Welcome to the Maldives

where sands are white as the smiles of the locals,
where fish swim happily in the warm waters of the Indian Ocean,
where the weather is a dream,
and the deep rays of the sun wait to engulf you their arms!!

Maldives

Overview | Fast Facts | Activities | Map | Islands & Properties

Overview

Welcome to the Maldives, where sands are white as the smiles of the locals, where fish swim happily in the warm waters of the Indian Ocean, where the weather is a dream, and the deep rays of the sun wait to engulf you their arms!!

The Island

Maldives has deep blue seas, turquoise reefs, white sandy beaches and palm trees. It is also a place full of character, where its people have long spent their days languishing in the very essence of idyll living. While it is the perfect place to sit on a beach and watch a sunset with a cocktail balanced on your hand, it is also a geographical marvel, knowing that there are thousands of fish swimming around the vivid corals just a few feet away from where you sit. In ancient times, the shores of the Maldives welcomed lost travellers. Still welcoming, these shores remain, providing a tranquil haven for visitors.


Overview | Fast Facts | Activities | Map | Islands & Properties

Fast Facts

Geographical Location
 

The Island is located in the Indian Ocean and astride the Equator, in both the Northern and Southern hemispheres. Its Coordinates are 3°15 N 73°00 E and lies 700 Km (435 miles) South-West of Sri Lanka and 400 Km (250 miles) South-West of India.

Number of Islands and Atol
 
Official Language & Religion
 

Dhivehi. English is widely spread and learnt as second language at a young age. 100 % of the population are Sunni Muslims.

Time Zone
 

The Maldives is currently 3 hours ahead of South Africa. 

Climate
 

The Maldives is located at the equator and experiences monsoonal climate. The country also has two distinct seasons; dry season (northeast monsoon) and wet season (southwest monsoon). In these two seasons the temperature varies very little.

  • Northeast monsoon (dry season) usually extends from January to March/April
  • Southwest monsoon (wet season) usually extends from May to November. In this season the Maldives can experience torrential rain, strong winds and storms.

 

Average temperatures: 25.9° to 31°C ( 78.62˚ to 88˚ F)

Maldives Currency
 

The Maldives local currency is the Maldivian Rufiyaa (MVR). You can exchange your foreign currency at all local banks as well draw from ATM’s. All resorts however accept USD.

Area Codes
 

The area code for Maldives is 00 960 +. Cell phone coverage is today available in most places of the archipelago.

Internet Access
 

Available today in all Hotels and Resorts and almost everywhere from North to South. This service is chargeable or free according to the Resorts.

Gratuity
 

A minimum of 1US$ / 0.63GBP£ / 0.80€ / per day for the room attendant. The same amount for waiters  and your luggage porter at arrival is advised. Butler services in luxury Resorts are generally more rewarded.

Dress Codes
 

In Resorts : Summer Casual. General trend is quite relaxed...but Island Chic style is welcome and even required in some Resorts, mostly in the evenings.
No swim wear allowed in restaurants.

Male and Maldivian local Islands : Women and men should keep their thighs and shoulders covered. No transparent clothes.

Customs
 

According to Maldivian Law, importation of liquor and alcoholic products without prior approval is prohibited. Hence, it is advised not to purchase liquor and alcoholic products on the flight or duty free shops while en route to the Maldives as these items will be confiscated upon arrival at the airport. However, liquor, beer and other such alcoholic beverages are available at all tourist resorts/hotels. These have been imported under special license issued prior to their importation. So is the importation of pork and its by-products without prior approval is prohibited. A valid medical prescription issued by a registered medical practitioner is required for importation of controlled drugs (for personal use only)

All tobacco products must carry a health warning label as prescribed by the Ministry of Health. All passengers are eligible for import duty allowance up to a limit of 200 Cigarettes, 25 Cigars and 250g of tobacco.

Talkie-set, receiver and any other telecommunication equipment with radio frequency transmitting capacity exceeding 100 mil-liwatts should be in-spected and approved by Communication Authority of Maldives.

