Thulhagiri is an island that many old-hand Maldives aficionados dream of. It seems like the most common complaint among the veteran sufferers of Maldivitis are the lack of affordable properties with good food, service, views and a house reef. Thulhagiri has all of these and more. Maybe that’s why they were at pretty much 100% occupancy during what is traditionally a low season.
Classic Maldives. A resort that has been around for a while, but has been well maintained and updated (eg. bathrooms) so it still feels fresh. Soft sand (including in the bars and restaurant), extensive tasty buffet.
And the classic main event at the Maldives is the shore. The beach above and the house reef below. And Thulhagiri boasts exceptional examples of both. The soft white sand beach is massive for the size of the island. And the house reef is everything you’d expect from an inner atoll gum drop of an island. And exits and entries are laid out with red buoys about every quarter of the reef’s circumference. We headed clockwise with the current from the exit by the dive centre and it took us a leisurely 45 minutes to reach the next red buoy which guided us in with a rope laid to shore. Along the way, we enjoy plummeting reef walls off which schools of colourful fish lingered. The treat of the day was coming across probably the biggest reef shark we had ever seen snorkeling (close to 2 metres) only to be followed by another pair of good sized adults swim right by us only a few feet away (rare for such skittish creatures).
The island hasn’t established any set pathways. All of the under-canopy is kept tidy so you can walk feely (joining other curious critters who do so including Crab Plovers, Parakeets and Bunnies). Sometimes you do have a somewhat adventurous weave around low hanging branches and direction deviating greenery. But it makes it feel more like a natural island with some villas on it instead of a manufactured tract.
We thought Thulhagiri would be an ideal contender for someone’s first visit to the Maldives especially if they had a more limited budget and they wanted to enjoy the classic Maldives resort experience.