Highlights: Maldives

After spending four sunny days in the Maldives we stopped in Singapore for two and a half days on our way back to Hong Kong.

I got back to Hong Kong late last night, after quite the rocky flight [i despise turbulence], and have been spending my day catching up on summer school.

summer school-pro: I get to work on it whenever I want and not work on it whenever I want.

summer school-con: I end up immensely behind after a week off and am paying the price today.

Oh the joys of summer school 🙂

I did get to watch a great movie today though. Remember the movie, Remember the Titans? I had to watch it for my organizational behavior class for a discussion we are doing this week about diversity and leadership. I forgot what a great movie it is. If you haven’t seen it, I highly recommend it!

Anyways, back to the Maldives. Here are some highlights from last week:

Getting my exercise through bike rides around the island and swims in the ocean

Attempting holiday card photos

The fresh fruits and juices

 

The eco-feel of the resort

The library’s large collection of almost untouched books and movies

The yoga studio

 The endless views

Apparently it’s rainy season in the Maldives right now and it rained the day before we arrived and began drizzling the day we left. So thankful it didn’t rain a drop when we were there!

Some photos I took when we were taking off.

It’s hard to imagine that all of this will all be underwater in 50 years.

I’ll be back tomorrow with my singapore highlights…including my one of my favorite sweet treats!


Vacation and Nutrition

After yesterdays post it probably seems like the only thing I’ve been doing in the Maldives is…EAT. haha

I promise I’ve been doing other stuff! 🙂

I’ve been doing a lot of snorkeling in – I guess you might call it – my backyard?

All I have to do is hop off the deck and I can swim with the tropical fishies!

There’re a couple reefs about 100 yards out that are home to hundreds of small and medium sized fish, lobster, and sometimes wandering sea turtles. See those darker patches out there? That’s where I go to see gil, nemo, and dory from the movie ‘Finding Nemo‘. And LOTS of them. I also saw puffer fish and a whole bunch of others which I have no idea what they are named.

Yesterday I did some skindiving around the house reef in the main area of the resort.

That was the extent of my underwater photos. Somehow my waterproof camera became not so waterproof after I hosed it off with fresh water. When I took the battery out some water dripped out with it and it no longer turns on. oops.

Anyways, remember how I got my diving certification back in June? That was for this particular trip! And hopefully some future ones.

I went scuba diving yesterday afternoon and had so much fun looking at all the different kinds of fish and coral. I wish my camera worked so I could’ve taken some more photos. Maybe next time.

_ _ _ _ _ _ _ _

Moving on…

Lets talk vacation and nutrition.

I feel like I often have a hard time keeping with my normal diet whenever I go on vacation. Particularly green foods.

I know it depends on where I go and what time of the year, but from my experience, I have a much harder time eating fruits and veggies in Europe than in more tropical places like…say, Hawaii.

I know its because I mostly eat out whenever I travel, but I have come to find a couple ways to incorporate more colors into my diet as I travel.

(1) I always bring a couple of my favorite packable foods with me. I love to bring my favorite bars (NuGo bars), regular or instant oatmeal, nut butter packets or peanut flour, and other snacks.

(2) I locate the nearest grocery store or farmers market (even better!) and pick up a couple staples like apples, bananas, or whatever fruits are in season. Sometimes hotels have apples or pears in their lobby for guest to munch on. If I have a fridge I’ll even pick up some parisables like almond milk and/or yogurt.

(3) Restaurants always have some sort of veggies on hand. Ordering a plate to share with the table is also a great way to try some local veggies that I don’t always get to eat or may be new to me.

(4) I try to eat various colors throughout the day by making fruits the star of one meal, veggies the star of another, and whatever I want (local fare) for the third meal.

(5) When all else fails, I’ll just enjoy myself and eat whatever pleases ME. After all, I am on vacation 🙂

Sometimes all it takes is a little creativity and balance.

Since I’m eating so much at the breakfast buffets and 3 course dinners here, I don’t really need much for lunch so I’ll just eat a smaller, more snack-like, lunch.

Faux-Hot Dog, anyone?

Yesterday’s:

 Whole wheat bread, a baby banana, and some maple almond butter I brought from home.

