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Maldivian Rufiyaa
Flight time
10 hours and 20 minutes from the UK
time difference
UTC/GMT +5 hours
best time to go

Introducing Maldives

This remote island destination has the charm and flavour of South Asia, the hospitality and warmth of its closest neighbouring cousins, and the unique island panoramas of a faraway place that you once saw in your perfect dream. To call it a surreal movie location is simply an understatement. For anyone who appreciates unspoilt beaches and unadulterated luxury, the Maldives is like heaven on earth. Not only that, but this is the place you need to shine your torch on for the ultimate winter sun because the weather here is much more agreeable between December and April during the dry season. So if you want scorching summer sun during the dull winter months, head to the Maldives and experience this South Asian paradise in the remote waters of the vast Indian Ocean.

Made up of 26 small coral atolls and hundreds of tiny islands, you’ll be miles and miles away from any sort of urban sprawl, a million horizons away from skyscrapers and shiny building blocks, and you’ll have nothing but beaches and glorious sunsets to contend with every day. This tropical nation is isolated from the rest of South Asia and as an island destination, it is best known for its white sandy beaches, crystal clear waters, impossibly blue lagoons and its extensive coral reefs which are great for avid divers. This collection of exclusive island resorts is also famed for its stunning water villas and unbelievable floating bungalows, accessible only by private boat and pier, so it’s filled with romance for couples. For luxury seekers, honeymooners and those important family vacations, it’s hard to think of anywhere more impressive than the Maldives.


The Maldives is the perfect place for a family holiday. Each island coastline is dominated by the finest resorts in the world, offering everything you could need on-site including restaurants, pool facilities, spa and golfing, private beach access, organised water sports and even day trips. Most resorts can offer family-friendly amenities and services too, such as children’s food menus and high chairs, baby changing or childcare. As a popular destination for affluent holidaymakers and honeymooning couples, you can be sure to have a peaceful holiday without the big tourist crowds.


Maldivian cuisine is cooked with the freshest ingredients and incorporates simple flavours with a big emphasis on coconuts, a variety of fish and starches such as rice, taro, sweet potato and cassava. The most significant dish of the Maldives is a fresh tuna curry called “Mas Riha” or the popular chicken curry which is called “Kukulhu Riha”. Skipjack tuna is a favourite amongst locals and can often be eaten fresh or dried, and other popular fish varieties you will come across are Latti tuna, Yellowfin tuna, Frigate tuna and mackerel. You will also find a choice of fried foods, broths and barbequed seafood – and whilst the wine selection can be small, most resorts will stock a wide variety of Asian and international beers.

History and Culture

Formerly known as the “Maldive Islands”, the Maldives were first settled in the 5th Century BC by Buddhist travellers from India and Sri Lanka. The atolls were once under Sri Lankan suzerainty and there continues to be both cultural and economic ties with the country. The Maldives underwent a 1,400 year long Buddhist period and this forms the foundation of the Maldivian society – today, the only religion is Islam and the law precludes any non-Muslims from voting or obtaining citizenship.

Top Locations in Maldives

Scuba Diving
Diving is one of the biggest sports in the Maldives and there are hundreds and hundreds of tiny little secreted islands waiting to be explored. Diving here is a unique experience and many of the dive spots will give you complete privacy unlike some of the world’s bigger and more populated resorts. The marine life in the Maldives includes Eagle Rays, Napoleon Wrasses, lots of pelagic fish such as the Giant Trevally or the Barracuda, Manta Rays, Whale Sharks, Whitetip Shark, Grey Reef Shark – or even the very rare Hammerhead Shark if you’re lucky enough to spot it! The best location for spotting pelagic fish is the Ari Atoll but there are many dive spots to choose from.
Visit Malé
If you want a day away from the beach, head to Malé, the country’s beautiful and colourful capital. The skyline is lined with multi-coloured buildings and there’s a pretty harbour which makes for a great day out with the whole family. Don’t forget to visit the Malé Friday Mosque, the National Museum and head to the local fish market to experience the soul of the city and to rub shoulders with the locals.
Whale and Dolphin Watching
The Maldives ranks as one of the top 5 places in the world to go whale and dolphin spotting, so do not miss this opportunity when you are here. Over 20 different whale and dolphin species can be seen in the waters and many resorts will offer excursions suitable for all ages. Dolphins and whales tend to feed in the early mornings and they can be seen leaving around the late afternoon so all excursions will be timed around these hours; although sightings are never guaranteed, there’s a very good chance you’ll spot them if you take an excursion.
Snorkelling is a great alternative to diving because it is much more budget friendly and it can be done with kids of most ages (as long as they can swim). You don’t need to take diving lessons and you don’t need to hire expensive equipment – all you will need is a snorkelling mask and you can take to the water from any area of the beach. This is a fantastic family activity.
Rasdhoo Atoll
Rasdhoo Atoll is located off the North Eastern corner of Ari Atoll and is a great place for daytrips. This attractive little town offers a great mix of beaches, a good dive centre, a few mosques and sights worth checking out, as well as a choice of souvenir shops if you’re looking to do a bit of shopping in the local area. Rasdhoo Atoll is a wonderful place to take the whole family and there’s a selection of cafes and restaurants along Bodu Magu, Anboofannu Magu and other main streets.

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