Destination Guide: The Maldives

The Maldives are the perfect place for honeymoons and couples looking for a luxury island vacation. This country of 1,000 islands has everything a person could want in a tropical island — clear water, white sand beaches, palm trees, warm sunny days, and lots of great diving. It’s as close to heaven as you can get. While the Maldives have always been thought of as an expensive, honeymoon /couple place to visit, it’s actually an incredible budget traveler destination. Yeah, the resorts are expensive (even the ones on the cheaper end) but the country has opened up its tourism in recent years and now allows locals to start their own guesthouses and the ferry system is greatly improving. You can easily visit these countries on a budget and still get to experience that picture perfect beach vacation you came here for!

Top 5 Things to See and Do in the Maldives

1. Explore Male City
This relatively small city is host to many interesting mosques, museums. The Hukuru Miskiiy, also known as the Old Friday Mosque, is the oldest in the country, dating back to 1656. Some other interesting places to check out are the National Art Gallery, the National Stadium, and Sultan’s Park.

2. Dive the Banana Reef
This is a protected marine area that is known internationally for its beauty and incredible diving and snorkeling. The numerous caves, overhangs, and dramatic cliff lines result in stunning photos with every shot you snap. The brilliant coral growth attracts a huge range of sea life, including grouper, barracuda, morays, jackfish, snapper, and more.

3. Visit Mahibadhoo
Mahibadhoo is clean (locals volunteer to clean the island once a week), and the buildings were more colorful, featuring a rainbow of pastel-colored structures. Though it doesn’t have a “bikini beach” (as the beaches for foreigners are called), there is good snorkeling right off shore, and it’s a launching pad for day trips to deserted atolls and quieter islands like Dhanbidhoo, Kalhaidhoo, and Isdhoo.

4. Eat
The food here is beyond delicious and incredibly fresh. Most of the restaurants in Male offer outdoor dining areas. Some of the more popular places to go include The Seagull Café, Symphony, Royal Garden Café, and Irudhashu Hotaa (for quick meals).

5. Do some watersports
Check out one of the many water sports available throughout the Maldives. The water here is great for a ride, whether it’s via a banana boat, parasailing, water skiing, or any other number of things. You are sure to have a thrilling time!

Other Things to See and Do
1. Skip Maafushi
2. Ride the Whale Submarine
3. Go fishing
4. Retreat to Bathala Island
5. Dive the Wreck of the Maldive Victory
6. Have a spa day
7. Explore the Fish Head
8. Go surfing
9. Shop at the STO Trade Center
10. Visit the National Museum