A paradise on Earth, Maldives is of shimmering white beaches surrounded by turquoise lagoons and green palm trees along with a calm and refreshing environment to spend a few memorable days of your lives.
Maldives located in the Indian Ocean, is stretched in 900 kilometers from north to south. Along with mesmerising beauty to greet you with, Maldivian Island has various kinds of sports, activities and things to do to keep its tourists entertained. The island boasts an exceptional list of water sports that are available and an environment that is appropriate for these sports.
|#||Top Activities & Things to do in Maldives||Learn more|
|1||Maldives Walking Tours||view details|
|2||Sand Bank Picnic & Excursions||view details|
|3||Snorkeling in Maldives||view details|
|4||Maldives Island Hopping||view details|
|5||Diving Tours in Maldives||view details|
|6||Maldives Culinary Tours||view details|
|7||Dolphin, Sunrise & Sunset Cruise Tours||view details|
|8||Maldives Cultural Tours||view details|
|9||Fishing in The Maldives||view details|
|10||Parasailing in The Maldives||view details|
|11||Water Skiing in The Maldives||view details|
|12||Windsurfing in The Maldives||view details|
Exotic aquatic life beneath the Indian Ocean makes Maldives even more special for these sports. You will find about almost 70 different species of colourful coral reefs and more than 700 species of marine creatures.
From snorkeling to island hopping, the island is just perfect for all kinds of activities. For snorkeling and scuba diving, the island has some of the best diving sites in the world.
Few of the many aquatic creatures that you can spot during these activities are Dogtooth Tuna, Tuna, Trevally, Jacks, Sweetlips, Butterfly fish, Mating octopus, Wahoo, Fusiliers, etc.
The visibility is up to 60 meters because of the crystal clear water that makes these activities even more enjoyable. And if you want more excitement and explore more, you can opt for night diving tours which is a different experience altogether.
Activities like water skiing, flyboard, wakeboarding, knee boarding, banana riding, fun tubes, Mono skiing, kite surfing, glass bottom boat, jet skiing and many more also present exciting options and promise to add some thrill to your Maldives vacation.
Even going fishing can be quite a unique experience here. You have various kinds of fishing to choose from such as big game fishing, night fishing along with special fishing trips. Most common catch at these fishing trips are sailfish, swordfish, marlin, wahoo, barracuda, yellowfin tuna, etc.
Apart from these, activities like parasailing present you with an exceptional view of the island and its natural set up. And if you want to do something in a relaxed manner, you have Dolphin watching tours and various day excursions like island hopping, picnic on a deserted island or for sunset or sunrise cruises.
It is a misconception that walking tours are only for cities that are bustling with locals and have plenty of touristy attractions. The Maldives, even though it is a cluster of more than a thousand little islands, offers neatly designed guided walks around its tiny islands.
While you can explore only one isle on a half day walking tour, Maldives full day tours will let you hop across islands and discover more walking trails. We bring you some of our favourite walking tours in The Maldives.
Malé City Walking Tour
Malé, the capital city of The Maldives offers both half day and full day walking tours. The half day Malé City walking tour gives you a short insight into Maldives’ history and culture. Learn of the importance of Malé’s harbour, know about the Maldivian education system and the prominence of Islam in the archipelago.
Malé – the world’s smallest capital, has plenty of attractions to make the walk worth your while. Explore lush parks, museums, mosques, memorials and cafes before getting a glimpse of the local fish market and the bustling vegetable and fruit marketplace. The walk doesn’t end until you savour some traditional black tea and local sweets from the vendors.
Huraa Island Walking Tour
Part of Kaafu Atoll, Huraa Island is only 850 metres long. The northern part of this isle is full of mangrove swamps, making it a protected nature reserve. Discover the simplicity of the local Maldivian villagers in Huraa as you explore 10 different varieties of trees in the mangroves, a rare occurrence on a sandy island. The fragile mangrove ecosystem sustains a freshwater lake and many protected bird species also.
Huraa Island walking tour will help you understand the process of curing fish and making a Maldivian condiment called rihakaru. This pungent paste is a local delicacy which you will be able to sample. After the walking tour, you can also relax on the island’s only bikini beach.
