Kuramathi Island Resort
25 Traveller reviews from Holiday Watchdog
"Visited Kuramathi Village in Feb 2004 for the second time,every thing about it we loved.The staff were so friendly and the island so pretty.Recomend you swim off the reef, we swam earley one morning when the tide was high, and saw manta rays sharks and turtles it was awesome. We are looking forward to returning to Kuramathi on the 19th of Feb [two weeks to go yipee] Barbara and Shaun"
- Travel date: Mon 30th of January 2006
Loved the Blue Lagoon
"My girlfriend and I decided to holiday at the Blue Lagoon off the back of a friends recommendation and also from having read all the praise received on TripAdvisor. Needless to say we were not disappointed. The Blue Lagoon is good. Very good.
The main thing i liked about the Blue Lagoon was the peace and quiet. Apparently the hotel was full during the 2 weeks we stayed there however it felt at times as though we were the only people there!
The Beach Bungalows are large, comfortable and have recently been refurbished to a high standard - the private outside showers are a plus as well as the quite frankly enormous beds. The power sockets are UK 3-pin type - European and US adaptors are provided and the rooms are tended to twice a day by the house-keeping staff who are only to please to help you with any requests you have, all of which went towards making our stay there that little bit better.
During our stay it was quite windy. Great for windsurfing and also for taking the edge off the heat from the midday sun, though not so great if you want real tranquility. Not to worry as even when the winds on one side of the island are quite strong the other side of the island was sheltered and blissfully calm.
The Snorkeling is also very good. Even if you have never tried it before or are even apprehensive lessons can be arranged through the Marine-Biology Station that is a permanent feature of the Island. Once you have been shown how to snorkel without damaging the coral reefs (very important) you will be able to enjoy it more (as we found). You'll find Nemo along with Sharks (harmless ones), Stingrays, the occasional octopus and a stunning array of other marine life. The sun is very strong and wearing a t-shirt is recommended as it is easy to get carried away with all that there is to see and before you know it it's been 2 hours and you are burnt to a crisp. The equipment is included if you are All-Inclusive (hired if Half-Bored) however better equipment can be bought at the Dive Shop on the island.
The sun in this part of the world is very intense. Even with cloud cover it can burn you if you do not wear sunscreen. If i can offer one piece of advices its take lots of factor high-factor sunscreen. You can buy more on the island if you run out however the shop had a limited choice; Factors 40, 30 and Carrot Oil !!
The food is not the best in the world but is good enough. Buffet breakfasts mean you can fill-up for the day, if you get hungry at lunch time the Palm Court Restaurant Pizzas are great, and the main restaurant alternates set-menu's and buffets from one night to the next. There are other restaurants on the island such as an Indian and a Thai which run buffets nights and are a popular choice.
The Sports facilities are OK however I was more interested in relaxing. There is a gym (went once on the tour of the facilities), a flood-lit tennis court, and various water sports such as Windsurfing, Water-Skiing and of course Diving. With 2 schools on the island running Dives for all abilities and the opportunity to attain PADI certs. the beginner and the advanced diver will not be lacking for things to interest them. Being a land-lubber I can not comment on this properly, but having said that I know that the Maldives are renown for the quality of its diving.
The pool is nice and the only place with sun-loungers other than the end of the (very windy) jetty. If you stay at the Blue Lagoon the pool and Gym facilities are included in the price of your stay - if you stay at the Cottage or Village you have to pay $15 a week per person to use the pool/gym.
The Spa is world class. They offer dozens of treatments to satisfy the nervous first timer (like me) to the spa connoisseurs. The Thai back massage induces sleep in a way that will have going back for more (no pun intended).
