While the Maldives is certainly known as a honeymoon and sunshine filled holiday destination, the country also impresses with very good surf spots at a variety of locations throughout the entire archipelago. If you decide to focus your entire trip on surfing in the Maldives then you might want to contact a tour operator that specializes in those types of trips, but if you're looking to surf for a few days as part of your trip then you've come to the right place.

Most of the water villa resorts on private islands in the Maldives offer wind-surfing alongside diving, snorkeling, sailing, and fishing, but only a limited number have, what most people would consider proper, surf beaches on their islands or very nearby. The water villa resorts that offer surfing are listed below, and fortunately for us, they come in all sorts of price ranges. The best surf is said to be at the Chaaya Island Dhonveli, which is the cheapest on the list as well. Others are in the moderate or luxury price categories, so there's a great choice for every budget.

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Surf seasons in the Maldives

The Maldives islands are spread out over thousands of kilometers, with some that are actually located below the equator, and you’ll find that the surf season peaks at different times in different places. For the most part, you’ll find that the peak season in the North Malé Atoll, which is where most of the region’s resorts are located, is April through October.


In the Outer Atolls, the peak season usually goes from February through April as well as September through November.


The surf is notably dead during the months of December and January, so if you are coming during those months (which tend to be the busiest as well as the most expensive) then you might not be getting conditions good enough to make it worthwhile.

Maldives water villa resorts with surfing

Cinnamon Dhonveli Maldives

  • Water villas: 60
  • Total rooms/suites: 115


With 60 water villas (in two different classes) that go alongside 55 island rooms and suites, the Chaaya Island Dhonveli Resort offers popular all-inclusive meal plans that offer an excellent value. The surfing beach here is supposed to be among the best in the region, and certainly one of the very best of those attached to private-island resorts. In fact, this particular resort is world famous for its surfing, making it a hot spot for those chasing waves.


This is also one of the few resorts that has reliable nightlife in addition to a Maldivian culture show. The modest prices help seal the deal for the right crowd, so it should be a top choice for surfers and those who aren’t coming to the Maldives to simply read a novel on a deck chair.


  • Low season online specials from US$1,226 per night
  • High season online specials from US$1,226 per night
>More information about the Cinnamon Dhonveli Maldives >Check rates

Sun Island Resort & Spa – Maldives

  • Water villas: 68
  • Total rooms/suites: 426


This is the largest private-island resort in the Maldives, with 68 water villas among the 426 total rooms. A resort of this size has some real advantages, and in this case one of the advantages is a surfing beach. What’s really special about this is that most resorts in the area (at the smallest ones) barely have room for a beach at all.


The water villas here are on the small side, however, with that said, they are still quite roomy compared to a city hotel, and the modest price is one of the better values in the Maldives. Most guests who stay here opt for the all-inclusive plan, but there are other plans that are an even better value for people who don’t drink or who prefer to sick dining on rich buffet food around the clock. Those who come here to surf will find that surfing spots are very easy to reach. In addition, there are special surfing trips that can be arranged any time during your stay.


  • Low season online specials from US$356 per night
  • High season online specials from US$446 per night
>More information about the Sun Island Resort & Spa – Maldives >Check rates

Adaaran Prestige Ocean Villas All-Inclusive – Maldives

  • Water villas: 40
  • Total rooms/suites: 40


For visitors who really like the idea of having their own personal butler included in the room rate, the Adaaran Prestige Ocean Villas Resort is a perfect choice. The surfing beach here offers both rentals and lessons in addition to a perfect left venturing down the entire side of the island, but that’s only one aspect of this luxurious hotel with 40 lovely water villas.


The whole place was remodeled in 2009, so it feels much more modern than many others do in its price category. Each water villa is quite large, and they offer a long list of daytime activities and water sports in addition to the surfing, so this is a great choice for active travelers.


