The Maldives, being 99% water makes for some of the best diving in the world. Grouped into 26 low atolls in the Indian Ocean, it has excellent reefs with an abundance of marine life. Scuba diving is done at the current sweeps along the island chains. The current sweeps along the island moving nutrients rich waters up so that a vast array of marine species are therefore accessible to the divers.
Manta and whale shark watching (Hanifaru Bay)
Hanifaru bay is an enclosed reef where large numbers of Mantas and whale sharks congregate to feed on its plankton rich waters. It is located in Baa Atoll and is a Unesco World Biosphere Reserve. Mantas maybe found here all year round and the highest numbers have been recorded between august and december. It is 10 minutes by speed boat from Dharavandhoo island and you have to get a permit to visit the site. This will be arranged by the hotel you are staying at. Each snorkeller is given a time limit of 45 mins and diving is banned in Hanifaru bay in 2017. An established Manta Trust makes sure that a maximum of 80 people can be in the water at a time with the mantas.
Snorkeling is the most common method used to access the beautiful undersea life of the Maldives. No matter where you are located, chances are there is a good reef nearby which you can snorkel in. A wide variety of fish can be spotted on the reef and if you are lucky you may spot a turtle or even a manta. The waters are perfectly safe and if you have the right gear with you it may well be a life changing experience.
Many guesthouses and resorts offer dolphin watching and it is one of the most popular excursions you could take. You could either take a super luxury Yacht from one of the resorts or take a small speedboat if you are at a guesthouse. Either ways if you are lucky enough to spot a pod of dolphins it will take your breath away. They are seen in all parts of the Maldives.
An ‘island-hopping’ excursion might take you to another resort, a desert island and/or an inhabited island all in a day-tour designed to give you a taste of the variety of island of the Maldives. Once you are on each island you could take the opportunity to walk around the islands and see what they have to offer. Shopping for souvenirs, snorkeling in the clear waters of a desert island or experience a barbecue on the beach.
The best time for Maldives surfing trips is from March until October. During this period, the roaring forties cause storms which bring the largest swells to the archipelago. The biggest waves are likely to occur in June, July and August. During this period, the wind is mainly offshore all day long. Maldives is exposed to the same swells as Indonesia is, except that its higher latitude and its South-East exposure offers cooler and less hardcore surfing. The typical Maldivian wave rolls up like most point breaks with workable corners, fun pockets and long rides.
The Maldives spa experience is a must for any traveler looking for rest and relaxation. Almost all the resorts in Maldives have a Spa on the island with treatments ranging from Ayurvedic healing treatments to deep tissue massage therapies. However it is important to note that they are not available on the islands where the guesthouses are located. Therefore a good idea would be to book a day trip to a nearby resort and get your massage on there.
Imagine taking a seaplane that flies slow low that you can clearly see the islands from a birds eye view. If the stars align and you are lucky, you might even spot a manta or a whale shark. Photo flights are the perfect excursion which offers an experience beyond the under sea beauty of the Maldives. Known as a “Garland of Islands”, Maldives is a feast for the eyes from the sky. Take it in as you fly over turquoise lagoons, desert islands and quaint little fishing villages.
Big game fishing
One of the best experiences to have in the Maldives. Try your luck at catching the fastest fish in the ocean – the sailfish. The adrenaline rush of hauling in a big catch such as a Marlin or a GT cannot be beat. There are numerous game fishing experience providers which will help you snag the fish of a lifetime. Big game fishing is a growing trend among many of the travelers that grace the Maldives.
Maldives offers a wide variety of watersports, including but not limited to Jet ski, banana boat riding, wakeboarding, catamarans, windsurfing, stand up paddle boarding, canoeing, cruising etc. Most of the local islands and resorts have a water sports center which you can visit to arrange an exciting day of water sports.