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Sub-Region: South of India, Indian Ocean
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Ideal duration: 3-5 days

Best Time: December to April Read More

Visa Policy for All Nationals: Visa on arrival for most countries Read More

Getting In Maldives: Male airport is an international airport and is well connected from most countries in Asia directly or via India or Sri-Lanka or UAE  Read More

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"A Tropical Haven For Honeymooners"

Maldives Tourism

The Maldives is an archipelagic state situated in the Indian Ocean known for its luxurious water villas. A tropical haven of white sand beaches, the Maldives is located in the south of Sri Lanka and is ideal for an adventure, honeymoon, or leisure holiday.

The Maldives is an archipelago of 1,192 coral islands grouped into natural atolls. However, only 200 islands are inhabited. Each resort generally occupies an entire atoll.
Imagine having a room on a pier jutting out from the shore with a glass floor under which manta rays and reef sharks can be seen swimming, and step out from your overwater bungalow to the view of turquoise water.

Comprising of 26 atolls (ring-shaped coral reef that encircles a lagoon), the Maldives is renowned for its incredible diving opportunities, Maldives' azure waters are home to diverse marine life and corals of distinct hues.

The capital city of Male is both commercial and financial capital. Seat to the executive, legislature, and judiciary, this city has the most well-connected international airport. The history lovers will be satiated here, given Male houses several buildings and monuments of historical importance. Male is accessible by ferry boats from the international airport. Travel to other islands in the Maldives is also quite feasible from Male due to the excellent ferry and seaplanes connectivity, though it is quite expensive.

Must Know Before You Travel to Maldives

  • Speedboats - Ideal for South and North Male Atoll. Located close to the airport (15-40mins). Perfect for catching a flight any time
  • Domestic flight+ Seaplane - Ideal for Southern and northern part of Maldives. Lands at a smaller island that connects with a speedboat to another island where resorts are located (above 1 hour - 30-40 min flight +speedboat)
  • Seaplane - Ideal for outlying islands. Only operate during daylight hours between 6 AM - 4 PM. Has a frequency of half-hour or 1 hour. If you land in the evening, you need to book one night stay at a hotel on Hulhumale or Male island
  • Budget Accommodation - Stay at Hulhumale or Maafushi Island if looking for budget hotels. These islands are also close to Male Airport. There are many other local islands as well, but the ferries will cost around 60 USD per person to reach there. You will have to get in touch with the homestay or hotel owners to help you book seats in the ferry and for the schedule.
  • Liquor - It is prohibited to have liquor on Maldivian land. Some hotels in Hulhumale and Maafushi have speedboat which takes you into the water where you can have liquor. Private island resorts have licenses for serving liquors.
  • Food - Opt for full board or all-inclusive plans when booking a hotel. The all-inclusive plan has in-house liquor (and in-house activities) while all meal/full board plan has all meals included in the package. Food is generally expensive in the Maldives
  • Indian Food - The majority of the resorts in the Maldives have Indian food available
  • Card - American Express, Visa, MasterCard, Diners Club, JCB, and Euro Card are accepted almost everywhere in Maldives.
  • Green Tax is to be paid by each person (adult & kid both). It is often included in the packages or hotel cost.
  • It is illegal to carry corals, shells and other things found in the sea, home from the Maldives
  • Importing liquor is prohibited in Maldives

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Local Etiquettes to Know Before Travelling

The Maldivian culture and customs are an infusion of elements from India, Sri Lanka and even North Africa, owing to the footfall of traders traversing through the Indian Ocean. Although life in the island resorts is quite relaxed, certain etiquettes demand to be followed.
1. While topless bathing and nudity are strictly prohibited for women, wearing bikinis is acceptable.
2. You need to be a little more adequately dressed for dining.
3. If you are visiting places inhabited by locals, like Male, bear in mind that Maldives is a devout Islamic nation. Therefore make sure you are sensitive to the local customs and dress conservatively. Lowers should cover the thighs and tops and t-shirts should cover the shoulders and not be very low cut.
4. If you are visiting mosques, women must have their heads covered and neither men or women should wear shorts.
5. Alcohol is not available and should not be consumed in the inhabited islands. Your resorts will be serving alcoholic beverages.
6. Tipping is not compulsory here, but will nevertheless be expected. The 10% service charge levied is usually not paid to the staff. Tips ranging from USD 5 - USD 10 will be appreciated by your waiter, boat crew or room attendant.