Health requirements
 

The Maldives is not a dangerous destination, with few poisonous animals and by regional standards excellent health care and hygiene awareness. Staying healthy here is mainly about being sensible and careful. Most resorts have a resident doctor, or share one with another nearby resort. However, if you are seriously unwell it will be necessary to go to Male, or to the nearest atoll capital with a hospital if you’re in a far-flung resort. The Maldivian health service relies heavily on doctors, nurses and dentists from overseas, and facilities outside the capital are very limited. The country’s main hospital is the Indira Gandhi Memorial Hospital in Male. Male also has the ADK Private Hospital, which offers high-quality care at high prices, but as it’s important to travel with medical insurance to the Maldives, the cost shouldn’t be too much of a worry. The capital island of each atoll has a government hospital or at least a health centre. These are being improved, but for any serious problem you’ll have to go to Male.

Insurance
 

It is highly recommended that travel insurance is purchased prior to departure in case of accident or illness. The Maldives is adequate for general medical complaints and injuries, but critical conditions will require international medical attention.

Electricity
 

Electricity in Maldives is 230 Volts, alternating at 50 cycles per second. If you travel to Maldives with a device that does not accept 230 Volts at 50 Hertz, you will need a voltage converter. Outlets in Maldives generally accept 4 types of plug that include Flat blade plug, Three round pins arranged in a triangle; Two parallel flat pins with ground pin and Two round pins.

Visa’s and Passport requirements
 

A 30 day Visa is issued on arrival for all Nationalities visiting the Maldives as a tourist. Each traveller should be in the possession of a valid passport and have a valid ticket to continue the journey out of the Maldives as well as have enough funds to cover the expenses for the duration of their stay (US$150 per day) or a confirmation of accommodation at a resort/hotel.

 


Overview | Fast Facts | Activities | Map | Islands & Properties

Activities

GETTING AROUND

Places to see in Male'

The Hukuru Miskiyy (Friday Mosque) built in 1656 contains finely fluted coral block walls, and intricately engraved beams; Mulee-aage, the current Presidential residence was built right before the First World War and overlooks the Friday Mosque; the Islamic Centre that was built in 1984 and has a lovely, geometric stretch of white steps leading up-to the grand mosque; the sultan park and national museum that are housed in the same compound, the latter consists of an intimate collection housed in a quaint building surrounded by trees; and the artificial beach, and swimming track, both ideal for a refreshing swim. Another interesting aspect of Male' are the names of houses. From names that pay tribute to island culture, like 'Sea-Breeze', and 'Sunshine Lodge', there are also slightly eccentric variations, like 'Forget-Me-Not', and ‘Always Happy House’. A quintessentially Maldivian feature, it provides an amusing accompaniment to a walk around Male' and an insight into the mindsets of the Maldivian people.

The Male' surf point Raalhugandu and the artificial beach lie on the south-eastern side of Male'. The area comes to life in the late afternoons and evenings, with hundreds of Male' dwellers coming out to relax and enjoy the fresh sea air and the day's end. The surf-huts overlooking Raalhugandu, built by local surfers and residents of neighbouring houses provide a vantage point for watching the waves. Whether you are there to see the surfers expertly guide their boards over the waves, or the strong curls of the waves themselves, the sight will not disappoint.

Shopping in Male’
Male' also hosts a wide range of shops that sell every imaginable good including supermarkets, chemists, electronics, books, clothes, footwear, and jewellery.

Notable shopping areas of Male’ include the two markets, one which sells local agricultural produce, and another that sells fish.
The local market stocks agricultural produce from all Maldivian islands. It is located on the northern side of Male', and distinguished by the sight of hanging clusters of bright yellow bananas throughout the market. The market is favoured by locals and expatriates alike, mainly because of the availability of fresh, local fruit and vegetable produce at inexpensive prices.

