Programs: AA EXP, SPG PLT, VX Gold, Kimpton InnerCircle
Best beach getaway from South Africa
I'll be in South Africa in early June, and want to go somewhere for a relaxing getaway after. We like
swimmable, warm water beach
snorkelling (though we're still beginners and get excited by run of the mill fish)
not a mega resort
Basically we want to relax, swim, eat good meals, and get away from it all.
Main contenders right now are
One & Only Maldives
Four Seasons LG
Is there somewhere else we should be looking at? Any opinions?
I liked Musken and Ericka's reviews of the Maldives and Mauritius.
For context, our favorite US resort is Post Ranch Inn, and favorite worldwide is Amanpulo. We've been to Tahiti and thought it was beautiful but the food so-so. We loved the Aman Balis.
Logistically, I think you would not be able to take a nonstop from JNB (which is where I assume you will be coming from) to the Maldives. I think you would have to connect somewhere like Dubai or Sri Lanka in order to get there.
Plus, it is rainy season in the Maldives in June, so possibly not the best time to be there (although, having said that, I have been there a couple of times at that time of year and the weather was fine).
I honestly think you are better going to Mauritius or Seychelles, both of which are nonstop flights from JNB and both of which have better weather at that time.
Programs: Miles & More FQTL (Silver), Asiana Club Diamond (*G)
We loved Mauritius. For us it was a great blend of beach (all water sports including waterskiing are part of the offering at most hotels) + some sightseeing (botanical gardens, coffee plantations) + very good food at many upscale hotels. Plus it's easily accessible from South Africa. Because it is a volcanic island, the reef surrounding Mauritius makes it fun for snorkeling. Depending on where you are, the reef can be as far as a mile or more out giving the lagoon in front of the hotel beach a nice, sheltered area for water sports). There is also golf, deep sea fishing, etc. I think it is a bit more varied then the Maldives.
If you are looking for deserted beaches, and proximity to South Africa, I think that you should definitely look into Mozambique, and I think the Seychelles would interest you as well. The Maldives on the other hand is not close at all and probably not nearly as interesting from a cultural point of view.