  • Low season online specials from US$1,300 per night
  • High season online specials from US$1,403 per night
>More information about the Adaaran Prestige Ocean Villas All-Inclusive – Maldives >Check rates

Robinson Club Maldives

  • Water villas: 25
  • Total rooms/suites: 101


Primarily an all-inclusive hotel, the Robinson Club Maldives is a great 4-star resort that plays host to 25 huge water villas. What makes these water villas even more impressive is the fact that they each come with their own Jacuzzi. The resort is German-run, and therefore extremely popular with Germans, which could be good or bad news depending on your own preferences.


In addition the the water villas, there are 76 beach bungalows, making it  so that the Robinson Club is large enough to offer many other activities, including fantastic scuba diving. The lagoon villas here are notably on the larger side, but for families there is also a Lagoon Suite on the end that comes with 2 bedrooms and a private pool on the sundeck. If you’re interested in surfing, but have yet to try the sport you’ll also have access to surfing lessons in addition to surfing itself.


  • Low season online specials from US$450 per night
  • High season online specials from US$620 per night
>More information about the Robinson Club Maldives >Check rates

Shangri-La’s Villingili Resort & Spa Maldives

  • Water villas: 60
  • Total rooms/suites: 142


In the case of the Shangri-La Villingili Resort,  the on-site surfing beach is only one small part of the charms of this place. The 60 water villas here are each as big as the house you grew up in, assuming you grew up in a pretty big house. If you’re interested, you can also book surfing vacation packages here that offer 2 hours of surfing everyday, making it a paradise for many.


Another thing you’ll want to note about this particular resort is the remote location which is actually south of the Equator and about 600 kilometers away from the main airport. The good news is that there is an airport that can handle private planes just an 8-minute speedboat ride away, so this is a popular option for those who lease or own their own planes.


  • Low season online specials from US$961 per night
  • High season online specials from US$1,398 per night
>More information about the Shangri-La’s Villingili Resort & Spa Maldives >Check rates

Ayada Maldives Resort

  • Water villas: 50
  • Total rooms/suites: 62


A relatively new resort, the Ayada Maldives Resort has gotten a lot of attention for its 50 ultra-luxurious and huge water villas, all of which are designed in a Turkish theme. There’s a nice surfing beach here as well as a traditional hammam (Turkish bath).


The location of this resort is quite remote so it does requires a charter flight and then a speedboat ride to reach the island, but that seclusion is a big plus for the high-end visitors who are booking at the Ayada Resort. Surfing wise, you’ll find that great breaks are only a short boat ride away. It’s certainly not for everyone, but it’s perfect for a select group.


  • Low season online specials from US$1,185 per night
  • High season online specials from US$1,490 per night
>More information about the Ayada Maldives Resort >Check rates

Four Seasons Resort Maldives at Kuda Huraa

  • Water villas: 42
  • Total rooms/suites: 96


With 42 water villas set over a beautiful and enticing lagoon, the Four Seasons Kuda Huraa Maldives is one of the most famous and photogenic of the resorts in this region. The surfing beach isn’t as extensive as some others are on this list, but it is there and lessons and rentals are available to paying guests. In fact, guests will also find that there are surfing cruises available. If you’re really exciting about taking a surfing vacation, you’ll want to consider on of these cruises.


Those familiar with the Four Seasons name certainly know that this is a 5-star deluxe resort with all the trimmings, and with that, a price to match. The water villas here come in several different categories and you’ll find that the cheapest of them are relatively small for this price category, but people who prefer a chain like the Four Seasons will likely be satisfied knowing they’ll get the amazing service they are known for.


  • Low season online specials from US$2,218 per night
  • High season online specials from US$2,218 per night
>More information about the Four Seasons Resort Maldives at Kuda Huraa >Chec rates

Four Seasons Maldives at Landaa Giraavaru

  • Water villas: 40
  • Total rooms/suites: 102


A small surfing beach might seem out of place for this sister resort to the one mentioned just above, but again, the people at Four Seasons enjoy offering the best of everything. The 40 water villas at the Four Seasons Maldives at Landaa Givaavaru are all quite large, and prices are a bit higher than the other resort, as you’d expect.


You’ve got 7 restaurants and bars to choose from, as well as a world-class spa that is located over the water itself. There’s also great scuba diving and snorkeling, in addition to 5-star service that’s presented from the moment you arrive until the moment you leave.


