Breathtaking, picture-perfect, heaven on earth – there are countless ways to describe the thousands of tropical island that make up the Maldives, but none quite do it justice. This stunning hotspot has long been a favourite with jet-setters, celebrities and holiday-makers from around the world. It’s also one of the most popular honeymoon destinations along with Bora Bora, Bali and Venice. But do you know exactly where the Maldives are? Could you point them out on a map? Don’t worry if you can’t! Read on to find out exactly where the Maldives are, as well as other essential information and Maldives resort recommendations that will come in handy if you’re thinking of booking a vacation to paradise.
Where Exactly are the Maldives?
The Maldives, officially known as the Republic of Maldives, actually consists of a chain of 26 atolls, and over 1200 coral island sandbanks, of which around only 200 are inhabited – 110 of which are home to Maldives resorts. These atolls are broken down into 21 administrative divisions by the government. The Maldives lie just southwest of both Sri Lanka as well as the southern tip of India. The Maldives span over 297km2, which makes it a very dispersed country.
The Maldives are famous for having a low elevation of around just 1.5 m above sea level – in fact this makes it the world’s lowest country. The Maldives are located both in Indian Ocean as well as the Arabian Sea, and the atolls stretch from Ihavandhippolhu Atoll in the North all the way to Addu City in the south.
Distance From the Maldives to Other Places on Earth
Have you ever wondered how far is from Maldives to other hotspots around the globe? Here are some distances for you to mull over:
Maldives to Lisbon 9085km
Maldives to London 5292km
Maldives to Perth 6003km
Maldives to Kuala Lumpur 3133km
Maldives to Los Angeles 15,692
Maldives to Paris 5149km
Maldives to Mombasa 3812km
Maldives to New York 8725km
Maldive to Rio Di Janeiro 12,835km
How to Get to the Maldives
If you’re travelling internationally, pretty much the only way to get to the airport is to fly to Male International Airport (MLE) which is located on the island of Hulhule. Note that this island isn’t much of a holiday hotspot as it doesn’t come with quiet desert island vibes like many other resort Islands scattered around the region. Ido need a place to stay here, then we recommend the Hulhule Island Hotel (click the link to check the latest rates). If you You will most likely need to get a seaplane or boat to your resort. Your resort will let you know what connecting transportation you will need, and many will even book it for you when you book online.
The closest resorts to the airport are accessible by boat. But if you do get the chance, or have the choice between travelling over water or in the air then we always suggest going for a seaplane, as you will get to see some incredible views and it’s all part of a holiday experience. There are no scheduled seaplanes because of the ever-changing weather, however a number of the planes operate throughout the day and you can even choose to book a private plane if your budget allows for it.
Flying is really the only way to get to the Maldives (unless you have a boat and captain) from Europe and America. There are several large cruise ships which offer cruises around the Indian Ocean islands, and they can even travel down to Australia or around Indonesia. However, these can be very pricey indeed. Another option is to choose to stay on a live-aboard boat. This is where you can live on a smaller boat in the Maldives and travel around the islands – so it’s a great way to get out and about if staying still on one resort doesn’t sound like it’s for you. Live-aboard options are particularly good idea if you love to snorkel or scuba dive, as they will often include these activities in the stay.
When is the Best Time to Visit the Maldives?
When planning a trip to the Maldives there are two main questions that come up time and time again, and they are: should I book an all-inclusive package to the Maldives, and what time of year is the best to visit? The truth is that any time of year is the best time of visit, after all the beaches will always be beautiful and the weather warm. There are two main Seasons, the high season which runs between December and March and the low season which runs between May and October. During the low season is when you can expect a lot more rain and even sometimes stormy weather. However, typically this rain only lasts for a few hours with the rest of the day in beautiful sunshine. Temperatures year-round hover somewhere between 25 and 31 degrees celsius.
