of waiting around Male airport on our last day. Although it’s quite fun to watch the seaplanes.

Cocoa Island had the best reef I’ve ever seen although the chance to spot the whale sharks at Maalifushi was well worth it!

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