When you visit a country that brims with over 1,200 islands, it becomes hard to pick just one place for your holiday. Maldives located in the Indian Ocean is stretched in 900 kilometers from north to south. To help you make your decision, we have drawn up a list of the best islands in Maldives. Our collection includes both inhabited and uninhabited islands to give you a good mix of choices.
It is not possible to talk about this archipelago without mentioning Malé – capital city of The Maldives. This public island is the most populated island in the country. There are plenty of hotels that can accommodate you. Some even face the ocean and have easy access to the beach.
There are a number of attractions that can be explored in this city and a nice way to see it all is to book a full day Malé City walking tour. Dating back to the 16th century, Sultan Park is home to around 18,000 trees that grace this garden.
For insights into Maldives’ history and culture, a stop at the National Museum is highly recommended. To understand how the locals follow Islam, you can even visit the Old Friday Mosque which is made of white coral stones. A must-see marketplace in the capital is the Malé Fish Market where fishermen bring in their fresh catch from the sea.
Malé offers a variety of activities and things to do in Maldives to keep its tourists entertained. Shopaholics will not be disappointed in Malé, as the shopping street of Majeedhee Magu presents a lively display of libaas, jewelry and electronic gadgets. End your day at the Artificial Beach. Check out the below to learn more about this island:
This private island in the Maldives is home to the all-inclusive resort of Ozen Life Maadhoo. Around 35 km away from the Velana International Airport, this 5-star resort offers beach villas and overwater villas, some with private pools. At their Ozen Residence, you also have access to a private butler.
When it comes to dining, this is one of the best islands in The Maldives for exotic experiences. M6m, which stands for Minus Six Meters, is their underwater restaurant that offers a seafood degustation menu with wine pairings. This super specialty restaurant is located 6 meters below the sea level.
Their Lonu restaurant serves Maldivian lunches while ‘Tradition Peking’ is dedicated to Chinese dinners. The beachfront ‘Hudhu Bay’ shack dishes out bar snacks with sundowners while ‘Tradition Indoceylon’ is for Indian and Sri Lankan cuisine. Food from around the world can be savored at ‘The Palms’ all-day dining restaurant.
Spa time at Ozen Life Madhoo is a ritual in itself. Beginning with a herbal tea, proceeding with a foot reflexology session, a face therapy or a full-body treatment and ending with some soaking in an overwater freestanding bathtub, relaxation has a new name at this Maldives water villa.
Part of North Malé Atoll, Hulhumalé is a local island that has been reclaimed from the Indian Ocean. This island is connected to the capital through the Sinamale Bridge. It is also easy to get transfers to Maldives International Airport from here.
Stretching to a length of 2.4 km, Hulhumalé has plenty of accommodation options for various wallet sizes. This inhabited island is home to a number of public parks such as the Hulhumalé Central Park or the Ferry Terminal Park. While some have walking trails and benches, some others have fountains and fish ponds.
There are plenty of activities and things to do in Hulhumalé. Beach bums can head to Hulhumalé Beach or Eastern Beach where it is possible to snorkel and discover colorful corals and reef fish. Night-times are particularly special on Hulhumalé due to the possibility of watching bioluminescence on the shoreline.
This is also a great island to start your North Malé local island hopping tour. The times of sunrise and sunset are ideal for a boat tour around Hulhumalé as this is when the dolphins come out in the ocean with their pods and provide a fantastic opportunity to photograph them.
The uninhabited island of Lobigili houses the 5-star OBLU SELECT resort. Just 15-minutes away from Malé International Airport, this is one of the most luxurious private island resorts in The Maldives. The villas here have features such as open-air bathrooms, private pools and walk-in closets.
OBLU SELECT Lobigili is your answer if you are thinking of what to do in Maldives for honeymoon. This adults-only resort is for couples only. This island also boasts of an underwater restaurant for that romantic date. Make the most of the infinity pool at this resort as you can recharge your energy levels at the pool bar.
Meals at OBLU SELECT Lobigili include all courses. You can also customize your orders at the live cooking stations, indulge your sweet tooth at the dessert bar and tuck into grilled meat or vegetables from the tandoor. For something offbeat, select your bites from the Gaadiya 17 Food Truck.
A couple massage at their adults-only spa is one of the romantic things to do in The Maldives. Feel all tension leave your muscles inside the double treatment rooms and unwind with your partner over a bath in a tropical garden.
