Asia

Visit to the Angsana Ihuru resort in the Maldives

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New account of blogtrip what did we do at Maldiva's Islands in November 2016. In this story we visited for a day the Angsana Ihuru resort.

We are crazy: that day we woke up at seven to half an hour later to be exploring the Coral reef surrounding the island of Vabbinfaru. Luckily, we were joined by one of the biologists of the hotel's marine center Banyan Tree The plan was to travel half the perimeter of the reef, and we did that. We saw spectacularly huge schools of fish that stretched like an electric blue mantle on the slope of the reef. We discovered a tortoise Very nice that swam with us for a few moments. Then we ran into three friends of his. Fish of all colors. Trumpet fish, unicorn fish, parrot fish ... And suddenly: a shark. Specifically, a white tip reef shark (Triaenodon obesus).

We must confess that last night we had created some apprehension to see the sharks that roam around the platform of the main pier of the hotel. Apparently a group of about six or seven specimens of reef shark They live in the deep area of ​​the reef below the pier (see end of previous entry for more details). But we were somewhat reassured that Natalia assured us that these sharks They only eat small fish and have never attacked humans. He also assured us that in the morning they usually retire to rest. In addition, the fact of having the presence of the Maldivian biologist when we started approaching there also calmed our fears. But not quite!

When I saw that we were approaching the dock area, I swam a little faster and avoided entertaining myself watching the reef very closely. When we had already passed that area, the shark. And despite all the above, contemplating the passage of a shark while you are in the water, at your height and just fifteen meters away, puts you in alert instinctively Logically, nothing happened. The two sharks we saw passed by and dedicated themselves to their daily chores without even paying the slightest attention to those scary tourists. In fact, although many sharks live in the waters of the Maldives, in the last 32 years none of them has attacked a human being.

Then we went on and saw much more aquatic fauna. For example, we saw a school of dark blue fish that descended in a spiral path and turned as if they were one being. Really spectacular. Finally, an hour later we returned to the beach. We had earned a good breakfast, so we went to the restaurant. The buffet we met met our expectations and much more. There was everything. Tortillas made at the moment, eggs of all types, peeled fruit, cut and served live, waffles, several French cheeses ... the list is almost endless.

Shortly after we picked up the snorkeling gear and went to the pier to embark. The twin-engine boat took us to the hotel opposite: the Angsana Ihuru. This island is somewhat smaller and more modest than the Banyan Tree Vibbanfaru, but it also has all the services offered by this hotel chain. As the two are twinned, the boat goes from one island to the other every two hours for free. So, if you get bored of one island you can spend the day in the other.

Upon arriving at the place, the same snorkeling instructor that morning, who was the same one who fed at stripes (see previous post), led us to the marine center of the island. There we participate in a very interesting activity, consisting of plant corals. Corals are organisms that are very sensitive to changes in temperature and the state of water, so in the Maldives many of those seen underwater are unfortunately dead. It is what in English is known as "coral bleaching". However, in these hotels they care about regenerate the underwater flora of the reefs, since they are the main tourist attraction of the country, but above all they are the vital base on which the fauna of the Maldives is based.

To do this, they create interconnected metal bar structures in the form of a spider web. Then they collect several corals that have found broken on the seabed, but are still alive, and join them to the metal structure by means of plastic flanges. Thus, when they then leave these structures at the bottom of the water, small pieces of coral can gradually regenerate clinging to iron and, over time, form large coral communities to house and feed all those goldfish. It is a slow process, since corals take about twenty years in regenerating completely. Even so, this activity was very fun and, more importantly, very useful to raise awareness about the importance of caring for corals.

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