Language of Maldives

The national language here is Dhivehi, with varying dialects. It belongs to the Indo-Aryan language family and hence quite different from English. However, being a popular tourist destination, English is also widely spoken and understood. Some common phrases in the local language are: Assalaamu Alaikum - Hello Aan - Yes Noon - No Ran'galhu - Good Shukuriyaa - Thank You

History of Maldives

The archipelago was inhabited as early as 5th Century BC, by Buddhists believed to be from Sri Lanka and southern India. Located in the prime marine route while crossing the Indian Ocean, Maldives used to be the replenishment centre for food, water, coir and other equipment. Maldivians were followers of Buddhism, as told by the Buddhist ruins excavated from these islands. Ancient relics have also suggested traces of Hinduism and Paganism, since inception. It was in 1153 AD that Maldivians embraced Islam. Ibn Battuta, a North African traveller was known to have resided here. Maldives was not free from foreign aggressions - invaded by the Portuguese in 1558 who reigned for 15 years, followed by the Dutch of Ceylon in the 17th century and finally became a British Protectorate in 1887 after the British took over Ceylon. It was only in 1932 that a democratic regime was adopted. In 1953, the first Republic was proclaimed, but Maldives had absolute political independence from the British in 1965. Ibrahim Nasir was appointed the first President of the Second Republic of Maldives. Subsequent to this, the island nations have developed tremendously over the year, exploiting various economic opportunities and opening its doors to tourism.

Shopping in Maldives

Male is the main shopping site in the Maldives, with its lanes lined with boutiques selling international products. Majeedhee Magu is one of the most famous shopping destinations with clothing items, cosmetics, accessories, electronics and groceries on offer. Orchid Magu and Chaandhanee Magu are adorned with rows of souvenir shops selling varieties of local artefacts. The STO Trade Centre is also situated in Orchid Magu. Shops in the inhabited islands also sell souvenirs in the likes of authentic lacquer works, dhoni crafts (miniatures of traditional boats), wood carvings, mat weavings, coconut shell products, coir ropes and clothes. Do visit the Male local market and fish market, for more so an experience rather than making purchases. Fresh produce in vivid colours will meet your eyes, as you explore the markets on foot. Fruits, vegetables, dry fish as well as fresh fish, green coconut, spices are few things being sold and as a visitor, you will be more than welcomed to stock on local ingredients. Most resorts will afford the opportunity of shopping in boutiques selling internationally acclaimed brands. Essentials like food, stationery, medicines, cosmetics are also easily available.

Currency in Maldives

Given the touristy nature of Maldives, USD is generally accepted by resort islands, liveaboards, hotels, restaurants, travel agents, local islands and souvenir shops. Most of the activities can be arranged by your resorts, and an accumulated payment can be made to the resort by the end of your stay, by cash or card. The capital city of Male affords payment by USD as well. Apart from USD, Euros and Pound Sterling can also be used. Major International Credit Cards like American Express, Visa Card, Master Card and JCB Card are all accepted.

Nightlife in Maldives

Maldivian nightlife tends to be more on the calm side, with most evening entertainment taking place on resort premises. The paradise islands being heralded as primarily a destination for couples, one wouldn't expect much in the way of clubbing - however, some hotels have bars and nightclubs attached to their premises. Standouts include the chic Fifteen Below at W Retreat and Spa, the unique underwater Subsix nightclub at Per Aquum Niyama Resort and the Reethi Beach Resort, which is a socialites' magnet. Partake in beach parties, with barbeques set up against the relentless sea and limited brands of wine.

Exchanging Money in Maldives

It is advisable to not convert a lot of your currency to MVR, since there aren't many occasions to use it, and you may be forced to sell it back at rates lower than what you purchased them at. Money exchange facility is available round the clock at the arrival terminal of the Male International Airport. Withdrawal from ATMs is also possible with a nominal fee.

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FAQs on Maldives

What is famous about Maldives?

  • The Maldives is a safe place to travel for tourists from any country to travel and enjoy.
  • It is the perfect place if you are planning your honeymoon or a romantic getaway with your partner.
  • Great place for an idyllic and leisure vacation and must go for all history lovers, or if you are just looking to spend some peaceful time by the ocean.
  • Most people converse in English making it easy to communicate.

What is not so good about Maldives?

  • The Maldives does not serve alcohol to the locals, however, if you are a non-Muslim and above the age of 18, liquor will be served at some of the hotels but it will be at quite an exorbitant price.
  • Accommodation, food as well as travel are also quite expensive.
  • It is also recommended that you refrain from showing affection on the street since it is frowned upon and the country does not encourage the public display of affection.
  • Friday and Saturday is considered as a weekend

Who should visit Maldives?

