Flying in the Beautiful Maldives – DRAMATIC Weather Challenge

I hopped on TransMaldivian Airways Twin Otter seaplane flying around the Maldives with some of the best views! However, the sunny weather changed and I encountered some rough weather in paradise.

TransMaldivian is the world’s largest seaplane operator with 65 seaplanes from its base in Male, Maldives. Seaplane operation is crucial for tourism in the Maldives. I managed some plane spotting at the seaplane terminal before boarding my flight. The seaplane pilots in the Maldives wear shorts and sandals to fly and earned the nickname “barefoot pilot”.

My flight was commanded by Captain Saif, who flew us to 3 resorts and back. We took off from the seaplane runway, flew over Male city, headed South and went as low as 500 feet for some beautiful sightseeing. Shortly before our landing at the first resort, the weather changed with rain showers in the area.

The turnaround time at each resort was just 5-10 minutes like a bus operation. Our next stop was the LUX resort where we were welcomed by a team of staff. The weather deteriorated rapidly so we have to quickly depart. The visibility was too low to land at our last stop. We had to divert to land in a lagoon and docked on a platform in the middle of the choppy sea. It was a very unexpected experience in paradise! I had never ever imagined I would land on a platform rocking in the sea soaking wet in the heavy downpour…