All of the excursions are run by the hotel which makes a nice change - no reps to pester or annoy you trying to convince you to do this, or do that and there are plenty to choose from. Of the ones on offer we sample the shopping trip to the neighboring island of Rasdhoo. This was.... interesting. If you are adamant that you want to buy gifts for folk back home then go; if you are adamant that you want a Magnum ice-cream then go (the hotels donât have them), however if you want to have a look around at a real Maldivian Island and see the islanders way of life, then steer clear as there is nothing to look at other than shops and a rather out of place looking rubbish tip. Palm trees, azure seas and 30 Degrees Celsius aside - a rubbish tip is still a rubbish tip. Very disappointing. Every shop has a very eager proprietor apologetically ushering you inside. Once they have you inside their shops your every step will be followed. If you show the faintest sign of interest in any item then you are treated to a 2-minute rehearsed speech on why you should buy it; They are the only one who do, they are the cheapest (surely irrelevant if they are the only vendors), they will give you a very good price, its very beautiful. By the time you have gone into your second shop you find out that the previous shop was not the only one who sells Coconut husked photo-albums or coconut ash-trays and that the Nemo emblazoned t-shirt you bought across the street is $5 cheaper in the shop you are in now. Some of the shops do offer unique items which are rather nice and a few sell very good quality sarongs which I could not resist. If you do buy anything and opt to pay using a Credit Card agree on a price first, bartering is expected, and then say that this price is to include the card transaction fee, usually $5. I got stung on this.
The only other excursion we sampled was to visit the island of Kandholhudhoo which is owned by the hotel chain that run the Kuramathi Resort Island. It's a tiny piece of paradise that will remain in with you for the rest of your life. You can walk around in 5-minutes and thats at that beach-ambling hand-holding pace that only ever surfaces in locations as beautiful as this. Its size, or apparent lack thereof means that Kandolhudhoo caters for a maximum of 20 guests; and to do this they have 40 members of staff! Raymond, the New-Zealander head-chef, serves up Michelin one-starred food that is simply fantastic and you can sample this paradise island for either just the day or you can push the boat out and stay over night and be totally pampered.
The overnight stay includes lunch on the first and second days, dinner on the beach under the moon and stars (depending on the weather of course), an in-room champagne breakfast the next morning and a 2-hour relaxing massage and bath. But thatâs not the best of it - the highlight has to be the Snorkeling. You get a 1-hour guided tour of the totally un-spoilt and breathtakingly beautiful Coral Reef by the islands resident diving instructor. It is almost a certainty that you will see 1 of the reefs two local sea-turtles. Seeing them in their natural habitat remains the most memorable part of my holiday. Whilst the reef at Kuramathi is good and there is plenty of interesting things to see it pales into insignificance compared with the reef at Kandolhudhoo which is simply stunning. Well worth the money in my opinion.
Other excursion include being dropped off on your own un-inhabited island for the day, big game fishing and island hopping - none of which we managed to do, but i guess that gives us an excuse to go back.
I was tipped off that I wouldn't need much cash and this is true - whilst on the island everything that you buy (even when on Kandholhudhoo) is charged to your room. We took $150 cash which covered the $10 pp departure tax that immigration forgot to ask for (largely due to my girlfriends Picachu Passport Cover I think), Tips for your waiter and Room-boy, Drinks and Magnums on Rasdhoo and ridiculously cheap Duty-Free Vodka.
The transfer to Kuramathi is included in the price of the package and is a 90-minute speed-boat journey. For that extra special touch you can of course opt for the 15-minute air-taxi transfer providing rather stunning views of the Atoll en-route. I would recommend sorting this out independently rather than letting the hotels do this. It will work out cheaper. The hotel will arrange it for $210 per person for a return journey - dealing directly with Maldivian Air Taxi the price was about $172 per person. No point paying more than you have to. Make sure that your large bags are under 20kgs each and under 5kgs each for you hand luggage otherwise supplements are charged. Be sure to keep your camera in your hand as you will not be able to retrieve from your bag whilst in flight. As what happened with us where they could not send our bags on the same transfer flight as us due to the sea-planes weight restrictions they will get them to you as soon as they can. Sure enough 30 mins later our bags arrived precariously balanced on the head of one of the Blue Lagoons members of staff (the one that feeds the stingrays - another attraction of the Blue Lagoon). I would also say that whilst the Air-Taxi transfer does only take 15-minutes compared to the 90-minutes of the boat, do not expect it to be any quicker. By the time we arrived the boat was already there - this may have been bad luck with the timing of the flights i don't know but it would have been nice to know up front.