Accessible by public ferry, Vilimalé has changed roles multiple times. Now an inhabited island, thisKinbidhoo place used to be a resort island many years ago. A few years later, Vilimalé became the prison island where inmates would be sent from various parts of the country.
This tiny island has 2 beaches with the classic white sand that one often associates with this archipelago. Even though Vilimalé is being rehabilitated with the local population of the capital city which is becoming overcrowded, there is an effort to preserve the simplicity of nature here.
Vilimalé encourages waste management and takes efforts to improve the coral cover of its house reef as well. You can even enroll into an activity to plant a coral grid at the bottom of the ocean when you go scuba diving.
There are many things to do in Villingili (Villimalé) Island. The laidback vibe of Vilimalé can be felt more closely when you sit in a jolie (a traditional hammock made of knitted ropes and fitted into a wooden frame to work like a chair) and have a hedika experience – a Maldivian teatime ritual which involves sipping on black tea and munching on a variety of deep-fried sweet and savory snacks.
Part of Alif Dhaal Atoll, Rangali is a private island that hosts the all-inclusive Conrad Ragali resort. This ultra-luxurious resort offers the country’s only underwater suite – The Muraka. The split-level suite has one of the bedrooms submerged at a depth of 16 feet and allows you to have an unobstructed view of the local marine life through its acrylic dome. This rare view can be enjoyed also from the underwater walk-in closet and the bathroom.
Conrad Maldives Rangali Island lets you choose from various room categories. One of the best places to visit in Maldives for honeymoon couples, most of the villas here have their own plunge pool.
Among their 12 dining options, Ithaa is ranked in the best underwater restaurants in Maldives. Taste provincial Chinese cuisine at Ufaa by Jereme Leung, satiate your seafood cravings at the overwater Sunset Grill, go on a detox diet at the Mandhoo Spa Restaurant, have a 6-course Japanese dinner at the al-fresco Koko Grill, savor Italian food at Vilu or spend your mornings at the Atoll Market watching some live action from the show-kitchens and tucking into your buffet spread.
You can also explore the underground wine cellar, have a private evening at the beach with some barbecue and champagne or taste wine and cheese at the house bar.
Hailed throughout The Maldives as a pioneer of guesthouse tourism, Maafushi is a public island in Kaafu Atoll. About 2.1 km in length and 200 meters in width, this inhabited island can easily be explored on foot within half a day. It is possible to see through to the other end of the island when you stand on the edge of the length and look across any of the narrow alleys.
Maafushi is home to more than 70 guest houses and this number is only growing. There are a number of 3-star and 4-star hotels that face the beach as well. This island has only two beaches – one faces the arrivals area where most of the speedboats dock. The other is located on the backside of the island and is called ‘Velana’.
Even though both the beaches are public and prohibit swimwear that expose too much skin, there is a small section of the main beach that is secluded from the rest of the island through foliage. This is called ‘Bikini Beach’ and it is possible to sunbathe on the loungers here and throw on your bikinis. Check out our detailed guide of things to do in Maafushi Island.
Maafushi has plenty of local stalls that sell Maldivian snacks and meals. You can even savor fresh fruits, juices and coconut water at some shacks. The island is a popular base for Maldives diving tours, Snorkeling tours, Fishing trips, Sandbank tours, Island hopping, and Shipwreck tours.
Hurawalhi is a luxury island with a single private resort sprawled on it. Located in the Lhaviyani Atoll, the place offers seaplane transfers from most international airports in The Maldives. It is never boring at Hurawalhi Island Resort as you have a plethora of activities to indulge in.
Visit their Marine Biology Center for a chat with a biologist, get photographed by a professional and capture your holiday memories in a tangible form, try a round of stand-up paddle boating, workout at the gym, relax at the spa, practice tennis, badminton, pinball, air hockey, table tennis or Pacman.
If you are a creature of the night, their handline night fishing tours is one of the most interesting things to do in Maldives at night. You can also visit a turtle sanctuary, go on a full-day luxury sailing trip or take a sunset cruise.
If you wish to see manta rays in Maldives, you can take speedboat tours that let you swim with these sea organisms via snorkeling or scuba diving. You can also enjoy parasailing, big game fishing or jet skiing if you need to spend some time away from your villa.
Located in Vaavu Atoll, Fulidhoo is a local island. Almost 56 km away from the capital city, this inhabited island sprawls across 28 acres. The main occupation of the Maldivians who live here is fishing. Jacks and snappers are the most commonly caught fish here.
