Like the ancient voyagers who gave us our name, we were born with a passion for discovery.
Polynesian navigators boldly traveled vast, uncharted distances, driven by an unlimited desire to explore the world beyond the horizon. It was a world they greeted with open arms and, as hosts, we follow their example.
Graciousness cannot be taught. It is the purest expression of the human spirit, infused with natural kindness and an effortless warmth you may have never experienced before.
The Outrigger Way
Developed in 1993 with Hawaiian scholar and historian Dr. George Kanahele, the Ke ‘Ano Wa’a process was designed to advance the company’s corporate culture and fundamental business strategies. The values-based process intricately connected three core elements of the hospitality industry:
HOST + GUEST + PLACE
It also deepened Outrigger’s understanding and appreciation of the local host culture, a distinct hospitality style that is recognized across the globe.
Outrigger Hotels and Resorts has long been known as an innovator of tourism development.
In 1929, Roy and Estelle arrived in Hawai’i with little more than a few dollars in their pockets and a lot of determined optimism. They saved, invested, started a family and 18 years later built their first hotel in Waikiki. They were the first to offer modestly priced hotel rooms in Waikiki as airline service sparked mass tourism in the 1950s.
Today, Outrigger Hotels and Resorts continues to prosper, operating premier resorts and hotel properties throughout the Hawaiian Islands, Asia-Pacific and Indian Ocean. Foresight and hard work have steadily directed the company forward; warmth and generosity have continually guided its success.
On December 20, 2016, the Kelley family announced that KSL Capital Partners LLC (KSL) has completed the acquisition of Outrigger Hotels and Resorts. Outrigger will continue operating business as usual across its holdings, providing guests from throughout the world with its signature Ke ‘Ano Wa’a (The Outrigger Way) hospitality.
17 May 23SPECIALS
Kids Stay and Eat Free at OUTRIGGER MaldivesOutrigger Maldives Maafushivaru Resort, rated “5.0 - Excellent” on TripAdvisor, has a great family ...Read moreKids Stay and Eat Free at OUTRIGGER Maldives - News & announcementsOutrigger Maldives Maafushivaru Resort, rated “5.0 - Excellent” on TripAdvisor, has a great family offer valid until end of October The award-winning luxury OUTRIGGER Maldives Maafushivaru Resort has launched a Kids Stay and Eat Free promotion for new bookings from now until 31 October 2023. It means that two children, under the age of 12, can stay and eat free as part of their parents’ meal plan. Kids can either dine from the buffet or from the kids’ menu in the resort’s five restaurants. With this offer, all little VIPs have a chance to experience the beauty of Maldives’ sun and fun, whilst the parents enjoy a stress-free vacation, spending less. Kids can enjoy activities such as snorkelling, stand-up paddle boarding, kayaking and attending the marine biologist’s educational presentations on whale sharks, manta rays, coral life and much more. The resort’s astronomer also enjoys showing the night sky to families with the aid of a powerful telescope. If holidaying with one child, the villa options include the chic Over Water Villas or the mesmerising Beach Villas, both of which can be booked with or without private pools. A very comfortable option could be accommodation for two adults and two children in the spacious 184 sqm Two-Bedroom Beach Villa with private pool. Its outdoor decks feature a daybed, dining area and private pool with sun loungers. Sumptuous and varied dining options for all the family include Cuisine Gallery for international breakfast and dinner, Art-I-San for fine dining, Koto for Japanese, Moodhu Grill for the finest meats and seafood, or Koffee n Chill for teas, coffees, ice creams and pastries. OUTRIGGER Maldives Maafushivaru Resort was selected by Luxury Lifestyle Awards as one of the Top 100 Hotels and Resorts of the World 2022. Based on 657 reviews as of mid May, the resort boasts a 5.0 “Excellent” rating on TripAdvisor, with guest comments showering the property with praise. Edoardo B wrote: “Everything was absolutely perfect, above expectations.” On 19 April, Alex S wrote: “I must say, having experienced multiple resorts and hotels across the world, the level of service and attention to detail was near perfection.” And in December 2022 rand513 wrote: “OUTRIGGER Maafushivaru is paradise on earth. If you’re trying to decide on a luxury resort in Maldives, the countless positive reviews about the location, property and landscaping, food, spa, and customer service are accurate.” The resort is a convenient 25 minute seaplane ride from Male international airport. To book the Kids Stay & Eat Free offer and for full T&Cs, call Kuoni on 01306 230 467.