Today’s:

Whole wheat toast, baby banana, berry jam, and the remainder of my Justin’s maple almond butter.

You can get whole grain bread just about anywhere nowadays and I just grabbed those bananas from breakfast.

Perfect afternoon pick-me-up.

I’ve been lucky here in the at this particular resort and getting plenty of veggies at dinner and lots of fruits and fresh squeezed juices in the morning.

Pomogranate

Dragonfruit, passionfruit, rambutan, mangosteen, and a bean shaped fruit

Fresh squeezed grapefruit juice and spirulina

Hummus and Organic Veggies

Detoxifying Elixir – Made from plant extracts

That last one (the elixir) I didn’t enjoy so much. It’s supposed to be taken like a shot, but one taste of it and I decided to pass. It tasted like echinacea, which I despise.

Tonight is my last night here 😦

Next stop…

Singapore.

How do YOU usually eat on vacation?It really varies for me. I always try to eat well, but sometimes I do better than other times. Sometimes I just can’t help it…like the week I spent in Italy in March, where all I ate was pasta, pizza, and gelato. By the end of the week, all i wanted (craving has never been so strong!) was a massive salad.  So I guess, in the end, my body knows what it needs.


Breakfast-ing

I’m loving life here in the Maldives!

I awoke this morning around 7am and spent 40 mins in bed watching Star Trek (it was on HBO and I couldn’t help but watch. SUCH a good movie!) then it was a quick face wash and tooth brushing and I was off to breakfast.

Breakfast here is just glorious.

Notice how everyone is barefoot? No shoes necessary at this resort 🙂 (They even have these cute green paddings that cover the bicycle pedals and make it comfortable for bare feet to peddle.)

It’s served in the main ‘house’ – about a 5 min bike ride from my villa.

Fresh Fruit

Choose any fruit you like and these guys will cut it up for you.

Bread and Jam

Cereal (in the wooden boxes) and toppings

They have all sorts of toppings, from dried fruits [dates, figs, apricots..] to roasted nuts [pistachios, almonds, sunflower seeds…] and more.

Pastries

Hot Foods and Yogurts

Some of my breakfast eats:

Yesterday:

Mango, guava, and rambutan

Detox Juice – beets, celery, apple, ginger

Dragonfruit and Mangosteens


Cereal & a dried fig in soy milk

Wheat toast, pineapple, chocolate chip muffin, pancake (i couldn’t resist and had to get one 😉 ), and jellies

Today:

Passionfruit, plum, rambutan, and two fruits I don’t know the name of

This was my first time seeing that bean-shaped fruit on the right. It originally looks like this with its shell on.

It tastes kind of like a dried date.

Carrot and apple juice shooter

Toast with honey, lemon basil jelly, pineapple jelly, and coconut jelly (the best out of the three!) and a side of muesli.

Fresh squeezed pineapple juice with ginger and mint.

Cereal with pistachios and cashews, waffle with chocolate syrup, and papaya

Mango, dragonfruit, and rambutan

I’m loving all this fresh fruit! I promise I didn’t eat ALL of this alone, but I did eat the majority of it. Breakfast is the most important meal of the day, yeah?
I need all the energy I can get in order to bike around the island 🙂
I get to bike past this organic garden everyday.

Above the garden is a restaurant, Leaf, where I actually just had dinner tonight.

I also get to bike along this path that smells so good and forest-y.

I love that this resort is eco-friendly and serves mainly natural and organic foods including free range meats, all locally sourced.

Today’s been a looong day and I can barely keep my eyelids from drooping. Time for bed! Night 🙂


Villa Sweet Villa

Ok, so the sun came up bright and early this morning and I got my first glimpse of this place around 7am. It was way too dark last night for me to see anything at all.

Basically, the only way to even properly classify this place is pure PARADISE. I don’t even think that word can give this atoll enough credit.

Late last night I got to the Maldives and began my stay here at the Six Senses Laamu. Today has been simply amazingly wonderful.

I do have to warn you that this post is pretty much photo vomit because there’re just so many wonderful things about this place that I don’t even know how to go about posting it.

So I’m staying here in a water villa which basically means I’m living above water.

There are three of these water villa jetty’s on this atoll along with some private beach villas.

