You need to be very careful when choosing rooms through Booking on Maldivian working islands.
There are different types of rooms, of course. But only big ones, as family deluxe, have normal windows, not to reception area. May be for someone it has no difference. But i want some view.
And this is the main secret. Even if it is view from the window of your room, may be you will never open the curtains. There are two points, why. First – its too sunny during the day and curtains help keep “cold” air in the room.
Second – in Muslim country its not good to be naked or half naked or just to be visible from the street or from the window of another house. Private life hidden inside.
Actually, there only few hotels which really have little ocean view. They are expensive. And this hotels located only on bikini beach which is of course full of people, because its only one beach for foreigners.
So, my first hotel on Mathivery island was cancelled before departure by myself. Owner all time asked, does everything ok? You really will be in time? This questions were because the hotel has overbooking and owner didn’t know what to do with our “small” group. Hotels didn’t block money on card, but to be sure that all rooms will be rented, they sell them twice.
At the end I understand that 2 rooms are without any window , two have windows to reception area and only one, family deluxe, is looks like the photos in Booking.com.
I cancelled reservation.
Mathivery island is very small. Its 90 km from Male. 50$ by speedy boat one way.
This boat have departure time twice a day – at 12pm and 4pm.
Trying to find our representative I found information with absolutely free local telephone. Just numerate all after 0 in your number.
Then we waited 3 hours till 4 pm. Its hot inside. Wi-Fi only if you buy something in airport Food Court. Shower only in male WC. Women do not need refreshing. Possible to try with toilet hose , if its deadly need.
The road by speed boat approximately 2 hours. Water provided on board. There are 2 additional stops by the way.
Mathivery is tiny and quiet.
We lived in Mathivery Holiday Inn.
Rishwan waited us in harbor. Our luggage was carried by electro car. And we followed Rishwan. First – huge, impressive palm grove near the ocean.
In 5 min we reach our hotel. Small and nice. On the second floor there is a long balcony around all building. So, all rooms have exit to balcony.
Bikini beach only one minute walk. Its clean and charming. Reef is very far away. But after two days we understood that from the right part of the beach its only 20 m to the corals and much closer to the reef. And its pretty beautiful – with different corals and fishes.
There are free sun beds, nice shadow patches between the bushes.
Near Mathivery its also small islet. Its possible get there by boat at any time or by foot when the tide is low. Current between the island and the islet can be really strong.
We took with us from Ukraine our catamaran. This is metallic construction with two balloons. All possible to pack into 4 bags. Big and heavy. Its costs us additional 320 euro to bring it with us.
But we received great opportunity get to islet at any time or make ocean walks near the island.
Its against the law to make walks between the islands without special permission. As i read its not difficult to receive this permission. Not very expensive. But if police will catch you in the ocean without this paper , the fine will be approximately 7000 usd.
So, our stay on Mathivery was very scheduled.
In the morning we took coffee on balcony. Early birds speak loudly. It was little breeze.
Next was breakfast. It was mix of Swedish table with different continental and local ingredients. In another hotels there was only choose of continental or Swedish. We had mix and as much as we wanted. And fruits. A lot of.
Till midday heat we stayed in the ocean, snorkeling and catamaraning ( my new word))
Its need to say, that home reef was only in one part of the bikini beach. But it was nice – with a lot of fish, with eagle rays, calamari’s and big round corals.
Island is very small and it was nice to make a walk around it. Mathivery is clean. With quiet streets and multicolor houses.
It has huge palm grove. Port embankment is wide, with a lot of net chairs, where, in the shadow of the trees, locals observe the life. There are police station, school, health center, children garden, big football field on the island.
There are several supermarkets. We bought there fruits.
In local shops possible to pay usd or rupees. Currency exchange rate everywhere equal.
First time in my life I ate mango as big as a small watermelon! 800gr each! So sweet, so tasty!
Unfortunately its from Australia, not local. And the price is something as 7-8 usd per one. Local mangoes are small, sweet but fibrous.
And papaya from Thoddoo. Every day, twice per day we ate papaya! How I will live without it after?
We also bought onion, garlic, lemons, carrot, oil to prepare fish. Ordinary prices.
Afternoon snorkeling, walking to the islet.
They fought 20 min before my husband won! Of course, he was happy. Locals were stunned, because it was first time, when someone catch this fast and aggressive fish just from the pier. This tuna was very delicious as sashimi, sivichy and in tom yam soup.
Another opportunity to take dinner was Swedish table in the hotel. Tell exact time and dinner will be served. According to menu list. Every day another dish. Normal price. 10 usd pp.
And those few restaurants, which have big menu list. But to be honest, the food is not what you imagine, when your location is in the island 300×400 m in the middle of ocean. No. If its possible to spoil the fish, they spoil fish. Dry and untasted.
But Mathivery has a lot of different fresh juices! We ordered them in bottels even if we didn’t take dinner in restaurant.
In Maldivies there is no cheese, no smoked sausages. We took from home little bit and made small sandwiches. Also i had special puddings . They are for tourists. Add boiled water, wait 15 min and sweet tasty pudding is ready. She like it! It was great idea. Some of our friends bought in supermarket Asian soups. But they are with conservants and with pasta. I have nothing about pasta, but not when its full cup!
Evening time is fresh. And with mosquitoes. They are not in the rooms. They ate my legs on the balcony. Also during morning coffee. Tiny ugly ones! And we didn’t take our antimosquitoes , our protection costumes!
And the epic story about our diving. I wanted to dive. We wanted to dive. I saw two dive centers on Mathivery. All time closed. In one there were tanks and BCD looks like someone jump out fron the center on one second!
No. During 4 days no people. I wrote message. Received answer – connect with Mario. Actually, Mario answered me, but after 10 days…
So, i asked our Rishwan to do something. And he found dive center on Bodufokhudhu. Thus guys pick up us and we arrived at their island. They pick up us by small speed boat. Then we fulfilled documents, check equipment and went to the house reef. It was nice decision.
After small lunch in local cafe in harbor we took all our equipment on board and rushed to big reef of Mathivery. I was little bit astonished – it was 5-30 pm. No torches. Nothing. We are going to the open ocean. With us person, who had first dive not in the pool two hours before.
Anyway. We made somersault back. Lucky that there were no waves! Here on the depth of 18-24 m was perfect coral garden. It was only one place where i saw table corals during this journey. As i know last tsunami destroy big ones. And only small ones preserved somewhere. It was small current. Colors quickly disappeared. And light also. In 25 min i understand that i didn’t see figures on my comp and didnt see other divers. Our instructor had any light, any blink, nothing!
Successful, in complete darkness we finished this strange dive.
The price which we paid in the evening was awful – 80 usd per dive…. This include boat, equipment ( not all, just something to everyone, like octopus to Ivan, bcd +octopus to Tasya, nothing for me). The main practice on islands – dive centers charged max 5usd for renting equipment. Usually we paid only for dives. This time, despite the agreed price, final price was 70% higher.
I really do not recommend this dive center to anyone.
Six days gone away.
Photo session in the palm grove near the ocean. Pictures from the magazine. Ocean beauty!
Time to go by speedy boat to the next island, to the Thoddoo.
It was light silence from the person with whom i communicated about boat. It was little bit of excitement, we order second boat, we get first boat, i cancelled second one, then all were displeased and then pleased again.