Fulidhoo enjoys a natural harbor in the form of a lagoon. The entire island is only 200 meters wide and less than 700 meters long. This makes it completely walkable. One of the interesting cultural events to watch out for is Langiri. This involves a type of folk music called Thaara with a retinue of drummers and dancers.
Thaara displays some Islamic elements and Arabic words along with the local Dhivehi dialect in which the songs are sung turn by turn as the performers come out from their two rows in pairs to sing and dance.
Stretching to a length of 1.6 km and spreading to a width of 440 meters, Nalaguraidhoo is a private island that houses the Sun Island Resort and Spa. Located in South Ari Atoll, this all-inclusive resort in Maldives offers villas with beach, lagoon or ocean views.
Home to airy Maldives water bungalows and beach bungalows, Sun Island Resort and Spa also has an exclusive tree-top dining area. Nestled deep in the woods, this wooden machan can be reached via a dedicated bridge. You need prior reservation to organize a date lunch here.
Find yourself in a tropical terrace surrounded by palm trees and banana plantations and enjoy your healthy meal with nothing but the soft chirp of birds that serve as natural music. If you fancy the waters instead, there is a restaurant on stilts as well.
This private island resort also offers plenty of water sport activities to keep you active on your holiday. Go on a parasailing trip and feel the thrill of flying over the ocean as you remain tethered to a parachute and the speedboat. You can also go on a dolphin cruise or dive into a manta sanctuary.
Located in Kaafu Atoll, Huraa is an inhabited island that has seen a rapid rise in luxury tourism, thanks to the establishment of 5-star hotels in Maldives. Just 300 meters wide and 850 meters long, only around 750 people call this public island their home.
Huraa is one of the few islands in The Maldives to have its own mangrove ecosystem. The swamp is a nature reserve in the northern part of the island and is home to a number of protected species of birds that rest in the island’s vegetation.
If you are into surfing, Huraa is a great place to hone your skills. The sea of the North Malé Atoll around this island has about 15 breaks and you will have a lot of opportunities to ride some waves. Maldives’ weather from May to October is perfect for surfing.
Another activity that should not be missed when you are staying on Huraa is snorkeling. It is possible to spot wild turtles, reef sharks, sting rays and even manta rays when their feeding season is on from June to October.
Located within the UNESCO Biosphere Reserve of Baa Atoll, Kunfunadhoo is an inhabited island that is home to the uber-luxurious Soneva Fushi resort. Promoting a barefoot lifestyle, this resort has villas and retreats with private pools in all of them.
Flying Sauces is an adventurous dining concept at Soneva Fushi where you will find yourself ziplining to your elevated treetop restaurant. The menu changes seasonally as Michelin-star chefs are flown in to curate special meals for the guests. Nestled in a rainforest on this private island, this experience is like none other in The Maldives.
Soneva Fushi also lets you relish movie experiences in the open sky which is one of the most beautiful things to do in Maldives at night. At Cinema Paradiso, you can catch an international film under the stars while having your dinner or sipping on cocktails at the beach.
You can also visit the hot glass studio on this island which is a one-of-a-kind workshop in The Maldives. At Soneva Fushi, waste glass is recycled into new glassware for the restaurants and villas on the island. Other exclusive activities include an overnight camping experience on a deserted sandbank – complete with a Bedouin-style tent and a barbecue dinner.
The public island of Guraidhoo is 700 meters long and 500 meters wide. The main beach does not allow western swimwear that exposes skin, so bikinis are not allowed here. Guraidhoo is home to a handful of guesthouses and has around 1,800 inhabitants living on it. During your stay, try some local specialties such as passion fruit juice, Maldivian seafood, kottu, noodles and rice.
Not far from Guraidhoo, Lhosfushi is a popular picnic island that is accessible by a footbridge. This secluded beach is one of the best bikini beaches in Maldives where you can sunbathe in your bikinis. If you take a snorkeling tour, you will be able to explore the house reef along with eagle rays, green sea turtles, blacktip sharks and Hawksbill turtles.
Guraidhoo is a great place for Maldives fishing tours. You can try night fishing for the chance to catch squirrelfish, snappers, barracudas, jacks and emperors. Most guesthouses in the Maldives will be happy to cook your catch for your dinner. If you wish to surf on the waves of Guraidhoo, visit between April and November. Scuba diving enthusiasts can look forward to sighting frogfish, sting rays and various other schools of fish.
