Seaplane boarding in a storm is tough. After which you will either stop flying altogether, or you will no longer be afraid of anything. Maldivian weather, which systematically deteriorated throughout the entire vacation, in the end gave us a real farewell tour with a real tropical monsoon as the highlight of the program.
If anything, a splashdown in a storm looks something like this.
And if this seemed not enough for you, then the subsequent transfer from the plane to the ferry and transportation to the shore is the final extreme chord, after which the longing for native birches will become literally palpable.
Naturally, I will go to the shore of the island Filitheyo Island Resort – the last point in our Maldivian voyage – after that we were especially happy. Although even in calm and clear weather, this is an extremely pleasant place in all respects.
The total length of the Maldives archipelago is about a thousand kilometers, and the climate throughout these kilometers is not the same everywhere. If the northern islands are rather dry, then the southern ones come across real tropics.
Filitéo is one of the latter. The humidity here is such that even a stick stuck in the sand can germinate with something after a while, and it is not surprising that the entire island is covered with dense jungle.
The administration, by the way, skillfully took advantage of this, organizing something like a botanical garden on the island. A small stand with a description of the specimen is set up near many of the plants. All in all, a nerd’s paradise. And what kind of spa center is organized in this jungle is a separate story, about which a little later.
The very same island of Filitéo is almost a regular circle with an area of about a quarter of a square kilometer. The resort was founded here a long time ago, and the territory therefore seems to be the most developed and habitable. At least, such an abundance of landscape design has never been seen before: a fountain, a Japanese pond with yellow carp (an incredible temptation for avid fishermen), large bowls of flowers placed along the paths – everything is done with love and attention to detail.
In addition, the island is very popular with divers, as there are as many as four “home” coral reefs, so theoretically you can dive here at least the entire vacation. “Theoretically” – because “due to” the weather there could be no question of any diving.
The Filitéo resort is positioned as “luxury”, but this does not make it super-fashionable, but rather simply means that it is not “olinclusive”. How this threatens you is clear from the last wording. Although the all-inclusive system is present here, it only applies to food and drinks that you consume during breakfast, lunch or dinner. For everything else in the remaining time you will have to pay separately, and quite good money. A can of cola taken from a minibar will cost you about $ 5. with alcohol, the consequences are, of course, even more ambitious.
Accommodation is simple: beach houses (double and single) and houses on the water – the so-called water-villa. At beach houses, the bathroom is traditionally located in a closed courtyard, and at water villas it is generally combined with a hallway, but somehow you don’t even pay attention to this right away – it turned out very organically.
The rooms are quite compact but very cozy. And the price, especially in the presence of the term “luxury,” is generally pleasantly razor-sharp – from $ 350 per day, depending on the season, if ordered directly. Take it through an agency – it will come out even cheaper.
Perhaps due to such prices for accommodation, the resort is very popular among the meanest Europeans – the Germans and the French. There are most of them here, and of the Russians, we managed to meet only a young couple from (surprise!) Yekaterinburg, who were going to organize a wedding ceremony on the beach and, of course, did not expect such a setup from the coming cyclone.
There is one more “trick” with accommodation on Filitéo. Even a double room can accommodate more than two, just for each subsequent tenant you need to pay $ 45 per day. By the way, this is actively used by Chinese tourists – as many as five people lived in the neighboring two-bed house.
And on the first evening there was a fishing trip. In general, on many Maldives, fishing involves a swim in the open sea for at least half a day, and this pleasure costs from $ 500 per person. But fishing is much easier on Filitéo! Three hundred meters from the shore, there is an excellent lured place, where you will be brought for an hour and a half or two, and there is guaranteed to be such a bite that the client (that is, you) will forget about everything in the world, including rather high waves and pouring rain with the wind.
Fishing tackle is the simplest: a reel with a fishing line, at the end of which a sinker is attached and a good hook that immediately suggests a very large fish. As bait – a whole box of fish scraps from the restaurant kitchen.
Such fishing does not require any skills from you at all: just drop it and wait. Even city girls, who went fishing for the first time in their lives – although, I suspect that they have been fishing before, but not as fishermen, but as their friends – were able to catch some very solid sea bass.
This pleasure costs about $ 100, which is significantly cheaper than the average Maldivian fishing.
Naturally, all the fish caught will be cooked for you, but since this is not enough for a Russian person, we asked if it was possible to cook this fish ourselves. Tellingly, we were not denied and given full access to the restaurant kitchen and all its contents.
The main “attraction” of Filitéo is the spa center, which is a huge park in the very center of the island. The park has six closed courtyards with massage pavilions and a shower right in the yard. Moreover, the pavilions are used not only for massage, but also, for example, for yoga. If expressed in terms of feng shui, here the stake was not made on “water” as in most resorts in the Maldives, but on “land”, and it turned out pretty cool – it was right.
The massage procedure itself is quite traditional. While you are at the reception, you are relaxed with green tea with lemon grass, then you will be escorted to your courtyard, and there they are already crumpled in accordance with your wishes. Wishes will have to be expressed in English – otherwise they will not understand.
When the massage is over, you will be cheered up with ginger tea and sent on.
The cost of the massage ranges from $ 90 to $ 130, but it lasts an entire hour and a half. True, most of the time you will sleep anyway.
The most important thing is nutrition. Despite the fact that Filitéo is very popular among the French and Germans, the cuisine here has a distinct Indian bias: a variety of curries, chutneys, rice, beans and other dishes not known to Russian taste. Fortunately, everything is signed, there are few spicy dishes and they are specially highlighted, so do not run into it.
In addition, any meal is also an opportunity to drink without separate payment, which the people quite actively use and use, although the people here are clearly not proletarian, so everyone knows the measure.
There is also a great souvenir shop on Filitéo. It is good not only for souvenirs, but also because sellers are quite willing to bargain. This must be done, since the prices in some places are simply merciless, and you can start bargaining right away from half of the declared price.
In the morning we were already going to fly back, but the weather had its own considerations on this score. Because of the cyclone, which raged all night and part of the morning, the seaplane was delayed for three hours, and it arrived at the very moment when my Russian plane was already taking off from Male airport. But there is a silver lining, because in this way I was able to spend another whole day in the Maldivian capital.