All in all a fantastic holiday (if you ignore the mosquito bites that will appear in the middle of night) at a fantastic place that I would recommend to anybody wanting to get away from it all and forget all your troubles."
- Travel date: Wed 25th of January 2006
Thoroughly enjoyed stay
"We visted Kuramathi Village for 10 nights on an all inclusive basis in November. The crossing from Male to Kuramathi takes about 1 Â½ hour by speed boat. If youâre able Iâd suggest making at least one transfer by sea plane.
The island is about 1 Â½ km long with two other hotels on it, Kuramathi Cottage and the Blue Lagoon. The island is beautifully planted with plenty of shade along the beaches. Snorkelling equipment is free to borrow and itâs possible to swim along the outside of the reef which runs down one side of the island. We saw a variety of fish, moray eels and even large reef sharks. The Marine Biologist based on the island gives weekly slide shows and is more than happy to answer questions.
Itâs worth walking to the end of the island to the sand bank which stretches into the sea. If you arenât able to walk a taxi service can be ordered via reception to take you from one end of the island to the other. At 1830 at the Blue Lagoon hotel each night Manta Rays are fed from the jetty.
Our room was a 5 minute walk from the restaurant. Although this wasnât a problem I understand that doing this 3 times a day for each meal wouldnât suit every visitor. The food was served buffet style with one set menu each day. I felt there was good a choice of food although after 14 nights you may find the routine tiring. At extra cost there are other restaurants on the island including Thai, Indian and the Island Barbecue.
If possible take some US 1 dollar bills to tip the porters. They werenât at all happy that we couldnât produce what they wanted!
If you want a small exclusive island that has everything within a minute of your room this isnât the place for you. However, I thoroughly enjoyed my stay on the island and if you want more space than your average resort Iâd recommend Kuramathi."
- Travel date: Sun 4th of December 2005
Just back from Kuramnathi - Excellent value holiday
"My husband and I normally look for a four or five star hotel. For this holiday our 24year old son was coming too so an all inclusive deal seemed the best choice.
Kruamathi Village is billed as a three star resort. In my opinion it is very good value. The beaches are lovely - even if it did rain a fair bit.
We stayed in Standard rooms. Basic and clean if a bit frayed round the edges. A common problem in the tropics. Nice large rooms with air con (noisy) and a ceiling fan.
The food is fine - a bit boring in the second week but still OK with plenty of choice.
The first ten days we were eating in the Island coffee shop. We were seated under a palm thatched shelter. The waiters worked hard and service was good.
Then the new restaurant opened. It is a lovely building with panoramic views of the sea. The first day was a bit chaotic and the waiters clearly were having a hard time working out the logistics of where everything was kept. By the third day things settled down a bit and even more choices of food appeared on the buffet.
The all inclusive deal meant a fair bit of time was spent in the bar. The deal was generous and even some mainstream label spirits were included. Great range of cocktails kept all three of us very happy.
My husband and son spent a lot of time diving while I snorkeled. The dive centre was excellent and very professional. My husband is an experienced diver and fussy about dive centre standards and he was very happy.
The service from all staff very good. When our Air con broke it was fixed within four hours. The front desk staff were so helpful.
This is a lovely island with good facilities and Kuramathi Village is a three star resort. No more. No less.
I know how hard it is to find out much info in advance - that is why I am writing this review.
If you are looking for a mega luxury hotel with staff catering to your every momentary whim this island is not for you.
If you want a good value holiday with brilliant snorkelling and diving at a reasonable price, Kuramathi is great. I am sure we go back again."
- Travel date: Wed 14th of September 2005
"I returned yesterday from the Kuramathi Village and wanted to post a review ASAP once I read the previous post. We also booked to stay at the village and were told 2 weeks prior to the holiday about the building work going on there.
