Best Private Islands: Maldives' Veli and Dhigu

In this island nation dotted with 80 resorts, it's almost impossible to pick just one that's the best -- so here are two. Anantara's Veli and Dhigu islands in the South Malé Atoll of the Maldives are connected by long walkways and free shuttles across the lagoon, sharing their collective eight restaurants and two spas among the guests of more than 100 bungalows and villas. Island chief Didi will kick off a night of dining with a story of the Maldives' history. To learn more about the Thai and fusion dishes, sign up for the Anantara Cooking School. To claim a piece of the Maldives just for the two of you, enjoy a private meal just off Dhigu on an uninhabited speck of sandy paradise -- with table and umbrella. (OK, that makes three islands.) See photos. Here is further insight from the managers of Anantara Resorts: What do U.S. travelers enjoy most about Matangi Island? Travelers most enjoy our people, our culture and the pristine beauty of our island. View Larger Map
Can guests at Dhigu enjoy the amenities of Veli and vice versa? Yes. We have shuttle service for free of charge among the islands for guests from each resort to enjoy facilities at another. What amenities or activities do U.S. travelers seem to enjoy most there? The choice of restaurants. We have various choices of restaurants for guests to enjoy, from Thai to seafood and Americans enjoy most for fine cuisine at our resorts. Which of Dhigu's and Veli's offerings best celebrate the authentic island culture? We have island Chief Didi who will give a secret night, starting by telling the history of Maldivians followed by dinner. What makes these two resorts unique among all the world's private-island resorts? These are the only resorts that still blend Thai senses in every element of services and design, unlike other resorts in Maldives. We also have two spas and the latest waters sports equipment. Are there any new amenities, accommodations, travel specials or other features planned for 2009? We plan to develop 10 beach pool villas and four two-bedroom pool beach villas further to the current existing rooms. To find out more information and book your stay, visit anantara.com. For more private islands, click here.