This private island in North Ari Atoll houses the 5-star Constance Halaveli resort. Luxuriate in their single or double story villas with plunge pools, free-standing tubs and sun terraces. This is a great resort if you are planning to propose to the love of your life, get married or renew your wedding vows on your marriage anniversary.
If you are wondering what to do in Maldives with family, bring your clan to Constance Halaveli where you little ones can relax at the Kids Club and play with other toddlers in a colorful room, enjoy some beach time, sit in a mini tabernacle with stuffed toys, attend cooking classes specially designed for children or just catch a movie under the watchful eye of the qualified staff.
Sip on their signature cocktails at one of the pool bars, savor Asian and European fusion cuisine at the Jing restaurant, satiate your appetite for Japanese food at Kaika Sushi restaurant or tuck into some seafood at the seafront Meeru restaurant. If you are missing your daily workout, you can pop into the gym for a round of spinning, rowing or weight lifting as well.
Located in Alif Alif Atoll, Thoddoo is an inhabited island. It is 2 km long and 1 km wide. There is much to this public island which not only has a Maldivian village but also farmlands and a dense tropical jungle. Use a bicycle to get around Thoddoo, as it is a tad too large to travel on foot.
The island produces a lot of watermelon which is exported to the rest of The Maldives. It is possible to relax in your bikinis at two tourist beaches which sit on either end of Thoddoo. If you are a strong swimmer, explore the house reef near the bikini beaches for a glimpse of vibrant corals, eagle rays, turtles, manta rays and sharks of the Maldives.
Thoddoo has one of few glowing beaches in the Maldives where you can watch bioluminescent phytoplanktons set the waters aglow after dark. When you stroll on the sandy parts of the island, you also have the chance to spot hermit crabs, geckos, gray herons and flying foxes.
If you wish to get insights into the local produce, ask around for a farm tour for the opportunity to look at coconut, papaya, banana and watermelon farms.
This private island in North Malé Atoll is home to the Sheraton Maldives Full Moon Resort and Spa by the Marriott group. One of the most exclusive places to stay in the archipelago, the 5-star resort offers activities such as sea bobbing, big game fishing, sandbank picnics, flyboarding, catamaran sailing and more.
Their inviting spa pavilion offers a host of services and signature treatments. Other wellness options on the island are gymming, yoga and swimming in a freshwater pool. When you stay at the Sheraton Maldives Full Moon Resort, you live in close proximity to more than 40 diving points.
To contribute to the healing of marine environment, you can also participate in a coral propagation project and have the opportunity to plant a coral fragment on the seabed. Embrace the sea breeze with a cruise in a dhoni – traditional Maldivian wooden boat.
When you book a Maldives honeymoon package 5 days and 4 nights, you can also include a floating breakfast in your plan. You will receive your first meal of the day in a wooden or wicker tray with fresh tropical fruits, breads, scones, juices and tea or coffee.
Part of South Malé Atoll, the public island of Gulhi is just 400 meters long and 225 meters wide. Even though this is a small island, it is so popular today that if travelers run out of hotels and guesthouses here, they stay in the homes of the locals or even set up their own tents.
The island has public beaches in the northern and southern ends, along with a bikini beach with sunbeds. It is possible to do Maldives resort day tours from Gulhi for a glimpse of private island resorts such as Adaaran Prestige Vadoo, Embudu Village, Anantara Veli and Holiday Inn Kandooma.
Interestingly, the island does not have an ATM, so it is recommended to carry cash in the form of Maldivian rufiyaa (MVR) or the American Dollar (USD). The local dive center offers PADI certification courses in scuba diving.
If you enjoy surfing, Gulhi Reef is a nice place to catch a wave during the wet season. If you have never caught a fish before, this is a good place to go on a fishing trip and learn how to catch a fish with a hook, line and sinker.
Located in South Malé Atoll, Rannalhi is a private island on which Adaaran’s Club resort is built. This premium all-inclusive resort offers exotic Maldives beach bungalows and water bungalows where you can soak up the sun, work on your tan and walk on the white sands.
At Adaaran Club Rannalhi, you can try kayaking together with your partner in twin kayaks or play a game of beach volleyball with your family. You can also go on a fishing safari with Maldivian experts and learn how to catch fish in the traditional way.
If you wish to explore the capital instead, the staff will arrange a Malé City tour by car. For a more rustic experience, go on a local village tour and listen to the people speak in Dhivehi – local language of the Maldives. For a taste of other islands, Adaaran Club Rannalhi also arranges island hopping tours to Fiyalohi, Biyandhoo and Guraidhoo.