We were assured by Kuoni that it was not a problem and will be finished by 31st August. Upon arrival we were informed that we would be staying in the village but taking our meals at the Kuramathi Cottage restaurant and would have full use of the bar there. The only advice I can give is if you get there to find the restaurant is still not open, make sure you demand the use of the cottage facilities, as these are noticeably superior to the village.
The buffet was great at the cottages, with plenty of variety, but the set meals were starting to become predictable by the end of the two weeks, although we never once had what we'd call a "bad meal". The facilities are top class, and the staff work extremely hard but always have a smile and time for a chat.
The fishing is not $1500 as previously stated, it was around $450 for the early morning deep sea fishing (the best time), or $750 for a full day. You pay for the boat, not per person so this can be split by upto 4 people fishing. If you ask around in the bar you're sure to get some people who are interested to help spread the costs.
The island runs a credit system whereby everything not covered by the all inclusive deal is billed to your room, including spa treatments and items from the gift shop. There is a limit to $50 travellers cheques per person per stay that may by cashed, but if you need extra cash we found you can settle your room bill as often as you wish and get cash that way if needed.
Overall we had a great holiday, and would still be there if we'd had our way. It was our first time to the Maldives and it is head and shoulders above some other destinations."
- Travel date: Mon 22nd of August 2005
Wot no restaurant?
"Imagine booking a dream holiday, looking so forward to going, then two days before leaving getting a call from your travel agent to be told the retaurant you were due to eat in had just been knocked down and that you were to eat in the coffee shop instead.
Imagine arriving at the airport and then having a 30 modd hour delay before leaving.
Imagine arriving at the island, paying to upgrade to a better part of the island, only to be told by everyone else sitting next to you that they had been upgraded for free.
Then imagine strolling down to the beach the first day in supposed paradise, finding the island does not provide anywhere to sunbathe on no beach beds, on a supposed beach holiday.
Imagine spending days inside due to the monsoon between May to August.
Imagine wanting to while away the hours and do a bit of fishiing only to be told it will cost you $1500 as you have to have a man and a boat.
You dont have to imagine. If this is you idea of a perfect holiday, simply go to Kuramathi.
PS- Imagine trying to simply be honest and writing some of these points in the kuramathi guest book, only to find KURAMATHI BIG BROTHER removes them."
- Travel date: Mon 15th of August 2005
"My husband and I spent 10 days on Kuramathi albeit in the rainy season! For the first two days it rained continually, after this the sun appeared and provided the weather you would expect.
We booked a superior room in Kuramathi Village, but were upgraded to a deluxe room due to a new restaurant being built. Our all inclusive package was also transferred to the Cottage resort on the island.
The meals taken in the Cottage restaurant were a combination of buffet and set menus. We found the choice on the buffet excellent, with a theme for each night and a wide variety of dishes, but the set menu was somewhat limited.
My husband took his PADI Open Water diving qualifiaction with the Rasdhoo Dive School and cannot speak highly enough of the instructors and dive leaders.
The snorkelling was fantastic, we met some lovely people and overall had an excellent time. I would also definitely recommend sea plane transfer."
- Travel date: Fri 29th of July 2005
Holiday from hell!!
"My party and I have just returned from the worst holiday experience ever. We were due to fly Monarch on 29 May 2005 from Gatwick for 1 week and travel to Kuramathi Village (due to arrive lunchtime 30 May). Unfortunately our flight was delayed 29 hours at Gatwick (having boarded it and taken to the runway once and waited 3 hours in the middle of the night for the baggage to be taken off the aircraft). Neither Monarch nor Kuoni, our tour operator, made any worthwhile efforts to keep passengers informed of events. Indeed, each company representative that we spoke with gave us different replies to the same questions. At one point, we suspected a riot would break out.
On arrival in Male on 31 May we boarded a speedboat for Kuramathi. However, due to weather conditions we were taken to Kurumba. This was not advised until we had arrived in Kurumba. However, Kuoni did finally agree to upgrade us to Kuramathi Cottage and Spa Resort.