I’m staying on Jetty B. Far enough away from the main area, but close enough that I can walk or bike.

Oh yeah, I forgot to mention that they give us each a bike to take around the resort, which I’m absolutely loving!

So, are you ready for a tour of my villa? 🙂

This is the place where I’ll be calling home the next couple days.

Water villa numba 48.

From the back.

These villas are fairly close to one another, but still have a very private feel to them, thanks to all those large walls. The shower is actually behind that large wooden plank wall.

Sooo…Come on in!

One of the first things you’ll see when you walk in are the sinks. They’re in the shape of suitcases and are so adorable and nautical with a bit of a modern feel.

Behind the sinks you’ll find the our closets and toilet.

See that bright blue spot on the ground in front of the toilet? It’s glass and you can watch fish swim by as you sit on the toilet. haha

Moving on…the left side of the room basically looks out into the jetty and ocean.

While the right side opens up to our shower and bathtub.

The bathtub is clear! So it’s like you’re bathing in the ocean. I hope no one swims under anyones villas. That’d be a little creeepy…

To the right of the shower are two sets of stairs.

One of the stairs takes you down into the ocean.

The other set of stairs takes you up a passage that leads upstairs to a little nook where you can just sit out and relax.

Now back downstairs to the bedroom.

The center of the bedroom lies one of the most comfy beds ever.

I don’t know if it was because I was beyond exhausted last night (most likely), or if it’s because it looks out at the most gorgeous view. Ever.

Which brings us outside to the deck.

Take your pick on where you want to lay out.

Hammock?

Couch?

Massive couch?

Or my personal favorite. The two [i’m not really sure what to call them] beach (deck?) chairs.

Perfect place to just lie there…and blog (instead of summer schooling) 🙂

My brother and sister prefer using it as a platform to jump into the ocean.

Rather than using the ladder to the right. Although I can’t blame them since there’s a good sized crab thats taken residence on that ladder. It scared the bejesus out of me the first time I was climbing up from the water.

Getting restless? Yeah, me too 🙂 Sorry for the photo palooza…

I’ll be back tomorrow with a tour of the resort anddd the awesome breakfast buffet.

Enjoy your Saturday!


Maldives

15 hours on almost every mode of transportation – train, 3 airplanes, a boat, and a walk through a jungle -and I’m in the MALDIVES!

I started my journey at about 1pm Hong Kong time yesterday afternoon (Friday) and am just now getting into my water bungalow (hotel room) at 3am resort time, 1 hr ahead of Male time here in the Maldives.

At 1pm yesterday I headed to the airport via train. 2 stops later I was at the airport where I boarded the largest plane I’ve ever been on. I think it just might be the largest commercial plane out there, or at leas thats what my brother told me. I was in row 79 on the second floor!  This was my first time flying Singapore airlines and I have to say it was a great experience.

It took about 4 hours to get from Hong Kong to Singapore. I haven’t been to Singapore since I was about 9 or 10 and the airport was amazing! Super clean and so much for you to do. You can do just about anything from spa time, or gym time to playing their free xbox set up to wandering their many beautiful gardens.  They even have a butterfly garden! It wasn’t near our terminal though and since our layover was about 20 mins I only got to pass by their orchid garden which was so pretty.

 

The plane from Singpore to Male, Maldives was slightly smaller (just one floor) and had a total flying time of just under 4 hours. Singapore airlines offers the widest array of inflight entertainment I’ve ever seen on a plane. Movies, tv shows, games, music…you can even learn a language.

My lens fogged up when I got off the plane hence the terrible photo.

Anyways, we finally made it to the Maldives, but our journey was not over yet. We got on an even smaller plane to fly to another island.

It took about 45 mins and luckily it was a smooth flight. I’m guessing some of the prior flights were not so smooth since the plane smelled like vomit.

After our third plane ride we took a 25 min speed boat ride to our final destination.

I knew the Maldives was remote, but I didn’t realize it was THIS remote.

It’s a little past 6am Hong Kong time now and I’m pooped. I’m going to bed and will be back tomorrow with photos of this place. It’s pitch black out so I’m still not sure what everything looks like.

Sweet [and hopefully bug-free] dreams 🙂

 

Crossing my fingers it’s sunny tomorrow!