Excellent and very accessible underwater life makes the Maldives
among the world’s best diving and snorkeling
destinations. Every resort has professional dive courses, taught
qualified multilingual instructors providing many different
courses, ranging from new
to full PADI certification. All resorts provide standard
diving equipment and many have underwater
cameras available for rent.
Dive schools offer year round daily boat trips to dive sites throughout
the islands. Special trips and night dives for more skillful
divers are also offered. Most resorts have glass-bottomed boats for reef sightseeing
The following are the best dive spots in the Maldives:
Maldives Victory Wreck: Sank in 1981, the Maldives Victory Wreck rests on the west side of Hulule Island at
35 metres or 115 feet deep. Because of strong currents, this dive is only
suitable for expert divers.
Thila (Shark Thila): Situated in the northern part of Ari Atoll, near Fesdu, Maayafushi Halaveli and Ellaidhu Islands.
Well known for its plenty of fish, particularly the grey reef
shark, tropical reef fish and giant snappers.
Corner: Close to Losfushi, Guraidhoo and Kandooma Islands,
this reef sits on the east side of South Male Atoll. Since the
vertical currents are strong, this dive is suitable for expert divers
only. The reef is
its large fish, such as grey
reef sharks, eagle rays, large snappers and sailfish.
Kuda Rah Thila (Broken Rock): Situated in the southernmost
tip of Ari Atoll, near Dhigurah and Dhangethi Islands.
Excellent for novice divers since the currents are quite weak.
Banana Reef: On the eastern side of North Male Atoll,
close to the islands of Fullmoon, Fushi, Farukolh, and Kurumba.
Powerful currents make this abundant with marine life, including
reef sharks, oriental sweetlips and banner fish.
The huge lagoons surrounding many of the islands are perfect for
windsurfing, a sport available in all resorts with windsurfing
schools offered in most of them. Surfing has currently become
popular and many resorts on the atoll tips have
great waves, especially those in the north of South Male Atolls.
Many resorts operate
frequent boat trips to surf breaks. The
ideal time to surf is during November to April (the northeast monsoon).
An index of the best surfing locations can be obtained from the Maldives
Tourism Promotion Board (see Contact Addresses section).
Most resorts also offer water-skiing facilities and catamarans
for hire. Many of the major resorts also provide facilities and classes
for parasailing. To allow tourists to see more than only
one of the Maldives’ many islands, various types of sailing
is offered including relaxing cruises or diving safaris cruises
around the atolls.
Many boats provide luxury rooms with all the modern conveniences, while
others offer more standard amenities. Additional information is available at the Maldives Tourism Promotion Board (see Contact
should be aware that the Maldives enforces a strict reef and marine
conservation policy. Severe penalties can be imposed for abusing
the environment (see also ‘Prohibited Items’ in the
Duty Free section).
For the population of the Maldives, fishing is a lifeline
and, with more than 99% of the Maldives’ total area consisting
of water, the country enjoys some of the world’s best fishing.
Many resorts provide fishing trips aboard modern speedboats suitable
for big game fishing. Night fishing for snappers, groupers, squirrelfish
or barracuda is especially popular. Fishing trips usually end with
a barbecue at the resort with the day’s catch being cooked
Note: For conservation,
sport fishing is only allowed using the tag and release method.
Harpoon guns and hunting of marine mammals like dolphins, whales
and large fish such as the whale shark is
and collecting the following is also prohibited: turtle, berried
and small lobster, Napolean wrasse, giant clam, conch and black
Various types of excursions are offered. Island hopping tours
normally lasts a half or full and
combine a trip to a
fishing village with a visit to an uninhabited island (where a beach
barbecue is usually served). Speedboats and dhoni, the traditional boats can be privately hired. Options are available for
spending a solo day and night an uninhabited island.
excursions frequently combine aerial sightseeing with diving.
Photo flights are also a possibility. Additional information
can be acquired from the Maldives Tourism Promotion Board (see Contact
Some resorts have sport facilities such as tennis, volleyball, football and badminton.