When we finally arrived at Kuramathi Cottage my bungalow was infested with ants the size of stick insects (room 202), the food was dreadful with not a great deal of choice. Either it was a set menu or buffet. The buffets did provide more choice but weren't great.
However, Kuramathi is a pretty island, quite large and the dives to see Hammerheads are spectacular if you're lucky enough to see any, which I was.
Take my advice, avoid Kuoni/Monarch but do consider Kuredu (has a golf course albeit small), Meerufenfushi, Komandoo, or Vela Varu (small island but with heaps of charm). These islands are prettier, the diving just as good, if not better, especially on Kuredu, and the food/drinks/service far outstrips Kuramathi Cottage.
Finally, do put valuables in the safe provided, my mobile phone was stolen from my room whilst we were at dinner on the last night!"
- Travel date: Thu 9th of June 2005
"From the moment we saw the Maldive Islands from the air we knew we had found paradise! We spent 25 mins flying to Kuramathi village and were greated with a refreshing, chilled orange juice. We were told that from this moment our holiday begins and our luggage was whisked away from us.
Our honeymoon was fantastic and we were both made to feel like King and Queen. We took advantage of the spa and indulged in a massage and bath for 2 - A MUST!!! We were fed well from the village restaurant as we were fully inclusive but also used other restaurants on the island at a charge - well worth it.
The people on the island couldn't have been more friendly and helpful and sent us off with a few freebies to remind us of our stay.
We will definately go back again!!!"
- Travel date: Tue 19th of April 2005
Holiday of a lifetime, perfect!
"My boyfiend and i came here on the 1st feb 2004. We stayed in the superior bungalows not in the water-ones. I would recomend upgrading to one of these as the standard bungalows didnt look as nice and werent in such good locations.
The food was excellent alot of seafood which is nice. lots of fresh fruit but they do normal food too and mashed potatoe! The bar serves international spirits on all inclusive. The island is quite big and the spa in the middle is top class we had an adam and eve massage together and you face the beach and i dont think you will ever beat this experience as it was perfect.
The snorkelling is out of this world i have just recently been to the red sea in egypt and it wasnt a patch on the sea life in the maldives.
Once you have been to the maldives you will be spoilt and no where else in the world will match up to this."
- Travel date: Tue 22nd of March 2005
Honeymoon in Paradise
"My husband and I spent the most amazing 12 days of our married lives so far on this amazing Island.
The location of this island is the most perfect for snorkelling along the amazing coral reef. It's mind blowing.
The Service is impeccable on this island. You're treated like royalty. It's very humbling.
There is nothing I disliked I promise you! Absolutely nothing.
The things I liked are everything from the time in Male airport to the lounge in the airport waiting to board the sea plane the exceptional services started.
The accommodation is 1st class always cleaned and kept stocked with clean towels for the beach as well as for use in the rooms. We stayed in a deluxe beach villa at e top end of the island, which I recommend if you are on your own and want to be more private.
If you go with family children or another couple the further end of the island near the infinity pool would probably suit you more. There's a lot more going on down there.
Please don't get me wrong there's always something to do any where on the island but it seemed to be busier there.
There seems to be so much room for everyone there was a full island when we were there as February seems to be a popular time to visit, but believe me you always seem to be the only ones there. It's Never over crowded any where!
The food is out of this world. Al la cartÃ© means top notch food, service and exceptional cleanliness.
Ladies make up not needed! No high heels needed flip flops if you like but most of the time I was barefoot.
There are sandy floors in some of the restaurants. So during the day we were mostly barefoot.
Evenings we did wear flip flops just because you kind of feel a bit more dressed up in the evenings.
The cocktails are amazing! They work so hard to give you the best they can do!
Although the drinks are included in the al la cartÃ© menu some how you don't over indulge. You don't need to, you're always high on the ambiance of every where you are on this island.
The fruit bays are so special to see, the reef is a must and the beautiful song of the bird that seems to be the only one there, must be captured on video so you can remind yourself of it when you return home.
The fish almost become your best friends the sharks too, I find myself missing them so much. They are so beautiful and they seem to welcome you into their world. It's truly amazing.
