Kurumba, The Maldives

The Maldives

It’s hard to know what to expect from a place as hyped up as The Maldives. As one of the world’s most luxurious archipelagos,  it is the dream destination for hordes of googly-eyed couples, a regular feature on the must see before you die lists, heck even the name sounds exotic. You wonder (and we did) how good it can really be and surely, SURELY it won’t live up to its reputation.

plane view MaldivesAs the boat pulled into Kurumba (stay tuned for more on the boat), it took all of about four seconds to realise, once again, we are completely and utterly wrong. Archetypal Maldivian paradise – 1. Clueless blogger – nil. We are blown away by the spectacular expanses of soft, white sand, not a straggle of seaweed in sight, the turquoise lagoons with water so clear you wish you could bottle it up and drink it. The skies are the bluest I have ever seen with the exception of a token wispy cloud, reminding us that this Utopia is in fact real. And this, my friends, is wet season – Lord only knows what dry season must be like.

luxury beaches Maldives KurumbaKurumba Maldives

I should have known I was wrong to harbour any doubts from the minute we stepped through the speedy airport exit onto the transfer boat. White leather sofas, cushions, eucalyptus-infused, refreshing face towels, ice-cold mineral water and service with a smile. You need sea-plane transfers to many of remote islands but for us, it was only a ten minute ride as Kurumba is one of the largest and nearest islands to the airport and is the original resort in The Maldives. Experience has served it well as we were greeted at check in with another face towel and a portion of the creamiest, dreamiest coconut ice-cream I have ever tasted. I devoured mine in record time, then half of Pumpkin’s and then back at the beach bar a mere four hours later for another serving.

luxury resort Maldives5 star resort MaldivesAfter an easy and efficient check in, we are given a private tour of the island and resort facilities and then driven to our room in none other than a golf buggy. The thing to realise about the Maldives, which I hadn’t grasped before going, is that most of the resorts are exclusive to islands on which they are situated so the entire island is effectively one resort.  We were given a map, not that it helped me find my way but then I’m hopeless at navigation – it took me 3 months of marriage before I finally mastered the route to Sainsbury’s. Thank goodness for Pumpkin’s in-built compass otherwise I’d struggle to make it to Heathrow Airport let alone The Maldives.

white sand beach MaldivesThe rooms were enormous and we didn’t even pick a fancy one.  Basically, with the posh rooms, your balcony is on the sand and with the peasant rooms, your balcony is 20 metres away from the sand. In designing the rooms, it seems Kurumba have opted for a minimalist but comfortable chic with an emphasis on environmental friendliness and they have homemade aromatherapy cosmetics.  I loved the chocolate-brown bamboo laundry basket with a bow-like handle. This would look far lovelier in our bedroom than our white wicker, chain-store counterpart but Pumpkin reminds me laundry baskets are not complementary.Kurumba hotel bathroom

The bathroom was outdoors with a suitably discreet almost-roof so you never feel on display. With a large bathtub located centrally, an indoor shower cubicle in one corner and a large outdoor overhead one lined with plants and gravel; there was something to suit everyone’s bathing requirements. Twin sinks completed the set up and beach towels could be found there as well. The bathroom was like something out of a Zen interior design catalogue. I want it! I want the little white ceramic pots with the shampoo and conditioner, so much more graceful than the plastic miniatures you see in most hotels and I want the translucent coconut soap bar with long strands of coconut visible under the surface.

The walk-in wardrobe means that, ladies, there is no need to hold back on this holiday. Bring all the frocks, shoes and hair equipment you like. The balcony has a green day bed with an ocean view and although I could have happily passed the time reclining on it, writing, there was much more to discover on splendid Kurumba…balcony resort Kurumba

There is no shortage of food at Kurumba, home to an impressive eight restaurants, serving everything from Middle Eastern, Chinese and Indian cuisines as well as three bars and even an option to have a private, romantic dinner in the sand. You will be sure to leave that little bit heavier than you were when you arrived but if you’re anything  like me, you’ll be too mesmerised by the Maldives to notice.

sunset MaldivesIt was far from a difficult few days, alternating between soaking up the sun (responsibly) and immersion in the jade waters, exploring the enchanting underwater-world in these lagoons, which are a snorkeller’s paradise. I can swim but would never be seen in tropical waters without my life-jacket on so it was wonderful to be in a place where the clear waters stretched out at a depth so naturally shallow that even with my wee height, I could venture out feeling safe. I didn’t make it to the spa as I couldn’t get past the sea and sand but if I ever make it back, a facial would definitely be in order.

snorkelling MaldivesBefore I came here, I was so convinced that The Maldives was “just a beach” and this trip challenged and taught me how important it is to be open minded in the world of travel, as I was completely blown away by its beauty. Do I have any regrets? Yes. I should have booked to stay a few days longer and I should have splurged a few more dollars to go para-sailing. But, these are minor details, that can easily be ironed out on a future trip. In the world of travel, there are those who lean towards discovering new places and those that lean towards returning to the places they love…..I tend to fall in the former category but The Maldives is, in no uncertain terms, a place I plan to return to. The only question is how soon is too soon?!

parasailing Kurumba maldives


28 thoughts on “Kurumba, The Maldives

  1. It sounds like an absolute paradise! Maldives is definitely on my wishlist but I agree, you need to go for a decent amount of time and really splurge.

