Eriyadu Island Resort is a very simple, cozy resort that I’ve had the pleasure to visit during my business trips. It’s not especially big but all the more tranquil.
It’s one of the oldest resorts and it’s located a short way from Male, barely an hour by speedboat. The island doesn’t try to put on modern appearances, it’s more like living in the jungle. Lots and lots of trees and bushes that provide a great degree of privacy.
The island is currently being slowly remodeled. The bar has been improved and the villas are gradually being refurbished with more modern furnishings and appearance. The resort has 60 rooms, usually with two rooms per villa. Which, as I found out on my last visit, isn’t the most pleasant experience in the world if your neighbor happens to be noisy.
The resort is located next to a beautiful coral reef overflowing with fish. You can see various species of sharks here, and it’s great fun to swim among them (they won’t hurt you since they’re full to bursting with all the fish). There’s also tortoises and scores of various fish. There’s shark feeding in the evenings, though it looks more like raven and ‘stork’ feeding. They just wolf those chicken breasts and legs down.
I arrived at the resort shortly before noon and received a pleasant welcome from the staff and even the manager himself. He accompanied me to the local bar, where I was given delicious fresh pineapple juice and enjoyed the view of the sea. Right next to the bar there is a pool hidden in the palm trees with some recliners. The towels are decorated with flowers. It’s a small detail but it made an impression.
Then I had a short meeting with the bar manager and after that I headed for lunch at the buffet. Too bad I stuffed myself with a ciabatta at the airport. But I still ate a bit, even if only to try it. I had a grilled fish with some salad. All the food is served at a buffet and every dinner has a different theme (Maldives, Mediterranean, Chinese, beach barbecue, etc.). Given that this is a relatively cheap resort, the food was much better than I expected. My friends had spent ten pleasant days here and they absolutely loved the food.
After lunch I went for a walk around the resort, to peek into the kitchens, the baths, and the freshly refurbished villas. At the beach I met a “Bob”, which is what we ended up calling the local species of stork, or whatever those stork-like birds were. But those are at pretty much every resort and you can get wonderful pictures of them. Much better than you can get of those weirdly squawking chickens that run around some resorts.
Visiting this resort was a bit like going back in time to a more peaceful past. Formal attire is not required, unlike some other resorts, it’s tranquil, there’s lots of greenery, pleasant sand, excellent sea for diving, and since it’s so close to Male, you can just hop over there for a day if you feel like enjoying the chaos for a while.
I spent three pleasant hours at the resort in the outstanding company of the staff; sadly, then I had to head back to Male. I recently found out that despite having a circumference of a mere 5 kilometers, it houses not 80,000 or 90,000 but 150,000 people, 50 of whom are illegals. It’s no wonder simply walking or driving around the city is one of the most demanding tasks. But I’ve grown used to it and I’m starting to rather like it.