My plan of going to Maldives started last March 2019. I thought of it so hard if I can possibly go there and make it a dream come true. Some of the big factors of not pushing this travel were (1) my BUDGET, (2) the guilty feeling of me going on a vacation while my handsome little man is in Philippines with my parents, (3) having a debt and here I am on a tour.
May be some of you raise eyebrow that I went on despite of the situation I had (which some of you know) but I don’t want to regret it. Ilang beses ko na ‘to pinalampas, ilang beses ko ng sinabi sa sarili ko na hindi mo ‘yan deserve kasi mas marami kang need i-priority hindi ang sarili mo.
But the other part of my brain would say “P.I ngayon lang! ngayon lang ako may gagawin para sa sarili ko! Ngayon lang ako hihingi ng oras para isipin naman kung ano ‘yon gusto ko! Ito lang, ibigay nyo na ‘to sakin!” and my tears went off, whole day and night, flowing in my eyes.
Yes, I can hear you loud and clear, I must not think of it as selfish act but a way to pamper myself. I was struggling a day before the flight, torn between going and cancelling. So we know what I choose, TO GO.
Just to let you know, I am eco-friendly budget limited traveler. Maldives is a visa free on arrival for 30 days to all nationalities.
Heading to my guest house, I booked speed boat transfer that cost me USD 40 (two way). I stayed in 3 star Medhufaru Inn (Guest House) with 9.2 rating under booking.com at Guraidhoo Island, Maldives and I only paid USD 90 for 5days and 4nights with cozy garden view room plus breakfast! I arrived in the Guest House around 7:30 pm.
On my first day, I tour around the island, met co-travelers and locals of the islands, and of course ate my first meal that cost me USD 3.99, a yummy nasigoreng of their version. Their food servings can be shared by 2 people! But first – breakfast!
On the island of Guraidhoo they have area for bikinis, Maldives is Islamic country so wearing bikinis at some places are prohibited. Most specially if you will visit the local beach! The resort beach they haven’t have restrictions, I guess.
The guest house I stayed also offers the following tour/excursion:
As you know, on my 2nd day I did my first experience snorkeling in Maldives (Check my blog post about it!). I asked for a discount since I am alone and the prices they have are good for 2 people – USD 50 Sand Bank travel with Snorkeling and Free Lunch. They gave me USD 20 so I went, surprisingly when I about to pay they gave me FREE of charge, Birthday gift indeed. Don’t hesitate to ask for discounts or freebies! It will help lessen the expenses. 😀
Maldives is so beautiful; I love the beach as much as I love myself so I spent my 3rd day at the beach while reading but the weather seems too grumpy that he does not want me to spend my whole afternoon sun bathing so I went back to my room and continue reading.
Sun is out the next day so I spent most of my time at the beach. Jafar, the guest house manager told me that there are 2 types of travelers he encounter, 1st – travelers who want to explore Maldives that is why all tours and island they are going to and 2nd – travelers who want relaxation only, which by the way he defined me as the 2nd traveler.
Yeap, that is correct! I spent my holidays in Maldives for relaxation alone, to free myself from all the stress, problems and struggles. Indeed, Maldives has been so good to me, thinking of investing property and make it as guest house! Would you checked in, if ever?
As I am about to end my surreal travel journey, I am having separation anxiety. My dream came true! I traveled alone! I got lost in a foreign country! My love tank is full, going back fulfilled!
But before packing up and go to airport, maybe I did something great that God allowed me to ticked off another bucket list I have, that is to have a pictorial shoot AND IT HAPPENED HERE IN MALDIVES! A professional photographer and owner of the photo studio in the island asked me if he can do me some photo shoot! At first I am bit scared but he showed me his work and I was blown away, so I said yes! I did a photo shoot IN MALDIVES!!!!!!
Time to get ready and head back! But before that let me take a selfie!
I am scheduled at 2:15 pm speed boat transfer.
Psalms 37:18 “Delight yourself in the Lord and he will give you the desires of your heart.”
Indeed, he answered all my prayers and gave me more than I prayed for. At the start of this planning, He gave me the right people to help me. He provided everything I needed. I received so many gifts and experience in my first solo travel! I was upgraded to Business Class too! What a way to end it!
Maldives is forever in my heart and will always be part of me! My number 1 Dream destination. The one I got to experience “my firsts” as traveler! I gotta go back to work my ass out and head up to my next travel journey! I am rooting for Santorini, Greece as my 2nd Dream destination (pulling out the long list I made when I was younger to travel the world).
I was 13 when I started dreaming of travelling to other countries. I was never given an opportunity to travel even in our beautiful country, Philippines, which by the way has so many islands too (7,100 -low tide; 7,107 – high tide if I remember it right :D) not because I am not allowed to do it but we do not have enough resources to make it happened.
I really want to travel the world if money is never a necessity! But hey, travelling still made possibly! I believe that our dreams are just glimpse of our reality. Do trust God’s process, it may long overdue plan but still it happened. Your waiting time is God’s working time.
The best experience are seen when you went out of your comfort zone. You will realized what you can and cannot do, how far you’ll go to achieve your dream?
GO and chase your dreams! Live it! Own it! Dreams are meant to happen. Keep Going.
Here are some of my take away notes:
- Wear knee length dresses if roaming around the island.
- 1 USD is not accepted in paying bills but can be given as tip.
- USD, Euros, MVR are accepted in all cafeterias, guest house, souvenir shops.
- You can explore 1 island in 2days.
- Walking, Scooters or Bicycle are the means of transportation within the island. Speed boat if you want to hop another island, will cost you 385 MVR or USD 25 – one way.
- Speed boat transfers have schedule timings.
- At least 1 hour to 1 hr half minutes travel time from Guraidhoo to Airport
Who said travelling is expensive? I will do this more often. It boosted my self love!
Happy Travelling ya’ll. Stay safe!