|Joined: 05 Oct 2007|
|This forum has been of significant help to me in planning the surprise honeymoon trip for the missus to Meeru and the least I could do in return is to give a report of my trip! Meeru was the second stop of our honeymoon (the first being Phinda Game Reserve in South Africa - see trip reports from elsewhere in the world - can't recommend a safari to SA highly enough!).
Meeru was organised through H&J and we flew with Sri Lankan Airways from Heathrow. I was pleasantly surprised! The planes have good legroom and the food was excellent. The only slight downside is that on the return leg you fly via Colombo which meant we woke up 4am (12pm UK time) in Meeru and only arrived home at 2:30am (10:30pm UK time).
As we approached the Maldives, the sun was shining (and nothing like the grey skies we had left behind in London) and we got our first glance of the Atolls from the plane window.
This was a great start to the holiday, especially since my bride had been kept in the dark as to where we were going and thus the beauty of the Atolls took her breath away!
On arrival in Male', we swept through customs effortlessly and were met by the local travel agents who guided us through to our speedboat transfer (we just had enough time to grab a quick coke at the coffee shop to cool us off as it was very hot!!!) Now came the part I was slightly anxious about as I am prone to feeding the fish on even the calmest seas. My sense of foreboding got even worse as I saw an approaching storm on the horizon, and lo and behold we headed straight towards the darkest clouds!! However, and I do say miraculously, the travel tip I had been given by some friends worked! I bought travel bands from Boots (only £6) which slip over your wrists and rely on activating pressure points to work. And thus, despite the rough seas, I felt not 1 pang of sea sickness. This continued throughout the holiday when we took boat trips and I can't recommend them highly enough if you do suffer like I do - I didn't even have to take the travel sick pills which normally make you so drowsy!
In the end we seemed to circumvent the storm and arrived at Meeru! We were given a welcome cocktail and a cold towel to cool off. Just the start to the perfect holiday! The first sight of the island is spectacular and certainly heightened our anticipation. However, we were then told we had been allocated JWV 301 (I had requested an even numbered 700). After a few queries we were promised that they would move us the next day. We arrived at our room to find the room decorated!
Our sense of exploration got the better of us and after a quick visit to our room we set off on a wander around the island. We had got no further than the Uthuru Bar when the storm we had passed caught up with us and forced us inside. However, this was at odds with the weather for the remainder of the holiday which was absolutely brilliant - sunny every day with a slight breeze to cool things down! Perfect!!
The next morning after breakfast in the Farivalhu, we enquired as to the status of our room request and we were deligted to be told to pack our things as we were being moved to a high even numbered 700!! The best present we could have had on our first morning!!
I don't want to start a debate on which is best, but for us (despite the proximity of the Pavilion Bar), there was no question which JWV's are better. The 300's are certainly newer and this is evident in the quality of the finishings, in particular the jacuzzi's themselves. However, 301 was far too close to the shore for any sort of privacy and was quite noisy the first night being so close to the Bar. In addition, there were a number of kids running around the Farivalhu which didn't really create the romantic feel I was looking for on honeymoon. The 700's are that little bit removed from everything else, which makes it more romantic in my opinion! And the Malaan was just that little bit quieter which suited us down to the ground. I don't think there was any notable difference in the food between the restaurants especially since the menus are identical! (The missus had been kept in the dark as to which room I wanted so as not to disappoint her - and at the end of the holiday she said that she was so glad that we were moved!).
After finally unpacking, we ventured to our prebooked His & Hers massage at the Duniye Spa (the over the water spa). What a great way to start the holiday - I felt so relaxed after the massage and allowed us to settle into an easy relaxing routine, which generally included a walk around the island (with mandatory stops in each of the bars around the island) after each of breakfast, lunch and supper (the food was way too good.....), a snorkel from the Asian Wok to the 700 JWV's (before we left London we purchased sets of masks, snorkels and fins from Decathlon for £20 - highly recommended) and some good tanning sessions in the awesome weather! On the trips around the island, we managed to take a few photos:
We even had time to get creative with the colour spectrum......
And, of course, who could forget the ice coffees.......
In terms of trips, we ventured out to the house reef - we found this really worthwhile as the snorkelling is excellent, although for whatever reason the people on our trip were inundated with very slight jellyfish stings (there must have been something in the water from a parent jellyfish who was not sighted). We also did the sunset cruise, which was also great, and managed to get some good dolphin sitings - including them playing and leaping out of the water!! We also made use of the kayaks as part of our all inclusive package, which provided a nice perspective on this island.
On our second last night we booked for the Asian Wok on the basis of recommendations from this forum. You did not disappoint - the food was excellent and I can't imagine too many places where you have such an amazing view!!
On an overall basis, there was not much more we could have asked for on our stay at Meeru - the staff are so friendly (our waiter Sobry looked after us so well) and go out of their way to make your stay enjoyable! The evening entertainment in the Dhoni was great, in particular the crab racing (the Kakuni Bar is being rebuilt or something to that effect). We even got to see schooling sharks and a lion fish at the bottom of our JWV stairs!!
Sadly, all good things come to an end, and on the final morning (as mentioned above), we had a 4am wake up call. Management organise everything for you and give you a letter on the second last day indicating exactly what you need to do, from the wake up call to an early breakfast in the Farivalhu and an early morning speed boat transfer. We arrived at Male' with more than enough time to spare.
Would we go back? Definitely! Although, we might have to visit a few more countries inbetween (as we love visiting new places). The Maldives and Meeru are so beautiful and we feel priviledged to have spent our honeymoon in such a flawless location.
And the cherry on top? The sunsets on a daily basis......
Here's looking to the next visit!