If you haven’t been, we don’t know what you’re waiting for! Here are our top 6 tips for Maldives, so you’ll be able to enjoy a perfect getaway in this island paradise – no excuses!
1. The Atolls
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The Maldives is an island nation made up of 1,192 coral islands grouped in a double chain of 26 atolls spread over 90,000 kms, making it one of the most dispersed countries in the world. The atolls are composed of live coral reefs and sandbars, situated atop a submarine ridge 960 kilometres long that rises abruptly from the depths of the Indian Ocean and runs north to south. The further the atolls are from the main group of islands, the more beautiful the views, which brings us to our next tip!
2. Getting Around
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When considering where to go, factor in transport time and costs from the airport: the more far-flung resorts generally require an expensive speedboat or seaplane transfer. On the upside, the further away you are from Malé, the more peaceful the islands and the better the diving. The seaplane transfers are part of the magic that is the Maldives, as they allow you to see the breathtaking views of the archipelago from above. Keep in mind that seaplane transfers only fly in daylight hours so you should book all your flights to arrive and depart before 3pm, otherwise you will need to make arrangements to stay in Malé overnight.
3. Alcohol Restrictions
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Maldives is a Muslim country and abides by strict Shariah laws. This means that alcohol is banned for the local population. However, nearly all resorts and live aboard boats are licensed to serve it, usually with a steep markup. We would recommend booking all inclusive packages at the resort, as this usually includes alcoholic beverages in the resort rate.
4. Eating Out
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All Maldivian resorts are self contained so they have at least one restaurant, which generally serves international cuisine to cater to the myriad of different guests. Breakfast is almost always included, and most resorts offer the option of half-board, which means you get a dinner buffet, and full board, which means you get a lunch and dinner buffet. These can limit the damage compared to ordering a la carte. If you’re planning on consuming more alcohol, it may be worthwhile to go all inclusive, or their special packages as these options usually include full board, drinks, spa treatments, tours and upgrades.
5. Weather & When To Go
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The temperature of Maldives ranges between 24 °C (75 °F) and 33 °C (91 °F) throughout the year. Although the humidity is relatively high, the constant cool sea breezes keep the heat at bay. Two seasons dominate Maldives’ weather: the dry season (November to April) and the rainy season which brings strong winds and storms (May to October).
6. What To Wear
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Thanks to the Maldivian equatorial weather, lightweight, loose cotton clothing is recommended. After all, you’ll mostly be spending your day in swimwear! Bikinis are acceptable for ladies, but it should be noted that nudity is against the law as is topless sunbathing. All guests are asked to cover up in the restaurants and public areas such as reception, and will be turned away from the restaurant if this is not done. Otherwise, dress codes are usually relaxed and smart casual is the order of the day, especially if you like to dress up but we think you can forget about high heels as the sand can make this dangerous! Some islands and resorts do have their own specific dress code, so it is advisable to check this before packing.