Gastronomy is integral to any resort, as is evident for Adaaran Club Rannalhi as well. They let you choose from a variety of cuisines that include continental, Maldivian, Italian and Asian. Special attention is given to seafood.
Part of Kaafu Atoll, Himmafushi is an inhabited island that is 900 meters long and 750 meters wide. The tiny size of this island ensures that you can stroll through it in less than an hour. Home to 850 residents, Himmafushi has a Bikini Beach for tourists who want the freedom to wear bikinis on public islands.
There are a number of breaks near this island for surfers. A laidback activity you can try is fishing. Game fish such as groupers, snappers and trevallies are often spotted in the ocean. Anything you catch can also be grilled by your hotel and served to you for dinner.
There are plenty of sandbanks in Maldives and Himmafushi is a fantasting base to explore those on boat trips. Sandbanks that are secluded allow western swimwear and sunbathing. You can also go snorkeling on the house reef or just enjoy a picnic lunch under a parasol.
If you decide to go on an after-dinner stroll, you can fill up some more by snacking on deep-fried hedika, pasta, tuna sandwiches or noodles. There are a few inns, lodges and guesthouses on Himmafushi where you can stay while you explore this island.
Located in North Malé Atoll, Thulhagiri is a private island which is home to Thulhaagiri Island Resort. Nicknamed ‘Lovers Paradise’, this island is spread across 7.8 acres. Thulhagiri offers plenty of beach bungalows with open-air bathrooms and overwater bungalows with direct access to the house reef.
Some interesting activities to watch out for on this island are crab races, live band performances and disco nights. For those who wish to get married on this island, your destination wedding dream is made possible with a dedicated crew including a wedding coordinator and a Master of Ceremonies.
You can enhance your special day with a tree planting ceremony, an evening cruise in a dhoni, a wedding cake, a wedding gift, a wedding parasol with tropical décor, in-villa breakfast the morning after, a tropical bridal bouquet, a turn down service in the evening with a special room décor, a celebratory local drink and a candlelight dinner.
Thulhagiri Island Resort also has a souvenir shop in case you wish to buy some postcards to send back home. At the boutique store, you will also find local handicrafts, swimwear, snorkeling gear and other items that you might need during your island holiday.
The local island of Rasdhoo is the capital of Alif Alif Atoll. This inhabited island has a number of guesthouses where you can put up. This tiny island is 600 meters long and 500 meters wide and is home to around 1,200 Maldivians.
The Bikini Beach on Rasdhoo stretches to a length of 100 meters and has plenty of loungers to sunbathe in your bikini. The house reef stretches to a length of 1 km but is surrounded by dead corals, so it is advisable to swim to a distance for a safe experience.
The outer reef is a nice spot to find a variety of fishes of Maldives. One can easily spot barracudas, eagle rays, reef fish, sting rays, Napoleon fish, manta rays, batfish, coral pipefish, parrotfish, black tip and white tip reef sharks, hawksbill turtles, groupers and tuna. The coral cover is also a vibrant one, full of anemones and sponges.
The guesthouses on Rasdhoo also arrange for sandbank dinners where you can enjoy your meal in a romantic setting. The dive centers on the island offer plenty of scuba diving certification courses if you are staying for a longer period of time.
Part of North Ari Atoll, Mushimasgali is the location of Safari Island – a private island resort. The all-inclusive island offers complimentary WiFi and the facility to exchange your currency at the 24-hour reception. The smallest members of your family can be entertained during your stay through puzzles, board games and child-safe TV channels.
Safari Island offers three categories of rooms – beach bungalows, semi water bungalows and water bungalows, each of which can accommodate a maximum of 2 adults and 2 children. Make the most of the transparent turquoise lagoon with an hour of canoeing or sip on a cocktail at the pool bar.
Recharge your body at the spa with a full body massage or just pick from neck massage, hand massage, foot massage or head massage. You can also take the massage together as a couple at the spa lounge.
If you are celebrating your honeymoon, you can also avail of a complimentary night of bed décor and a beach dinner with cocktail. Their all-inclusive plan lets you go on a snorkeling excursion or a half-day local island trip as well.
Part of Kaafu Atoll, Dhiffushi is a public island with around 1,200 inhabitants. The island is 950 meters long and 200 meters wide, making it a breeze to walk around. There is a sandbank not far from Dhiffushi, where it is possible to take photos as if you were on a deserted island.
