The sun-soaked archipelago that forms the Maldives is situated in the warm Indian Ocean, South West of Sri Lanka. The aptly named nation derived from Sanskrit mālā (garland) and dvīpa (island) is a double chain of 26 atolls that are strung across the equator.
The Maldives is one of the world’s most geographically dispersed nations with over 1,192 coral islands dotted along 180 kilometres. This unique setting is in the heart of Maldivian tourism, offering over 140 hotels, each self-contained on its own island.
Must Have Experiences
Experiences in the Maldives are unique to every island, resort and atoll. However, here at Hummingbird Travel, we have a few favourites we think you should try.
The Maldives’ position on the equator gives it an all-year-round warm temperature that sits consistently between 25 C and 32 C. The picture-perfect weather can be experienced throughout the year.
The Maldives experiences two seasons every year. It’s sunny and dry from December to April. And has a few showers in May to November, brought in by the South West trade winds. But the sun usually shines brightly for more than 7 hours of the day.
The Maldives is made up of over 1,192 coral islands in 26 coralline atolls. Islands on the outer ring of each atoll have a coral reef on one side of the island and a lagoon on the other side. The islands in the middle of the atoll tend to have a coral reef that covers the perimeter of the island.
It has 31 protected areas of marine biodiversity and the designated UNESCO biosphere reserve in Baa Atoll famous for its manta rays.
Tourism and Fishing
Rufiyaa but USD accepted in all resorts
The Maldives has been inhabited since the early 1500 BCE. First settlers are thought to be Aryan, followed by Indians, Arabs, and Persians. The contact with Arab travellers paved the way for the Maldives to adopt Islam in 1154.
The country has been independent through its known history, except for a short period of Portuguese occupation in the 16th Century. This was followed by a period of voluntary British protection.
The county’s history can be traced through a number of dynasties, ruled by 93 Sultans and 4 Sultanas. The Maldives became a republic in 1968 when the sultanate was abolished after a referendum.
The Maldives boasts a rich cultural mix because of its position on the historical spice route. The food is heavily influenced by South India and Sri Lanka featuring a lot of chilli, lime and coconut. The traditional Maldivian drums known as ‘bodu beru’ and the accompanying dance comes from Africa and many of the country’s traditions come from the Middle East in line with Muslim customs.
Guests are free to wear whatever they like whilst on the resorts, however when visiting the local islands and the capital, we do advise guests to cover their shoulders.
Travelling in Maldives
Due to the dispersed geography of the country, there are three ways to travel across the Maldives, by speedboat, seaplane or domestic flights.