04 May 23Partner News
OUTRIGGER Resorts & Hotels is Green Seal CertifiedThe premier beach resort brand is the first in Fiji and Hawaii to earn ...Read moreOUTRIGGER Resorts & Hotels is Green Seal Certified - News & announcements
The premier beach resort brand is the first in Fiji and Hawaii to earn Green Seal accreditationPremier beach resort brand OUTRIGGER Resorts & Hotels has successfully achieved Green Seal certification for key properties in Fiji and Hawaii. OUTRIGGER is first in the State of Hawaii to earn the prestigious Green Seal designation as well as the first hospitality brand to achieve certification outside of the United States. Green Seal is a global non-profit whose certification mark is a universal symbol that a product, cleaning service or facility meets the highest benchmark of health and environmental leadership. OUTRIGGER’s owned/managed properties that are now Green Seal certified include:
- OUTRIGGER Reef Waikiki Beach Resort
- OUTRIGGER Waikiki Beach Resort
- OUTRIGGER Waikiki Beachcomber Hotel
- OHANA Waikiki East by Outrigger
- Embassy Suites by Hilton Waikiki Beach Walk
- OUTRIGGER Kona Resort & Spa
- OUTRIGGER Fiji Beach Resort
- Castaway Island, Fiji Resort
- Conserve energy with 100% energy-efficient lighting in all guestrooms and public areas and energy-efficient appliances and windows.
- Conserve water through water-efficient landscaping, grounds-keeping measures and water-saving fixtures in guestrooms and public areas.
- Reduce waste by minimising use of disposable food service items and seeking out reusable packaging and shipping pallets.
- Protect human health and the environment by using housekeeping products that are free of toxic chemicals and low VOC (volatile organic compounds).
- Are committed to stewardship by having an environmental mission and purchasing policy.
14 Apr 23SPECIALS
Latest Offers from Outrigger Resorts AsiaGet Away in May to the Beach at Khao Lak, Thailand: Up To 20% ...Read moreLatest Offers from Outrigger Resorts Asia - News & announcementsGet Away in May to the Beach at Khao Lak, Thailand: Up To 20% Off Kenwood Travel is offering seven nights in the Outrigger Khao Lak Beach Resort in Thailand for two adults and one child in a Deluxe Garden Balcony Room. The package, which works out at nearly 20% off, includes daily breakfast. Prices, inclusive of taxes, are from £1005 per adult, £765 per child, based on 15 May 2023 departure from Manchester on Etihad. Alternative airports, departure dates and room types are available. The new Outrigger resort is on a quiet long sandy beach, surrounded by nature, and has its own kids club. Prices subject to availability. Call Kenwood on 020 7749 9278. [Images here] Get Away This Autumn to the Beach in Khao Lak, Thailand at 20% Off Kenwood Travel is offering seven nights in the Outrigger Khao Lak Beach Resort in Thailand for two adults and one child in a Deluxe Garden Balcony Room. The 20%-off package includes daily breakfast. Prices, inclusive of taxes, are from £1065 per adult, £809 per child, based on 1 October 2023 departure from Heathrow on Etihad. Alternative airports, departure dates and room types are available. The new Outrigger resort is on a quiet long sandy beach, surrounded by nature, and has its own kids club. Prices subject to availability. Call Kenwood on 020 7749 9278. [Images here] Save 10% with Outrigger Maldives Maafushivaru Package in June The luxurious Outrigger Maldives Maafushivaru Resort has partnered with Kuoni which is offering seven nights in a Beach Villa inclusive of breakfast and dinner (half board) for £2999 per person for selected departures in June 2023 on SriLankan Airlines from Heathrow. The offer saves up to 10% on normal prices and must be booked by 1 May. Call Kuoni on 01306 230 467. [Images here] New World-Class Magic Theatre Show Unveiled in Koh Samui A new world-class magic show has been unveiled in Koh Samui. The Illusions Theatre magic show will take place six nights a week in a new 71-seat air conditioned show theatre within the newly opened Outrigger Koh Samui Beach Resort in Lamai beach. From Monday to Saturday, starting 17 April, there will be two shows nightly: a 7pm show for the whole family, and a 9pm show with magic effects of a slightly darker nature and mild adult humour. Each show lasts an hour. Details here. Images here.
