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Kandima, Maldives hotel review: Relaxed, family-friendly beach resort backed by lush jungle

Simon Calder’s Travel

In a nutshell: A buzzy atmosphere, an excellent range of à la carte restaurants and a large kids club make this Maldivian resort a great choice for families


Located in Dhaalu Atoll, Kandima is a large resort in the Maldives, and one of the more remote atolls. Transfer options include a domestic flight followed by a boat, or a 40-minute seaplane, which offers amazing views of the reefs and lagoons but does come at a price. The resort is not located on a house reef, so there’s less sealife spotting than at other resorts, such as its sister hotel Noma.

The look

Instantly recognisable as the Maldives, Kandima is characterised by white sand and pale blue ocean. But there’s also lush vegetation, which gives the resort a jungle-like feel. If visiting during the rainy season, insect repellant is a must as the humidity means the mosquitos are out in full force. The bright and colourful design means the resort feels more inclusive and fun than other luxury and exclusive hotels in the Maldives. It also leans into the fact that it’s meant to be a destination for fun activities.

The bright colours of the reception set the vibe for the resort


The vibe

Appealing to a young crowd, Kandima is best suited to those looking to get involved in the fun as opposed to a quiet retreat. Owing to this buzzy vibe, it’s less of a honeymoon destination and instead a great one for groups, families or couples looking to soak up a lively atmosphere. Little ones are catered for in the form of a large kids club.

Bed and bath

Comprising 264 studios and villas, there are lots of accommodation options. Nestled among the trees, even the most basic rooms feel private – designed so you can’t see your neighbours and complete with either a balcony or direct beach access.

There are sunrise and sunset beach villages – the latter don’t have access to the sea owing to the current, which is not made clear during booking. The choppiness of the sea can be loud, particularly during stormy conditions. Both do feel like a private oasis though, complete with their own private pool and large, outdoor bathrooms. These, while novel and fun, does mean you’re exposed to the elements.

Ocean villas are located on a jetty, and are quiet and sophisticated, feeling miles away from the busy main bar and restaurant. A great choice for couples.

The sky villas are the…

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