Villimalé Eco Walking Tour
Formerly known as Vilingili, the tiny island of Villimalé is relatively untouched by modernization. Previously a prison, and then a resort island, Villimalé is presently a public island inhabited by local Maldivians. Villimalé eco walking tour is a great way to learn about marine conservation. Save the Beach NGO tells you about the involvement of the local community in protecting the island and the lagoon.
The walking tour includes a stroll through the village streets, insights into marine conservation efforts such as waste management and coral planting, and hedika tasting, which is a sweet or savoury snack, often enjoyed with black tea.
Environment enthusiasts can also learn the names of various tree species in Dhivehi – local language of The Maldives. Post the walk, snorkel on the house reef of Villimalé, close to its only two beaches. This tour can also be taken as part of the full day Malé City walking tour.
Sandbanks are the nameless surprises which dot the landscape of the Maldivian archipelago. These sandy patches of land, that keep shifting their shape and position with the ebbs and flows of the ocean waves, make for pretty spots to relish some alone time. Also known as sand strips or sandbars, sandbanks add an element of fun to any Maldives tour package. We recommend some sandbank tours for you to dream about.
Sandbank Picnic by Constance Halaveli Maldives
Nestled in the North Ari Atoll, Constance Halaveli offers a bespoke sandbank picnic experience to its guests. Enjoy a boat ride from the private island of Halaveli to a secluded sandbank. Your personal butler serves you select delicacies under the open sky from the resort’s picnic basket menu as you take comfort under a beach umbrella.
Tuck into Danish pastries, fruit muffins and croissants with a bottle of champagne. Indulge in a range of seafood, meats and vegetarian dishes while also sampling exotic preparations such as prosciutto baguette, sweet corn cactus roll and buffalo mozzarella. An array of salads, cold cuts, bread and cheese are also laid out before you. Dessert is usually a mix of tropical fruits, Thai sliced mango and chocolate brownies.
Overnight Sandbank Camping by Soneva Fushi Maldives
Exclusive to couples, the overnight sandbank camping is a romantic experience offered by the 5-star private island resort Soneva Fushi. Blush as you reach your private sandbank for a candlelight dinner date with your partner. Enjoy a lavish meal and wine served by the resort attendants before they leave the sandbank to offer you ultimate privacy.
Be enraptured by the starry skies of the Baa Atoll as you lie on a blanket over the cool sand before settling into your Bedouin-style tent. Antique lanterns and diffused floor lamps light up this off-the-grid sandbank.
Your tent comes furnished with wooden side tables, a plush bed with mosquito netting, and a modern water closet with canvas partitioning. Wake up next morning to a sumptuous breakfast set over the sparkling sands, before returning to Soneva Fushi.
Kuredu Maldives Sandbank Tour
Kuredu Island, located in the Lhaviyani Atoll, can be reached via seaplane from the Maldives Velana International Airport. Kuredu’s private sandbank has a webcam that can live-stream videos of the isle to anyone in the world. Visit the sandbank at any different times of the day to witness the various shades of the sky. While sunrises and sunsets paint the most beautiful pictures on the sandbank, afternoons are best for sunbathing.
Snorkeling in Maldives
Maldives is one of the most sought after places for the sport of snorkeling. It offers you the opportunity to have a glance at the rich and exquisite marine creatures and vegetation under the Indian Ocean. If you go snorkeling in the months late summer and during the fall, you can see many more whales and sharks.
Most of the resorts and guesthouses in Maldives offer their guests with necessary equipment like mask, snorkel and fins, etc. They also have appointed experts to guide you throughout the sport and provide you with all the required information and instructions. They ensure your safety as well make sure that the marine world is also not harmed.
Few precautions that you are required to take during snorkeling are checking tide tables, as water depth and clarity will change with the tides and also tidal currents and speed. Along with all these, Samudra Maldives also offers you with different kinds of snorkeling trips. These are half day excursions and night snorkeling trips.
There are some excellent sites promising exceptional snorkeling experience. These are Sunlight Thila, Rasfari and the protected marine sanctuary of Kuda Haa which are shallow enough for the sport.
The current of water is quite important in gathering big fish species. One of the popular sites, Banana Reef has strong current. Reefs are generally considered better for snorkeling. There are differences in the coral and marine creatures as we go deeper.
