Solo Trip to The Maldives: Snorkelling & Fish Feeding at Rasdhoo Madivaru Finolhu (The Sandbank)

As I write this, it is my last full day in the Maldives. My bags are packed and I am preparing for the 30-hour or so journey back home tomorrow. In the two weeks that I’ve spent on the island, the internet has been flaky, so I held off trying to blog again until now. By the time you see this, I will either be in or on my way to Dubai.

When last we left off, I shared that I had just arrived in the Maldives and was only just enjoying my first taste of island life. The specific island I visited was Rasdhoo and I stayed in the general area for the duration of my trip.

The first activity I planned was to go snorkelling. After speaking with my host, he arranged a trip to Rasdhoo Madivaru Finolhu, which is a naturally-formed sandbank island.

Heading Off

Typically, this is a trip reserved for groups of two or more. However, my host understood that my friend bailed on me at the last minute and was very accommodating, for which I am eternally grateful. Yameen (the host and the hotel manager) helped us bring our things to the beach on his bike, but only Imran (a member of his staff) and I made the trip to the island.

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The first order of business was getting the motorboat ready. I waited on the shore while Imran waded out into the water to remove the anchor and manoeuvre the boat as close to shore as possible.

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Getting on board was a little tricky in a long dress, but Imran was patient and helpful. If you’re wondering why on Earth I would wear a long dress to the beach for a snorkelling trip, as a reminder, the Republic of Maldives is a Muslim country. While I did not subject myself to the restrictions local women followed, I followed my own code of modesty.

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This is the view once safely seated on the boat. Backing out of the shallow waters was slow business due to the reefs. However, once we moved to the deeper waters beyond, we picked up speed.

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This is the view of not the wake created by the motor, but Rasdhoo Island in the background as we moved further and further away.

Within five or so minutes, both Rasdhoo Madivaru (Picnic Island) and Rasdhoo Madivaru Finolhu (Sandbank) came into view. Once we began to enter shallow waters again, the water resumed its lighter turquoise blue.

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The Arrival

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I wasn’t sure what to expect when I arrived at the Sandbank, but what I saw blew me away. The beach was beautiful.

The water also stays the same depth all the way out to where you see the darker blue line on the horizon. It barely got up to my waist β€” if at all β€” making it excellent for basic snorkelling.

The-Maldives

However, I didn’t go all the way to South Asia for “basic snorkelling”.

There is a blue lagoon close to shore where the seafloor drops and sea life flourishes. It is not as deep as the darker blue on the horizon, and here, there are some corals.

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Beneath the Surface

The underwater view was beautiful, but why waste words on it when I have pictures? I’ll separate these pictures into the snorkelling and then the fish feeding. Imran took most β€” if not all β€” of these photos of me using the hotel’s GoPro. He took videos as well, but I won’t be sharing those here. Underwater photography is one of the services offered at my hotelΒ and maybe several others. If you ever do visit, I highly recommend it.

Snorkelling

Fish Feeding

Back on Shore

My mom says I tire of things quickly and easily, and she is perhaps right on that account. As beautiful and fascinating as this was, I was eventually ready to get out of the water. This ultimately worked to my benefit, however.

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Believing good ol’ melanin and my island-girl conditioning would protect me, I only used sunscreen on my face. Well, so much for that. Within 24 hours, my skin was on fire.

Thereafter, Yameen took extra precautions whenever we went sea-adventuring. Before I left, we went kayaking together around the entire island (all three of us!) …

… and also enjoyed a second snorkelling adventure that was even better than this one.

On the second snorkelling trip, I saw sharks, eagle rays, and a ginormous turtle. However, those are stories for another day.

Stay tuned!

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30 thoughts on “Solo Trip to The Maldives: Snorkelling & Fish Feeding at Rasdhoo Madivaru Finolhu (The Sandbank)

  1. Love the photos! My sister’s been to the Maldives last year and she was equally enthusiastic about them.

    Which is great. Just one more destination added to my already too long list…

    1. Haha, you should move it further up the list if you love beach destinations. Clearest water I’ve ever seen!

    1. It’s finally stripping now. It looks terrible πŸ˜‚ It doesn’t hurt though, so that’s a plus.

      I’m not sure if you’ve seen it yet, but the kayaking post is out πŸ™‚

  2. Ouch! Sunburn burns! Hope you have recovered!! I love underwater photos, but I hyperventilate when I see people under water. Lol

    Glad you had such a fun adventure!!

    1. It sure did hurt! I haven’t burned that badly in years!

      Why does it make you hyperventilate?

      And thank you. I had an amazing time. πŸ™‚

    1. You should definitely add it to your bucket list. It’s really not as expensive as many people think if you know when to book and where to go. ☺️

  3. Oh and one more thing I burn like crazy I have to put on SPF 155 every 2 hours just to get a burn after all of that once went with my daughters to the Bahamas and we sat in the shade the entire time and we still burnt even wearing sunscreen. hope that’s feeling better

    1. Oh my! 155 is some serious business!! I hear once you build a tan first through very light exposure, then you can become resistant to the burn. My friend’s husband from Holland told me that. He lives in Jamaica and that’s his strategy πŸ˜…

      I didn’t burn after this, but I’m not sure if it’s because I used the sunscreen, had built up some protection or because of other precautions the hotel took for me. Probably a combination of all 3!

      1. Hahaha! I just look very dark. No lobster for me. Everyone keeps asking me what happened to me. πŸ˜‚

  4. This post is so exciting for me number one that you didn’t let going by yourself get you down and number two I super love snorkeling they prefer scooping but I love to snorkel and I can’t believe you got to see that sea turtle up close like that I’m super jealous right now.

    1. Haha, thank you!! I really have to thank the hotel for being so accommodating, because all these trips I took actually require 2 people and as you know, it was just me!

      The snorkelling was amazing, definitely the best I’ve ever seen and this is coming from a Jamaican! The only thing I didn’t get to do that I really wish I had was paddle boarding. I am terrible at it, but I love doing it πŸ˜…

      1. Awesome! Happy to connect you with the hotel whenever you’re ready. They were a lot more affordable than other options and they are the ones who handle their own excursions, underwater photography, etc.

        Next time, I would like to try out one of those over water bungalows though. I don’t want to stay there for the full trip, but at least for a night or two to see what it’s like.

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