Best Things to Do in Maldives

maldivian girl

The Maldives, an idyllic collection of islands in the Indian Ocean, is a paradise for travelers seeking a blissful getaway. Picture-perfect white sandy beaches, crystal-clear turquoise waters, and an array of breathtaking atolls await you here. 

The Maldives offers much more than just scenic beauty. As you explore the islands, the stories and traditions of the local people will enrich your experience, and the vibrant coral reefs will leave you spellbound.

Planning your itinerary to include a mix of relaxation and exploration is key, and knowing the best time to visit ensures that your stay in the Maldives is as enchanting as the destination itself.

Embarking on a journey to the Maldives opens up a world of activities, from snorkeling and diving among colorful marine life to pampering yourself with luxury spa treatments overlooking the ocean.

Each atoll presents its own unique places to visit, ensuring that your stay is filled with picturesque memories. Whether you seek tranquility on secluded beaches or the exhilarating thrill of water sports, your time in the Maldives will be an unforgettable escape from the ordinary.

Things to do at the sea

scuba diving

In the Maldives, you have the unique opportunity to engage with the ocean in a variety of exciting ways. Each activity brings you face-to-face with an abundance of marine life and breathtaking underwater landscapes. From the vibrant coral reefs to water sports, your love for the sea will deepen here.

Go Snorkeling

Snorkeling in the Maldives is an unforgettable experience. The Coral Reefs are teeming with life, from colorful fish to majestic turtles. Glide over the calm, Clear Waters and observe Whitetip Reef Sharks and schools of tropical fish in their natural habitat.

Go Scuba Diving

Dive deeper into adventure with Scuba Diving. With professional guides, encounter Marine Life that includes Rays and Manta Rays amongst the dynamic scenes of the reef. The Maldives boasts an array of dive sites suitable for both beginners and experienced divers.

Go Surfing

Ride the Waves and feel the thrill of Surfing the Maldives’ swells. You’ll find waves for all levels, whether you’re just standing up on your board for the first time or looking for a challenge. The surf here is as welcoming as the locals, and the warm water means you can leave your wetsuit at home.

Go Parasailing

For a bird’s-eye view of paradise, go Parasailing. Take off on a Parasailing Tour and soar above the turquoise lagoons. It’s an Adventure not just about the thrill, but also about the stunning panoramic views you’ll remember forever.

Go Paddle Boarding

Stand-Up Paddle Boarding (SUP) combines tranquility with a bit of a workout. Paddle at your own pace and explore the Maldives’ shallow coasts. The calm clear waters make SUP both relaxing and invigorating, perfect for a sunny afternoon.

Go Fishing

Engage with the Local Experience and go Fishing. Whether it’s catch-and-release or you’re hoping to land a Tuna for dinner, fishing is a serene way to connect with the sea. Learn from local fishermen and enjoy a peaceful sunset out on the water.

Wildlife Exploration

turtle swimming in a house reef

The Maldives is as breathtaking below the water’s surface as it is above. Your adventure here extends to unique encounters with diverse marine life, making wildlife exploration an unforgettable part of your trip. Grab your camera and get ready to mingle with some of the ocean’s most friendly and majestic creatures.

Watch Dolphins

In the waters of the Maldives, you have the opportunity to witness Spinner Dolphins – famous for their acrobatic displays. Dolphin watching excursions usually take place right before the sunset when these playful mammals are most active. 

Watch Manta Rays

Encountering Manta Rays is a surreal experience as you watch them glide gracefully through the water. These gentle giants are often spotted at cleaning stations where smaller fish remove parasites from their skin. Remember:

  • Location: Manta Point is a hotspot.
  • Season: Best seen from May to November.

Swim With Whale Sharks

Swimming with Whale Sharks, the largest fish in the sea, is as thrilling as it gets. These spotted behemoths are docile, allowing for a serene swim alongside them. When embarking on this adventure, consider:

  • Safety: Maintain a respectful distance.
  • Equipment: Use quality snorkeling gear.

Prepare to be in awe of the Maldives’ rich marine life as you dive into these activities. Whether you’re watching, swimming, or simply admiring from afar, the memories will surely last a lifetime.

Take A Tour In Male

Start your cultural journey with a walking tour of Male, the bustling capital of the Maldives. You can visit the Fish Market where the fresh catch of the day comes in, providing a glimpse into the everyday lives of the locals.

The Grand Friday Mosque, with its stunning architecture, stands as an emblem of the Maldivian Islamic faith. Don’t miss out on the National Museum, which holds important artifacts that reflect the rich heritage of the country.

Visit A Local Island

For an authentic local experience, take a day trip to one of the local islands such as Maafushi, Huraa, or Ukulhas. Engage with the community and see their traditional crafts, savor local cuisine, and soak up the laid-back atmosphere.

These local islands offer intimate white sand beaches where you can relax and watch a mesmerizing sunset.

Visit A Sand Bank

Embark on a day trip to one of the many pristine sandbanks. Here, you’re treated to a 360-degree view of endless turquoise waters and powdery white sand beaches.

