Closing out our Vilamendhoo series (that I’m way behind on), I wanted to cover the activities available for guests! As I mentioned in my initial resort post, excursions were a big draw for us, specifically the opportunity to swim with whale sharks. While Vilamendhoo offers up a quiet island to relax on, they also offer a multitude of things to do, should you decide that you want to get out and have some fun!
First up, let’s talk about the scuba diving available at the resort. Whether you’re a seasoned diver or beginner, they have plenty of choices, including a 3 days series of dives meant to get you PADI certified. Jen and I have been diving before, but it was a long time ago, and neither of us are certified, and Bayley had never been. Before sinking a bunch of money into an excursion, we wanted to see if it was something she’d like, and fortunately Vilamedhoo’s dive center, run by Euro Divers, offers up a free beginner class. You sign up at the dive center at least a day in advance, and on the day of your lesson, the instructor takes the group out to the lagoon where you take turns trying out the gear in the shallow water. Each person in our group got around 15 minutes with the tank on, while the instructor assisted. We all enjoyed the time in the water, and also discovered that it was something Bayley liked. We’d planned on signing up for one of the non-certified dives to get a closer look at the house reef, but weren’t able to make the timing work when looking at the rest of the activities we’d scheduled. Next time!
Next up, watersports! Next to the Sunset Bar, they have a little shack on the beach where you can check out equipment to kayak and windsurf, among others. The all-inclusive package we had included a free windsurfing lesson that the girls were excited about, but the day they went to do it, the wind kicked up after the beach portion of the lesson, and the guy at the shack wouldn’t let them go out on the water. We did check out kayaks on our last full day there, and while the trip under the dock and around the back side of the island was fine, the current on the front side was really strong, making it a tough trip back to the point of return. Whatever you do, just keep an eye out for snorkelers, you don’t want to run any of them over accidentally!
Moving on, we happened to be there over World Environment Day, during which Vilamendhoo hosts a few activities guests can take part in. We signed up for two of them, the first being a back house tour. It’s pretty much what it sounds like, one of the staff members took a group of guests on a behind the scenes tour, showing us how power is generated for the island, how water is desalinated and cleaned, and how recycling happens. All very informative!
The second event we signed up for was reef cleaning. We headed out with a couple of their excursion guides and our snorkeling gear and swam around the house reef in small groups looking for any trash that had made its way into the water. Another group was in full dive gear going out along the outer edge of the reef in deeper spots we couldn’t get. I think we spent about an hour swimming the front side of the island collecting trash. As you can see from the bags, we cleaned a bunch of stuff out of the reef!
Next up on page 2, snorkeling the house reef and searching for whale sharks!