For a tiny speck of an island, Kandolhu’s all-inclusive packs a punch. Dining here is so flexible that you can have lunch any time between breakfast and dinner; and if you don’t fancy dinner until 10pm, that’s fine too. You can eat at all five intimate à la carte restaurants – including the Japanese teppanyaki and seafood grill – and, in your villa, the wine chiller is stocked with more than 30 bottles… that can be replaced as often as you like.
Our favourite inclusions: Use of a GoPro, fully stocked in-villa wine chiller, minibar with branded spirits, Champagne and canapés sunset cruise.
This ultra-luxe retreat is in the remote Baa Atoll – the Maldives’ only UNESCO World Biosphere Reserve that’s inhabited by dolphins, manta rays and whale sharks. Milaidhoo’s huge villas are some of the most beautiful in the Maldives; stylish, light and airy, with private pools, bespoke furniture and a focus on outdoor living. Upgrade to one of the residences and you’ll have your very own butler, private chef and outdoor cinema.
Our favourite inclusions: Dinner at the chef’s table, dining at the signature overwater restaurant, selected non-motorised watersports, bottle of Champagne in your villa.
“Only when I arrived in the Maldives did I understand what the islands were really about. It looks almost too perfect, straight from a postcard, and the best way to arrive is by seaplane, flying over the tiny atolls below. Pictures don’t do the Maldives justice, it really blew me away. There are not many places in the world where you can actually leave your shoes in your suitcase for the whole of your stay!”
Charlotte Housley, Kuoni Personal Travel Expert
It’s all about barefoot luxury at Constance Moofushi, where the subtle, high-end Robinson Crusoe theme includes hammocks on the Beach Villa terraces and coin chest minibars packed with treats. Everything in the all-inclusive package here oozes quality; you can sip Champagne with dinner, drinks are premium international brands, and afternoon tea is served every day.
Our favourite inclusions: Guided snorkelling trips, introduction to scuba diving session in the pool, minibar with wine and beer, Mac mini with music and movies on demand.
This cool island playground shakes things up with a fun and fresh spin on Maldivian luxury. It’s quirky; think Instagrammable splashes of retro cool like VW campers parked on the beach and vintage phones for ordering Champagne. But it’s also ultra luxurious, with sleek private villas and five-star dining. Hands down, our favourite place to eat on the island is the Fish & Crab Shack at the end of the powder-soft sandbank.
Our favourite inclusions: Yoga sessions, weekly parties, entertainment from acrobats to DJs, lunches at the Fish & Crab Shack on the wow-factor sandbank.
“For unique experiences, choose the fun and quirky island of Finolhu – known as the playground of the Maldives! I sat at their famous 1 OAK Beach Club bar enjoying a nice cold cocktail and was joined by the island’s resident mermaid!”
Jared Brown, Kuoni Personal Travel Expert
Our most popular island has a great choice of restaurants, two oceanfront pools and a dazzling sandbank. We love Kuramathi’s Select All Inclusive option, where you can try out all of the island’s à la carte restaurants including the popular Island Barbecue on the beach, Thai dishes at Siam Garden, and fresh seafood at the overwater restaurant, The Reef.
Our favourite inclusions: Sunset cruise, trip to a local island, windsurfing and snorkelling gear, high tea.
These laid-back sister islands have an identical all-inclusive package and it’s a generous one. Enjoy meals at the main buffet restaurant (or the overwater restaurant for Water Villa guests) and make the most of the fact that your minibar is refilled daily with water, soft drinks and beer. Stay in a Water Villa and you’ll also get free Wi-Fi in your villa, wine in your minibar and a selected sparkling wine menu.
Our favourite inclusions: Free watersports like windsurfing, guided snorkelling tours of the house reef, Fisherman’s Island excursion.
“I left the curtains open in my villa so the sun would naturally wake me up and I witnessed the most beautiful sunrise. I went outside and down to the lagoon to paddle and was surrounded by a few reef sharks, a turtle and parrot fish. It was like something from a movie and one of the most amazing experiences I’ve ever had.”
Lauren Abbott, Kuoni Personal Travel Expert
The wild card in our all-inclusive Maldives round-up isn’t an island, but a luxury 19-cabin ‘safari yacht’ that combines premium spa treatments and exceptional diving as it sails around this picture perfect archipelago. Expect sleek modern cabins, a plush on-board spa and the chance to dive deep into clear waters home to mantas, hammerheads and whale sharks. What’s more, a 30-strong crew includes four spa therapists, a yoga master and four chefs.
Our favourite inclusions: A choice of eight spa treatments or 15 dives; or a combo of six dives and four spa treatments each week.
Veligandu means ‘sandbank’ in Maldivian and the glorious long swathe of sand at the south end of the island is up there with the best in the Maldives. This small island offers authentic barefoot comfort and has a crystal-clear lagoon. All meals are served at the same buffet-style restaurant, but it’s the little extras – from learning how to windsurf to round-the-clock snacks – that make a difference here.
Our favourite inclusions: Sunset cruise, half-day local island trip, group windsurfing and snorkelling lesson, 24-hour snack menu.
This feature was published on 7 March 2019. The information within this feature is correct to the best of our knowledge at the time of print. Feature by Siobhan O'Hallaran.