If you have a bucket list, put kuramathi in it! Start saving today! You must go to paradise!
You must experience this island."
- Travel date: Mon 2nd of March 2015
"My wife and I were lucky enough to spend our honeymoon here. I know I will just be echoing previous reviews but here is my take on it:
We arriverd by sea-plane at an extra cost of Â£90-00 each. It was more than worth it as you fly relatively low-level and get to see so many of the wonderful islands and atolls. The colours of the sea are incredible. It's an amazing way to start your holiday.
You then land at a small floating jetty and are taken to land by a long boat.
The island is very low-lying with very full vegitation so you walk down the jetty and into what looks like a tropical desserted island. In just this short walk you see many fish in the crystal waters including reef sharks. They are small and harmless.
The reception is a large open wooden pavillion and you are greeted with a tasty cool drink whilst guests are booked in.
We had a beach villa and although it would've been great to stop in a water villa with jaccuzzi, you could not fault it. It was large, very clean, well appointed, of a tropical feel and the private outside shower was amazing. Having a shower outside in the tropical heat surrounded by palm trees stretching up to the blue sky.
The island is beautiful and well worth walking around. The sandbank at the top of the island is very special and often we would walk up and watch the sunset and then walk down to the Laguna bar and watch the sting ray feeding with a coule of cocktails. A must do!
The waters are unbelievebly clear and as you look out to sea the colours change through varying turquoises at different depths. I genuinely have never been anywhere as beautiful or unique as The Maldives.
The sealife waere incredible. You only had to walk in and lots of different fish just swim past you.
The different colours are breathtaking. At first you ferel slightly edgy when you see the sharks (about 3 feet long) but you soon get used to them. I did see a a shark that was at least 5 ft long but I was quite far out and it was not interested in me in the slightest.
Something happened that will stay with me forever. There is a small island across from Kuramathi, where provisions and waste etc are kept. Some people complained about being able to see it but its a hotel, a working island and these provisions have to be kept somewhere before distribution. There is obviously a natural channel between these two islands and on one of the days we were sat on the beach, sipping a cocktail by the infinity jaccuzzi when something caught my eye. A pod of dolphins came through the channel. Everyone rushed to the water to watch them. They were about 100m out and starting jumping. We were treated to a natural dolphin display. It was the most incredible thing ever to see them doing this in their natural envroment and not in those cruel aquatic shows.They came back through are were only about 20 feet out!
Every member of staff we met, from beach cleaners and gardeners to maitre d's, were very polite and very professional. We were waited on hand and foot without any sense of rush or intrusion. The staff took the trip from excellent to perfection.
The bars have a blend of tropical and elegance. Sipping your favourite drink on a sun deck looking out over the most beautiful sea. Is there anything more relaxing?
Lastly, my most favourite pastime, FOOD! We went A La Carte all inclusive. If you book Kuramathi, upgrade to this. Don't look at the cost as it is more than worth it. Every meal we had was a romantic evening out with excellent food and the best of service. I can't express just how good the food is. My personal favourite was The Island Barbeque. The food at all restaurants were of the same high standards but the atmosphere here was my favourite. You had intimate and romantic at the others but there was a really nice buzz here.
We dined outside on the sundeck, clear skies above us gazing at the moon and stars. You're just by the beach and can hear the waves gently breaking. There was nice background music coming from the sand bar. You must order the pork ribs and the steak that is dramatically flambeed at your table.
If you are looking to spend your honeymoon or holiday somewhere beautiful and tropical, with as much or as little as you want to do whilst eating the nicest food with the best service, look no further than Kuramathi.
Lastly I would like to mention Bluebay Travel. They were the team we booked through and have done ever since. They are excellent and always secure the best package at the lowest price with the greatest of service. I strongly reccommend you give them a try. If you would be so kind please mention me, Oliver Payne, because as a self-employed decorator I know how important customer referral is and would love them to know their customers are as loyal as they are. I believe who you book through is just as big a part of your holiday as the trip itself. It's where it all starts."
- Travel date: Sun 1st of July 2012