“Practice random kindness and senseless acts of beauty.” —Anne Herbert
Anne Herbert’s quote above seems to capture the ethos of Nika’s “kind island” initiative:
“NIKA ISLAND will be the first kind island in the Maldives…An island not subject to the ravages of time, nor to the dynamics of massive tourism that are redefining the Maldives. A land that embraces the value of kindness by translating it into concrete social projects that benefit the ecosystem itself: an ambitious alchemical experiment with simply unrepeatable contours. International Kindness Movement is a network that to date has reached 300,000 participants and spreads kindness, restoring the highest human, spiritual, cultural, environmental and social values to the territory in which it operates, through the promotion of a healthy and conscious lifestyle.”
Nika is becoming an Ambassador of Kindness as a part of the International Kindness Movement which describes them in their charter as follows:
“The Ambassadors of Kindness are: Friendly, Understanding, Positive, Kind, Inspirational, Grateful, Compassionate, Resilient, Passionate, Patient, Empathetic, Respectful, Determined, Forgiving, Humble, Honest, Courageous. As an Ambassador of Kindness, you will be undertaking to support the ongoing kindness campaign. Whilst it is about the promotion of events leading up to World Kindness Week in November, it’s also about engaging the whole village to create a better environment within the greater community by promoting the good work that is being done in all sectors of the Village.”
Some of this might seem rather obvious and superfluous (isn’t every resort going to be “kind”), but I think that just mission statements and campaigns can inspire and focus organisations to make that extra effort and take those extra initiatives to walk the walk.
Another variation of the wish tree is Cora Cora’s “Freedom Tree”. Not only do you write you wish to hang on a special walking tree for them to be lofted away by the Maldives ocean breezes, but you can also choose one of 4 colours each associated with one of the following sentiments:
Another “Finally Seen”, in fact one of my earliest. Coincidentally, Lori gave me a 60th birthday gift of a trip to Belize partly motivated by its similarity to the Maldives. One of the activities on the agenda was a zipline through the rain forest. Soneva Jani’s now offers that high flying thrill for kids at its “The Den” facility.
Ropes courses are a classic team building activity in the corporate world, and for those budding executives, Ritz Carlton Maldives’ “Ritz Kids Club” offers and indoor and outdoor net-protected rope climbing (and clambering) frame. With the number of these “Climbing” features going higher and higher, I’ve added a tag for them with this post.
For all the budding young Gladiators looking to burn all the excess energy of from the excitement of arriving in paradise, Emerald’s Dolphin Kids Club offers a fun obstacle course to scamper through for hours on end so when Mom and Dad pick them up they are all spent and ready to sit calmly during cocktail hour.
The underwater, well, everything in the Maldives is so amazing that every visit should feature as much of it as possible. I love underwater facilities, but I especially like when the resorts expand their use to for other things so as many people can enjoy the underwater experience as possible. OBLU Ailafushi and OBLU Lobigili are using their underwater restaurants as a marine classroom. And part of their coral-life curriculum is a fun treasure hunt for different species of marine life. And the activity is not just for guests, but the properties also invite local Maldivian school children over to enjoy and benefit from this unique classroom experience.
“The Educational Marine Tour sensitises school children between the ages of 5 to 12 years about marine life. They identify fish and corals, connecting with the country’s fragile ecosystem. This initiative attempts to educate future generations who may decide to have a career in hospitality. Every month the resort will invite students from different schools in Malé for the program.”
Two of my favourite things to enjoy in the Maldives – underwater and treasure hunts!
If you want to make your own song or if the music of the ocean breeze in the palm trees and the gentle rhythm of seawater lapping the linen white sand inspires your compositional creativity, Cora Cora offers guitar lessons for their guests by resident Mani. In fact, even their staff have taken part including Sam featured here in this sample duet of some cord progressions.
Birds are the most prominent above-water creatures in the Maldives and Patina has segregated its own over-water sanctuary for these feathered friends. A review from Luxury Traveler describes:
“Not exactly a facility but an interesting place to visit nonetheless. Bird Island it is the only part of the entire Fari Islands development that was originally above water and isn’t made from dredged sand. As the name implies, Bird Island is still used as a breeding ground by local birds and is a great place to come and observe them (whilst carefully maintaining your distance).”