Dhiffushi has a dedicated Bikini Beach on its southern end and a Bioluminescent Beach on its northern end. However, the growing tourism on the island has made the locals tolerant of tourists wearing bikinis even though the signs warn against western swimwear.
You can catch plenty of glowing planktons on the beach at night as the sea waves wash up these bioluminescent creatures to the shore. You can further agitate the waves to ensure the phytoplanktons glow.
If you are looking to create a romantic date night setup, you can check with your guesthouse in Dhiffushi if they can erect a pavilion around your table on the sand and drape the pillars with soft fabric. Barefoot dining with nothing but dim table lamps and lanterns around the pavilion can make it a night to remember.
Located in Ari Atoll, Ellaidhoo is a private island owned by Cinnamon Hotels. The charming resort of Ellaidhoo Maldives by Cinnamon is spread across the island and welcomes guests to its garden rooms, ocean rooms, beach bungalows and water bungalows. All the accommodation types come with a pillow menu among other frills.
The dining options at Ellaidhoo Maldives by Cinnamon nod to the easy-going vibe of the place. You can walk barefoot at the main buffet restaurant where the wooden tables, chairs and buffet counters are placed directly on the sand. At their poolside restaurant, you will look over the Indian Ocean and the infinity pool during your meal.
When you stay at this resort, you can dive around the popular spots nearby such as Orimas Thila, Fish Head, Fesdu Wreck or the Ellaidhoo House Reef Wreck. You can also take up night diving for a whole new range of sighting possibilities.
If you are celebrating a special occasion, you can also book their 4-course destination dining experience and be served by a personal butler. Look forward to colorful salads, appetizers, mains and dessert.
The inhabited island of Thulusdhoo is the capital of Kaafu Atoll. The island is 700 meters long and 400 meters wide with a population of 1,400 people. If you are curious to know about the occupation of the locals, go on a guided excursion to see their sea cucumber and tuna drying factories.
The island is also popular for its boat building. You will be able to understand the process on a tour of the workshop. Also known as Coke’s Island, Thulusdhoo is known to be the only island with a Coca-Cola plant where desalinated water is used (in place of regular freshwater).
The local beach is a lucky place where you might even have the chance to see dolphins swimming in pods afar. There are hammocks tied between palm trees for those who wish to spend their lazy afternoons reading a book outside.
Thulusdhoo has a small number of guesthouses to host tourists and a bikini beach which is separated from the other beach areas. It is only here that one can wear a bikini as the other parts require conservative dressing.
Located in Lhaviyani Atoll, the private island of Kanuhura is home to the newly built Six Senses resort. With a focus on ocean conservation, this luxury resort offers turtle safari, snorkeling, scuba diving and other water sport activities in Maldives. The concept of sustainability is also applied at Six Senses Kanuhura where salads, vegetables and herbs are grown locally and collected every morning for the day’s meals.
If you are a culinary enthusiast, you can look forward to an interactive workshop with the chef and understand the farm-to-fork experience that the resort aims to create. Picnics on the pristine beaches of Six Senses Kanuhura are to be cherished as the exotic locale is sure to enhance the flavors on your plate.
The accommodation types at this resort are a mix of beach villas, family villas and overwater villas in Maldives, some with private pools and either sunrise view or sunset view.
Part of Alif Alif Atoll, Ukulhas is a local island that is 1 km long and 200 km wide. Inhabited by only about 900 Maldivians, this public island is perfect to stroll around. Most of the island’s west is lined by a beach that stretches to 1 km.
There are a number of hotels and guesthouses that you can book for your stay in Ukulhas. If you would like direct access to the beach, pick an accommodation in the west of the island. It is a nice place to relax on one of the sunbeds under the shade of an umbrella to get some tan.
The best season to visit Ukulhas is between November and April if you would like to relax by the sea. During the wet season, most of the beach areas are submerged due to high tide or littered with dead corals that are washed up on the shore by the waves.
Please note that Ukulhas is not protected by any external reef, so it is prone to tidal waves. Nevertheless, you can see octopuses, parrotfish, turtles, stingrays, manta rays and cuttlefish when you snorkel on the house reef.
Nestled in South Malé Atoll, Dhigufinolhu is the private island on which Anantara Dhigu Resort is located. This 5-star resort is home to elegantly designed beach villas and overwater suites with rain showers, sun terraces, outdoor baths and private pools.