  • Low season online specials from US$1,380 per night
  • High season online specials from US$2,893 per night
>More information about the Four Seasons Maldives at Landaa Giraavaru >Chec rates
32 thoughts on "Maldives Water-Villa Resorts Near Malé Airport"

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  1. Hi Roger
    I am visiting Male on a cruise ship and would like to get a day ticket to a nearby island. Could you recommend one or two with good snorkling and give any advice on the best way to book.


  2. I have booked Paradise island resort for 3 night stay in December but I want to visit underwater restaurant like Ithaa or 5.8 but unable to get information how can I go there ? Please help me the cheapest way of travel from my resort to the underwater restaurants

    1. Amit,

      Generally speaking, there isn’t much transportation between resorts. It’s mostly between the airport and the resorts. It would be best to check the website of the resort with the underwater restaurant and see what their policy is. Best of luck. -Roger

  3. Hi Roger,

    if i take a ferry first to the city. Will it be possible to book a watervilla from there via some travel agent or some rep ?

    1. Game,

      I would assume that it would be possible, but I’m not sure. Because of the fact that airport transfers are built into the reservations could make it awkward to book once in Male. Also, I doubt you’d get a better deal there because the best deals tend to through Agoda.com and if someone has an office they would find it hard to compete. I know there are a couple of online travel agencies based in Male, but I don’t know if they have walk-in offices. Best of luck with this. -Roger

  4. Hi Roger, great list. Do you know if any of these resorts are particularly baby friendly — offer cribs and childcare, etc?


  5. Hello Roger,
    Thanks a lot for all the information! We just booked a 4 days stay in Meeru Island, and I wanted to check with you if the speedboats can only be booked via the hotel for a fixed price, or are there different websites/companies with different rates?
    Many thanks,

    1. Talina,

      I’m only aware of booking speedboats through the resorts. Meeru owns quite a few different boats and they send the appropriate size to the airport to pick up the people who have just landed, usually within an hour or so. I’ve heard of private speedboat companies, but I don’t think these private-island resorts allow transfers through them. You are going to love Meeru Island. -Roger

  6. Am planning my honeymoon on 21/12/2018 till 28/12/2018 I know it’s the high season but I want to ask what it the best water villa with pool in good resort around $800 – $1000/ night all inclusive ? And if u can also tell me what transfer is best to that resort and how much it will cost /person ? Thanks a lot

    1. Mika,

      I’m not sure how many all-inclusive Maldives resorts have private pools, although quite a few of them have private Jacuzzis. Check our list of the best Maldives resorts with pool water villas. I think the all-inclusive resorts with private Jacuzzis such as Meeru Island and Veligandu Island are going for around US$700 to US$900 per night for that week, and those are usually the cheapest, so I’m not sure if you’ll find a pool villa in that price range. As you know, that is literally the busiest and most expensive week in the Maldives and everywhere else in the Tropics.

      As for airport transfers, each resort books you on their own speedboats or through a charter sea-plane company and they add it to the room price when you book. The speedboats for the closer places start around US$100 per person, return, and the sea-planes can be as much as US$700 per person, return. We list the transfer options just below the normal room rates on our page about each of the resort, along with the price for each option. I hope this helps and best of luck with this. -Roger

  7. Hi Roger, Thanks for this. What are your thoughts on the Club Med resorts in comparison to those you have listed here? are the on the same / better / worse level? Thanks very much

    1. Alex,

      I’ve never stayed at a Club Med, but generally I hear very good things about them and their customers seem to be loyal. As far as I can tell, Club Med offers a premium product at a premium price. I think you can get something similar for less money elsewhere, and nearly all of the Maldives all-inclusives are very high quality. My guess is that people are willing to pay more for Club Med because they trust that it will be great, and to book at a small chain or an independent resort means taking a little chance. I can tell you that Meeru Island and Veligandu Island, which are both run by the same local company, are excellent. I hope this helps. -Roger

  8. Hi Roger,

    Do you know what the weather is like in the Maldive in May? I am struggling to get a common answer off travel agents?
    Also do you know if it is possible to get a speed boat transfer from the airport to the Shangri la Villingili?

