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The Top 10 Things to Do in the Maldives

April 10 2018

If you were to close your eyes and imagine the most sensational island paradise your imagination could conjure up, there’s a good chance you are picturing a dream destination uncannily similar to the Maldives. Mesmerising cerulean waters surround thousands of islands that have been scattered in the Indian Ocean like the jewels of a broken necklace. It’s a destination of unparalleled five-star luxury resorts, sensational food, immersive experiences and naturally, out-of-this-world beaches which afford guests the quintessential island lifestyle. A once-in-a-lifetime bucket list-worthy destination, the Maldives has a myriad of fascinating and exhilarating things on offer for wild-hearted travellers. The conundrum, however, is of all the magical things to do in this island paradise, how do you know which to prioritise, especially if you are only in the country for a short time or plan on spending at least 80% of your trip on the beach? If you are wanting adventure in between your suntanning days but are not sure what to do in the Maldives, here are ten of our top recommendations (in no particular order):

1. Visit Male’s fish market

If you are heading to the Maldives on a once-in-a-lifetime trip, we highly recommend a stop in Male. This unique island city is a fascinating hub, filled with vibrant colours, an electric energy and fascinating sights. If you are wondering what to do in the Maldives and would like to get a feel for the local fishing industry, then a trip to the fish market is an absolute must. Here you can witness the catch of the day being brought in from the harbour and marvel at the size of some of the fish that these expert fishermen have brought it. 

2. Discover the Old Friday Mosque 

If you have a penchant for history or architecture and are wondering what to do in the Maldives, then we highly suggest a trip to the Old Friday Mosque, also located in Male. The oldest mosque in the country (it dates back to 1656), this unbelievable structure is made from coral stone and is characterized by intricate chiselled details and Quranic scripture. Non-Muslims are meant to get permission from an official of the Ministry of Islamic Affairs to see it, but because most of the staff are ministers, as long as you are respectful and dressed appropriately, you should be able to gain access.

3. Seek out the National Museum

If you have decided to make the most of your time on Male, then a visit to the National Museum is a must. The somewhat unattractive building was gifted to the Maldives by China, but if you can look past the unattractive architecture then you are in for a treat. This phenomenal museum houses a huge collection of historical artefacts that speak of the interesting history of this unique country. 

4. Dine underwater

It’s no secret that the Maldives has one of the most awe-inspiring marine ecosystems in the world and if you are looking for a unique way to experience the tropical Indian Ocean, then one option is to partake in an activity that literally takes place underwater (but where you don’t get wet). World-class restaurants can be found underwater (where you dine as fish swim above and around you) on a few of the islands—an experience that is well worth going out of your way for.

5. Snorkel and dive


diving maldives


If you are wondering what to do in the Maldives, then there’s one thing you need to know; heading to the Maldives and not snorkelling or diving is borderline criminal. The stunning turquoise ocean is beautifully warm and has a host of exotic and exhilarating marine life from vibrant corals, unbelievable tropical fish to larger pelagic species that include a variety of sharks. A phenomenal thing about the Maldives is that you don’t have to have a diver’s license to make the most of its waters—the snorkelling opportunities are sublime in their own right. But if you feel that you can’t bear to miss out on the myriad of remarkable dive sites but don’t have your license, a few of the luxury resorts allow you to get your certification at their dive centres while on holiday. Apart from snorkelling and diving, there is a host of other exceptional and thrilling water sports for guests to indulge in (from SUP to surfing), many of which are offered at the resorts themselves. 

6. Indulge in a castaway experience

Because many of the gorgeous luxury hotels and resorts in the Maldives unfurl along their very own islands, you shouldn’t find it too difficult to find one that offers romantic castaway picnic experiences for you and your significant other. These usually take place on secluded parts of the resort’s island—or in some exceptional cases, on the resort’s neighbouring deserted islands—and often includes a stunning setup and sensational food cooked in front of you by your very own private chef. This is what luxury island living is all about.   

7. Sail away on a traditional dhoni sunset cruise


dhoni sunset cruise


One of the best excursions you can take while in the Maldives is one on a dhoni, a traditional Maldivian boat. Have a look around to see which option appeals to you, but the sunset cruise, complete with champagne or cocktail offerings, is something special. This remarkable experience is bound to stick with you for the rest of your life and is made even more memorable if a pod of dolphins graces you with its presence. 

8. Island hop

Whichever luxury island resort you choose, once you are there, you are probably going to find it very hard to leave (especially when your stay actually draws to an end). However, visiting some of the local islands such as Mas Huni and Thulhaadhoo, to name but two of them, is a hugely enriching experience and allows you to get a real feel for the local people, culture, food and customs. Explore the heritage of this wondrous and diverse country by island hopping and make the most of your time in this fascinating slice of paradise. 

9. Witness a Boduberu performance


boduberu dance on boat kanuhura maldives


A truly magical experience, Boduberu is unique to the Maldives and is something you should ensure that you witness while on holiday in the island paradise. This traditional performance consists of a harmonious blend of drumming, singing and dancing and creates a spectacle that is as exhilarating as it is mesmerising. 

10. Sleep in the ocean

If you opt for a water villa room at your resort, you won’t be sleeping in the ocean yourself but you certainly will be sleeping over the ocean in a room perched on stilts. Many of these exceptional rooms offer glass floors (or at least a portion of the floor in glass), private swimming pools and uninhibited views of the big blue, with direct stairways down to the water. Peek over the edge and you will be able to spot extraordinary sea life from the balcony of your room—it just doesn’t get better than this.  

Heading to the Maldives and searching for the best possible place to stay? Look no further than Kanuhura. This sensational five-star resort is a fantastic “home base” from which to explore the Maldives and offers everything you could possibly want for a truly out-of-this-world experience in paradise. 

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