12 Apr 23Partner News
Cirque du Soleil and Outrigger Announce New Multi-Year Resident Show for HawaiiOutrigger Waikiki Beachcomber Hotel and Cirque du Soleil Entertainment Group have teamed up to ...Read moreCirque du Soleil and Outrigger Announce New Multi-Year Resident Show for Hawaii - News & announcementsOutrigger Waikiki Beachcomber Hotel and Cirque du Soleil Entertainment Group have teamed up to bring Honolulu residents and visitors a new multi-year resident show, exclusive to Hawaii. Executives from both organisations were joined by Honolulu Mayor Rick Blangiardi to make the announcement on 10 April. Anticipated to open in late 2024, the show will fuse the world-renowned acrobatics and innovation that Cirque du Soleil is known for with the natural beauty and unique culture of the Hawaiian islands. Native Hawaiian, Aaron J. Salā, PhD, has been retained as the creative cultural producer to assist in creating this show’s storyline along with other prominent Hawaiian artists, musicians and dancers. A joint venture is being made by both parties to create this opportunity and transform the 20,000 sq. ft. (1858 sqm) showroom venue at Outrigger Waikiki Beachcomber Hotel, previously used by Magic of Polynesia. The necessary permits for renovation work to commence and create the nearly 800-seat theatre with state-of-the-art audio-visual system are being submitted. The venue architect is Hawaii-based G70, with project estimating done by RLB in Honolulu. “Cirque du Soleil is an iconic company at the apex of entertainment,” said Jeff Wagoner, President and CEO of Outrigger Hospitality Group. "We are confident that the show created for Outrigger Waikiki Beachcomber Hotel will delight and astound our guests and residents.” Mr Wagoner added: "This collaboration with Cirque was years in the making and perfectly aligns with Outrigger’s brand elevation strategy, which includes a promise to provide authentic live music and signature experiences in renowned beach locations.” Mayor Rick Blanglardi, said: “In addition to bringing new vibrancy to Waikiki, this project will produce significant economic impact through job creations in redeveloping the theatre space and ongoing show operations. I’m honoured and excited to welcome Cirque du Soleil as the newest Honolulu resident.” More details will be shared in the coming months regarding the partnership, the show’s name and creative concept, as well as on-sale dates, with a target of December 2024 for the show’s debut.
01 Mar 23TRAINING | COMPETITION
Triple Rewards promotion at Outrigger ReefTriple reward points Guests staying in Voyager 47 Club rooms and suites enjoy ...Read moreTriple Rewards promotion at Outrigger Reef - News & announcementsTriple reward points Guests staying in Voyager 47 Club rooms and suites enjoy daily breakfast and evening appetizers with complimentary drinks. Earn triple (300) reward points for every room night sold at Outrigger Reef Waikiki Beach Resort. Upgrade your clients to Voyager 47 Club for bonus inclusions such as daily breakfast, evening pupus and exclusive access to our oceanfront Voyager 47 Club Lounge. Not only will you earn points towards your next dream vacation, your clients will also receive a complimentary welcome gift from you. Make sure to log your booking through the OEA portal to collect your points! Book Dates: Now - March 31, 2023 | Travel Dates: Now - March 31, 2024 Following Terms and Conditions apply: *Travel Advisor must be a certified and active Outrigger Expert Advisor. Valid for new bookings only from now - March 31, 2023 and registered through the portal. Valid for client stays through March 31, 2024. Reward Points awarded after actual stay dates. Reward Points apply to GDS bookings, Wholesale packages, direct brand.com retail commissionable bookings. Not applicable to group bookings or 10 or more rooms. Other restrictions may apply. Subject to change.
