Male, the capital of Maldives, boasts a few standard restaurants,
serving international and local cuisine. On the other islands, there
are a few restaurants along with those operated by the resorts.
The international cuisine and all food, apart from seafood is
imported. The fish is superb. Oriental and curry buffets are widely
A variety of alcoholic and non-alcoholic drink is offered
at the resorts, which reflect the desires of the travellers. There are only a few local cocktails as well as the Maldive Lady, a
potent and delicious concoction, whose combination varies from island
to island and bar to bar.
Bars are all located in tourist resorts (alcohol is not available
on Male) and all of them accept cash; however, they usually add orders onto the total
do not consume alcohol at all. During the month of
Ramadan (see Public Holidays), travellers are not prohibited
from drinking alcohol in public except in the tourist resorts.
There is very little or no organized nightlife; however, most resorts
have informal discos in the bar areas, often with live bands playing
either western or traditional music. Beach parties and barbecues
are also quite popular. In some evenings, a number of resorts present cultural
shows and some screen videos.
Local merchandise available for purchase include seashells (only
when bought in official shops; they may not be taken from
the beach or from the sea), lacquered wooden boxes and reed mats.
Jewellery for sale includes silver, gold, coral, mother-of-pearl
and turtle-shell products. However, there are strict laws against exporting
coral and turtle-shell.
Shopping hours: Saturday-Thursday
8.00 am - 11.00 pm, Fri 1.30 pm - 11.00 pm. Shops are officially close for 15 minutes
5 times a day for Muslim prayer; however, this rule is not
usually strictly enforced in the tourist regions away from Male.
For additional details about special festivals and events in the
country, contact the Maldives Tourism Promotion Board (see Contact
||New Year Celebrations
||Eidal Adha (Feast of the Sacrifice)
||Independence Day Theme Floats (celebrations
with themed floats)
||Kuda Eid(End of Ramadan)
is informal; however, nudity or skimpy clothing in public places
will offend local Muslims, and the Government strictly enforces
these standards. Scanty beachwear or bikinis are not acceptable
in Male or on any other inhabited islands.
entering a mosque, cover the entire body with the exception of the
face and neck.
hands is the most common form of greeting. The local people
not associated with the tourist trade live in isolated island villages
and enjoy almost total privacy.
A host of
indigenous people smoke; however, eating and smoking during
Ramadan is not polite.
Tipping is officially discouraged.