As the trend for unique and adventurous travel experiences sees a resurgence, Amilla Resort in the Maldives is unveiling two new cultural immersions for guests curious to discover neighbouring island communities. Travel experts predict that young and adventurous travellers are set to lead the recovery of the industry, post-pandemic, with a renewed appetite for unique and authentic cultural experiences. As Amilla Maldives Resort and Residences is one of the few Maldivian-owned and operated luxury resorts in the Maldives, championing its heritage is an important part of its ethos. So Amilla has created an incredible new cultural immersion experience exclusively for its guests, featuring unparalleled insights into traditional island life.
As the Maldives has a high vaccination rate, the Maldivian Government has recently permitted resorts to resume conducting local island tours, whereby resort guests can mingle with the local community. But while many of these tours tend to be little more than a quick walk around a village before visiting a souvenir shop, Amilla Maldives Resort – known for its pioneering concepts – wanted to do something different. The Baa Atoll resort’s new one-of-a-kind cultural experience, led by Amilla’s activities team, begins at Kendhoo, a neighbouring island community.
Here, guests will discover the first mosque ever built in this proudly moderate Sunni Muslim nation. Built over 800 years ago, this ancient site surrounded by coconut trees is built from coral stones and whitewashed with limestone, in the traditional Maldivian style. Legend has it that the Arabian scholar who first introduced Islam to the Maldives visited Kendhoo, where he was presented with a drink of the sweetest coconut juice he’d ever tasted.
There will also be the opportunity to observe women making coir (coconut husk) rope by hand – the island’s biggest industry. The husks are buried in the sea at the point where the waves break, or in the mangroves, for three months to soften before being beaten with a wooden club and plied apart. The strands are then woven by hand into bundles of rope.
After watching the rope-makers, guests are then taken by speedboat to Kudarikilu. This island is home to a ‘secret’ heritage museum run by a passionate local collector. His private museum is open to Amilla guests by special arrangement. It contains countless historic pieces that showcase the history of the Maldives, such as thodi’s, farming tools and ancient pottery. Guests can refresh themselves with a fresh drinking coconut and traditional handmade snacks such as bajiya, Gulha, Kavaab and Biskeemiya.
And as more countries achieve high vaccination rates, Amilla Maldives Resort is seeing tourism bounce back. The country’s highly vaccinated population rate combined with Amilla Maldives’ private island location, spacious private villas, and open-air restaurants and walkways have made it a highly desirable destination. According to General Manager, Jason Kruse, the resort was fully booked up over the festive season and Easter however he says “Don’t discount a Maldives holiday during Maldives monsoon season. The vast majority of days between June and November see sun and this is an ideal time to visit Hanifaru Bay to see Manta Rays”.
Amilla will continue to uplift Maldivian voices and talent, and is planning another Maldives Cultural Week from July 20th-26th after the success of its inaugural event. It will feature a local sand artist, two Maldvian fashion labels, Dhivehi lessons, cookery workshops, drumming and games.
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