Last year when I first visited Maldives, there was one activity that I wanted to try and we didn't get to do it in the time we were in the islands, and that is the Castaway Private Island Picnic. But this year we couldn't leave without doing it, at Angsana Velavaru they took us on a 15min boat trip to an inhabited island near the hotel to enjoy during 6 hours a private island on our own.
Once we arrived on the island, the hotel team unloaded the picnic material and the boat could stop close enough to only get the feet into the water so we could take all our belongings with us to the island.
We were 10 in the group and we were left with soft drinks and water and a complete pack lunch for each of us that contained: a potato salad, a shellfish salad, smoked salmon with lettuce and a couple of sandwiches. We also had fresh fruit bruschettas and cake and in my case a lactose-free cake for me.
I was surprised of how complete the picnic was, we had ceramic plates, a tablecloth, cutlery and cups to drink and we found the perfect shade under some palm trees. We were worried to be in the island for so long without shade as the sun was very high and we already had some sunburns after a week in the Maldives.
The island where they took us has a very nice coral reef, as most of them the majority of coral was already dead but we found some brain-shaped coral alive and other plants and seaweeds surrounded by a wide variety of fishes.
It is the perfect romantic scenery if you want to go with yoru husband or wife to spend half day in a deserted island, if you like snorkeling it is the main activity but sunbathing and resting is also a must.
Snorkelling in Angsana Velavaru and surroundings
Snorkeling is the main activity in Maldives along with diving if you are a certified PADI diver at a minimum, or you can even get the certification in the Maldives, some resorts offer that option too.
The house reef at Angsana requires to get a boat to be able to snorkel in it, the boat trip takes around 10 to 15 minutes depending on the chosen snorkeling spot. The resort has fins, masks and live vests available for guests to rent or you can bring your own from home if you prefer.
It was fun to snorkel during the morning and the sunlight let us enjoy and see better the marine life, we saw some electric blue fish shoal all swimming together in a perfect line, some schooing banner fishes, and moorish idols.
Maldives is full of daisy parrot fishes I have seen them in every resort in the Maldives and also here in Velavaru. I have to say that although the marine life is lively. Unfortunately, most of the coral is already dead as happens in the majority of resorts, fishes use it to hide inside them but the quantity of alive coral is minimum.
Very near the shore in Velavaru you will be able to see Eagle Rays, they come for food snacks every day around 17pm, the marine biologist feeds them but only snacks as they want to preserve their food-seeking unaltered so they don't depend on the food the resort provides them.
It is interesting as when they had enough they just leave, so no greedy eagle rays it seems. They just come for what they feel they need and they come back to their place.
In our stay in the In Ocean Villas in Angsana we have discovered that right in front of the villas there is a very good snorkel point, once you come down the stairs of the Sunset Villas you will start to get into the reef. You can easily get to the In Ocean Villas from the main land in the shuttle boats that run every hour, check the schedule in your room and it is for free.
We could see alive coral in brain shape, as well as different kinds of fish, if you wake up in the morning from 7 to 9 is when the most activity you will find while snorkelling. Although there are shallow parts, there are built entrances to the coral reef that can be seen easily for you to enter safely and don't damage any of the coral while snorkelling.
It is common to see baby coral reef sharks, don't get scared by them, they are tiny and they are very used to people and are no danger for humans. As always when snorkeling it is important to be respectful and don't bother the fish or touch them as they are wild animals and you can harm them touching them and you don't know how they will react.