The real beauty of Maldives lies beneath, i.e. underwater, in the varied, multi-shaped, multi-colored aquatic life both moving and still.
We stayed at a resort by name Kandooma, managed by Holiday inn and placed on its own island about 2-3 sq km in size. Our accommodation was a Beach villa (true to its name facing the sea).
Not surprisingly our 5 day vacation to Maldives was centered around Snorkeling. Though Snorkeling seems to be simple at first there are certain technical nuances that need to be learnt and practiced before you take the plunge into the middle of the ocean.
Learning to Snorkel:
The resort conducted snorkeling classes everyday at 11 am for a duration of 1 hour where one could familiarize with the activity but this was done in the common pool area which was not the same as snorkeling in the sea, so we decided to sit through the class as mere spectators and practice the skill ourselves in the sea along the shoreline. Snorkeling along the shoreline got us used to the snorkeling equipment and also gave us the much needed confidence when we actually ventured out for snorkeling in the middle of the ocean.
A photo of mine while snorkeling – captured by a diving guide
Kandooma island resort lacked a good Home reef (coral reef) so they were arranging a daily 1 hour guided tour to a nearby reef. The motor boat that ferries the snorkelers stops at a distance from the reef edge and the snorkelers have to jump into the ocean and swim towards the reef – this is a scary proposition to snorkelers who aren’t confident swimmers even though a life vest is provided. Once the inhibitions and fears of drowning are disposed off then one starts enjoying the real joys of snorkeling. Luckily I had purchased a underwater camera to capture for eternity the sights, so here we go!
A beautiful wide coral which was visible because of low tide
We were snorkeling on the edge of the coral reef, so you can see the sudden change in depth as the ocean floor disappears at the top half!
We saw a wide variety of fish as we drifted through the coral reefs. I think the first one on the left is a clown fish of ‘finding nemo’ fame!
Almost at the end of our Snorkeling we encountered this beautiful shoal of blue fish unmindful of our presence.
We wish we could have undertook more such snorkeling expeditions but it was not possible because of limited budget and time, but what little of Maldives we could explore and experience was well worth its value and can be easily termed as an ‘experience of a lifetime’!