The fish market is located a mere two blocks away from the local market. The main feature of the market is its omissible odour of freshly caught fish. Once your nostrils adjust to the strong smell, the market is a veritable delight of colour and energy. The best time to visit the fish market would be in the late-afternoons, when the local fishermen bring in their catch. Make sure you see the fish-cutters at work, with their practised blades slicing and dicing the fish neatly.

Slightly off the usual tourist track are the plentiful textile shops dotted around Male'. There are hundreds of them and local woman often get their clothes from these as they offer fabrics of every imaginable texture, design and colour. Air-conditioned and well-maintained, these shops are well worth a visit if only to get a glimpse of local women in their element. Any tour guide will be able to point you in the direction of the larger textile shops, and you will come across a dozen stores on a walk along the main roads of Male'.

Male’ also has a range of bookstores, where you purchase stationery as well as a range of popular fiction, non-fiction and self-help books.
To take back memories of your holiday in a more material form, the souvenir shops on the northern end Chandhanee Magu provide the perfect outlet. Wooden ashtrays, turtle shaped salt and pepper shakers, shell necklaces and packs of playing cards, these shops offer kitsch of every kind and shape for the discerning traveller.

Eating Out in Male’
Open from early morning till 1 am in the night, the Male' restaurants aim to please. Menus ranging from Thai, Italian, Indian and other international, regional and local cuisine. They are served in a range of restaurants, from the cool air-conditioned bistros to the laid-back open-air cafes. For a truly Maldivian dining experience, try the fish, preferably while listening to the waves at a waterfront restaurant. The local version of fast-food are served at what are known as Sai-Hotaas (teashops). In chatter-filled environment, these hotaas serve ‘short-eats’: a variety of (often deep-fried) sweet and savoury finger-food, mostly fish and coconut based, as well as local bread ‘roshi’ to be eaten with a variety of side dishes. Hotaas have a robust clientele, and serve food on communal tables. The atmosphere is extremely informal and should you want to engage in conversation with a friendly local, this may very well be the place to do so.
Cafés are big with the locals of ages and sexes in Male’. Over cups of steaming coffee, tea and hot chocolate, friends catch up on the day’s affairs and business deals are conducted. In addition to various beverages, cafés also serve snacks and smalls in an environment more tempered than that of the hotaas. Ranging from the cozy and air-conditioned to water-front and laid back, they are the perfect place to satiate a caffeine fix or to quench dry throats with a fresh juice.


Overview | Fast Facts | Activities | Map | Islands & Properties

Map

Maldives Map


Overview | Fast Facts | Activities | Map | Islands & Properties

Maldives Properties

  • Velaa

    Velaa Private Island 

    It is very difficult to describe this Boutique Hideaway – one can only repeat that it is the realization of a dream to create a ‘beyond luxury’ ultra-exclusive boutique hideaway. The name of this private retreat, means “Turtle Island” in the local language – and named after generations of sea turtles that have flocked here to nest and hatch.

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    Soneva Fushi

    Soneva Fushi

    SLOW LIFE  = Sustainable - local - organic - wellness learning - inspiring - fun - experiences

    This is Intelligent Luxury - Soneva Fushi’s down to earth feel is reflected in its guest’s casual dress code and its naturally-designed architecture

    The Resort is the first “Robinson Crusoe” style hideaway in the Maldives, and is set on the privately owned tropical island of Kunfunadhoo in Baa Atoll, the latest UNESCO Biosphere Reserve. The resort can be reached by a scenic 30-minute sea plane flight direct from Male International airport or for guests scheduled on evening flights by domestic carrier flights via nearby Dharavandhoo airport.

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  • Constance Halaveli

    Constance Halaveli – a place to Relax and Regenerate!

    Floating in the North Ari atoll and shaped like a curved Dhoni (Maldivian boat) is the five star Constance Halaveli. It is a place where time seems to have stopped and dreams become reality. Water and sand combine and lie in contrast to the exuberant green of the foliage. The shadow of the 86 villas falls on the turquoise lagoon. The three restaurants and the spa ensure that both body and mind are well cared for. Constance Halaveli is a place to relax and regenerate in overwhelming peacefulness.

