Snorkeling and diving are the most popular activities and entertainment on the islands. A good house reef near your island practically guarantees encounters with sharks, manta rays, stingrays, and turtles. Therefore, below you will find a rating of the top 10 hotels with the best house reef in the Maldives.

It will be difficult for you to plan your dream trip to Maldives without these websites

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Flight tickets

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eSIM internet

maldives top hotels

What is a house reef?

A brief explanation so that you can understand and assess the hotel you booked in terms of the availability of a house reef.

  • All 1200 islands of the Maldives are of coral origin. This means that each island was once formed from a coral reef that rose above the water. What petrified above the water became an island, while the coral reef under the water remained intact.
hotels with the best reef in the Maldives
For hotel guests, the house reef is the entire reef around the island, as shown in the center of the photo. However, a neighboring small island with its own separate reef is not considered a house reef, and it is not possible to swim there due to strong currents in the strait between the islands.

The photo above provides a very clear example that can be used in textbooks.

House reef:

This is the reef that the island itself belongs to. In the photo above, there is an island with a hotel in the center, surrounded by the house reef. To the right, there is a smaller island with its own reef. For you, as a guest of the hotel, the neighboring reef will not be a house reef since you cannot swim there independently; you need a boat, and that reef belongs to another island.

Advantages of a hotel with a good house reef

The most significant advantage of a good house reef is that you can spend whole days snorkeling for free right on the beach. For more details about snorkeling in the Maldives, how to find the best spot on the reef, and where to have the best chances of encountering manta rays and sharks, please see the article via the link.

Below are some key points to consider when choosing a hotel with a good house reef:

  • The best snorkeling and the most beautiful corals can be found at the edge of the reef, where the reef ends and the deep begins. There, the reef drops off like a wall, and it’s the best place to go snorkeling.
  • If you look at photos of any island from above, you can see that the distance from the beach to the edge of the reef varies from place to place. Sometimes it’s 50 meters, and sometimes it’s a kilometer. It’s better when the edge of the reef is close.
  • Even if a neighboring island with a neighboring reef is separated from you by a narrow channel, it’s dangerous to swim there due to strong currents. That’s why renting a boat to snorkel on the neighboring reefs of other islands is necessary and can be expensive. Therefore, a good house reef is preferable. Snorkeling there is always free and can be done at any time.
  • You can always evaluate the home reef of the island you’re traveling to by looking at satellite images on Google Maps or photos from a high altitude on the internet.
hotels with house reef maldives
This hotel is not the best option for snorkeling, as you can see how far the edge of the reef is from the villas. Not everyone can make it there, so it’s better to look for hotels where the edge of the reef is closer to the island.

Below are two useful articles that will help you better understand the beauty of snorkeling and diving in the Maldives. And why having a good reef near your bungalow is super cool:

  • The underwater world of the Maldives, or who you can meet right by your island. Spoiler alert: nurse sharks, reef sharks, whale sharks, mantas, rays, turtles, moray eels, barracudas, and many more.
  • Sea on the Maldives. For many, it’s a surprise that the Maldives is not in the Indian Ocean.

Hotels with the best house reef in the Maldives

Below, in the hotel ranking, all links are clickable. Click on them and you will read fresh reviews about the hotel, see photos, including aerial photos, and evaluate the house reef. You can also check the prices for your dates and find out where to book a tour to the hotel.

A brief legend of the rating:

  • Distance from Male – the hotel’s distance from the international airport in kilometers. The further away, the more expensive the transfer and the longer the journey.
  • Room rate – the cost of a villa or bungalow in dollars per night for two people if you book only accommodation.
  • It is best to book a tour package on specialized service sites, such as Expedia.
  • You can click on all the links and find more up-to-date information about the hotel you are interested in.
Hotelfrom Male, kmRoom rate, $
Lily Beach Resort & Spa78from 880
Bandos Island Resort & Spa8from 270
Biyadhoo Island Resort 3*31from 400
Vilamendhoo Island Resort & Spa90from 340
Reethi Faru Resort155from 230
OBLU SELECT at Sangeli55from 900
Embudu Village 3*10from 340
Ellaidhoo Maldives by Cinnamon65from 340
Filitheyo Island Resort120from 170
Kandolhu Maldives Resort70from 740
Rating of hotels with the best reef in the Maldives

Here are two more awesome rankings:

In conclusion, the top 10 hotels with the best house reef in the Maldives should help you choose your dream hotel. After all, for some, the best hotel is the one where they serve champagne for breakfast, while for others, it’s the one where rays and mantas swim near their villa. An excellent house reef at your hotel will make your vacation unforgettable, even if you’re not particularly fond of swimming.

If you enjoyed the article and the content in this guide, you can buy me a coffee ^_^

Resources to help you plan your dream trip to the Maldives

  • Flight tickets and the best deals
  • Tour packages (from budget to luxury): Expedia
  • Hotels and guesthouses on any island:
    • Hotellook compares prices among a dozen other services and platforms and offers to choose the best one.
    • Booking – the most popular service for booking accommodation.
    • Agoda – the main competitor of Booking.
  • 12go is the largest Asian transfer service. It gathers all Maldivian carriers, even the small ones that operate between local islands.
  • Tours and excursions: Viator – a limited selection of excursions, but convenient and reliable.
  • Comprehensive insurance: EKTA
  • eSIM at the same price as in telecom office in Male.