The Maldives is recommended for people of any age be it a family vacation or a romantic honeymoon. A great destination for aqua lovers to try out different water activities, recommended for history lovers, for a great experience.

What is the best time to visit Maldives?

The best time to visit the Maldives is during the dry season from December to April. The dry season is characterised by the bright sun, clear skies, calm sea and only sporadic rainfall at times, thus making it the ideal time for sunbathing, scuba diving and snorkelling. This time tends to be relatively more expensive owing to peak season.

The Maldives with its sun-kissed beaches is a tropical island that witnesses a dry spell, 'Iruvai', between December - April and a wet spell, Hulhangu, from May - November. There is a negligible change in temperature amidst the two seasons.

Surfing enthusiasts should head to the Maldives during the monsoon from late February - Mid-November, with the best time being March to May, when there is torrential rainfall, and the seas are rough. There are occasional bright days as well. Budget travellers can visit during this time since resorts offer attractive packages and offers.

What is the local food in Maldives?

Traditional Maldivian cuisine comprises three staple ingredients - fish, coconut and starch. The cuisine here is influenced in palates by Sri Lanka and Kerala, with its own distinct flavours. Eating in Male affords the best opportunity to try the local food and you must try the 'hotaus' or cafe which serves the traditional fare. As an island nation, fish is no doubt the source of all protein and nutrition, tuna being the favourite. Sometimes the fish is flaked or pounded to be added as a condiment for flavouring or alternatively stuffed in a dough pastry, 'short eats'. Curries prepared with coconut milk and a curry paste blended from roasted onions, chili peppers, herbs and spices are a usual fare. Mas Riha and Kukulhu Riha are the popular curries made with fish and chicken respectively, and a blend of spices. Roshi or flatbread is the common accompaniment to the Rihas. Garudiya, yet another popular dis is a fish broth made from such cured tuna, while Rihaakuru, a fish paste consumed with rice daily is made by concentrating the fish broth, while Kulhi Boakibaa is a fish cake made from tuna and coconut. Begin your day with some Maldivian breakfast, Mas Huni, for the fish eaters and Barabao Mas Huni, a pumpkin based alternative for the vegans; gorge on some curries over the day and end with Dhonkeyo Kajuru, a fried banana cake flavoured with vanilla or rose water. The locals in Maldives do not consume alcoholic beverages, however alcohol is served in the resorts. Sip on to some tender coconut water or try the Raa, which is toddy tapped from palm trees, while you bask in the sun. There is yet another irresistible dining option on this island - underwater dining, amidst the fascinating under water world. Sea Restaurant, Ithaa, Conrad are some of the popular ones. This is inevitably an expensive affair, an approximate meal for two being US $ 400. The resorts generally serve the popular global cuisines. So for all those who do not wish to venture with the local cuisine, there is no cause for worry.

How much does a package cost for Maldives?

The packages for Maldives start at INR 10433 which can be further customized based on number of people, days, hotel category, vehicle type and customizations. You can have a look at all packages

What are the things to do in Maldives?

The top things to do in Maldives are Male, Banana Reef, Diving in Maldives, Island Hopping, Water Sports, Artificial Beach. You can see all the places to visit in Maldives

What are the places near Maldives?

The top places near to Maldives are London which is 8714 km from Maldives, Dubai which is located 3241 km from Maldives, Amsterdam which is located 8403 km from Maldives, New york city which is located 14245 km from Maldives, Bali which is located 4749 km from Maldives

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Maldives Reviews

Your rating

Rohit Shroff

7 months ago
Maldives is absolutely beautiful. One of the most beautiful waters that you'll see anywhere in the world. The islands are a little far off from Male, so choose your public island or private island re (Read More)sort carefully. Going through a travel agent should be helpful in planning a nice trip as there are lots of activity and public transport options are not available easily.

Banwari patidar

4 years ago
Best place in the world. Undoubtedly it is. Maldives is really heaven on earth South of India it is like dream home for all those who love beaches, sea and ocean, resorts & spas, parties, marine wild (Read More)life, sunbath, isl

Taniya Batra

6 years ago
The Maldives is another one of those places for which weather plays a crucial part. Although the beautiful islands of Maldives experience relatively similar temperatures throughout the year, the rain (Read More)fall it receives differs largely. Choosing the best time to visit the Maldives can be derived from the activities you wish to participate in. Take a look at which activities would require calm seas and less rainfall as opposed to the ones that would require heavy rainfall.
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