    For your dream wedding and honeymoon contact us for special offers!

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  • Centara Grand Island Resort

    Centara Grand Island Resort & Spa

    Surrounded by the blue ocean of the South Ari Atoll, and distinctive with its timbered walkways and colonial-style buildings, Centara Grand Island Resort & Spa Maldives is a barefoot paradise with a palm-fringed beach and shimmering lagoon that offers the perfect island holiday for everyone. 

    With 112 spacious villas set over-water, and suites blending harmoniously with the natural setting, the island has a wealth of activities and superb facilities that makes this an ideal hideaway for couples and honeymooners, or a fun-filled destination for families.

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  • Lily Beach Resort & Spa

    LILY BEACH RESORT AND SPA

    Located in one of the most spectacular archipelagos of the nation, Ari Atoll; Huvahendhoo Island, Lily Beach Resort & Spa Maldives, is popular worldwide for their pristine white beaches and the exotic house reef only a couple of meters away from the shore. It is also in close proximity to some of the most amazing dive sites worldwide. This is one of the most ideal Family Resorts.

    The accommodation aboard the island consists of 69 Beach Villas, 16 Lagoon Villas, 36 Deluxe Water Villas, 4 Sunset Water Suites, 6 Family Beach Villas inclusive of different amenities and services.

    Contact our Island Travel Designers for more information

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    Huvafen Fushi

    HUVAFEN FUSHI

    A surreal Maldives luxury resort in the North Male’ Atoll, PER ACUUM Huvafen Fushi is truly a waking dream. The experience becomes even more surreal as you float at infinity’s edge and pamper yourself with the amenities and services offered. Huvafen Fushi’s underwater seasonal underwater excursions are inclusive of Whale Shark Spotting Coral Creation, Adopt a coral and Manta ID program.

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  • Shangri-La's Villingili Resort & Spa

    SHANGRI-LA'S VILLINGILI RESORT AND SPA

    Shangri-la’s Villingili Resort and Spa is located south of the equator on Villingili Island which is the southernmost tip of Addu Atoll. It is a 70 minutes transfer from Domestic airport and 5 minutes by speedboat. The Resort offers a luxurious experience in a spacious boutique style environment. The three kilometres long island features towering banyan trees, coconut trees and 45 species of plants along with three natural lagoons.

    Shangri-la’s Villingili Resort and Spa offers luxurious accommodations with sensational sea views. They have seven well styled villas each equipped with modern and convenient amenities. These homes offer a touch of Middle Eastern and Indian elements along with beautiful views..

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  • Cheval Blanc Rhandeli

    CHEVAL BLANC RANDHELI

    Located in the tropical archipelago of Noonu Atoll, Cheval Blanc is a luxurious property only 40 minutes away from Male’ International airport. Cheval Blanc has their very own customized seaplane for convenient transfer. It is set on five islands with natural lush exotic vegetation that offers a rare exclusively private experience. The Randheli is only the second Cheval Blanc in the world after its sister hotel, the original Cheval Blanc Courchevel, Europe.

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    One & Only Reethi Rah

    ONE & ONLY REETHI RAH

    One & Only Reethi Rah is just 35 km away and 75 minutes by luxury yacht from the airport at Male’, the capital of Maldives. A luxury launch brings the guests directly to the resort located on one of the largest islands in North Male’ Atoll. It is an exclusive all-villa retreat on one of the region’s largest resort islands, adorned with infinite white sand coves and turquoise bays.

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  • Four Seasons Landaa Giraavaru

    Four Seasons Landaa Giraavaru

    Four Seasons Landaa Giraavaru is located within the beauty of renowned Baa Atoll. It is a 30 to 40 minutes scenic seaplane ride from Male’ International Airport allowing you to enjoy the aerial view of turquoise waters and open horizon. Landaa Giraavaru offers impeccable services, five star facilities and world class cuisines. They also feature a luxury catamaran, The Four Seasons Explorer which cruises between the two island resorts while stopping at dive sites, uninhabited beaches and remote island communities along the way.

