‘No news, no shoes’ has never sounded better.

That’s the motto in the Maldives, where private white-sand islands are fringed by crystal blue waters, so it’s no surprise that this cluster of tiny tropical resorts is the hottest holiday destination for 2021. 

Next year, switch off from your everyday – whatever that might look like now – and zone out on a great Indian Ocean escape. In the Maldives, you can treat yourself to a holiday of unique experiences that will be worth the wait: splash out on an overwater villa, go snorkelling with turtles and manta rays, and watch movies under the stars. 

We’ve sought out the resorts raising the bar in the things that top 2021 holiday wish lists: wellbeing, seclusion and value for quality.

Unwind on a wellness island at Kagi Maldives 

This Maldives newcomer has arrived at just the right time. Opening in Autumn 2020, 5* Kagi Maldives is waiting to perk you up with restorative yoga sessions, nourishing meals and soothing spa therapies above its glistening lagoon. 

Kagi Maldives

Self-care is the order of the day at this cutting-edge boutique resort and the immersive Baani Spa is set to become one of the Maldives’ most in-demand wellness retreats. Perched above the lagoon, Baani has four ocean-view treatment rooms, a yoga sound room and the Spa Corner restaurant where delicious healthy dishes are whipped up to help you recharge your body and mind. 

The soothing theme continues in the resort’s 50 villas – all have a private infinity pool and a calm beach-chic design. Bag an Ocean Villa for pinch-yourself sunset views and direct access to the water.

Holiday on a tropical island for less at Sandies Bathala 

This recently revamped 4* island has been popular for years with divers from all around the globe. It’s simple and laid-back, offering all the key Maldives ingredients at great value – which is why we’ve secured it exclusively for Kuoni guests in the UK. 

Sandies Bathala

There’s a stunning house reef that surrounds the island, where you can spot colourful fish, reef sharks and turtles. You can snorkel from the beach at lots of our featured islands but at Bathala you can also go diving straight from the beach – so there’s no need to do an ungraceful back-roll entry from a boat. 

We recommend booking the all-inclusive option – which includes all meals, wine and beer, evening cocktails and a daily snorkelling tour – because the most relaxing holiday is one where you don’t have to worry about the bills totting up at the end of your stay.

Beach Villa at Sandies Bathala

Get space and seclusion at Emerald Maldives

5* Emerald Maldives has all the best bits of a tropical luxury beach escape: excellent watersports and activities, a tropical spa and a great choice of top-quality food. It cleverly caters for all kinds of holiday bubbles – restaurants range from casual to fine dining and there are rooms designed for couples, families and friends travelling together. 

Superior Water Villa at Emerald Maldives

This cool and contemporary retreat is located in the Raa Atoll, which is one of the most secluded and least developed atolls in the Maldives. There’s a huge sense of space on the island – half of the huge rooms are perched over the ocean and some have incredible indoor/outdoor pools – and there are lots of ways that you can get out on the water to feel total freedom. The watersports centre has kayaks, sailing boats and windsurfs (as well as jet skis that you can use for a supplement) so it’s pretty easy to while away a few hours on the lagoon. Choose the Deluxe All Inclusive option to get your meals and drinks included, plus added extras like guided snorkelling trips and excursions.

Emerald Maldives

Inspired?


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Indian Ocean & Arabia 2020/21