Lovely Lauren in the Maldives

Brace yourselves— it’s wedding season, folks.

Besides the bright bouquets, princess dresses and monogrammed napkins, we feel like the most important part of the nuptial tradition is the honeymoon (of course!). Like marriage, travel is one of the most enriching and divine experiences in life, and we believe there is no better way to celebrate the beautiful union between two people. Our passion for travel and, well, love has led us to partner with Destination: W, an online magazine dedicated to planning destination weddings as well as honeymoons. You can find great ideas and tips for any type of destination wedding on the site, and then leave it up to us to help you plan it!

Why all of the wedding talk, you ask? One of our fabulous agents and our resident destination wedding expert, Lauren Boyd, was selected to go on a familiarization trip to Turkey and Maldives hosted by Turkish Airlines and Hyatt. The focal destination of the trip was the Maldives, a cluster of islands spread across 26 atolls (ring-shaped coral reefs) in the Indian Ocean.

Flying Over the Islands via Turkish Air

Flying Over the Islands via Turkish Air

Lauren in the Maldives

She Made It!

If you are not familiar with the Maldives, let me assure you that it is honeymoon heaven— or as Lauren described it— “Hawaii times ten!” Breathtakingly beautiful lagoons surround you with clear blue water and white, powdery sand. Lauren stayed at the Park Hyatt Maldives Hadahaa, a trendy resort that just became a part of the Virtuoso network. This property offers three different villas types, all of which have their own private sitting area at the beach just steps away from your door. Lauren’s Park Pool Villa also had a private plunge pool with a stunning beach view.

Park Hyatt Maldives

Walk right into paradise…

Park Hyatt Maldives

Lauren’s private plunge pool.

Park Hyatt Maldives

Park Pool Villa

Like the Park Hyatt, all of the resorts in the Maldives are set on their own island, so you’re guaranteed great privacy and seclusion. It is the perfect place for couples to bask in their love, or for single travelers to tune out and de-stress. Because the land is so well protected, there aren’t a ton of off-site activities to do, so your experience is highly dependent on the company you’re with. That doesn’t mean you can’t explore, though! Some excursions offered on the islands include private island picnics, deep sea fishing, yacht charters, scuba diving, and snorkeling. You can even enjoy a local village tour on a nearby island for a home-cooked meal in a family’s house— talk about cultural immersion!

Snorkeling in the Maldives

Lauren and another agent go snorkeling!

Dancing

Dancing the night away to Maldivian music.

In fact, the southern portion of the Maldives is one of the best places in the world for divers. The large, deep atolls provide stretches of unspoiled coral reefs and a large abundance of marine life. Lauren had the opportunity to snorkel the azure waters and fell in love with the peculiar-looking parrotfish!

Parrotfish

Parrotfish…say cheese!

The only tricky part of traveling to this fabulous destination is getting there. There is no direct way to get to Male, the capitol of the Maldives— then from there, you will still have to take an island hopper and/or a boat to get to your resort. But according to Lauren, the travel time is well worth it. She recommends breaking up the trip by staying in your layover city for a few nights. In her case, that city was Istanbul, Turkey, thanks to Turkish Airways (which offers a direct flight from LAX to IST!). In the next post, we’ll get a glimpse of Lauren’s adventures through the bazaars and mosques of Istanbul!

If you’d like to contact Lauren about a trip to the Maldives, email her: lauren@coastlinetravel.com

Cheers, love birds.

–          Kate

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