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    Four Seasons Maldives Kuda Huraa

    Four Seasons Maldives Kuda Huraa

    Four Seasons Maldives Kuda Huraa is a private coral island with gardens, large lagoons and exceptional surf.  It is located in the North Male’ Atoll of Maldives and is 25 minutes by speed boat from Male’ International Airport.

    Indigenous materials were consumed by local craftsmen in order to construct 96 thatched beach and water villas on the island. World-class facilities and limitless amenities are offered. Four Seasons Maldives Kuda Huraa has 13 villas including the specialty suites.

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  • Kandolhu Island

    KANDOLHU ISLAND

    The northern Maldives offer a haven of tranquility and serenity in Kandholhudhoo. Kandolhu Island is located in Alifu Alifu Atoll 74 km from Male’ Airport, and can be reached in 25 minutes by sea plane. Measuring 200 meters by 150 meters this serene island is surrounded by a wide sandy beach and ocean with a colorful reef ideal for snorkeling.

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    Dusit Thani Maldives

    DUSIT THANI

    The luxurious Dusit Thani Maldives is on Mudhdhoo Island in Baa Atoll, surrounded by a mesmerizing house reef and a turquoise lagoon. They blend the graceful Thai hospitality with the luxurious setting of Maldives. Mudhdhoo is only 35 minutes by seaplane from the capital Male’ and 10 minutes by speedboat from the domestic airport in Baa Atoll.

    The 100 villas and residences of Dusit offer a haven of modern and chic amenities and technology. The types of villas are, Beach Villas, Beach Villas with Pool, Lagoon Villas with Pool, Ocean Villas with Pool and the exclusive Ocean Pavilions and Beach Residences.

    Contact our Island Travel Designers for more information

     

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  • Anantara Dhigu Maldives Resort

    Anantara Dhigu

    Dhigufinolhu Island or Anantara Dhigu Maldives Resort is located in the South Male’ Atoll with the most spacious and luxurious villas in Maldives. It is surrounded by stunning views of Indian Ocean and the turquoise lagoon is designed to bring the home away from home feeling to guests. It is only 35 minutes by speedboat from Male’ International Airport. The tropical lagoon and beauty makes the speedboat ride a scenic experience.

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  • Coco Palm Dhuni Kolhu

    Coco Palm Dhuni Kolhu 

    Located on the private island of Dhuni Kolhu in Baa Atoll, this is the ultimate hideaway in the Maldives. Coco Palm Dhuni Kolhu is 30 minute from the Male’ International Airport by seaplane. Being located in one of the best dive sites of the world, Dhuni Kolhu attracts a lot of guests towards its tranquil designs. The beaches are also immense and amongst the main highlights of this resort.

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    Soneva Jani

    Soneva Jani

    An imaginative journey that began over two decades ago, the Soneva story continues with Soneva Jani, the brand’s newest luxury resort offering. Inspired by a word that means ‘wisdom’ in Sanskrit, Soneva Jani encompasses a collection of Water Villas and Island Sanctuaries set within a lagoon of crystal clear waters, fringed by pristine beaches and blanketed in lush tropical greenery. The highlight of the islands that the resort calls home is the 5.6 kilometre private lagoon that surrounds it; an awe-inspiring azure spectacle that inspires a sense of calm. Here you will be treated to a unique ‘castaway’ experience within your spacious villa, which features beautifully designed interiors made from the highest quality sustainable materials.

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  • Velaa - Private Residence Maldives

    Velaa Private Residence Maldives

    Velaa Private Island is part of the Noonu atoll situated towards the northwest edge of the Maldives archipelago. The Island, at just less than 20 hectares in size (500m x 400m), is small. Velaa Private Island is the realisation of a dream to create a ‘beyond luxury’ ultra-exclusive boutique hideaway. It is a scenic seaplane flight of 45 minutes from Male' International Airport is a fusion of elegance and contemporary luxury.

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