Soul trip and heart tip: Finolhu in the Maldives


I’ve never sent myself voice messages before, even though they’re supposed to be self-vibes for further development. But the other day in the Maldives, the time had come: I sent three messages to myself in person. Simply because I wanted to preserve the happiness vibes that were buzzing around me. Because I knew that my voice from paradise would lift the corners of my mouth in the everyday German drizzle. My God, how heavenly it was in the above and below water realm of fish lady Dory – do you remember her from “Finding Nemo” – a powder-sand-soft embrace in the most beautiful shades of blue.


A joy every day: Seaside Finolhu with year-round sunshine and a colourful underwater world

You can fly to the Maldives in 10 hours from Frankfurt or, in my case, Vienna. The island atolls of the Maldives await with crystal water and unimaginably wide, blue-tinged views of the Indian Ocean. My unsolicited styling tip from the “how to pretend you have everything under control” category: pack at least one kaftan, preferably more, because that’s exactly what you’ll need here all night & day long. Also flip-flops or other toe separators, a pair of which I pull out of my hand luggage on the plane, take off my support socks and put them on my grateful feet as soon as the plane lands. In return, the all-weather jacket goes into the travelling bag, along with the north, everyday life and crises. Freshly landed, I pick up my nonsensically large suitcase from the conveyor belt, in which no more kaftans are waiting, but jeans, none of which I need here – too warm! Quickly through the departure hall, switch off the data roaming and to the shuttle service. – There are no discounted mobile phone networks in the Maldives, so it’s better to send pictures and nice words to family and friends later from the hotel wifi.


Like pearls on a string: the waterfront villas, facing the sea with pool, facing the lagoon without

Everything on paradise!

I’m not travelling alone, by the way, but with a small group of journalists from Germany, Austria and Switzerland. And the capital Male is not the destination, but Finolhu. It is a 20-minute flight from the main island and lies in the centre of the Baa Atoll, which is protected by Unesco as a biosphere reserve. This is the home of the palette surgeonfish (Dorie), clownfish (Nemo), as well as yellowfin tuna, barracudas and hovering, swinging manta rays. And this is where the Finolhu Resort awaits us! Completely redesigned in 2020, it is now a pearl of Seaside Hotels – the first resort in German hands and also a member of Design Hotels. You can see this as soon as you land: proper white villas, lined up like a string of pearls, jut out into the light blue ocean. Incidentally, our propeller air taxi from the capital Male to Finolhu is driven by two pilots in casual Bermuda uniforms – with flip-flops. However, as soon as they take off, they go off again – the fine control on the foot pedals is done barefoot.


Villa with a view


Welcome to my pale blue home: My view of the pool and ocean when I wake up

“Finolhu” means sandbank. The resort extends over four islands with 2 kilometres of powdery fine sandy beach. Seen from above, it looks like a giant turquoise donut in the deep sapphire blue of the Indian Ocean. My home for 6 sky-blue days on Finolhu is one of the beautiful waterfront villas with pool. At my front door, as with all the villas, there is a large clay bowl with water and a ladle for my feet. A ritual on Finolhu that I celebrate with enthusiasm at day and night temperatures of around 30 degrees and almost 90% humidity. I slip my kaftan on and off in a “new chapter of bedroom” with a glazed front and a view as far as the eye can see – I don’t really need much more. I can perform wide-open dances of joy in my bathroom, look out over the ocean from my bedroom and jump into my own pool 24/7. By the way, for me, swimming every day is the same as meditating every day for others. Welcome to the Finolhu cosmos of happiness.

All light!

6 days at Finolhu are packed with experiences, just like 3 weeks of light and warm summer holidays. What impresses me the most? Every resort in the Maldives has a marine biologist. On Finolhu, it’s Laura who broadens my horizons about corals. The bad news: In the last 30 years, 50% of the world’s corals have disappeared due to climate change, pollution, etc. The good news: corals can be bred or cloned. We first attach coral babies to small metal trees with cable ties, then they are lowered into the water, allowed to grow and later glued back to the seabed when they are big enough. With a bit of luck, they will then reproduce by cloning themselves.

The “Crab Shack”, one of the 4 restaurants on Finolhu


Feet in the sand, rosé in your hand

Or the magical white night in the “Crab Shack”, one of the four restaurants on Finolhu. Please pack a monochrome and white outfit in addition to your kaftans. All guests arrive by boat. All in white, across the jetty decorated with fluttering sails, bare feet in the sand, Michael Jackson in your ear at sunset and a glass of rosé in your hand. With the finest dining on the plate, fire-eating acrobatics and dancing in the starry night – life is beautiful. And it’s even better to walk the 20 minutes back across the sandbank. Your nose in the wind, an unobstructed view of the stars so close and avoiding the crabs, who all carry a flat made of shells piggy-back with them. Yes, my own little cosmos has ups and downs, Finolhu is definitely a high C in holiday life.

All sunshine!

Or what were the moments when you were proud of yourself? How did you look, what were you wearing? And who was with you? With me, an extremely wiry diving instructor with an orange life belt. Me with fins in a courageous leap from the boat, down into unclear depths. No, not into his arms, but directly with one hand on one side of the lifebuoy. On the other side, he steered me safely through the reef for 30 minutes. Breathe, look and marvel. On the return journey in the boat, I sat there grinning blissfully, no longer knowing which way was up and which way was down and was delighted by all the heavenly things that had simply found me. When I close my eyes now, I immediately visualise this underwater world again, remembering things that also make life above water understandable: Nature is always right, corals and fish sightseeing beat forgotten UV protection before a dive, plants also bloom on the seabed, the world is beautiful everywhere – even underwater. I believe it now! I’ve rarely been so deeply impressed in my life.

Come along to the spa? The blue clay bowls for your feet at the bottom left of the picture. Marvellous!

My soul trip is definitely the Maldives, so much beauty at once doesn’t leave you without a trace. The world becomes tiny at the sight of a slowly gliding manta ray beneath your villa on stilts. The air is golden and you gaze into the horizon, feeling nothing but freedom and thinking: the earth is not bitter and much more beautiful than you might think at the moment. What else I experienced: Fine dining on a platform in the sea, to which we sailed by catamaran. Or discovering the giant bubbles in which guests on Finolhu can experience an unforgettable starry night. Fishing on the high seas, which is difficult, especially if – like me – you don’t want to catch a fish …

Everything on Finolhu!

Perhaps this little beauty-technical mention: Pore peeling? You don’t need it. My skin on Finolhu was in baby-soft mode from the very first moment, with the most perfect pores I’ve ever seen in the mirror. The glow doesn’t come from expensive serums, but simply from washing and sunscreen creams, topped off with a dab of liquid blusher and a bronzed cheek contour. The hair? Thanks to the moisture, they have been plumped up to unimagined volume and are in top form from morning to night. And I, I was and am happy to the tips of my hair, gobsmacked by this infinitely beautiful experience and life and still looking forward to going home again, as I do after every holiday. To North Rhine-Westphalia, or to DRIZZLE QUIETLY ON, as I have saved my happiness vibes – in sound & vision.

Thank you Finolhu and TN-Hotelconsulting for this wonderful trip to paradise, for the peach-coloured sky at 6 a.m., for the radiance inside and out, for freedom and gratitude for this great life.

Want to read more? This way to Tyrol and South Tyrol, Zurich, … and more journeys here

Warmest regards from the most beautiful (blue) donut in the world. Finolhu