Maldives—the white sand beaches and clear ocean water, the cleanest air and lush tropical vegetation. What else do you need for a perfect vacation? A hotel with a well-developed infrastructure, schools of colorful exotic fish by the shore, a constant sense of comfort and serenity… All this is in the Maldives—a wonderful world where eternal summer reigns.
Tourists go to this archipelago primarily because of its natural beauty and excellent climate, but that is not all that attracts travelers to the Maldives. There are many architectural, historical and cultural attractions. So what is the first thing to see in the Maldives?
Top 15 attractions in Maldives
An ideal place for lovers of windsurfing, water-skiing, snorkeling, canoeing and catamarans, scooters and “bananas”. And if you like diving, the atoll will seem like a real paradise.
But there is something here for fans of active recreation on land: the islands of the atoll are connected by bridges, so that Ari is very convenient to ride a bike.
These atolls, the North and South, are especially popular with diving enthusiasts. Here you can fully enjoy the beauty and wonders of the underwater world. And one of the local hotels has even become famous for opening the world’s first underwater spa; there is also an underwater bar with a wine cellar.
The cost per diving session is $75. And if you want to take a full diving course, you’ll have to pay $500 (plus $170 for a certificate).
One of the best places in the Maldives. Located about a hundred kilometers from the airport. The island is known for its excellent infrastructure and local nature – just a tourist’s dream.
It is not hot, the water is always warm, everywhere lush and beautiful vegetation. The diversity of aquatic fauna is amazing: turtles, stingrays, small sharks (not dangerous to humans) and many other exotic inhabitants of the Indian Ocean.
The island’s infrastructure is as impressive as its nature. It has everything you need for recreation:
- diving center;
- a huge swimming pool;
- Tennis courts;
- volleyball courts;
- several restaurants.
And excursion lovers can take sea and air walks, trips to the depths of the ocean and to uninhabited islands.
The most famous of all the islands of the Maldives: it was here in the 70s of the twentieth century, first came tourists from Europe. The clearest ocean water, beach without stones and pebbles, apartments of every conceivable category, excursions on boats with a transparent bottom – that’s what tourists from around the world come here for. And the advantages of the island can be listed for a long time!
But if you like to relax in a hammock, forget everything and bask in the sun, you can also find here what you are looking for: an atmosphere of peace and serenity.
The island is also home to geckos, unusual lizards about forty centimeters long that are completely safe for humans.
Do you dream to swim in the colorful corals and sunbathe on the clean soft sand by day and drink champagne in the fresh water pool in the evening or have dinner in a stylized hut, under the canopy of palm leaves? Then this place is just for you!
There are marriage ceremonies on the island (but it is preferable to book them in advance).
The main attraction of the capital of the Maldives. Located next to the presidential palace and the main pier of the city. The building has six floors and is decorated with a magnificent golden dome. The center was built with money donated by several Islamic nations.
You can see this attraction any day and the center is open to tourists from 9:00 to 17:00. The exception to this is during prayer time when only Muslims who have come for a religious ceremony are allowed into the Islamic Center.
The most picturesque place in Male. The park once adjoined the Sultan’s Palace. In the 20th century, the Sultan lost power, the palace was destroyed (only a small part of the building survived). The park was also damaged, but was restored. Today it is a favorite vacation spot for tourists and locals.
Here, the lush greenery and fragrance of luxurious flowers provide a respite from the noise and crowds of the modern densely populated capital (which is Male). The vegetation of the park is rich and diverse: orchids and roses, ficuses and lilies… And at the entrance there is an aluminum composition “Monument to the Republic”.
This park was opened in Male in the late 1980s and instantly won the love of the citizens and guests of the capital of Maldives. It is located near the residence of the president. From the alleys framed by lush greenery, you can see the national flag of the Maldives flying on the roof of the residence.
On the territory of the park everyone can plant a plant and give it a name of his choice. This event will be recorded in a special journal.
One of the main attractions of the country. The palace is located in the capital of the Maldives. The building was built in the early twentieth century for the son of the Sultan. A few decades later, there was a coup in the country, the sultan lost power, the palace was nationalized. For a long time it housed various government agencies, and in the 90s of the twentieth century, it became the residence of the president.
The white and blue building is decorated with columns and forged gates. There is a luxurious park around the palace.
Similar to the previous attraction, this palace was built in the early twentieth century. The building is designed in blue and white colors, and the style of the building is colonial. The palace is surrounded by a beautiful park and there are several kinds of roses that fill the air with fragrance.
The building was built by the Sultan for his son and after the coup it became state property. For a long time it was the residence of the head of state, and today the building houses a museum. Also in the palace are state institutions.
Museum and the park can be visited on any weekday, the palace is open to visitors from 9:00 to 18:00.
The Crypt of Sultan Ibrahim
Historic site of Male’. The crypt was built in the 17th century. Stone tomb crowned by a triangular roof, the door of the crypt is made of wood. The walls are decorated with special ornaments, typical of the early architecture of the Maldives. The wall above the entrance is lined with tiles, the preservation of which is amazing (given the several centuries that have passed). In the mid-90s of the twentieth century, reconstruction of the foundations of the tomb was carried out.
The crypt is not far from the Friday Mosque, another famous landmark of the Maldives.
National Art Gallery
The main cultural attraction of the country. The gallery is housed in a building which is a valuable historical monument: it was built in the 19th century and originally belonged to one of the sultan’s close associates.
It houses works of art created by Maldivian painters (portraitists, landscapists, abstractionists) and craftsmen and sometimes displays the work of designers. If you visit the gallery during a break between exhibitions, you can watch the creative process, talk to the authors of the works and buy the work you like.
Gallery opens at 9:15 a.m. and works until 5:30 p.m. Day off is Friday. The gallery is in Sultan Park and is easy to find as the building is visible from afar.
The main and longest street in Male’. It goes practically through the whole town. Previously the street was called Marin Drive. If you want to get a comprehensive view of the capital of Maldives, you can walk along this street. It doesn’t take long to walk around, as Male is one of the smallest capitals in the world (but it’s also one of the most densely populated). The city is also the only island capital in the world.
Male fruit market
The market is located on the coast in the capital of the Maldives. It is considered one of the city’s attractions, attracts the interest of tourists but is also popular with locals. Here they bring goods from all over the country. Here’s what’s spread out on the stalls here:
- papaya fruits;
- betel leaves;
- areca palm fruit.
But this is not the end of the list! The variety of goods at the fruit market is really impressive. Some products cause tourists questions about how to consume them properly. It is the betel leaves and areca fruits. The locals know how to eat betel leaves together with palm seeds and… lime. This chewing in small quantities is good for health (improves digestion, tones, cures for some diseases), but too long use can cause harm.
Male fish market
Fish is an important ingredient in almost all dishes of Maldivian cuisine, so the fish market is one of the most popular places in the capital of Maldives. In the morning, small boat owners come here and bring their catch – small reef fish and mackerel. At midday, bigger fish hit the shelves, but the high point of the market is when the owners of the big fishing boats come to the market and bring the tuna. The locals consider this to be the only fish worth fighting for.
Some travelers come to the Maldives to fish and take their catch to the local market.