27 Feb 23Partner News
Outrigger Maldives Maafushivaru Resort Joins World’s Top 100 Elite PropertiesService by the resort’s hosts, a successful recent refurbishment and a stunningly beautiful setting ...Read moreOutrigger Maldives Maafushivaru Resort Joins World’s Top 100 Elite Properties - News & announcements
Service by the resort’s hosts, a successful recent refurbishment and a stunningly beautiful setting have wowed guests and judges alikeOutrigger Maldives Maafushivaru Resort has been selected by Luxury Lifestyle Awards as one of the Top 100 Hotels and Resorts of the World 2022. The judges also named the property’s General Manager, Mr John Allanson, as one of the world’s “Top 100 General Managers for 2022.” Since acquiring and opening the resort in April 2022, Mr Allanson has led the luxurious 81-key all-villa property to a 5.0 “Excellent” rating on TripAdvisor based on more than 600 reviews. The awards recognise an elite group of companies and leaders that represent the ‘best of the best’ as selected and assessed by industry sources, based on reputation, credibility, brand awareness, luxury experience and service excellence. The organising committee said of the awards: “Your impeccable reputation and professional performance have been recognised and acknowledged.” A TripAdvisor review of the resort in December 2022 is indicative: “Everyone – the wait staff, management, concierges, hosts, chefs, kitchen geniuses, grounds keepers, gardeners, water activity experts, spa therapists, security, and the excellent housekeeping team – blew us away. No business is a perfectly well-oiled machine and there are always issues that can be improved, but this one definitely does their absolute best to make guests believe that there are no imperfections.” Outrigger Maldives General Manager, Mr John Allanson, said: “We are grateful to the judges at Luxury Lifestyle Awards and to all guests who went out of their way to leave a positive review. On behalf of all the dedicated and hard-working hosts at the resort, we appreciate it very much.” Offering small-island charm with contemporary architecture and bespoke finishing touches, Outrigger Maldives Maafushivaru Resort offers guests an idyllic island experience, epitomising all that one thinks of when dreaming of the Maldives. The property is a convenient 25-minute seaplane journey from Male. Travellers looking for one of the world’s definitive tropical beach escapes can take advantage of the latest best offers to stay at Outrigger Maldives Maafushivaru Resort at www.Outrigger.com.
13 Dec 22Partner News
UK MasterChef Champion Eddie Scott to Cook at Outrigger MaldivesUK MasterChef 2022 champion Mr Eddie Scott will create special dishes on two evenings ...Read moreUK MasterChef Champion Eddie Scott to Cook at Outrigger Maldives - News & announcementsUK MasterChef 2022 champion Mr Eddie Scott will create special dishes on two evenings at Outrigger Maldives Maafushivaru Resort in in the second half of April 2023. The UK MasterChef winner will also hold a special cooking demonstration at the resort for guests who want to learn culinary skills. Specific dates will be confirmed shortly. Eddie, 31, from Yorkshire in northeast England, won the coveted TV accolade in May with MasterChef judge John Torode calling him a “culinary powerhouse”. Fellow judge Gregg Wallace said: “I think we’ve just seen the birth of a future great chef.” Eddie is currently working in the 3-star Michelin restaurant Gordon Ramsay in London. Eddie spent eight years as a navigation officer in the Merchant Navy travelling the world before becoming a marine pilot in the River Humber in northeast England in 2017. Only since storming his way to the top of MasterChef UK in May has he switched to cooking full time. Chef Eddie draws on his love of classic French food and often surprises diners by adding Indian culinary flavours, a skill he learned from his Punjabi grandparents. His father also made exciting dishes such as Mexican chimichangas and original Indian curries. His mother shared her love of baking with him. Eddie is passionate about Royal Mughlai culinary dishes from northern India. He learned his French culinary skills from travelling around France with his family, eating in local workers’ canteens, exploring fresh markets, then emulating the dishes back home in England. “The way food was ingrained in French culture was a total revelation. I wanted to recreate the food I’d tasted and that’s how I really got into cooking,” he said. He was making classic French dishes like Tarte Tatin, Ile Flottante, Crème Brulée and Gratin Dauphinois by the age of 12. Eddie will create special menus on two occasions in the latter half of April at Outrigger Maldives. He will also give a culinary demonstration and hands-on cooking class for guests. It will be Eddie’s first trip to the Maldives. “I can’t wait to go and cook there. I’ve heard so much about the place,” he said. “The water there will be a bit different from the Humber. I look forward to trying the island’s fresh seafood.” The resort’s executive chef, Christopher Long, also from Yorkshire, met Eddie while he was visiting the Michelin-starred Pipe and Glass near Beverley, Yorkshire, run by James Mackenzie, who was also a guest chef at Outrigger Maldives in 2019. “The three of us got talking,” said Chris, “and the idea was hatched for Eddie to do a guest chef stint in the Maldives with Outrigger.” Details of the menu and the cooking class that Eddie will organise at Outrigger Maldives will be revealed in January. Further information will be announced on Outrigger.com. Offering small island charm with contemporary architecture and bespoke finishing touches, Outrigger Maldives Maafushivaru Resort – winner of Luxury Lifestyle Awards’ "Best Luxury Hideaway Resort” in the Maldives 2022 – is a 25-minute seaplane journey from Male. The resort offers guests an idyllic island experience, epitomising all that one thinks of when dreaming of the Maldives. Take advantage of the latest best offers to stay at Outrigger Maldives Maafushivaru Resort at www.Outrigger.com.