When you first realize that there are about 1,200 islands in The Maldives, it takes a while for the fact to sink in. While only 200 of those isles are inhabited by locals, the number is still too big to digest. It is not possible to see too much of the country on a single trip. Nevertheless, you can discover a diverse variety of public islands on Maldives island hopping tours.
North Ari Atoll Island Hopping Tour
There are numerous islands in the North Ari Atoll of The Maldives. In the interest of time, the North Ari Atoll island hopping tour covers only the local islands of Rasdhoo, Ukulhas and Mathiveri, each famous for something unique. This multi-day island hop lets you soak in the local culture of one island before moving on to the next.
Rasdhoo Island has a beautiful house reef which can be explored as you snorkel. The village has a mosque that you can visit to understand the Islamic influence in The Maldives. Chat with the local kids or watch the Maldivian ladies make traditional dinner. Sunsets are best experienced on a sunset kayaking tour to a nearby sandbank.
The next island, Ukulhas, is a fishing village that employs environmentally safe fishing practices. Interact with the friendly locals, listen to the anecdotes told by the tour guide, and rejuvenate on the pristine sands of Ukulhas before moving on to the last island.
Mathiveri and the nearby uninhabited island of Mathiveri Finolhu are home to manta rays. Go swimming or on a guided snorkelling trip to watch these marine gems in the North Ari Atoll. Also, dolphin cruises are organized during sunset for good sightings.
North Malé Local Island Hopping Tour
North Malé Atoll is home to freshwater lakes, which is quite an anomaly in an otherwise saline environment. Thanks to the profusion of mangroves on some of its islands, the atoll has rich biodiversity of both flora and fauna.
Hop on to the public island of Himmafushi from Hulhumalé, where souvenir shops abound. Admire the local craft produce or indulge in some shopping before chilling on the white sand beaches. The next speedboat hop is to another local island village – Huraa.
Take an orientation walk of Huraa Island and understand the simple lifestyle of the villagers. Thereafter, visit a boat building yard to get some insights into one of their livelihoods. Next, watch the process of drying and curing fish. Stroll through the mangrove swamps, see a freshwater lake, and know about the delicate mangrove ecosystem and how it helps maintain the ecological balance of the country.
South Malé Local Island Hopping Tour
Explore Maafushi, one of the pioneers of ‘guesthouse tourism’ that helped local tourism to flourish. This public island in South Malé has plenty of hotels and guesthouses. There is a bikini beach here and another beach on the other side of this little island, called Velana Beach.
Explore the colourful streets of this local island where graffiti and art thrive. The stores on this island sell hand-crafted bags, souvenirs, coconut shell items and other collectibles. Maafushi is also popular for water sports and diving excursions.
The next island is Gulhi, a simple village which is known for boat building. Beachside cafes serve delicious tropical food while the beach looks inviting for those looking to let their hair down and relax.
Scuba Diving in Maldives
Rich marine life, high visibility and suitable water temperature are few of the factors that make scuba diving in Maldives even more special and enjoyable. If you want to experience the best of scuba diving, you must visit the island between the months of June to October and December to March.
The temperature of the water is 24°C (75°F) in February and July to 27°C (81°F) in April, May and September. Visibility of the water is up to 15 – 40 metres (50 – 130 feet) allowing to have a clear picture of the beautiful marine life.
Maldivian Island has many good dive sites to offer you with. Some of these are Lion’s Head, Kudu Haa, Girifushi Thila, Middle Point, Nassimo Thila, Okobe Thila, Sunlight Thila, Maldives Victory, and Banana Reef.
These and other dive sites in Maldives offer you with rich flora and fauna which comprises almost 70 different species of colourful coral reefs and more than 700 species of fishes and other aquatic creatures.
Some of the aquatic creatures that you can spot are:
- Napoleon wrasse
- Grey reef sharks
- White tip reef sharks
- Eagle rays
- Manta rays
If you concentrate more on seeing whales, then you can get the same at the southern tip of Ari Atoll from late August to October. For giant rays and whale sharks, you can visit Malé and South Male from August to November and Ari Atoll from February to April.
You can go for relaxed lazy diving or drift diving and if you are looking for some thrill and excitement, you can go for night diving in Maldives.
