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To fly or not to fly to the Maldives with children? This is one of the most popular topics on forums about island vacations and resorts. Let’s clarify whether the Maldives can be considered as a destination for a family vacation, or is it, after all, just a “paradise for lovers.”

Peculiarities of flying with children

Probably, the biggest fear when planning a trip is the long flight. However, as a rule, fears are not justified. Airlines foresee such moments, and in this regard, priority is given to direct regular flights. Some of the airlines that fly to the Maldives are included in the ratings of the best airlines for flying with children. For example:

  • Etihad offers services of a flying nanny on long haul flights who advises parents and keeps children entertained.
  • Lufthansa at the German airport offers a family check-in area, and the planes have toys and a children's menu.
  • British Airways offer SkyFlyer entertainment kits based on age.
  • Emirates give out children's travel kits, toys and offer a special menu. When landing in Dubai, a separate check-in area is available.
  • Qatar Airways offer flights in separate family areas for 4 people using special partitions.

In addition, almost all airlines provide changing tables and baby food warmers.

A child under 2 does not need a separate seat but if you pay the Infant fare in addition, the baby will travel in the parents’ arms. You will be provided with a special fastening and, depending on the airline, you can take extra baggage for the child, stroller and other necessary things. These moments are individual for each carrier. For an older child, you need to book a separate seat. It would be great if you manage to buy the so-called bulkhead seats when there is no front row in front of you, which will provide more space.

At the airport

If you have a connecting flight, you shouldn't worry too much. In any case, you shouldn’t worry about what to do with the child during the connecting. The big hub airports have taken care of this. For example, in Dubai, children can have fun in the Arabian desert-style children's area and have a snack at the Nutella cafe; Doha airport also has playgrounds and many toy shops.

In Male

At Male International Airport, in front of the border control zone, there is a mother's room, where you can feed and change your child upon arrival.

When passing through passport control, you will need to provide documents for the child (birth certificate) and fill out a migration card. A child under 16 must be accompanied by an adult. If the adult is not a parent, he must have a notarized permission from the parents.

Choosing accommodation with children in the Maldives

It is important to take the time to choose the resort where you want to spend your vacation. Indeed, there are resorts in the Maldives that are focused on romance and do not have special conditions for families with children.

When choosing accommodation for family, consider the following points:

  • Availability of suitable room categories
  • Nutrition for children
  • Children’s clubs and entertainment for children
  • Lagoon and beach: it is important to have a gentle entry into the water
  • Shade canopies on the beach and resort premises
  • Distance from Male

There are two main ways to get from the airport to the island: by boat and seaplane. The first one is used for hotels that are located near the capital and, if you have small children, it is better to use this option. In case of a domestic flight, you will need to check-in and take a bus to the local airport.

Посадка на гидросамолет
Seaplane boarding | Asad Photo Maldives

Over-water bungalows

The paradise overwater bungalows that we so often imagine when thinking of the Maldives are not suitable for families because you won’t be able to relax due to the need to constantly monitor a child not to end up in the water. Most hotels don’t offer overwater bungalows for guests with small children.

Guest houses

The advantage of guesthouses, first of all, is that they are often located on the territory of residential islands, where an authentic atmosphere and landscape have been preserved, there are many markets and shops with local products and cafes. In addition, this option will cost less than a vacation at a resort. But you need to take into account the fact that you are unlikely to be offered babysitting services, special baby food or a nursery. Therefore, it is better to choose guesthouses for families with older children.

Resorts

Resort hotels are the most common option for families. In addition, there are resorts that solely specialize in accommodating guests with children and have the appropriate infrastructure. For instance:

