The Maldives is a state located on 26 atolls in the Arabian Sea, which is part of the Indian Ocean.
The Maldives is a unique combination of the purest water, stunning sandy beaches and the comfort of picturesque hotels, most of which are bungalows scattered along the coast. Divers will discover a special unique world of warm equatorial waters.
The main advantages of diving in the Maldives are the incredible transparency of the water and the opportunity to see a huge variety of fish and other underwater inhabitants, including manta rays and whale sharks. The best places for scuba diving can be called the heart of the atoll — Ari Atoll, the largest in the Maldives, with a huge variety of underwater life and wrecks, as well as the coastal waters of Helengeli Island.
Among the divers, the popular Male Atoll reef with a unique visibility of up to 50 m and currents that will carry you along the reef. Ari Atoll in the western part of the Maldives has 82 islands. Many hotels have domestic reefs where dives are performed to observe marine life — dolphins, turtles, crabs. And swimming deeper, you will meet a hammerhead shark or whale shark. Baa Atoll — an archipelago with magnificent beaches with white sand. From July to November, divers can observe a mass-migration of manta rays and whale sharks to Hanifaru Bay.
The Maldives Dive Shops provide a full range of diving services from beginner training to advanced vocational courses for divers who want to pass the instructor exam. Here you can rent any equipment for diving, but it is desirable to have a personal mask and snorkel.
The daily air temperature rises from +30 ° C in March to +33 ° C in April and May, the water warms up to +28-29 ° C. May is the month of storms, strong wind and rain, undercurrents change, and diving is possible only with local instructors.
Summer season opens with rains. In the afternoon, the air warms up to +31-34 ° C, water: to +28 ° C. Humidity reaches 80%. This is a time of powerful storms and strong winds. The best month for diving in the summer is August when the sea becomes calmer and the winds quieter.
At the end of September, the rain-season ends in the Maldives, and in October the storms finally stop and the southwest monsoon subsides. The tourist diving season starts in November. The air temperature in this month comes up to +30 ° C, while the water heats up + 28 ° C.
New year holidays are the peak of the tourist season. The weather is dry and not too hot; the winter “iruvai” winds blow. Air temperature stays at about +30 ° C, while the water cools to + 27 ° C. Precipitation is possible in December, meanwhile, there is little rain in January and February.
The best Maldives dive sites are located on Male Atoll. For example, it is worth visiting the Manta Point — a cleaning station for manta rays, which patiently wait in line while sucker fishes and wrasse fish clean their mates off algae.
Medicine on the islands is poorly developed. Although every hotel should have an on-site doctor, in the case of a real emergency they would be of little help. The only large hospital is on the Male island, but the transport there is expensive, long, moreover, no transport is sent there at night. You do not need vaccinations to visit the Maldives, it is recommended that you buy insurance, but it will not cover the cost of transportation to the hospital in Male, if the need arises. Individuals safety in the Maldives is almost absolute, many islands have strict religious laws, and crimes are considered absolutely unacceptable.
Around the Maldives there are poisonous sea urchins, jellyfish "Portuguese man o' war", "crown of thorns" starfish, which should not be touched. By picking up a beautiful conch or hitting a coral, you can be stung by one of the poisonous creatures that are harmless in appearance. Even a simple stone can be a wart fish, armed with poisoned needles.
Due to the abundance of fresh fruits and seafood, the Maldives is an ideal place for healthy food lovers. For compulsory tasting recommended Garudhiya (clear tuna broth), Roshi (rice cakes) and Rihaakuru (tuna paste, which is eaten with bread or side dish).
The most common drinks are freshly squeezed juices. There is no fresh water on the islands, although, it is centrally imported into hotels and local outlets.