A sandbank visit is perfect for sunbathing, snorkeling, or just enjoying a peaceful moment. You might also consider a sunset cruise around the islands to cap off an unforgettable day.

Embark on an Island Hopping Adventure

sailing dhoani

Embark on a captivating island-hopping journey across the Maldives, where each island unveils its unique charm. From secluded paradises to vibrant communities, this adventure promises diverse experiences.

You could stay in a guesthouses nestled within local communities for an authentic cultural immersion. Engage with warm-hearted locals, savor traditional Maldivian cuisine, all while being moments away from pristine beaches.

Island hopping combined with guesthouse stays ensures your Maldivian exploration is not just a vacation but a cultural odyssey, offering a rich tapestry of memories.

Embark on a Seaplane Tour

The Maldives, renowned for its vibrant marine life and picturesque landscapes, takes on a whole new perspective when viewed from the sky.

The seaplane tour offers a unique opportunity to appreciate the vastness of the underwater world, providing a panoramic view of the dynamic scenes that unfold beneath the ocean’s surface. Your experienced pilot will guide you over the most captivating spots, ensuring you don’t miss the beauty that lies beneath.

As you gently descends for a water landing, you’ll have the chance to witness the convergence of the sea and sky, creating a tranquil and awe-inspiring setting. 

Stay At A Water Villa

house reef and water villas

Imagine waking up to the serene sound of waves gently lapping beneath you. Water villas, suspended over the azure Indian Ocean, offer this unique sensation. Here’s what these overwater bungalows have in store:

  • Direct Ocean Access: Step right from your room into the clear waters for a swim or snorkel.
  • Privacy: Enjoy seclusion with uninterrupted views of the horizon.
  • Sunsets & Sunrises: Witness breathtaking sunsets and sunrises from your private deck.

Some notable resorts featuring water villas are:

  • Soneva Fushi: Pioneering luxury and eco-friendly accommodation replete with innovative comforts.
  • Conrad Maldives Rangali Island: Home to the world’s first underwater spa, providing a surreal aquatic pampering experience.

Embrace the tranquil luxury of Maldives water villas for a stay that you’ll treasure long after your footprints leave the sand.

Cultural Experiences

When you visit the Maldives, immerse yourself in the local culture by exploring the exquisite Maldivian cuisine. Start your culinary journey with a taste of Mas Huni. This traditional breakfast dish features shredded smoked fish mixed with grated coconuts and onions, giving you a fresh start to the day. Pair it with Roshi for an authentic Maldivian flavor.

Indulge in the snack culture with bite-sized delights like Kuli Boakiba (fish cake), Gulha (fish balls stuffed with coconut and spices), and Bis Keemiya (a samosa-like snack with tuna, vegetable and egg filling). These treats perfectly showcase the blend of flavors found in the atolls.

Local restaurants often host Maldivian dishes “Divehi Keun” where you can sample a variety of these dishes. Some restaurants often prepare dishes at an open-air Barbecue, offering both an aromatic feast and insight into cooking methods.

  • Try Maldivian Cuisine: Discover the rich tastes of the ocean.
    • Mas Huni: Smoked fish with coconut and onions.
    • Roshi Flatbread: An ideal complement to Maldivian dishes.
  • Savory Snacks and Seafood Specialties:
    • Kuli Boakiba: Spicy fish cake.
    • Gulha: Mini fish ball dumplings.
    • Bis Keemiya: Tuna or egg-filled turnovers.

Exploring the Maldives isn’t complete without experiencing its culinary heritage. As you dine by the water’s edge, engage with locals and fellow travelers, savoring not just the meal but also the shared stories that come with it. This is a wonderful way to not only satisfy your palate but also to gain a deeper appreciation for the Maldivian way of life.

Other Activities

While the Maldives is renowned for its stunning beaches and water activities, there’s a plethora of other experiences that cater to both your adventurous spirit and the desire for relaxation.

Kitesurfing sessions, where the Maldivian trade winds provide ideal conditions. Beginners and experts alike will find that kitesurfing here is an exhilarating way to enjoy the ocean’s vastness.

If relaxation is more to your taste, the Maldives offers a serene escape with its array of spa treatments. Indulge in a soothing massage or a rejuvenating facial as you listen to the gentle lapping of waves. Most resorts have their own spas with a variety of treatments designed to pamper individuals and couples alike. For an unforgettable experience, look for spas that offer views of the ocean or are set over water.

For a chance to explore the Maldivian waters at a slower pace, consider kayaking or taking a ride in a glass-bottom boat. Both options provide a unique view of the vibrant sea life without having to dive in. You can paddle out with friends or family to enjoy the calm turquoise waters.

When traveling between islands, choose a local ferry for an authentic experience or a speedboat for faster transit.

Remember to experiment with some non-alcoholic tropical drinks as well, but if you’re interested in alcoholic drinks, check with your resort; as most local islands do not serve alcohol due to local laws.