12 Dec 22Partner News
Come Be Here: Outrigger Resorts & Hotels Elevates Iconic Beach Brand with New Look, New Properties, New WebsiteCelebrating 75 years of warm island hospitality, Outrigger Resorts & Hotels has announced a comprehensive brand ...Read moreCome Be Here: Outrigger Resorts & Hotels Elevates Iconic Beach Brand with New Look, New Properties, New Website - News & announcementsCelebrating 75 years of warm island hospitality, Outrigger Resorts & Hotels has announced a comprehensive brand revitalisation in alignment with its bold mission to be The Premier Beach Resort Company in the World. Sun-kissed and sandy, the elevated yet playful aesthetic permeates all aspects of Outrigger’s barefoot luxury brand as it further modernises its current assets and expands its portfolio with additional destinations. The new strategic direction incorporates a multi-million dollar, state-of-the-art technology stack – most notably, the all-new Outrigger.com website, which brings to life Outrigger’s premier beach resort product in a digital format. Developed in partnership with Rightpoint, the data-driven and dynamic website uses the Optimizely platform to deliver a personalised, best-in-class user experience with rich, compelling content updated daily. The launch of Outrigger.com comes on the heels of a very successful Cyber Sale, connecting guests to exceptional rates and re-introducing the Outrigger DISCOVERY loyalty programme. Outrigger’s brand evolution was a project two years in the making, said Sean Dee, EVP and Chief Commercial Officer for Outrigger Hospitality Group. “Using qualitative and quantitative data, we leaned into our beach positioning and are now focused on delivering a cohesive brand experience across all platforms,” he said. “We’re now proud to share with our guests five iconic elements at every Outrigger resort: a renowned beach location, the must-see beach bar, authentic live music, signature experiences, and our commitment to conservation,” said Dee. In the last 18 months, five premier beach resorts have been added to the Outrigger portfolio: three in Thailand, one in the Maldives and one in Hawaii. The company has earmarked US$250 million to reinvest in its Hawaii assets, including the flagship Outrigger Reef Waikiki Beach Resort, Outrigger Kona Resort & Spa, Waikiki Malia by Outrigger and Outrigger Waikiki Beachcomber Hotel – which has more exciting enhancements on the horizon. As part of the brand revitalisation, the name of Hawaii’s first and only craft hotel – Waikiki Beachcomber by Outrigger – has been changed to Outrigger Waikiki Beachcomber Hotel. “Moving the Outrigger brand to the front of our hotel’s name epitomises the confidence of our ownership and the maturing of our product – fulfilling the Outrigger standards of unforgettable happenings and unparalleled hospitality on the world’s most iconic beaches,” said Edwin Torres, General Manager at Outrigger Waikiki Beachcomber Hotel. With its central location, steps to Waikiki Beach, Outrigger Waikiki Beachcomber Hotel draws inspiration from local artisans who are integral to the interior design and modern Waikiki vibe of the craft property. The alliance of extraordinary collaborators named “The Beachcomber Originals,” contribute to the hotel’s look, sound and taste to create a one-of-a-kind journey of the senses for its visitors. Guests will also start to see the new Outrigger icon throughout its properties, collateral and logo wear. Because watching the sunrise and sunset over the sea is an integral part of a beach vacation – the Outrigger “O” is akin to the warm island sun, resting on an ocean wave. Drawing hues from the sea, sand and sky, the brand’s new colour palette is fresh, bright and natural. Elevated, authentic, iconic, lively, caring and playful, Outrigger invites guests to ‘Come Be Here’ at Outrigger Resorts & Hotels.