Not just these, even the facilities offered at the hotels and resorts in Maldives make it easier for tourists to enjoy the sport of scuba diving. You have dive centres with experienced divers helping tourists in diving. Many dive centres also offer PADI, NAUI and CMAS certified courses for those interested in.
#6 Culinary Tours in The Maldives
Food is that essential element on any trip that completes it while also revealing much about the place. The Maldives is a paradise, not only in its natural beauty but also in the rich variety of local fruits, fresh catches from the sea, and aromatic curries. Travellers who love not only to eat but also to learn about indigenous styles of cooking, should definitely get on a culinary tour in The Maldives.
Maldivian Private Cooking and Islamic Culture Experience
When in The Maldives, you must venture out into their busy fish markets. This culinary tour lets you explore a seafood local market where you get to select the fish and other items that you will be cooking for the meal. The culinary tour is designed for small groups of 4 people to ensure every participant gets personal assistance throughout the shopping and cooking process.
If you are vegetarian, you can opt for a customized tour that lets you pick local vegetables and spices for a meat-free meal. Lasting about 2 and a half hours, the private cooking class helps you understand the condiments that go into the curries and also the chopping styles for the authentic dishes.
Thanks to the tour guide, you will get insights into Islamic culture while preparing your dishes. The tour ends with all the participants relishing the fruits of their hard work. Since you have made it all yourself, you will now be able to replicate the flavours when you attempt cooking it back home.
Fishing & Barbeque Tour in The Maldives
For a culinary experience that intersects with a boating and fishing trip, hop onto the fishing and barbeque tour in The Maldives! Begin with an exciting boat ride across the seas, in search of a good catch.
Fishing lines will be provided by the local boatmen, who will also teach you how to work those and catch a fish. After you return to your guesthouse on a local island, you can enjoy the outdoor barbeque and taste your freshly caught saline fish after it is spiced and served with an array of sauces.
Multi-Day Maldivian Culture & Cooking Tour in Fuvahmulah
Sitting in the Gnaviyani Atoll, the public island of Fuvahmulah has a culture that is quite distinct from that of the rest of The Maldives. The locals speak Fuvahmoloke baha, a dialect of Dhivehi. Famous for its areca nut palms, the isle offers a multi-day culture and cooking tour, spanning a week.
The tour not only allows you to explore the history and geographical diversity of Fuvahmulah Island with a Maldivian guide but also lets you take cooking lessons with a chef. Learn to prepare hedika and share it with a local family, master Maldivian breakfast staples such as garudhiya, a clear fish broth, and even discover how to make coconut-based desserts.
#7 Dolphin, Sunrise & Sunset Cruise Tours in The Maldives
You simply cannot miss a cruise experience when in The Maldives! Gifted with fabulous lagoons, crystal blue waters and gentle waves, this archipelago is the perfect destination to splurge on cruises. Whether you prefer a luxury yacht or a traditional dhoni boat, a customized cruise can always be arranged from almost any island. Take a look at some interesting cruise tours in The Maldives.
Dolphin Watching at Anantara Dhigu Maldives
Situated in the Dhigufinolhu Island, Anantara Dhigu is a private island resort, and quite a luxurious one at that! Part of the South Malé Atoll, this resort in The Maldives offers a dolphin watching cruise specially designed for its guests. The lagoon is blessed with a huge number of spinner dolphins.
Known for their ability to perform water acrobatics, spinner dolphins are absolutely delightful to observe. These water mammals usually travel in pods and can be seen from close quarters as you luxuriate in an opulent yacht. Carry a video camera along to capture the lovely moments of dolphins playing with each other and taking acrobatic leaps out of the Indian Ocean.
Sunset Dhoni Cruise
Dhonis – traditional Maldivian wooden boats are one of the most widely used objects to represent this group of islands. Typical to The Maldives, these sailboats are used for various purposes. While fishing is the largest activity, transportation, sailing and tourism also figure significantly when it comes to dhonis.
The two most easily identifiable types of dhonis are masdhoni and vadhudhoni. While the latter is motorized, the former is a pole and line boat which is exclusively used for sailing. Sunset sailing cruises on a traditional dhoni add to the charm of the pure Maldivian sunset. Dhoni cruises are often customized to let you enjoy a romantic date with your partner, go on a fishing trip or even set out on a sail to watch some dolphins.
