The Maldives are the epitome of desert island bliss and barefoot glamour, with their turquoise lagoons, dreamy overwater spas, and white sand fringed with coconut palms. Under the water, pristine coral reefs are home to a dazzling kaleidoscope of life, where manta rays float like flying carpets through sunlit waters and gentle whale sharks swim slowly by, their white spots clearly visible in the crystal clear sea.
A Maldives yacht charter offers thrilling experiences that will sear into your memory, from night-diving with hammerhead sharks to dining in an underwater restaurant made entirely of glass.
Join your charter yacht in the bustling capital of Mahe and get immediately underway for the blissful isles, enjoying lunch on deck as you marvel at the almost unbelievable colour of the water slipping by the yacht. After an approximately two-hour cruise, you’ll come to the island of Bandos, a small, laid-back island ringed by soft white sand, coconut palms, and a superb coral reef.
After an incredible afternoon snorkel, head ashore to have a cocktail in a coconut at the island resort’s barefoot sand bar, returning to your yacht for an alfresco dinner at anchor, the moon shining on the water.
The yacht will get underway at sunrise, delivering you first to Rasdhoo Atoll. Rasdhoo is one of the diving hotspots of the Maldives, as it attracts the big pelagic species, and Hammerhead Shark Point offers the perfect dive for the adventurous.
Those who’d prefer lazing about can head to the beautiful resort island of Kuramathi, where you can have lunch by the infinity pool or enjoy a massage in an idyllic overwater pavilion, feeling the sea breeze drift over bare skin and inhaling the sweet smell of frangipani and jasmine flowers hanging from the trees.
After lunch, the captain will move the yacht to the nearby dive site of Ulkulhas Thila in the North Ari Atoll, where competent divers can descend to a rock pinnacle where giant mantas come to clean their wings, floating toward you with infinite grace. These breathtaking mantas are naturally curious, and if you hold onto the rock they’ll swim close to check you out — an experience you’ll never forget.
Start the day with an exhilarating dive at Maaya Thila, considered one of the standout dive sites of the Maldives. White tip sharks, rays, barracuda and nurse sharks are in tremendous abundance here, as they swim and hunt around the pinnacle.
The yacht will then leave for Meeru, a dreamy island that will make you feel like you’ve fallen into a Conde Nast photoshoot. A long afternoon by the emerald lagoon is the perfect way to ease into life in the Maldives, drinking out of fresh coconuts, relaxing on the white sand beach, and snorkelling past overwater bungalows, drinking in the tropical views above and below the surface.
The yacht will get underway at sunrise for Dangheti Island, where the nearby Kuda Rah Thila site is considered one of the best in the region for its stunning soft corals and dazzling marine life, including Maori wrasse, turtles, and reef sharks. For encounters with the huge, gentle whale sharks, head to nearby Sun Island.
Evening will see you drop anchor off Conrad Rangali Island, where we suggest you arrive early enough to enjoy a pampering session in the resort’s glass-floored overwater spa or a sunset yoga class, before adjourning to the resort’s spectacular underwater restaurant, where you can dine in a glass tunnel as sharks and tropical fish cruise overhead.
Another day, another incredible memory to add to the collection. Miyara Kandu in Felidhu Atoll is a gathering ground for whale sharks, mantas and reef sharks, with an outstanding reputation for diving with hammerheads. Look out from the reef and you’ll see the big pelagics cruising by past the drop-off. Those wanting a thrilling experience of haunting beauty can go on a guided night dive at Miyara Kandu to see the hammerheads circle in a giant school above you.
Start the day early with another sensational dive at Fotteyo Kandu in the east of Vaavu Atoll, where swim-throughs and caverns create an underwater wonderland of soft yellow corals and black coral trees, as well as abundant schools of fish.
Dry off on deck as the yacht moves north back into the South Male Atoll, where divers will definitely want to put their wetsuits back on at Kandooma Thila, a 300m teardrop peninsula festooned in corals and marine life, including schools of eagle rays, dogtooth tuna, barracuda, and reef sharks.
Enjoy a lazy morning on deck relaxing after the dive, watching turtles float by the yacht and cooling off every now with a swim, while those wishing to surf can find a great right-hand break and surf school on Kandooma Island.
Get up early for one final dive, still amazed at the color and life swirling all around. Enjoy breakfast on deck as the yacht cruises back to Male and you disembark for the airport. As your plane ascends into the skies, you’ll look down across the coral atolls you just cruised through on your luxury charter yacht, remembering long happy days swimming with manta rays and whale sharks and starlit dining on tiny sandbanks on the edge of the world