Maldives: The Perfect Locale for Honeymoons and Vow Renewals

Luxury hotel with water villas and palm tree leaves over white sand, close to blue sea, seascape in Maldives.

The Maldives have become a popular destination for honeymoons, symbolic wedding ceremonies and vow renewals, though legal marriages between foreign citizens cannot be performed there. The archipelagic nation offers picture-perfect scenes of Maldives resorts and overwater bungalows with glass floors, white sand beaches and colorful coral reefs—suitably romantic settings to exchange vows.

As I sipped a detoxifying juice—a blend of cucumber, apple and ginger—at the Iridium Spa at the St. Regis Maldives Vommuli resort, overlooking the soft white sand beach dotted with tiki-style gazebos housing lounge beds, I turned around to my husband, and jokingly said, “I wish we got married here!” To which he responded, “Well, that ship has certainly sailed.”

Though we were joking, the truth is that the crystal blue and turquoise water of the serene Indian Ocean is an idyllic backdrop for a ceremony celebrating love. Just think about this: morning sunshine glints off the ocean, tropical breezes caress the skin, endless fresh fruits and seafood dishes are prepared by world-class chefs, and sunsets are dreamy.

Here is everything you need to know before booking.

The Maldives is a Built-In Honeymoon

Reaching the remote Maldives typically involves an epic trip—long-haul flights, layovers and a final puddle jumper or seaplane to arrive at your resort. From London, it took a total of 16 hours. The gateway is usually Male International Airport, involving at least one transfer to bridge the thousands of miles between the Maldives and most visitor home countries, followed by a seaplane transfer from Male. From the minute you get to Male, you are greeted with remarkable hospitality. In fact, we even spent some time unwinding at the St. Regis lounge before strapping into the small aircraft to get to the resort.

With such a long journey, the biggest advantage of a symbolic ceremony in the Maldives is that it easily converts into a tropical honeymoon, with many resorts focused on pampering and privacy. Newlywed couples can enjoy romantic dinners on the beach, water villas with infinity plunge pools and exclusive excursions like desert island picnics for two. Those who value privacy will especially appreciate this.

Celebrate Luxury at the St. Regis Maldives Vommuli Resort

View of a romantic beachfront dinner at the St. Regis Maldives Vommuli Resort
Photo courtesy of St. Regis Maldives Vommuli Resort

Picture an intimate, magical wedding as the sun dips low over the shimmering Indian Ocean, waves lapping at powder soft sands, you and your beloved exchange heartfelt vows on an flower-strewn altar. The sweet tropical breeze carries notes of bougainvillea and frangipani, whispering over a small gathering of your nearest and dearest under the coconut palms.

Later, gentle island rhythms played on a traditional boduberu drum set the pace as you share a first dance illuminated by flickering torchlight and an ink-black sky glittering with millions of stars. These are precious memories in the making—where time stands still yet each detail is attended to by the St. Regis team, which stands ready to anticipate your every need and wish.

Allow the hotel’s signature Butler Service to lend a hand crafting a bespoke celebration where you need not lift a finger. From salon pampering to Champagne toasts to exquisite seasonal menus, impeccable care and service elevates each moment. Should you wish to honor the storied traditions of the St. Regis’ century-old luxury hospitality, partake in rituals like sabering open the Champagne or enjoy traditional English Afternoon Tea in refined surroundings or try the customary Bloody Mary cocktail, with your very own twist.

There are a few packages available at the St. Regis, starting at $3,500, which includes a beachfront wedding ceremony (nonreligious), single-tier wedding cake, “just married” buggy for transfers, wedding photographer, private three-course romantic dinner on the beach, and a newlywed 60-minute hydrotherapy Blue Hole Pool experience, among other items. To make it an even more special occasion, add bespoke touches like a manicure, videography and photography services, and bath rituals at the spa.

Say “I Do” Under the Sea at Anantara Kihavah Maldives

A married couple dive into the water in the Maldives.
Photo courtesy of Anantara

Exchanging vows submerged in the vibrant tropical waters of the Indian Ocean—can it get any better than this? In Anantara’s one-of-a-kind underwater restaurant, SEA, floor-to-ceiling glass walls reveal schools of colorful fish darting through coral reefs as you commit your lives to each other six meters below the surface. After professional styling, makeup and pampering (which is part of the package), descend and be enveloped in aquatic tranquility within SEA’s wine cellar and restaurant. As a Maldivian boduberu drum echoes ancient island rhythms, all you have to do is pose so the professional photographer can capture your romance. Afterward, you’ll enjoy a customized five-course meal with thoughtfully paired wines in SEA’s dining room. Back in your private pool villa, cap the night with a relaxing aromatic bath drawn by your personal butler before slipping into a blissful newlywed slumber. This entire package starts at $7,699.

Greet your first morning as a married couple by diving into a floating breakfast specially delivered to your room. Then continue celebrating this underwater dream honeymoon—where paradise enfolds you both in its loving embrace.

Choose Simplicity at Sun Siyam Iru Veli Resort

A couple enjoying a romantic evening at at Sun Siyam Iru Veli Maldives
Photo courtesy of Sun Siyam Iru Veli

True love doesn’t have to correlate with extravagant price tags or lavish affairs. The sincerity of recommitting your hearts is captured through thoughtful intentions, not cost, and at Sun Siyam Iru Veli Maldives, you can do that for only $1,730. This price tag includes your personal wedding planner, who masterfully tends to each detail, from symbolic paperwork to decorating a ceremonial beach altar. Don’t forget to toast happiness with a celebratory bottle of Champagne before cutting into a sweet fruit cake, then continue your romantic retreat with a decorated wedding limo buggy. No overblown gimmicks needed when tropical perfection already surrounds you both.

For those who want to bring their epic love story to life, you can even work with the Sun Siyam’s team to host a cocktail party or any other vision you and your partner desire. Pricing for bespoke affairs is based on your one-of-a-kind ideas, but hey, it’s love, and does it really cost a thing?