They say when a new resort opens, give it some time to perfect the final touches. Dhigali might have been open for a little longer than our title may have made it sound, but it is definitely still very new and “old” enough for you to now pay it a good visit!
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If you are looking a combination of privacy, white sands and beautiful clear water, then Dhigali Resorts should be on your to-do list when considering where to stay in the Maldives. You are probably thinking every resort in the Maldives will give you privacy, but let us tell you that you are wrong. The privacy is affected by the design of the island, or the common areas, beaches, villas or rooms you choose, etc. So let’s start and let us share with you everything about Dhigali so you can decide where to book for your next Maldives trip!
Where is Dhigali Located?
Dhigali is in the Raa Atoll, much further from the main island than other resorts but that added to the charm of it. It takes a domestic flight with a small plane (from the main airport) for 20 mins then speed boat for 45 mins to get to the island. You can get there by seaplane if you can afford it and it will be an adventure in itself. Either way, make sure you have the camera out to get some great aerial shots of the Maldives islands.
One of the greatest things we have encountered happened on the speed boat as we watched the dolphins playing with the boat waves. They actually looked like they were playing with us and having the best time. This added to our experience getting to the hotel.
Things around Dhigali
Like most of the Maldives islands, the island is jam packed with a great mix of relaxing spots, social areas and recreation activities. We prefer to do activities when we travel, so spent plenty of time trying them all out. We really enjoyed the fact the island has a distinct Jungle theme. The design of the island was made on purpose under that theme and the middle of it is a wide area with so much greenery. This gave the feeling we were on a much wider deserted island than a resort. Not too far from the middle of it all is Dhigali’s Spa. We got ourselves Balinese massages and hot stone massages to which we were both satisfied. They also have a relaxation area to unwind from that “stressful” massage and even an analysis of how you felt to get the best massage (prior to the treatment).
How to get around from Dhigali?
Most islands in the Maldives are quite small, however Dhigali is a bigger than some others. They have buggies that you can call from your room to come and collet you to take you around the island. When we were there, they sometimes took a while (like 10-15 mins), which was quite inconvenient for us since we were so on the clock with many activities on the schedule. Although the resort has been looking over the issue and have recently bought a whole bunch more so it only takes a few minutes maximum after the guests call. It should be operating by now that we are publishing this! Although, if you have time, we invite you to walk as it allows you to find the beautiful charm of the island and enjoy even more its amazing jungle landscape.
Food and Drink at Dhigali
One of the best things about Dhigali is that there are plenty of eating options here. They are all situated in different locations of the island and we can guarantee you will have some awesome views while you are eating and drinking.
At the ip of the island is Haali bar, the definition of the ultimate sunset bar and we have been to plenty! The bar is a double story tree house on the west end of the island and is the best place to be watching the sun go down to a wide array of drinks when staying at Dhigali. Get there early so you can get a good spot on the sand and bean bags!
Capers restaurant is for breakfast, a very diverse buffet style with continental food and a wide array of fresh juices while overlooking the infinity pools. It is not an international type of breakfast buffet with dim sums and such, although after making friends with the chef and having extensive discussions about Asian food, after our second night he gave us a treat of his private dim sums he makes for himself for breakfast. We were in heaven; the perks of liking food and talking to the chef to make him crave for it too haha!
We suggest you to absolutely not skip a dinner night at Battuta, named after the famous world explorer Ibn Battuta, who has a very strong history here with the islands. We went through a culinary adventure as different dishes came out that corresponded to his real life travels. It was a feast and a unique dining experience that will be long remembered. Without spoiling the experience too much, we recommend you to reserve in advance and to be hungry!
One of the more unique things we encountered on Dhigali was the Deli. Located near reception, you can go there any time of the day, order ice creams, coffee and cakes just like a café at home. It had such a charm about it that we went back a few times during the hot days to have ice cream and cool down. It’s so important to be able to give the guests an informal food pit stop that is not a restaurant or in-room dining, which makes this Deli something we quite appreciated as an offering.
Dhigali is jam packed full of things to do. Not only for couples, but it keeps the kids entertained with a huge area with a playground, climbing facilities, books, toys and everything you can imagine to keep them busy as you chill on the beach.
As a couple who loves staying fit, we were excited to visit the gym with its own personal trainer there… you know, in case you don’t want to just eat and drink! There is good enough equipment for whole body sessions with plenty more equipment such as battle ropes, kettlebells and treadmills. The PT was super helpful and kind as he gave us tips on improving our technique. You can book daily classes, private PT sessions and there are many things coming up, just always do not hesitate the hotel staff to assist you.
Our favourite activities in the Maldives are the water sports! Stand Up Paddle Boards, Jet Skis, name it, they have it! We decided to do a glass boat kayaking, which was a first for us. We went out on the reef which is just in front of the reception area, and very close to the water sports zone. We paddled all along the reef seeing colourful fish, sharks and even a stingray! The water around the island is as blue as people say and there is plenty of sea life to keep you looking through the glass kayak trying to spot more!
Scuba Diving and snorkelling centre that is solely dedicated to helping you train for a dive or if you are more advanced you can go to the deeper reefs. If you are not yet into diving, they are also happy to give you snorkelling equipment for free.
Several times a week there is also a sunset Yoga session held on the west side of the island. It is out on the jetty and is a place of absolute peace and serenity. If you are looking for awesome Instagram photos, try the West Side Pool side bar just as the sun is setting, it will be quiet and give you fantastic colours.
Like most of the islands, Dhigali offers a wide range of rooms and this makes it quite affordable (relative to the Maldives). The Maldives in general is not a cheap holiday, unless you’re going the backpacker route, so you certainly get what you pay for if you come to a quality island like this.
Our room was a beach villa with pool, had everything we needed with the open windows facing out to the private pool and beach being the highlight. The price our room cost was approximatively 470$US a night. Dhigali has 8 types of rooms, including the basic beach bungalows, deluxe beach bungalows, beach vills with pool, beach suites with pool, water villas, beach villas, lagoon villas with a pool and of course the majestic Dhigali suite! You can compare prices before booking on Booking or Hotels and Agoda.
How was the stay?
It is really hard to go wrong with the Dhigali resort. Plants are still growing, and it’s beautiful to be part of the hotel growing during your stay. It has a new fresh feel about it, and the modernity of its villa designs makes it quite different to the other traditional Maldivian huts. The service is exceptional and you feel like a king or queen the whole time you are on the island. Our favourite part is to actually mingle with the staff. It makes it way more personal and enjoyable once you get to know them. If you are to stay in the Maldives for a week, might as well enjoy the company of those you see daily to make the journey more fun! Even though we disliked the lack of flexibility in transport around the island (we are being critical though!), we very much enjoyed our stay in Dhigali. Having a flu starting up, the staff went beyond their way to bring us fresh juices filled of goodness like lemongrass to make us feel better. Not only that, they had prepared everything needed so we heel fast to enjoy more! Dhigali was a great blend of jungle life combined right next to the beach we know and love in the Maldives. We can’t wait to return in a year and see the progress of the island!
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