Anantara Dhigu offers a variety of watersports such as diving, surfing and snorkeling. There is a surf school on the island in case you wish to try this sport but have never surfed before. Snorkeling on the house reef is rewarding, with a view of eagle rays, fusiliers and turtles. If you wish to see marine life without getting wet and are wondering what to do in Maldives for non-swimmers, you can go on a glass-bottom boat ride.
You can make your memories more magical with a yacht ride or a dive tour to swim with nurse sharks. Honeymooners can look forward to handcrafted chocolates, a romantic décor in-villa, speedboat transfers from the Velana International Airport and a bottle of champagne.
Gourmands can expect a culinary treat at the variety of restaurants at Anantara Dhigu, from Thai and Italian to sundowners and seafood. After-dark activities include a cinema-under-the-stars experience or a private dinner on a sandbank.
Located in Alif Alif Atoll, Mathiveri is an inhabited island. This public island is 775 meters long and 475 meters wide with a population that is just over 1,000. Apart from tourism, the main occupation of the locals here is fishing. Yellow-fin tuna happens to be the most widely caught fish on Mathiveri as it is an important export product.
Despite the popularity of this island with tourists, there are only 10 guesthouses that are available for accommodation. This tiny island has 3 beaches, one of which is a bikini beach where tourists are allowed to wear bikinis. One of the public beaches is called ‘Stingray Beach’ as it is possible to sight a lot of stingrays there in the morning.
There is another beach that you can swim up to if you are a strong swimmer and do not mind the currents. This is also called ‘Picnic Island’ as it is deserted and ideal for secluded picnics under the sun. In terms of sighting marine life, you will not find much other than young sharks.
Fishing is a popular activity even with tourists here. You can catch a game fish and have the chance to cook it in your guesthouse without any charge.
Part of Noonu Atoll, Randheli is home to the luxurious resort of Cheval Blanc. This 5-star resort is ideal for families with children as there is a dedicated area for kids – Le Carrousel where they can play while you get some quiet time with your spouse.
You can explore the coral atoll on a gorgeous yacht or appreciate the art curated by Cheval Blanc Randheli. Gourmet dining is redefined on this island as you can indulge into a 12-course menu or picnic on a private sandbank. Barbecue nights are also offered.
This French resort steals hearts with its state-of-the-art architecture and spa therapies with Guerlain products. When you stay at Cheval Blanc Randheli, you can choose from water villas, lagoon villas, horizon villas, garden water villas, lagoon garden villas and island villas.
This private island is not only about French hospitality. You can also taste a variety of flavors from around the world. Find Italian flavors at Deelani, Japanese and East Asian cuisine Diptyque, healthy bites and juices at the Spa Bar or slip into the Wine Museum or Cigar Lounge.
Part of Raa Atoll, Vaadhoo is one of the most famous inhabited islands in The Maldives for its bioluminescence. The nightly magic displayed on its shores is often termed as the ‘Sea of Stars’ because of the brilliant glow that comes from the planktons.
Also known as Mudhdhoo, this local island glows because of the light emitted by certain types of creatures in the sea. While bioluminescence is often attributed to phytoplanktons, the glow can also be produced by bacteria and some types of sharks. Interestingly, this ‘lighting up’ is a form of self defense among marine creatures.
Vaadhoo glows at night because of microalgae noctiluca scintillans which give out light when they are agitated. While the island is only populated by about 500 Maldivians, the beach area is visited by a lot of tourists who wish to see the spectacle.
To increase your chances of seeing bioluminescence, it helps to agitate the water with your feet as that will signal the planktons or dinoflagellates to emit their fluorescent light. Vaadhoo is 1.45 km long and 400 meters wide.
Located in Alifu Dhaalu atoll, Huvahendhoo is a private island that houses Lily Beach Resort and Spa. This luxury resort offers beach, lagoon and water suites, residences and villas with or without a private pool.
When you visit this island for your honeymoon, you can get a 30-minute coupe massage, a sparkling wine, a floating breakfast in your private pool, romantic bed and bath décor and a heart-shaped cake. The plethora of dining avenues at Lily Beach Resort at Huvahendhoo include Oriental, Indian and Japanese teppanyaki flavors.
There is never a dull moment on this private island as you can get a spa treatment, go diving, go sailing, watch dolphins, relax on a private sandbank, try stand-up paddle boating, hit the gym or watch a live cultural show performed by locals.
