We stayed at Vakarufalhi the last week in July, first week of August for a week, it was the end of our honeymoon which in the previous two weeks had us hopping from Dubai, to Cambodia then Bali and finally here.
We arrived on the resort around 7:20am following a 25 or so minute sea plane from Male and then a short 10 minute boat from a jetty. The sun was high and as we walked down the jetty we could see all manner of sea life in the lagoon. Small schools of sardines, these little sharks (no more than two feet) which patrolled back and fourth, eagle ray and plenty of colourful parrot fish. We received a warm greeting at reception and this really set the tone for the rest of our stay.
We stayed in a water bungalow and are glad we made that choice as having a sea facing view as well as a private decked area which had steps leading directly into the lagoon was pretty amazing. We did a little snorkelling on our first day straight from the back of our bungalow. The general room finish was to a good standard although my other half felt it felt a little tired in places, either way it was a comfortable spacious room with a very large bathroom.
The spa was good, we did the couples honeymoon thing on the last day and enjoyed it very much. The bar was good but we found that the quality of the cocktails was not consistent between the shifts of staff (one Balinese tender who was the guy we really looked out for when we fancied a tipple).
WiFi - they say it's free and it is if you are sat basically in reception, if you want it in your room it costs $20 a day or $50 flat fee for the whole stay. The flat fee seemed reasonable but be warned, the signal is not so great if you are in a water bungalow, particularly ours which was some way from the main complex we basically asked for a refund and for the code they gave us to be voided which they did.
We are keen SCUBA divers, we cannot praise the professionalism, organisation and general friendliness of the ProDivers dive centre there http://www.prodivers.com/vakarufalhi-maldives
we did the first two dives of each day every day we were there and our first night dive off a wreck located near the house reef of a neighbouring resort. The boats run on time, and the local crew who ferried us around all week on our various trips were very helpful, I could really get used to having my gear carted around for me all the time! The diving in the main was sublime, one thing I will say is if you are not used to currents I would think twice before jumping in when told it's pretty strong. The rest of our group on one of the early morning dives were game so we all jumped in and we all made it out but pretty much agreed we wouldn't do it again! Didnt get to see any whale sharks, and I only saw one Manta (which was quite far away) there were plenty of other things to see and whilst those are the main attractions it didn't diminish the experience.
We did our first night dive which I have to say I was quite nervous about initially but once I got in, Poi really put us at ease and when we found the bit Moray eel on the deck of the cargo ship it was pretty cool!
We'd like to thank Antonio, Fahreed and Poi for looking after us, we will definitely be back with some of our UK diving buddies at some point.
We're big foodies and enjoy our fair share of fine dining, my wife also has some very challenging food considerations when eating out (gluten and dairy free, no rice, oats, apricots or celeriac) I very luckily can eat what I like and I have the belly to prove it. We had gone full board which was buffet style and I have to say for buffet style the chef and his team did a very good job both delivering a high standard of food but also across a variety of international styles. The teams Asian food was probably their strongest offering and tended to be where my preference went most evenings. Whilst it was buffet food, Chandeeka the restaurant manager and the Chef arranged a special dish for my wife every evening. They really went out of their way to make sure she was able to eat well! Hameed who was our waiter most breakfasts and meal times kept the drinks well topped up and was bang on it with regards to service in general.
The staff were incredibly helpful and attentive. Chandeeka who I mentioned earlier made sure things were available in the restaurant to accommodate our diving schedule and we really felt in general they really did go the extra mile.
We would highly recommend staying here and whilst we will look at alternatives next visit purely to maybe see the North atoll we will also seriously think about simply going back because we know we'll get the experience we want!
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- Vakarufalhi Island Resort, tucked away in the remote corner of South Ari atoll, 90km away from the airport, Vakarufalhi is among the pearls that make up the amazing Maldives Islands. Vakarufalhi, better known as Vakaru, is a tropical island enhanced by swaying coconut palms and white sandy beaches. Surrounding the island is a pristine lagoon enriched by a stunningly beautiful living house reef. These features combined with traditional Maldivian building concepts, makes Vakarufalhi a haven of nature and tranquility. Almost a quarter of a square kilometer of land area with 50 sea front Beach Villas spread evenly around the island and 25 Water Villas creates an atmosphere which rejuvenates your body and mind. ... more less
- Reservation Options:
- TripAdvisor is proud to partner with Holiday Gems, Expedia, Agoda, Booking.com, Travelbag, Hotels.com, Ebookers, Travel Republic (UK), Ctrip TA, HotelQuickly, Evoline ltd, Cancelon, HotelsClick and 5viajes2012 S.L. so you can book your Vakarufalhi Island Resort reservations with confidence. We help millions of travellers each month to find the perfect hotel for both holiday and business trips, always with the best discounts and special offers.
- Also Known As:
- Vakarufalhi Island Hotel South Ari Atoll
- Hotel Vakarufalhi Island