|Soft white sand, clear blue skies and the sea|
|The water chalets where we stayed for 4 nights|
Last week Repin and I followed the Open University of Malaysia delegation to the Maldives to attend a convocation - their third to date. This is the branch campus of our OUM in the maldives and all together 77 students graduated this time around, most of them doing Business Administration and a few in Education.
The trip there was by Sri Lankan Air which was surprisingly good. We were in business class and the seats were very comfortable while the food was great. We landed in Maale around 4.30pm and were quickly whisked off to Paradise Island Resort, about 15 minutes away by boat. It was a speed boat so the ride was swift though a bit bumpy. All around me were tiny islands, some inhabited, many uninhabited. At the resort we were met by the Liaisons officer,
Fatimath Nadja Ibrahim who would be with us throughout the trip.
This was the beginning of a wonderful 5 day 4 night trip, full of new experiences and sights. The first day there, which was a Tuesday was a free day and we explored on our own, walking on the beach, exploring the whole island (which was about 2km by 3 km only) and swimming in the shallow lagoon made by the corals surrounding the island. The water was so clear one could see the bottom very easily and sometimes this could be deceptive in that it may look shallow but can easily be 6-7 feet deep. We could see the variety of coral and other types of fishes swimming gracefully in the water. In the early morning, walking to the restaurant for our breakfast we saw some baby sharks and even a bay manta. Even a baby can easily be at least 3 feet in length! I was so excited at the sight I nearly dropped my iphone to catch their images!
|A school of dolphins passing by our boat|
On the third day after attending the convocation we were taken to see a tuna factory, where the tuna were caught, graded and processed before being exported to Europe. However I did not stay to watch because I was overcome by the sight and smell of raw tuna being processed I had to leave. That night we saw the feeding of the sharks, which was an awesome sight. It seems that the sharks are offered free food every night by the seafood restaurant at 8pm. So every night around 7.30pm the sharks would assemble before the restaurant hoping for a free meal! It was a sight I wont forget easily - 10 or more sharks fighting for the tidbits thrown to them by the kitchen staff!
|A view from the shore|