If you are a party person, you will also find a DJ who is ready to play your kind of music to get you to dance. There is something for the kids as well. The Turtle Kids Club at the resort organizes treasure hunts, hermit crab races, water sport activities and craft sessions to keep the little ones busy.
Part of Addu Atoll, Gan is the southernmost point of The Maldives. It is intriguing to note that the name of this public island is derived from a Sanskrit word – ‘grama’ which means village. Gan is the second largest island of Addu Atoll, which is also known as Seenu Atoll.
With a total area of 2.2561 square km, the island stretches to a length of 1 km and a width of 330 meters. About 1,100 Maldivians call Gan their home. This public island was once a producer of manioc and yam. If you wish to stay on this airport island, you will have access to a hotel.
However, Gan is preferred by most tourists for the presence of the Gan International Airport which connects them to the south of The Maldives. The island is also the site of ancient Buddhist ruins as per the findings of archaeologists.
There are plenty of activities that you can keep yourself occupied with on the island of Gan – biking on rented cycles, canoeing, snorkeling, jet skiing or stand-up paddle boating. You can also go on a fishing trip and try your luck with the line.
Located in South Ari Atoll, Dhidhoofinolhu is a private island that is home to the Lux* resort. Luxury is in the very name of this resort that offers villas and pavilions, some with their own private pools. The spa itself has a number of therapy rooms, some overwater.
Eating is a whole new experience at Lux* South Ari Atoll as you can choose from 6 bars and 7 restaurants with a wide array of cuisines such as Indian, Lebanese, North African, Far Eastern, Japanese, Italian, Maldivian and Mediterranean. You can also book the wine cellar for a private dining experience. If you are vegetarian or vegan, you can request for a special menu as well.
Apart from the popular watersport activities such as kayaking and snorkeling, you can try banana boating, jet skiing, windsurfing, wakeboarding, pedal boating and rubber ring rides on Dhidhoofinolhu. Diving sessions are conducted twice daily and offer the opportunity to see turtles, butterfly fish, dolphins, parrotfish, whale sharks, sting rays, barracudas, manta rays and tuna. Active sports on this island that do not involve the water include tennis, gymming, table tennis and volleyball.
Dhigurah is a public island located on Alif Dhaal Atoll. Measuring 3.175 km long and 275 meters wide, this inhabited island is home to just over 600 islanders. Dhigurah is known for the high chances of sighting whale sharks which are known to be seen all around the year in this part of the Indian Ocean.
The name literally translates to ‘long island’ in the local language of Dhivehi. Due to its elongated shape, Dhigurah happens to be one of the longest islands in the archipelago. The southern tip of this local island looks like a sandbank where you can see the ocean on either side of the sand strip.
For the opportunity to see manta rays, head to the north of the island and snorkel in the house reef. You can also go on a 2-hour night fishing trip just before sunset and return in time for your barbecue dinner with the catch of the day.
Dhigurah is close to about 30 dive sites where you can visit on a dive boat. Most of the dive boats have a tanning deck to keep you warm after a cool dive.
Part of North Malé atoll, Olhahali is a private island owned by the Jumeirah group. The beach villas and water villas on this island sport a Mediterranean architecture. Dining options at Jumeirah Maldives Olhahali Island include floating breakfasts in your private pool, Peruvian and Japanese cuisine, Greek and Mediterranean delicacies and more.
You can also ask for a private movie screening on the rooftop of your villa or let your children play in the splash park. The sandbanks on Olhahali are used not only for romantic picnics but also couple massages and private yoga sessions. You can even shop for designer beachwear at the boutique.
Adventure is not too far when you call Olhahali your home, even if it is just for a few days of vacation. Try the exhilarating experience of flyboarding or go for something mild such as a semi-submarine ride. Charter a private yacht to cruise around the atoll with your family or simply have your photos taken by a professional photographer on the island.
While there are a number of sports activities available at Jumeirah Maldives Olhahali Island, if you do not play a sport, you can always hire a trainer to teach you the basics. Be it tennis, gymming or yoga, the resort offers personal trainers for every activity. When you are on the pristine beaches of The Maldives, volleyball is the perfect game to play barefoot and soak in some sun.
After you have chosen one of the picturesque islands in Maldives for your vacation, it is time to plan the finer details. From the best time to visit Maldives to top experience. Reach out to Samudra Maldives to get some help with your itinerary, resort bookings, meal options, airport transfers and activity inclusions. We will work within your budget and ensure you have a fabulous trip.