Sunrise & Breakfast Cruise by Conrad Maldives
Hidden in the Alifu Dhaalu Atoll, Conrad Maldives is an elegant resort in the private island of Rangali. Exclusive to the guests of this premium property, the sunrise and breakfast cruise is an experience one will remember for a lifetime. Spanning 3 hours, the morning cruise begins at 6 AM, perfectly timed to ensure you catch the glorious Maldivian sunrise.
The cruise is undertaken on Conrad’s own luxury yacht, the Rangali Raani. The vessel follows a course that takes you through various islands in the Indian Ocean. Lasting until 9 AM, the experience includes a lavish continental breakfast which is served on board. The joy of tucking into fresh fruit, decadent pastries and some flavoursome coffee aboard a ritzy sailboat while watching the sun come up from the waters is indescribable.
#8 Cultural Tours in The Maldives
Maldives’ history and culture is influenced by Morocco to a great deal. It is from this North African Muslim country that the archipelago received most of its knowledge of Islam, the state religion. Once a Buddhist country, all the islands of The Maldives now practice Islam. Apart from religion, one can discover the local dances, cuisines and other customs of this island nation through cultural tours.
Ramadan Meal and Maldivian Culture Tour in Malé
Lasting about a couple of hours, this cultural immersion tour offers a great feel of Ramadan, the Islamic annual festival. You will be escorted by a local guide to the home of a Maldivian family where you will have a chance to interact with the family members and understand their views on Ramadan.
Enjoy a delicious home-cooked meal with the family, specially made for Ramadan. After you have eaten, you can join in the Muslim prayers which are recited from the Quran, the scriptures which the Maldivians refer. The entire tour lasts only about a couple of hours, so can be easily accommodated into any Maldives vacation package.
Fulidhoo Village Visit & Bodu Beru Performance
Located in the Vaavu Atoll of The Maldives, Fulidhoo is quite popular for its cultural dance performances such as langiri and bodu beru. This lively village is inhabited by very friendly Maldivians who are happy to invite guests into their traditional bodu beru performances which involves the use of large drums (which translate to bodu beru in Dhivehi) and folk music.
Apart from the cultural performances, you will also be able to visit the local mosque of the village. You must remember to take off your shoes before you enter the mosque though. It’s also recommended to dress conservatively to respect the sensibilities of the local Muslims. The nearby reef at Fulidhoo is also great for snorkelling.
Dhiffushi Local Island Tour with Hedika Experience
Part of the Kaafu Atoll, Dhiffushi is a public island with a vibrant character. The village is full of small buildings in pastel shades, adding some much needed colour to the sandy and blue hues. Highly influenced by Moroccan architecture and design, the doors in Dhiffushi flaunt mosaic patterns. Street art and graffiti add to the edgy vibe of this little island, although most of the works have political themes.
After exploring the island, hop into a hedika café where the Maldivian locals love to gather. Ask for the traditional black tea which goes very well with the sweet and savoury snacks called hedika. Generally deep-fried, the filling of hedika items vary from meat or fish to grated coconut or cabbage. You can also enjoy the beach during sunset.
Fishing in Maldives
Maldives is nothing less than a paradise for fishing lovers with favourable conditions and exotic marine life and rich fauna. Most of the resorts and overwater villas in Maldives organise fishing trips for their guests along with providing them with all the required equipment for fishing.
Equipment like fish rods, fish finders and international fishing hooks along with Dhoni, local Maldivian boats and speedboats can easily be accessed along with proper guidance from the experts at the resorts.
There are mainly two kinds of fishing that you can go for; big game fishing and night fishing. Whichever kind you choose, you are introduced to the best of natural settings and exotic fishes to catch, making the experience worth remembering.
Big game fishing which is also known as morning fishing, you have to start in the morning. Here your Dhoni will move just around the atoll enclosure reefs where you can find exotic big fishes.
Outside the atoll, you can catch fishes like Sailfish, marlin, barracuda, yellow fish tuna, wahoo, swordfish along with many other big fishes. Big game fishing mainly depends on the weather condition and the fishing locations in Maldives. The experience is enhanced by the barbecue and music on the beach which generally follows the sport of fishing.
Night fishing, add some more excitement and adventure to the fishing experience. The experience is exceptional as you catch exotic fishes under the star studded sky and soothing atmosphere.