28 Nov 22Partner News
Outrigger Koh Samui Beach Resort Completes Its OpeningOn 26 November, Outrigger Koh Samui Beach Resort completed its opening by unveiling its ...Read moreOutrigger Koh Samui Beach Resort Completes Its Opening - News & announcementsOn 26 November, Outrigger Koh Samui Beach Resort completed its opening by unveiling its final complement of 102 rooms. The finishing phase comprised elegant colonial-style rooms with balconies, including 32 inter-connecting pairs of rooms designed for families and small groups of friends. With the full opening of the resort in Koh Samui, Outrigger Thailand now has a total of three resorts operational in the region: at Koh Samui, Khao Lak and Phuket. Outrigger Koh Samui’s ali-day dining restaurant, Mala Kitchen, and an additional courtyard swimming pool were also unveiled in the final phase. The 146 room and suite property now has two restaurants, a Coral Kids club, a games room, the Voyager 47 Club lounge, a fitness centre, three massage salas and four swimming pools, one with a children’s waterslide adjacent to the beach. “We have created a superlative beach holiday setting for families and couples to experience,” said Leah Matters, the resort’s General Manager. “Our resort’s leisure facilities, extensive adult and children activities programmes and dining options are ideal for families with children of all ages. Our Edgewater beach club, which is already proving popular in the destination, will soon welcome an international DJ five nights a week along with Koh Samui’s famous beach fire show.” Based on its first seven reviews on TripAdvisor, Outrigger Koh Samui already has a 5.0 “excellent” rating. The 146-key property on Lamai beach in the southeast of the island, 30 minutes from Samui International Airport, has an elegant colonial feel. Like all Outrigger properties, live music – from either a DJ or a band – will be a key feature at the resort, as well as private romantic dining and vow renewal options for couples. Guests so far have hailed primarily from the UK, Germany, Australia and Israel. Apart from day trips to the spectacular Angthong marine national park and assorted waterfalls around the island, visits to Haven Elephant sanctuary for rescued elephants are also proving popular. Outrigger Koh Samui Beach Resort is putting its new facilities to good use this Christmas and New Year. The resort has arranged festive dining, drinks, entertainment and fun for families and couples on 24, 25 and 31 December. The full festive programme details are here. Outrigger has opened four properties in Asia in the last 11 months: the Outrigger Koh Samui Beach Resort, the Outrigger Khao Lak Beach Resort, the Outrigger Surin Beach Resort in Phuket and the Outrigger Maldives Maafushivaru Resort. Outrigger Resorts & Hotels continues its journey to becoming “The Premier Beach Resort Company in the World”. Further information and bookings, including very special cyber sale offers, are available at outrigger.com.
16 Nov 22NEWS
75th Outrigger Hawaii anniversary celebrates the largest collection of resorts and hotelsOutrigger CCO, Sean Dee, provides a background and an update on their Hawaii properties to ...Read more75th Outrigger Hawaii anniversary celebrates the largest collection of resorts and hotels - News & announcementsOutrigger CCO, Sean Dee, provides a background and an update on their Hawaii properties to TravelMole Publisher, Charlie Kao.
