Hot date with a manta: Make memories at Four Seasons Resort Maldives Landaa Giraavaru
Heed the call of the wild this manta season (from now until November) and head to one of the most renowned manta hotspots in the world!
With the Maldives having reopened its international borders on July 15, and last year’s Baa Atoll high number of sightings, there’s never been a better time to join resident Manta Trust experts at Four Seasons Resort Maldives at Landaa Giraavaru to swim with these incredible gentle giants.
Last year saw an incredible 4,423 sightings of 589 individual manta rays in Baa Atoll. A total of 280 new manta rays were identified across the Maldives, taking the total number of reef manta rays in the Maldivian Manta Ray Project (MMRP) database to 4,942: the largest recorded population anywhere in the world.
“Since the MMRP – the founding project of The Manta Trust – was launched at Four Seasons Landaa Giraavaru in 2005, we’ve worked tirelessly to care for the mantas that visit Baa Atoll each year,” says Dr Guy Stevens, the Founder and CEO of the Manta Trust.
“We’re delighted that sightings were so abundant in 2019, and with the quieter waters of 2020, we’re hoping for record sightings this season.”
All manta ray activities at Four Seasons Landaa Giraavaru prioritise safety, sustainability and conservation, and are run by on-site Manta Trust experts who know hundreds of the regular mantas by name; these include Mr Spotty, the spottiest manta in the Maldives, and the aptly named Blob. With the help of a contactless ultrasound unit, the team discovered Blob was in the early stages of pregnancy last season, so are hoping soon to spot an inquisitive manta pup.
Manta is Spanish for “cloak,” referring to the ray’s wingspan that propels these balletic black and white beauties through their underwater kingdom with the grace of an eagle soaring over mountains.
With an evolution that can be traced back 20 million years, studies suggest that manta rays may possibly recognise themselves in the mirror – a high cognitive function ability shared by dolphins, primates, and elephants – and their curiosity often brings them close to snorkelers, making a manta experience even more magical.
Manta experiences at Four Seasons Landaa Giraavaru
Keeping marine magic on speed-dial, from July to November the resort’s Manta-on-Call service sees guests given a “manta phone” that rings whenever mantas are sighted nearby, before an exhilarating speedboat transfer to a once-in-a-lifetime snorkelling experience.
Manta Ray Scientist for a Day is a unique opportunity to be part of the pioneering work of the Manta Trust, the world’s leading manta ray charity. Learn to free dive in the Baa Atoll; take ID photos; record environmental data; and even be in with a chance of naming a new manta.
Drawing on more than a decade’s worth of local research and analysis, the Manta Trust experts have put together the following list of likely mass aggregation dates, allowing guests the best chance of meeting a manta in 2020 in the waters around Landaa Giraavaru:
- July 18-22
- August 1-5
- August 17-21
- August 31 – September 4
- September 15–19
- September 30 – October 4
- October 15–19
- October 29 – November 2
- November 13-17
Combining innovation, wellness and conservation, Four Seasons Resort Maldives at Landaa Giraavaru is a 44-acre, 103-villa wonderland in the Baa Atoll UNESCO Biosphere Reserve — a 30-minute seaplane flight from the main Velana International Airport.
Its sister property, Four Seasons Resort Maldives at Kuda Huraa lies to the south: an enchanting garden island complete with Island Spa sea sanctuary and Tropicsurf coaches and guides. It features 96 thatched beach and water accommodations constructed by local craftsmen using indigenous materials and techniques to reflect a true sense of the Maldives.
The luxury catamaran Four Seasons Explorer connects the two properties via three, four and seven-night cruises, plus private leisure, surf and manta ray charters.
The latest addition to the Maldives collection, Four Seasons Private Island Maldives at Voavah, Baa Atoll opened in 2016 as the group’s first exclusive-use private island: off limits to everyone else, limitless to the guests.
To be the first to swim alongside manta rays this season with the Manta Watch package, book online, email: firstname.lastname@example.org or call the Central Reservations department of Four Seasons Resorts Maldives at tel: (960) 66 00 888.