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Honeymoon - Maldives Vs. Borneo

Manchester, United...
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Honeymoon - Maldives Vs. Borneo

Hi,

I'm debating where to go on Honeymoon in Apr/May 2013 (advanced planning just to keep me sane at work).

I have been to the Maldives twice before: Kuramathi/Atoll explorer (2010) and Vilamendhoo (2011).

I have always wanted to go to Sabah (Borneo) and travel around, climb mount Kinabalu, see the orangutans and snorkel etc.

But I'm torn as I would also love to go back to the Maldives for the amazing snorkeling. If I went Borneo I would probably go for 3 weeks whereas 2 weeks in the Maldives would be more than enough.

I guess because we've had some quite bad rain/storms in the maldives, I worry that if the weather was bad again, that there would be periods of boredom when im stuck in my room with nothing (almost nothing) to do. Whereas at least in Borneo I could still go out exploring.

Our budget would probably me an absolute maximum of £5000 for us both including flights/transfers (ideally less as we have to pay for the wedding). If I did decide on the Maldives I'd be looking at Robinson Club (if price was in budget) or somewhere with an amazing reef and full board/AI.

Any ideas/thoughts would be welcome especially from anyone who has been to both the Maldives and Borneo (or similar area - Thailand, Philipines, indonesia etc) and can make some comparisons.

Thanks

Edited: 15 November 2011, 19:24
Swanwick, United...
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1. Re: Honeymoon - Maldives Vs. Borneo

I can only comment on Robinson Club. We have also been to Kuramathi, Vilamendhoo and AE.

Robinson has a fantastic reef, food, beach and decor. It does not have a touristy feel and is very quiet and relaxing. It feels more like a 5 star resort but at 4 star prices. It is without a doubt the best 4 star I have visited in the Maldives and even beats a 5 star one I have just visited.

We really want to return. Purely Maldives gave us a really good quote. The garden rooms are fine with open air bathroom and jacuzzi.I would think you could get one of those within budget. Also the FB plus means drinks with meals.

IMO It is about the size of Vilamendhoo and more upmarket than Kuramathi.

Birmingham, United...
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2. Re: Honeymoon - Maldives Vs. Borneo

I have been to Thailand along with the Maldives (all be it only once) but the main different is that the Maldives holiday islands are purpose build for sun, sea and relaxation where by Thailand, Philipines and Borneo your never far from 'normal life' of local people as well as SS&R.

If you are able to do Borneo for 3 weeks you could get all three.

Sabah area I believe offers world class diving but snorkelling..not so much as compared to Redang and The Perhentian Islands. Only reason being is that the snorkeling is all deep water around Sabah and you go out with the divers.

You could try the following island for maybe a week before moving to the main land

http://www.pompomisland.com/page.php

Has a house reef but reports are that it's ok but not on the same level as the Maldives but this island offers lots of snorkeling trips.

I'd then head in land and do the rest of the local culture trips and 5* hotels.

If I had to chose it would be Borneo purely for getting more Bang for my Buck and not spend time on the forums asking about weather!

Failing that go to the Philipines and go here http://www.clubparadisepalawan.com/index.php

This is one of my dream islands!

Edited: 16 November 2011, 02:30
Kent, England
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3. Re: Honeymoon - Maldives Vs. Borneo

I looked at Pompom, Sipadan Kapalai & Lankayan last year when we were trying to decide where to go for my birthday. They really are set up for divers though and don't offer anywhere near the same sort of shore snorkeling experience you get in the Maldives, and cost wise, there were actually miles more expensive too.

I think if I wanted to have a bit more than a beach experience then for me it would probable be Thailand or even Vietnam (some lovely islands off the coast of 'nam - work mate stayed at Phu Quoc). That way you have the option of some lovely beaches but as much or as little culture and exploration as you want!

My planned Thailand itinerary was

Bangkok - 2 nights, overnight train to Surat Thani

Khao Sok - 3/4 nights to go jungle & elephant trekking, river exploring.

Khao Lak - 4/5 nights, maybe a couple of trips to the Similans/Surins for diving/snorkeling.

Phuket (west side) - Phi Phi Island, James Bond Island, Temples

then either Krabi or Koh Tao, season dependant!!

Just really off the cuff but ever considered Hawaii?

Manchester, United...
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4. Re: Honeymoon - Maldives Vs. Borneo

Thanks everyone for your helpful replies.

Robinson Club does sound amazing - Turquoise you're to blame for making it sound so idyllic on previous posts! :-D

Aylith and Jody, thanks for the suggestions, i will look into these further. Redang and The Perhentian Islands sound nice.

I agree that Kapalai & Lankayan do look far more expensive than the Maldives - I briefly looked at them last year but they were too expensive - they made the maldives look cheap in comparison.

Lots more researching for me :)

Rome, Italy
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5. Re: Honeymoon - Maldives Vs. Borneo

lovign this thread, since we are already researching on places for our next holiday.... we just got back from Filitheyo... so our next trip in February, my birthday, i would like to do some Rainforest AND good snorkeling.

so Borneo is out then... i should look in to Thailand?

Lebanon
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6. Re: Honeymoon - Maldives Vs. Borneo

One downside to Broneo is the extent to which they've destroyed their rain forests. It was just depressing to see how little lowland forest remains. If you go to see the Orangutans, you will probably be taken to Sepilok 200 people crammed on a platform waiting to look at 3 to 5 orangs, worse than a zoo. To see the proboscus monkey you go up kinibatangan river by boat, and there also very crowded, touristy and very little forest left (just a narrow corridor on the river banks with the rest being a palmoil plantation). If you do decide on Borneo however, then Shangrilla Rasa Ria is a nice hotel with beautiful beach but no snorkelling (there are some day trips you can take). To me the Maldives is Paradise, although I like adventure, I would avoid Borneo and go somewhere that the nature is less damaged. I did Kilimanjaro last year, maybe that could be an alternative.

Guernsey
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7. Re: Honeymoon - Maldives Vs. Borneo

As has been said it really does depend on what type of holiday you want. The Maldives for us is all about complete relaxation and totally getting away from it all however Thailand was about the culture and exploring the incredible Islands (we were based in Koh Samui but travelled off).

From a cost point of view you will get a lot more for your money in Thailand and some incredible experiences however the snorkelling is not so great unless you are prepared to travel quite long distances by boat to get to other Islands. Have a look at Angthong National Marine Park in Thailand - this was something special.

Happy honeymoon!!

Perth, Australia
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8. Re: Honeymoon - Maldives Vs. Borneo

Just come back from the Maldives -Ellaidhoo and went to Lankayan, Borneo last year. Go to the Maldives.....there is no comparison.

Lankayan is a pretty island with some fantastic snorkelling. However, the island have very few guests. There is a "bar" (if you can call it that) next to the restaurant but they're really not geared up for much social activity after dinner.

You need some life after it goes dark.......

Manchester, United...
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9. Re: Honeymoon - Maldives Vs. Borneo

Thanks for all your helpful replies.It sounds like the Maldives cannot be beaten for beaches/snorkeling/paradise.

Regarding lack of social activity in Lankayan, I didn't think the Maldives had much social activity. Everyone seemed to prefer to be left alone and so no one chats to other couples...especially not younger couples. It does get a bit boring after 2 weeks - just the 2 of you.

Kent, England
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10. Re: Honeymoon - Maldives Vs. Borneo

I find that surprising MD! We met two lovely couples at Vilamendhoo and often met up in the evenings for drinks and chats.

But...yes I agree, I guess it could get quite boring! Have you thought about maybe doing a twin centre with a week in the Maldives and a week somewhere else for a bit of adventure?