    1. Shikha (whywasteannualleave) May 2, 2014 — 8:30 pm

      Thanks Mandy! It was so beautiful but yes, it would be fabulous to save up one day & do the whole water villa experience! 🙂

  2. One word…..paradise! It looks so beautiful. And, in answer to your question…..it can never be soon enough! How about tomorrow? 😉

    1. Shikha (whywasteannualleave) May 2, 2014 — 8:35 pm

      Hehe! Thanks Molly – I might have to get you to persuade my husband of this plan! And if he remains unconvinced, perhaps all us travel bloggers can get together & head to paradise ourselves 😀

  3. aroundtheworldin80pairsofshoes May 1, 2014 — 7:27 pm

    Lately I have really wanted to go to the Maldives but my other half is not keen as he went down a few years ago for a diving trip. You have given me a serious case of wanderlust with this post young lady!

    I always get nervous when a resort provides you with a map to get around; I break out in a sweat. Thanks for joining the travel link up.


    1. Shikha (whywasteannualleave) May 2, 2014 — 8:41 pm

      Persuade him (or go with the girls!!) 😀 I honestly wasn’t expecting it to live up to the hype and only even considered it because we were already going to Sri Lanka and it’s only an hour from there but so glad we decided to give it a chance 🙂 x

  4. I am totally being repetitive here – but this place sounds like a dream! I would LOVE to visit the Maldives some day!

    1. Shikha (whywasteannualleave) May 4, 2014 — 1:58 pm

      Thanks Kasha 🙂 I’d never seen an island so beautiful before – it really did feel like a dream! Hope you get a chance to go one day – you wouldn’t regret it!! 🙂

  5. Wow what luxury! A dreamy destination for sure! Anything like that would have probably made me think ‘could this be real?’ too. Ahh another place for the bucket list!

    1. Shikha (whywasteannualleave) May 4, 2014 — 2:09 pm

      Yes I had to pinch myself a few times to make sure it wasn’t all a dream! Really beautiful sea and sand that I just didn’t want to leave! Definitely worth adding to your bucket list 🙂

  6. This looks amazing!!!! So beautiful. I going to the Maldives in 3 months for my honeymoon but it is a secret where I’m going. But I hope it’s a place like this!

    1. Shikha (whywasteannualleave) May 4, 2014 — 10:54 pm

      You lucky lady!! If it’s for honeymoon and it’s a surprise, then there’s a good chance it’ll be at least as nice as this and probably more! Lovely place to start married life together! Hope you both have a wonderful time & happy honeymooning 🙂

  7. LondonKiwiEmma May 4, 2014 — 8:34 pm

    This simply sounds divine, you’ve convinced this culture vulture to relax on a Maldivian beach soon!

    1. Shikha (whywasteannualleave) May 4, 2014 — 10:56 pm

      Thanks Emma – to be honest, I’d never really imagined it would be my kind of place for similar reasons but was a complete convert within just a few seconds of arriving 🙂 When you’re next in need of pure R&R, I’d highly recommend it!

  8. It does look like a dream!

    1. Shikha (whywasteannualleave) May 6, 2014 — 6:38 pm

      It felt like a dream too!! Thanks so much for commenting 🙂

  9. Another lovely post. Beautiful photos as well. I have been aware how beautiful Maldives is (especially for clear sea and beach lovers) for a while now, but it is certainly not cheap. When flying to Sri Lanka in February, we had an option of 24 hour stopover in Male, but I chose not to. I regret it so much. The plane stopped in Maldives for a fuel stop and I saw pristine turquoise waters right from the plane. One day I hope I can afford to travel to Maldives. I am glad that you had a great time there.

    1. Shikha (whywasteannualleave) April 15, 2016 — 12:55 pm

      Aww thank you so much for your lovely comment! You know, it’s funny, we ended up in the Maldives a very similar way. We were actually just going to Sri Lanka and then my husband noticed on the map how close it is to Maldives. We had been planning to end our Sri Lanka trip with a few days on the beach there but instead ended up doing a few less days there and spending 5 days in Maldives instead for the beachy part of the break 🙂 Hope you do get to visit one day to enjoy a dip in the turquoise waters that you saw on the plane 🙂

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