Dear Steemit friends :
What would a paradise be without its choix d'aliments?
Ayada attracts guests from all over the world, and thus faces a considerable challenge of serving delectable food to suit a broad range of tastes. For an island barely a few kilometers in perimeter, there are a surprising number of dining options available offering a sound mixture of international cuisine along side local Maldivian specialties.
Today, we'll be having a look at the Magu a la carte restaurant which doubles up as the breakfast venue. It is here that the daily inclusive breakfast is served from 06:30 to 10:00 and will be the only meal of the day which is inclusive of your stay. Other food options including the evening dinner will be at extra cost.
John Gunther once said "All happiness depends on a leisurely breakfast" and I absolutely agree. Nothing makes me more happy than seeing the first light of dawn bathe the white sandy beaches whilst the gentle crush of waves sound the beginning of the day.
My day began with a familiar whistle of wind through imperfect cracks of my bedroom door. It was like natures alarm signalling for me to wake up and enjoy the day.
I slide open the doors for my first breath of morning fresh air, the sound of the wind suddenly disappears leaving only a chorus of waves splashing on the stilts of the villa below. Even though I am wide awake, the smell of the sea makes me feel like i'm having a daydream. The stellar views, and heavenly atmosphere play a large part in the illusion.
From the ocean villa, it is a casual 5 to 10 minute walk to Magu Restaurant. I use the walk as an opportunity to resolve my senses. Am I really actually here? Is this island real? Am I in a dream? I think i'll take the blue pill and leave those questions unanswered.
After-all, I came to the island to dream.
Maldives has proven to be an exceptionally popular destination for those seeking a winter escape, this is especially true for the Chinese. As such, Ayada has positioned itself really well to receive the oriental "onslaught" by recruiting a healthy number of native Chinese or Chinese speaking staff.
In terms of food, the international cuisine includes many familiar Chinese dishes. You'll find dishes like fried rice, fried noodles, congee, and dim sum to name a few, but each are prepared with their own Maldivian flare.
At closer inspection, I found that the dishes offered came from a myriad of countries. Catering to people with all sorts of tastes. Be it traditional English, Japanese, French, Indian or Maldivian. There was quite literally something for everyone.
Without further ado, time to see the food!
In-room breakfast service
Aside from eating at Magu, each guest is also entitled to one complimentary in-room breakfast. The food is prepared by the Magu restaurant and only requires you to make the food selections through your butler one day in advance.
Naturally, I couldn't resist having breakfast by the pool deck. Topping up on sunshine whilst kicking off the day with room service breakfast could not get any better!
Although the temperature was high, there was actually quite a lot of intermittent rainfall, this makes the availability of sun some what a godsend. Any opportunity I had to go outside and wade in the pool with my floaties under the sun, I'd take in a heart beat.
This is a wide angle shot of the pool deck.
Today's floatie is the pineapple. If you remember from about a year ago, I made a pen pineapple apple pen meme contest. Suffice to say, I'm a big fan of pineapples!
The light emerald blue water really stands out under the sun. It's almost.. ethereal.
The obligatory hammock abuse.
These are the ocean villas, on the left are the suites and on the right are the standard villas. Connecting them are these quite wide piers which are often used by the mini carts and buggies. But you'll also find people cycling along the top of it for some stellar ocean views.
Sunset fishing excursion
One of the most popular activities is the sunset fishing experience. This is one of many activities available at the Dive Kingdom. Other popular activities include various water sports and Big time fishing. Unfortunately, the weather was unsuitable for the water sports, and I'm not experienced enough for big game fishing. Sunset fishing is the only option left!
We gather about 2 hours before sunset (17:00) and set off with a group of other keen fishers. By this point, I had waited several days for this experience because the weather had been too rough for the boat to go out to the sea. As you can imagine, I was quite excited when I found out the activity was going ahead.
We headed a few miles out to sea, close enough to keep our point of origin in sight, but far enough to enter deeper water.
There were several crew members to help us out. None of the people on the excursion had any experience fishing. The only time I ever tried fishing was with a rod. Strangely enough, I didn't see any of those around. I wondered how we'd go about fishing without any?
The first task is to prepare the bait. Actually the bait is fresh fish caught from earlier in the day. It is sliced and diced into little pieces, and the innards and throwaways were used to attract nearby fish.
A by product of throwing fish guts overboard to attract fish we want to catch, is that it also attracts fish we don't want to catch. In this case, my familiar friends, the Nurse sharks.
Several followed our trail and swam around our boat for the entire evening. It was actually quite fun seeing them swim around harmlessly.
As you can see, we are quite literally line fishing. There is no rod, and we hold the line taut with our hands. A glove is provided to protect your hands when there is violent activity on the line.
Instead of watching a float to see if fish are taking bites, you feel the nibbling directly through holding the fishing line. The first time I felt the fish nibbling, I couldn't believe it.
After about an hour, I was getting quite impatient as I had yet to catch anything. It was getting dark, and there were sporadic spells of rain which tested my patience even more.
Finally, after nearly two hours, I finally felt a vicious tug on my life, and in response, I gave it a firm tug back. To my surprise, I felt the hook latch on to the fish and fight against it as I pulled the line in. It's quite hard to believe that this seemingly primitive method of fishing actually works!
Before long, the rest of the party also started getting nibbles and caught their own fish too. I'm proud to report though, that I was the first!
Finally, with our catches of the day secured, we headed off back to the island just as the sun began to set. Overall, it was a very enriching experience.
I caught a fish, saw Nurse sharks, and watched the sunset. Mission accomplished!
Once we came back, we were given the option to dine at Magu Restaurant. The fish we caught would be prepared on the house. There's certainly an extra sense of achievement when the fish you're eating is the one you caught just moments before.
And here it is, the grilled fish fillet with lemon.
I will go ahead and state that this is the best tasting fish I have ever tasted. Obviously i'm biased and living in a dream, but hey, that's what i'm here for!
And that concludes our very hands on Miss Delicious. The Magu restaurant must be applauded for being so diverse with it's dishes. It caters to people from all corners of the world and even does room service breakfast! Whats more, they also cook your daily catch for free! Next time, I hope to catch a larger dinner, you know my relationship with food.. I like to eat.
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