Snorkelling the Park Hyatt Maldives House Reef at Hadahaa, Maldives


The Park Hyatt Maldives at Hadahaa Island has one of the most spectacular house reefs out there in the world. From the comfort of your private island, from it’s sandy shores, you and one of the 150 other island residents have access to some of the most exclusive and pristine coral reefs out there. Thanks to the high price of admission, it’s a limited bunch that gain access to these waters, resulting in a reef that’s in gorgeous condition, but exceptionally accessible from shore.

This post is one chapter on our third Round the World trip via South Korea, Vietnam, Singapore, the Maldives and India. This trip was redeemed through Air Canada’s Aeroplan and through Starwood Preferred Guest (Marriott Bonvoy) and Hyatt Gold Passport (World of Hyatt) loyalty programs. For more information on how this trip was booked, please see our trip introduction here. For other parts of the trip, please see this index.

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Snorkelling the Park Hyatt Maldives House Reef at Hadahaa, Maldives.

“The Park Hyatt Maldives House Reef at Hadahaa Island, Maldives is simply the greatest house reef that I’ve ever visited from any resort in the world. “

On this visit to the Park Hyatt Maldives, we stayed in a wonderful Park Hyatt Maldives Pool Villa. We also had the opportunity to circumnavigate the Hadahaa Island, took in a back of house tour, explored and snorkled the wonderful Hadahaa house reef, and enjoyed many sunsets on Hadahaa.

For our experience during our last stay, or for some additional room configurations, please see here for our time in a Park Hyatt Maldives Park Villa and Park Hyatt Maldives Over Water Villa.

Where is the Hadahaa Island House Reef?

One of the features of the Park Hyatt Maldives that doesn’t always get mentioned is the excellent house reef. The Park Hyatt Maldives is situated a mere 55 kilometres north of the equator. The Hadahaa Island house reef is by far the best house reef I’ve ever experienced across by travels throughout the world.

The house reef is situated on the north west portion of the island. From almost half the island, corals exist on the entire north west side of the island. From the dawn jetty or the dusk jetty, you can snorkel halfway around the island, seeing a variety of marine life.

What does the Hadahaa House Reef look like:

We’ve been fortunate enough to snorkel in many of the world’s greatest locations; Ko Phi Phi Don in Thailand, The Whitsunday Islands in Australia, Dahab in Egypt, Moorea in French Polynesia and off Le Morne in Mauritius. None of them compare to the beauty of the Hadahaa House Reef.

There Is a whole variety of tropical fish in this reef that’s situated around the Park Hyatt Maldives. The visibility is usually excellent. The corals are also in excellent shape and have not had any damage from being stepped on.

Gorgeous Reefs at Hadahaa
Reefs near the edge of the “drop off”

What can you see on the Hadahaa House Reef?

The reef contains a remarkable amount of aquatic life. The Park Hyatt Maldives features guided tours of the reef in both day and night times although we didn’t partake in the tours. You could spend days and months here and not be able to see everything in this particular reef.

Schooling of Fish

Once you get past the enormity of all the various fish types you can get acclimated to the environment. There were hundreds of specimens on an individual basis. The Hadahaa house reef had a great opportunity to see a wide sampling of tropical fish.

A Porcupine Fish
Butterfly Fish
Imperial Angel Fish
A Beautiful Moorish Idol
Bright Royal Blue Parrot Fish
Imperial Angel Fish
Blue Sturgeon Fish
Emperor Angel Fish
Blue Lined Snapper
Needle Fish under the Park Hyatt Over Water Villas

Spotting Grey Tip Reef Sharks:

In addition to spectacular underwater life, we were fortunate enough that we were able to get a swim past of several grey tip reef sharks. It’s pretty terrifying to see one of these things coming toward you- I had the underwater camera at the time and managed to keep still enough to get some photographs. MrsWT73 and I were swimming together and likely looked bigger than we actually were. They say that they are harmless, but I wouldn’t make a habit of provoking them.

Our first sighting was out by the drop off near the water villas at feeding time around 5 PM. Keeping our eye on him, he circled through the reef shallows, checking us out before he headed out to open waters. 

Grey Tipped Reef Sharks
Gliding through the Reef
What a beautiful and potentially deadly family of animals!
Headed off into the Reef

We had a few additional sightings during our stay. Needless to say, we needed a few cocktails that evening after that first shark encounter!

My thoughts about the Hadahaa House Reef:

I have always been really impressed with the Hadahaa House Reef at the Park Hyatt Maldives. It is simply a wonderful underwater environment that allows any visitor to take in a whole lot of fish with the convenience of being right from shore. While we’ve had the opportunity to snorkel in Moorea- French Polynesia, Dahab- Egypt, the Withsunday Islands on the Great Barrier Reef – Australia and Muscat- Oman, nothing has compared to this particular reef. Make sure you get here while it’s still in great condition.

If you’ve snorkelled the Park Hyatt Maldives house reef, did you find it as gorgeous as we did?

3 Comments on “Snorkelling the Park Hyatt Maldives House Reef at Hadahaa, Maldives

  1. Excellent review and great pics. I have to tell you that it is great to see how well the Hadahaa house reef is faring. You probably won’t believe this, but when we visited in 2017 the house reef was bleached almost entirely. It looked more like a coral graveyard than a coral reef. I spoke to the friendly guy who ran the dive shop, and much to my surprise he was completely unconcerned. He stated that the currents in the Indian Ocean change every so often, bringing an influx of warm water which bleaches the coral. However, he stated with certitude that this would be temporary and in a matter of a few years the reef would again be like an underwater Eden, resplendent with abundant fish and coral life. This flew in the face of all the dooms and gloom/alarmist messaging that western media bombards us with, so I was hesitant to believe it. But the pictures don’t lie! The reef bounced back in entirety! Now I must begin planning my return to observe its glory in person. Thanks again!


    • The reef conditions around the world are something that’s super concerning. We’ve seen a lot of coral bleaching and corals that are in a lessor condition as a result of temperature changes. In my limited experience, it seems to be worse in the Caribbean and Australia. The Maldives have been pretty good to us, and their remote locations seem to have less traffic and damage to coral reefs.

      Thanks for reading Wes.


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