I don’t know about you, but I have definitely dreamt about running away to the stunning azure waters and pristine beaches that make up the secluded paradise of the Maldives. The Maldives is the type of place where bad days don’t exist, and beauty is limitless, that is, until you find out the only vegan option is lettuce!
Can you imagine jetting off to paradise only to discover that you must subside on carrot sticks? I don’t know about you, but I’d be more than a little mad.
But have no fear; I’ve found the most vegan-friendly resorts spread across the gorgeous islands of the Maldives that blend opulence with a plant-powered touch. From delectable cruelty-free cuisine to sustainable practices that align with your values, I will bet that after scanning this article, the Maldives will move up to the number one spot on your bucket list (that is if it already isn’t number one)!
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The Best Vegan-Friendly Resorts in the Maldives
It still annoys me to no end that every resort and hotel on this planet isn’t vegan-friendly; I mean, come on, it’s 2024! Alas, that is still the case. So, before you start planning your getaway to the Maldives, you will want to check out these stunning resorts to make sure you don’t get stuck eating the same thing day after day.
#1 JA Manafaru
Experience an idyllic retreat at JA Manafaru, nestled on a breathtaking private island; the resort welcomes guests to an oasis of picture-perfect tranquility. Each villa, whether perched over the turquoise lagoon or ensconced in lush foliage, offers breathtaking views of the Indian Ocean. JA Manafaru takes pride in its commitment to sustainability, engaging in coral reef conservation projects, implementing eco-friendly practices, and promoting local community initiatives. They are also the first resort in the Maldives to partner with Ocean Bottle, a start-up that creates reusable water bottles from plastic removed from the ocean. This dedication to responsible tourism is evident in every aspect of the resort, ensuring that guests enjoy a once-in-a-lifetime stay and contribute to preserving the Maldives’ pristine natural beauty.
Vegan Options at JA Manafaru
The JA Manafaru Resort isn’t fooling around when it comes to food — in 2023, it was awarded the title of the Best Culinary Resort by Travel Trade Maldives and also launched a “Wellness Your Way” initiative aimed at wowing all diners, including vegans. You will find separate vegan menus at all of the resort’s six restaurants — dishes are made with local ingredients, and some include plant-based meats and cheeses. At their White Orchid Lounge, you can enjoy a multi-course Thai feast that includes green bean tempura, plant-based rock shrimp sushi, pineapple fried rice, and even a mouthwatering lineup of house-made desserts.
This five-star vegan-friendly Maldives resort boasts overwater villas and beachfront residences, each designed to offer a relaxing stay with mesmerizing views of the Indian Ocean (you might not want to leave). LUX South Ari Atoll is renowned for its commitment to sustainability and has aligned its strategy in partnership with the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals. The resort has instituted programs to support the community and uplift those suffering from marginalization and participates in Tred Lightly. Tred Lightly focuses on using renewable energy, biodiversity conservation projects and offsets the carbon guests create.
Vegan Options at LUX South Ari Atoll
When I started thumbing through the menus, I was greeted with a green page titled “Keen on Green.” The resort has challenged its chefs to create more vegetarian and plant-based items on all of its restaurant menus because they believe that our planet needs a little TLC, or “tender, loving care.” On all menus, the veggie-forward dishes are highlighted in green, and those that can be vegan (if they aren’t already) are noted. You’ll find delicious options like house-made tofu steak, creamy mushroom agnolotti pasta, flavorful dahl, and even almond panna cotta.
Situated on the Gaafu Alifu Atoll, this resort offers overwater villas and beachfront accommodations, each offering stunning panoramic views of the Indian Ocean. The Pullman Maldives is not only a haven for relaxation but also a playground for those who like to stay active. The resort features tennis courts, beach activities, aerial yoga (along with other yoga options), and it’s one of the best areas for snorkeling and diving. In addition, the resort has a lengthy plan to operate as sustainably as possible, which includes implementing solar projects, limiting disposable packaging, composting waste, marine life conservation, and more.
Vegan Options at Pullman Maldives All-Inclusive Resort
While all the other resorts on this list have well-marked menus and a good selection of options, The Pullman is home to the first vegetarian restaurant in the Maldives, The Phat Chameleon. This gorgeous restaurant is set in a beautiful organic garden, surrounded by lush, green foliage — the perfect place for a veggie-packed meal. The menu seeks to wow all diners, not just veggie lovers, with its exceptionally creative and beautiful cuisine created with ingredients sourced from the island. Depending on when you visit, you’ll find delicious options like beetroot risotto, refreshing ceviche, and pumpkin cheesecake.
Nestled within the breathtaking Baa Atoll UNESCO Biosphere Reserve, Amilla Maldives offers a stunning escape to paradise. This five-star resort captivates with its overwater and beachfront residences, where modern sophistication meets the natural beauty of the Maldives. Each villa is meticulously designed, providing guests with panoramic views of the turquoise waters. Amilla Maldives stands out for its commitment to sustainability, receiving a silver certification from EarthCheck for its dedication to reducing energy consumption, waste management processes, and supporting the local community and environment.
Vegan Options at Amilla Maldives
The resort features multiple restaurants and cafes, each with a separate vegan/vegetarian menu. In the morning, you can start the day with a flavorful tofu shakshuka (scrambled tofu with tomato, ful medames, and pita bread), then later, come back for avocado tartare, a vegan club sandwich, and much more. The menu options are plentiful and diverse — it would be easy to please even the pickiest eater here. In addition to the lovely selection of options, the resort focuses on the impact of its ingredients, and to lessen that, onsite, you will find a banana plantation, hydroponic garden, mushroom hut, and a coconut processing facility.
Escape to your own private island within the southern rim of the Gaafu Dhaalu Atoll in southern Maldives with a stay at Ayada. This exquisite resort offers a sanctuary of tranquility and refinement, with each private villa boasting breathtaking views of the Indian Ocean’s azure waters. Ayada Maldives is a haven for luxury seekers and a champion of environmental responsibility. The resort received a Green Star Diamond award for its environmental efforts, which include coral restoration, water and energy reduction, and waste management programs. Ayada Maldives is working to ensure its beautiful environment stays pristine for its visitors and everyone who calls it home for many years to come.
Vegan Options at Ayada Maldives
Whether you visit their international buffet or one of their many sit-down restaurants, you will always find vegan options. All of the dining menus are well-marked, taking all of the “is this really vegan” guesswork out of ordering. While many resorts only offer one or two vegan options, that’s far from the case here — there’s a good chance you might not be able to try everything. From creative vegan sushi platters and spicy green curry to simple vegan grilled cheese and tomato — there’s something for everyone.
Looking for More Vegan-Friendly Accommodations?
Look no further! These guides and articles will help you plan an epic plant-powered trip.
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This idyllic resort offers a harmonious blend of natural beauty and contemporary elegance. You’ll be greeted by expansive, overwater bungalows and villas that boast breathtaking views of the turquoise Indian Ocean. Atmosphere Kanifushi is Green Globe Certified and operates in a sustainable manner which includes, but not limited to reducing single-use plastics, using solar power, and improving its waste management systems.
Vegan Options at Atmosphere Kanifushi Maldives
The resort is known for its all-inclusive offerings, that includes gourmet vegan options! One of its signature restaurants, Just Veg is fully vegetarian (with many vegan options) and focuses on creating dishes with inspiration from the Mediterranean, Middle East, and India. Just Veg is open for lunch and dinner — you don’t have to worry about checking the menus at the other restaurants; just spend all your time here!