  • Four Seasons Landaa Giraavaru is a 5-star hotel of the famous international chain, located in North Male Atoll, 25 minutes away from the airport by a speedboat. Children are greeted here with welcome gifts. Kids from 4 to 12 will have a lot of fun at the Kuda Mas Kids Club, including dolphin cruises, surf lessons and fishing. There is also a Marine Discovery Center and babysitting services for an additional fee.
  • Jumeirah Vittaveli is an island resort with five-star villas in South Male Atoll, 20 minutes away from the airport by boat. It is perfect for large families as it offers accommodation in two-bedroom villas for up to 6 people. The hotel has 2 clubs for children depending on age: Sinbad's for children 3 to 12 years old and Teen Lounge for teenagers from 12 to 16 years old. Both offer a variety of leisure activities, including a visit to the Marine Center.
  • Centara Grand Island Resort & Spa Maldives is located on the island of Machchafushi, which can be reached by a seaplane in 25 minutes or by boat in 1.5 hours. This is one of the few resorts that still provide accommodation with children in water villas. Moreover, the villas have a separate children's room with a PlayStation. There are 2 children's clubs: Camp Safari Kids Club for children from 3 to 9 years old and E-Zone for children aged 10 to 17. It has an infinity pool with a children's section, babysitting services and a variety of activities including family snorkeling and safari tours.
  • Bandos Maldives is located 15 minutes away from the airport by a speedboat in North Male Atoll. Kokko Kids Club entertains children from 3 to 12 years old from 8:00 to 17:00. The hotel offers many family activities, including cruises, glass bottom boat trips and excursions in Male. Bandos also has a children's pool, babysitting services and children's tables.
  • Sheraton Maldives Full Moon Resort & Spa, a 5-star hotel of the world's leading chain, is located 20 minutes away from the international airport by boat. Here you can choose from several family accommodation options. Children aged 4 to 12 will find plenty of fun at the Sheraton Adventure Kids Club: Maldivian language lessons, music and dance workshops, sports activities and adventures. A special feature of the hotel is the SPG program - all-inclusive baby meals for a separate fee.
  • Meeru Island Resort is one of the largest 4-star all-inclusive hotels in the Maldives. The island is divided into 2 parts and one of them is dedicated just for families with a separate pool and restaurants. Children have all the infrastructure they need, including The Komas Kids Club with a pool and many outdoor activities.
  • Hideaway Beach Resort & Spa at Dhonakulhi is a resort in the north of the Maldives, on the Haa Alifu Atoll, which is known for its very spacious family villas with private pools and beach areas by a shallow lagoon. For children from 3 to 12 years old, there is a Tender Hearts Kids Club, there is a children's menu and a water park.
  • Constance Halaveli. The hotel is located in North Ari Atoll, a 25-minute flight from the international airport. For families there are several options for comfortable accommodation: Family Beach Villas with a children's room and Double Storey Beach Villas with two bedrooms. Each villa has its own pool and beach area. For the entertainment of children from 4 to 12 years old, the Constance Kids Club is open from 9:00 to 21:00, offering many activities, such as cooking classes, crab hunting, sand sculptures and disco for children.

JW Marriott Maldives Resort & Spa
JW Marriott Maldives Resort & Spa

Nutrition for children

  • Guest houses. In guesthouses, a menu includes dishes of mainly national cuisine with a mixture of Indian, Eastern, Chinese cuisines. If children are small, nutrition can be a problem, because you have to get more sophisticated with cooking or constantly search for something more suitable. In small grocery stores, you can only find rice, pasta and sweet cereals. Also, there might be problems with dairy products that require long storage. In this situation, powdered infant formula may be a good option.
  • Hotels. Hotel meals definitely win. The resort restaurants offer a wide variety of international cuisine. It is best to book an all-inclusive option with children, so that you always have a choice. Some hotels also provide special family meal packages with discounts for children.
  • Cafes and restaurants. If you choose to eat at any local restaurant or cafe, keep in mind that the national cuisine is quite peculiar and spicy.

Детский буфет
Children’s buffet | Lily Beach Resort & Spa

Entertainment for children in the Maldives

Depending on the age of the child, the Maldives has many options for entertainment. Firstly, these are the activities offered by kid's clubs in resorts:

  • Culinary master classes
  • Marine biology lessons
  • Crab races
  • Exploration of the nature of the island
  • Study of Maldivian culture: dance, music, language
  • Arts and crafts
  • Yoga
  • Spa for children
  • Treasure hunt
  • Theatrical performances
  • Playrooms
  • Children's film screenings
  • Board games


Shangri-La's Villingili Resort & Spa

We should also highlight water activities. Depending on age, children will be interested in:

  • Dolphin cruises
  • Snorkeling
  • Diving
  • Fishing
  • Excursions on a submarine or the Maldivian dhoni boat
  • Picnics

Дайвинг с детьми на Мальдивах
Kuredu Island Resort & Spa

Health and safety

First aid kit. There are only 2 full-fledged hospitals in the Maldives and both are located in Male. Almost every resort offers the services of a doctor who can help in specific situations. Clinics and regional hospitals are open in the large atolls. At the same time, some islands may not be able to provide emergency assistance. Therefore, you need to have your own first aid kit. Do not neglect the advice to stock up on a baby remedy for diarrhea, as it often happens in children due to acclimatization.

Security. It is very important to be careful in the sun and have 50+ sunscreen available. In addition, you may encounter insect problems, so we recommend purchasing repellents in advance.



Helpful tips

  • When traveling to the Maldives, it is best to take as many of the necessary things for the children as possible. This is especially true for diapers, napkins and baby food. It is not easy to find everything you need on the island and it could be indecently expensive.
  • Drink water only from securely sealed bottles or cans.
  • Be sure to wash fruits and vegetables before eating.
  • If you order drinks with ice, specify what water is used for making it.

The Maldivian vacation with children is no longer something unusual and risky. Like any resort destination, the Maldives will be another fun adventure for the whole family. The main thing is to arm yourself with knowledge and recommendations. We wish you a carefree vacation!

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