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Maldives on a Shoestring

Maldives on a Shoestring

Maldives on a Shoestring

Trip Details:

Operator:   Encounters Travel
Price From: 1,279 USD
Ideal Age Range: 19 to 30, 31 to 50, Over 51
Fitness Needs: Light Impact
Program duration: 8 days

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About this program

Here’s your chance to see the authentic Maldives and all of its jewels. Discover the exciting culture, breathtaking landscapes, warm local people and delicious cuisine.

Finally, a budget-friendly vacation that doesn’t skimp on the experience, as you start your adventure with a modern tour at the capital, Male. You’ll visit two local islands: Guraidhoo and Maafushi where you’ll have the opportunity to join snorkelling trips, cultural shows and more.

Enjoy meals with local families, beach barbecues, and other fantastic opportunities to taste local snacks and delicacies. There is magic here, come find it!

Itinerary

DAY 1 : Arrive in Malé, transfer to hotel

Upon arrival at Male International Airport you will be greeted by our representative and transferred by the airport shuttle taxi to your guesthouse on Hulhumale, just 15 minutes away. Settle in after your flight before taking your first steps on the sands of this tropical paradise. The beach is 3 min walk away, with several local cafes and local restaurants, plus a watersports centre. For travellers arriving before 5.00pm there is an optional visit to Male for sunset mocktails at the top of the highest building in Male which provides panoramic views of the city and surrounding islands. OVERNIGHT: Hulhumale guesthouseEXTRAS: Extra day in Hulhumale - pre-tour, Single room supplement (MASHMM)

DAY 2 : Malé Tour, ferry to Guraidhoo and dinner with local family

Following breakfast served at the guesthouse you will transfer by public ferry to Male, a 20-minute journey, where a guide will accompany you on a tour of the capital city, providing opportunity to visit places of interest including The Friday Mosque, The National Museum and Sultan Park. After lunch transfer by local ferry (approx. 14.30) to your guesthouse on the local island of Guraidhoo, South Male Atoll, 120 minutes from Male. Sit up top on the ferry to view the beauty of the many Maldives islands that pass you by whilst keeping your eyes open for dolphins! Upon arrival you will have time to settle in before either relaxing in the garden at the guesthouse or on the local beach to watch the sun go down. Dinner this evening is spent with a local family just don't expect silver service as traditionally meals are eaten without the aid of a knife and fork! OVERNIGHT: Guraidhoo guesthouseMEALS: Breakfast, Dinner

DAY 3 : Morning snorkelling trip. Free afternoon

Following breakfast you will be taken by speedboat to nearby coral reefs for your first underwater encounter! The coral reefs of the Maldives are inhabited by diverse marine life and are teaming with colourful fish and corals. Keep your eyes open for turtles, sharks and rays you never know what may be in the blue! On return to Guraidhoo the afternoon is free for you to participate in optional watersports, diving or surfing. This evening enjoy a relaxed beach BBQ dinner. OVERNIGHT: Guraidhoo guesthouseMEALS: Breakfast, Dinner

DAY 4 : Family breakfast, island tour, Hedika & optional Bodu Beru

Breakfast this morning is taken with a local family allowing you true access to Maldivian local life. You will then have free time at your leisure to relax on the beach or enjoy optional watersport activities. As the afternoon cools down accompanied by your guide time is spent exploring Guraidhoo with the opportunity to learn about the local way of life including a visit to the Mosque, visit the boatyard learn how the common wooden boat known locally as a 'dhoni' is built, stop and chat with children playing in the street and watch the ladies of the community begin their evening meal preparations. Stop by a local cafe to sample traditional 'hedika' - Maldivian savoury and sweet short eats served with black tea. This evening you can enjoy an optional beach dinner under the stars accompanied by traditional dancing and the beat of the 'bodu beru' where a group of men sit around the 'bodu beru' - big drum and sing to a rhythmical beat until they reach a crescendo. OVERNIGHT: Guraidhoo guesthouseMEALS: Breakfast

DAY 5 : Maafushi, snorkelling boat trip

Start early today for breakfast and then a transfer by local ferry (07.00) to the local island of Maafushi, just 20 minutes away. After checking into the guesthouse, this morning you will have the chance to once again enjoy the underwater beauty of the Maldives. We stop at a sandbank for picnic lunch with time to swim or lie back and relax. Heading back to Maafushi we will cruise the Indian Ocean in search of dolphins. This evening a dinner comprised of local dishes is taken at your guesthouse. OVERNIGHT: Maafushi guesthouseMEALS: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

DAY 6 : Maafushi, free time, various watersports options

Following breakfast served at the guesthouse, today is yours to enjoy as you please, relax on the beach or for those feeling energetic participate in the various optional watersport activities on offer. Optional diving trips can be organised for certified divers. OVERNIGHT: Maafushi guesthouse MEALS: Breakfast EXTRAS: Full-day scuba-diving boat trip from Maafushi, Half-day scuba-diving boat trip from Maafushi, Manta Ray boat trip from Maafushi

DAY 7 : Maafushi, free time, various watersports options

Following breakfast served at the guesthouse, today is again yours to enjoy as you please, relax on the tourist bikini beach or for those feeling energetic participate in the various optional watersport activities on offer. Optional diving trips can be organised for certified divers. OVERNIGHT: Maafushi guesthouse MEALS: Breakfast EXTRAS: Full-day scuba-diving boat trip from Maafushi, Half-day scuba-diving boat trip from Maafushi, Manta Ray boat trip from Maafushi

DAY 8 : Transfer to Malé airport for departure

After breakfast you are transferred back to Male by public ferry (approx. 07.30-09.00), across town, and on to Male airport where the tour ends. You should expect to arrive at the airport by around 10.30am. If you have a flight departing earlier than 1pm then we recommend taking an earlier speedboat transfer from Maafushi to the airport (at extra cost). If you have a late afternoon or evening flight departure and understandably do not want to spend a long time waiting at the airport, then day-use rooms are available at the Newtown Inn (price includes an airport departure transfer to meet your flight). Alternatively, there are day package options at Hulhule Airport hotel to use the swimming pool, restaurant, bar etc. or a half day visit to Vilingmale Local Island which is 15 minutes from Male. Other snorkelling trips or other watersport activities are also available. Those travellers booking a resort extension will transfer from Male airport on to their resort via the resort's own transfer boat. Our guide will assist you with meeting this transfer though there may be a short wait depending on the resort boat's schedule. OVERNIGHT: N/A MEALS: Breakfast EXTRAS: 3-night resort island extension, 4-night Dhoni cruise extension, Extra day in Hulhumale - pre-tour, Speedboat departure transfer, Day-use room & airport transfers in Hulhumale, Extra day in Hulhumale - post-tour

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