VISIT A GARDEN OF AQUATIC DELIGHTS
Snorkel through the impressive house reef, a veritable marine superhighwayTour the turquoise lagoon on a privately guided underwater explorationSwim with sea turtles and manta rays while admiring miles of untouched coralA few smooth strokes of your snorkel fins from the Deluxe Beach Villas lead you to Conrad Maldives’ house reef, a veritable marine superhighway. Rangali is the last island in South Ari Atoll which creates ideal conditions for underwater explorations. Guests may borrow a mask and fins from the Ocean Sports and Dive Centre (located on the main island behind Ufaa by Jereme Leung) to explore the house reef and other areas of the turquoise lagoon that surrounds and protects the two islands. For your first excursion to the house reef, we suggest a privately guided snorkeling exploration. These can be booked for any time of day, but to maximize your spotting odds, snorkel first thing in the morning. As you kick your fins gently along the water’s surface, experienced marine guides can show you the best underwater enclaves for sightings of a giant angelfish, schools of yellow and black Moorish idols, solo Picasso triggerfish, and our favorites: the oriental sweetlips with their polka dots and stripes. Consider yourself especially lucky to spy a giant turtle or pincushion sea star. Once you gain confidence in the water, flutter closer toward the reef ridges in hopes of spotting eagle rays, stingrays, and manta rays. Regardless of what you see, you’ll be aquatically cruising around a verdant garden of hard and soft coral, including mushroom leather corals notable for their orange spikes, an array of sponge coral from ballerina pink and light lavender to electric yellow and neon orange, and a proliferation of table coral. Living within this underwater tableau as well are Gorgonian sea fans with their delicate tentacles, neon blue and green speckled clams, and Nemo’s pal, the sea anemone.