16 Nov 22NEWS
Outrigger showcases Hawaii portfolioCelebrating 75 years, Outrigger CCO Sean Dee, provides a background and an update on their ...Read moreOutrigger showcases Hawaii portfolio - News & announcementsCelebrating 75 years, Outrigger CCO Sean Dee, provides a background and an update on their Hawaii properties to TravelMole Publisher, Charlie Kao. [yotuwp type="videos" id="y0ZiwehtV-w" ]
13 Sep 22Partner News
Top 10 Tips on Viewing Manta Rays in MaldivesAhead of World Manta Day on 17 September, Lynn Jula Kessler, the marine biologist ...Read moreTop 10 Tips on Viewing Manta Rays in Maldives - News & announcementsAhead of World Manta Day on 17 September, Lynn Jula Kessler, the marine biologist at Outrigger Maldives Maafushivaru Resort offers the following advice on viewing the gentle giants. 1. When to go? The manta rays’ migration pattern is dominated by the two monsoon seasons in the Maldives. From roughly December to May we find the mantas more frequently on the Western atolls. From June to November we mainly focus our search on the eastern sites. In South Ari Atoll around Outrigger Maldives Maafushivaru Resort we are extremely lucky to record year-round sightings of manta rays, as the animals don’t leave the atoll when the monsoon is changing (due to the geographical size of the atoll). Most manta sightings have been recorded between October and March. 2. Videos and books to enjoy in preparation The Manta Trust has published a fantastic Guide to Manta and Devil Rays, which gives a great overview of all the manta species known to science, with helpful identification keys. For a more aesthetic book, I recommend the Secret Life of Manta Rays, co-authored by Dr. Guy Stevens, the founder of Manta Trust. This book has stunning photographs and interesting insights to the conservation efforts, plus it’s a beautiful coffee table book. As one of the biggest threats to manta ray populations around the world is overfishing, I can recommend Seaspiracy on Netlfix to familiarise yourself with overexploitation of the seas. 3. Choose a resort with a dedicated marine biologist or conservationist Many resorts in the Maldives have a resident marine biologist or conservationist on site. With a bit of research, or by contacting the resort directly, you can find out how well the marine biologist is included in the resort’s ocean activities — and what other types of sustainability efforts are being pursued by the resort. At Outrigger we have our global nature conservation programme called OZONE — Outrigger ZONE. 4. Do a trial snorkel or scuba dive first This is important, especially if you are not a strong swimmer or have little experience snorkelling in the ocean. Try snorkelling in a safe environment first. This way you can familiarise yourself with the equipment, practice being in open water, and increase the chance of a more enjoyable manta dive or snorkel excursion. 5. Be ready! If you join a group trip make sure you listen to your guide’s instructions and are ready to get into the water at any moment! 6. Don’t get too close Manta rays are very curious by nature. We try to stay at about a three to four metre radius. But due to mantas’ inquisitive nature they almost always break this distance themselves. The best advice I can give when it comes to manta ray encounters is to stay as calm as possible. The chances of the manta ray turning around and checking you out from up close are much higher when you remain calm at the surface rather than splashing around and chasing after it. However, don’t try to touch a manta ray. This will most likely end the encounter as mantas are not tactile animals and get scared when being touched. 7. Photography tip Many times I have seen guests more focused on their camera settings than on the mantas themselves. If you are not familiar with your camera settings or you don’t want the extra pressure of having to take pictures as well as keeping up with mantas, leave the camera behind. However, action cameras such as GoPros are usually a very easy solution and make great footage and can be rented at the dive centre. If you join a trip with me you can be certain that I always carry a camera. I am more than happy to share my pictures. 8. Instagram channels to keep an eye on If you are interested in manta rays, I recommend the channels from Manta Trust (@mantatrust) and the Maldivian Manta Ray Project (@maldianmantaproject). On the OZONE Maafushivaru (@ozone_maafushivaru) channel, I share information and insights on manta rays as well as other marine projects at Outrigger Maldives Maafushivaru Resort. 9. What is Outrigger Maldives Maafushivaru Resort doing on Manta Ray Day? For World Manta Day we have a scheduled manta ray excursion for our guests. I will be joining as well, providing the participants with insights into the manta rays’ life and briefing everyone on proper in-water behaviour. All data collected during this trip will be submitted to the Maldivian Manta Ray Project and the Manta Trust, which is the world’s leading organisation on manta ray research and conservation. 10. Learn more about mantas and the responsible resort approach Find out more about World Manta Day at WorldMantaDay.com. It’s a great resource with information links, a list of challenges facing mantas, upcoming events, and how to get inolved. The Outrigger OZONE page also gives useful insights on coral protection and propagation initiatives, reducing waste, guest education, and the best eco-activities for responsible travellers.