If you go for this sport, you are required to have your Dhoni leave the island in the evening and anchored by the outer Atoll reefs. The lines and sinkers are dropped in the reef waters from different sides of the Dhoni.
Emperors, snappers, squirrel fish, jacks and other reef fishes are some of the common catches during this sport. Night fishing, along with being adventurous can also be highly relaxing as you get the opportunity to lie on the boat’s deck and admire the clear sky and a moonlit surrounding.
Parasailing in Maldives
Experiencing the rich marine life and having amazing aerial experience, you must go for the sport of Parasailing in Maldives. Parasailing provides you with an opportunity to have an overview of the islands and its mesmerising natural settings.
In this sport, you are made to fly in the air while being pulled by a high-speed boat/ speed boat. Here, while you fly and are caressed by the refreshing and cool wind, you get an amazing aerial view of the island and its shimmering white beaches that are surrounded by turquoise lagoons. Also experience blue vast Indian Ocean along with a top view of the atolls and beautifully designed over water bungalows and hotels on the island.
Many popular hotels in Maldives also offer excellent facilities for the sport of parasailing. Hotel’s highly qualified experts make sure that the tourists are guided properly. They are generally advised to wear a life jacket for safety as they get in touch of water before and after lift-off.
Tourists are guided properly throughout the sport with all the necessary details and steps to be taken. And if you want, a professional can accompany you for parasailing. One can also get all kinds of equipment related to Parasailing at the resort’s sports centres making the sport all the more enjoyable
Water Skiing in Maldives
Water skiing is a perfect combination of excitement and a refreshing experience. In this sport, you are pulled behind a boat or a cable ski installation on water of Indian Ocean, skimming the surface.
Water skiing offers you with ample excitement if you are looking for some. Along with this, the experience of being amidst the blue water of Indian Ocean is exceptional and very refreshing.
There are favourable environmental conditions as well making Maldives one of the best places to go for water skiing. Its gentle breeze caressing you and warm weather comforting allows you to enjoy the sport all the more.
Many popular islands in Maldives offer excellent facilities and all the necessary water skiing equipment as well. Almost all the resorts and hotels in Malé provide proper guidance and have appointed guests to help you out throughout the sport on demand. Along with high qualified guides, you also have lifeguards in most resorts to ensure your safety during the sport.
Although the island is appropriate for the sport, it is generally advised to avoid water skiing during the months of June to September. During the rainy season which starts from June till September, it becomes difficult to water ski with the high winds, rain and rough, choppy ocean currents.
Windsurfing in Maldives
Windsurfing is one of the popular water sports in Maldives along with other sports like water skiing, scuba diving, snorkeling, fishing, dolphin and whale watching, etc.
This was introduced in the late 70s by Tony Hinde, an Australian surfer who was highly impressed by the surf breaks in Maldives and decided to start the sport on the island with a favourable environment supporting him for the same.
Maldives islands have excellent environments for water sports like windsurfing. Maldives with its rich flora and fauna under the sea and high visibility of water makes itself suitable for most of the water sports.
Moderate temperature of water which on an average is 25°C (77°F) creates a much favourable setting for those going windsurfing. Along with suitable conditions, the island also offers a safe and secure setting.
The large crystalline lagoons with waist deep water and soft sandy bottoms and a protective barrier that is provided by the house reef make it safe for windsurfers, especially helping the beginners.
In this sport, the surfer cut across the water enjoying a thrilling experience in a refreshing environment. Here, the windsurfer maintains balance on a long board that is wider than a typical surfboard and holds onto a triangular sail at the same time.
There are many excellent surf breaks in Maldives. However, the best surf breaks are in North Male’ Atoll and South Male’ Atoll and the best time to go is during the South-west Monsoon which is from the month of April to October.
The biggest swells can be seen from the month of June to September. The surf breaks are generally of the size that ranges from 3 – 8 feet. Along with natural settings, the island has excellent facilities as well.
Most of the resorts in Maldives offer equipment like boards and sails for hiring that vary as per the skill levels to their guests along with windsurfing lessons if interested. There are also instructors providing you with all the necessary information about the sport and guiding you throughout.
Interesting activities in The Maldives don’t stop at these. You can sign up for various other tours that include craft sessions such as palm weaving and woodwork, and more.