Floating in the Indian Ocean, the Maldives are the cream of the crop when it comes to beach holidays. The waters here are their own brand of blue. The sands are blindingly white. And phalanxes of palm trees stand to attention. What’s more, if you count each island individually, you’ve got almost 2,000 reasons to visit.
Each of the 26 atolls in the Maldives has its own unique selling point. The North and South Ari Atolls offer easy access to the Maldivian capital, Male, the islands in the Ari Atoll have a reputation for their world-class dive sites, the more northern atolls, like Lhaviyani and Raa, are known as the least chartered, and the atolls in the south are becoming the focus of cutting-edge hotel designers.
For honeymooners, nothing compares to the Maldives’ just-married credentials. The archipelago’s trademark accommodation is stilted water villas, which come with four poster beds and infinity views of the sea. The islands’ restaurants, meanwhile, have turned tables for two into an art form.