    1. LCJones,

      From Late May through early July it can be rainy for most of a day or two at a time in the Maldives, but during the rest of the year the rain tends to last only 20 or 30 minutes at a time and is often overnight. Also, the Maldives covers a huge area and resorts south of the equator can have different weather patterns from the ones closer to Sri Lanka, so you have to drill down. The general weather forecasts including my advice is for the area fairly close to the capital and airport. -Roger

  9. Hello there Roger! This is a very helpful article. I would like to ask if the room fits 2 people and it says 560usd per night does that means 560×2 per night? We are planning to go by next yr and we are group of 7.


    1. Cindy,

      If you are referring to the information on this website, yes, every water villa fits two people (and most of them actually fit 3 because they have a pull-out sofa), and the prices we quote are for the whole room with two guests and that includes the taxes. We update the rates at least once a year, and if you are looking at high season you might see higher rates. But generally speaking you can use the prices on this site as what you’ll pay for two guests per night in a water villa. Let me know if you have any other questions. -Roger

  10. Roger,

    Please I would like to know which Resorts/hotels in Maldives offer the symbolic weeding? Also, which are the cheapest? Thank you in advance!!!

  11. Hi Roger, me and my husband are planning a 10 night vacation to the Maldives and would appreciate first hand advice from you pls…….we are looking for as close as possible to the main airport, butler service, all inclusive if poss and over the water accom with splash pool on deck and exceptionally clean is a must! Many thanks, cheers

    1. Sue,

      Unfortunately, I haven’t visited nearly enough of these resorts to be able to recommend one with butler service near the airport. The list in the article should be helpful because we list all of the resorts from closest to the airport and going out from there, and all of them have speedboat transfers. I’m not sure any of the places that have butler service also do all inclusive.

      You might look into Gili Lankanfushi (formerly Six Senses)

      They don’t have all inclusive but they are fairly close to the airport and they have amazing service and great suites. Sorry I can’t be of more help on this. -Roger

  12. Hi Roger,

    Me and my wife will be in Maldives in August 2018.
    i was looking for a resort witch can be access via speedboat and seaplane, i was thinking if we can arrived at the resort via seaplane and back to male via speedboat.

    thanks a lot.

    1. Richard,

      Quite a few Maldives resorts offer both speedboats and sea-planes so you should be able to do what you are hoping. I don’t have a list of the resorts that do offer both, but on this website we have prices for each option on each of our resort pages and we have both prices for the resorts that offer both. In other words, if you look around this site a bit you should be able to find some resorts that look good to you and offer both modes of transport. -Roger

  13. Hi ,

    Me , my wife and my 1 year kid is planning to visit maldives on june 2nd week.

    To avoid a long drive , we would like to take a good private resort near the airport also which includes full meals.

    Could you suggest a good place for us. privacy and safety are our main concenrns

    1. Arun,

      The article above shows all of the resorts that are close to the airport, and most of those are within 45 minutes by speedboat. I wrote it to specifically answer questions like this. -Roger

  14. My husband and I are looking for a pool water villa/ pool beach villa accessible by speedboat from Male airport, for our 15th anniversary. We would prefer something that is all inclusive (includes alcohol), and has a luxury feel to it, but is not exhorbitantly priced.It will be a romantic getaway for 2. We stayed in Taj Exotica for our 10th and loved it – want to explore another property this time. Any help will be appreciated. Thank you.

  15. Hey Roger.
    Looking to holiday in the Maldives in November.
    We are a family of 4 (2 kids, 5 and 13).
    Could you suggest a good water villa resort not too far from the airport.
    One thats all inclusive and decently priced.
    Thanks and Regards ?

  16. do you know if you can get to any of these via public ferry? would love to avoid that expensive speed boat!

    1. Danny G,

      The public ferries only go to populated islands and by law all of the Maldives resorts like these have to be on a private island. So unfortunately there are no public ferries to private islands, at least not that I’m aware of. -Roger