Saying that, there are a couple of things that you should take into consideration when it comes to deciding what time of year to visit the Maldives. If you really really love blue skies and sunshine, then try and visit during the high season so that you can get the best weather. However, the best weather often comes with the biggest crowds and the highest prices, so you will need a larger budget to accommodate for your trip. If you’re on a bit of a budget, you prefer quiet beaches, or if you don’t mind warm rain on an afternoon, then a trip during the low season makes sense. All of the top Maldives resorts have a number of activities and events in place during the rainy season so that you will be kept entertained. It can even be quite a cosy experience listening to the pitter patter of rain on your best roof water villa or even swimming in the ocean as the heavens open.
Popular Activities and Excursions in the Maldives
Most people travel to Maldives resorts for some pure indulgent R&R, that is some serious chill out time away from the hectic lives back home. Saying this, there are a number of activities and excursions to keep all holiday makers of all ages entertained. You can choose to go out on a boat to watch dolphins play, and go snorkelling the incredible marine-life filled waters. If you feel like staying on dry land, then most Maldives resorts will have extensive fitness class offerings particularly yoga, tai chi and meditation classes. And of course there is always the spa to go and check out: Having a relaxing massage while listening to the gentle sounds of a lapping ocean is one of the most relaxing things you can do on any island. Some hotels in the Maldives put on special events, such as traditional Maldivian dancing, art classes and the likes, so check with concierge what’s on during your visit.
Many people choose to just spend their time on their resort, but some want to explore a little more of the local culture. Concierge will be able to make this possible by organising a seaplane for you to one of the major islands where you can have a guide show you around traditional Maldivian towns and villages. If you choose to do this then make sure that you follow the local rules as to not offend anyone or break some taboos as they can be very difficult different from those in the West. We recommend that you sample some of the traditional cuisine which is a delicious blend of Asians favourites. Be sure to try the samosas, banana flower salad, and a fresh, bubbling and fragrant coconut curry.
If you’re a music-lover then some of the big resorts have a club, to provide a place to tap your toes the beat and enjoy a cocktail three under stars. If the party by that’s particularly important to you, then we recommend heading to the One and Only Reethi Rah which has a very impressive club area. Sometimes they even book international superstar DJs coming to work their magic behind the decks. Click here to see more photos and book your stay.
Top Tips for Getting the Best Deals on Maldives Vacations
The Maldives aren’t exactly known for being a cheap holiday hotspot, however great value deals have been popping up over the years and you can snag yourself some affordable Maldives accommodation and flights if you follow a few of these tips and tricks.
The main one is to visit off season when prices dramatically lower. Of course, you will have to expect the lower prices come with a higher chance of rain, but when you’re in a tropical wonderland that won’t seem to be too much of an issue. It goes without saying that you should try and avoid the big holidays, particularly Christmas and New Year as prices will Skyrocket during these periods.
You can also be flexible with your dates in order to score better flight deals. Skyscanner have a great tool which allows you to search for flights over a whole month, and quite often you can swap them cheap flights if you have the luxury of flexibility. Another little flight tip is to look into connecting flights, particularly if you’re travelling from Europe or the US, you can even use this as an excuse to stop off in another beautiful location such as Dubai or Singapore and make your vacation a multi-stop trip.
If you’re the bargain hunter type, look into cashback sites that will give you a portion of your Maldives resort or flight purchase back to you that is normally paid to advertisers. This is useful if you are booking your Maldives hotel and flights separately, as is often somewhere between 1% 5% of the total value of your purchase. While it doesn’t sound a lot, it can actually add up quickly if you are travelling with the whole family. Make sure that you choose a trusted cashback sites such as TopCashback.
If you are a member of any type of air miles or frequent flying club, then make sure that you check out your current earnings before booking a flights, many people forget that they actually have a number of miles added up which they can use towards a flight to the Maldives or even to upgrade to travel in style. The same goes for special cars and loyalty programs that can be used towards your flight or Maldives hotel stay.
And finally check out all- inclusive packages. In the Maldives there are high taxes, and things are often very expensive as they have to be imported from outside of the country. So it actually works out a lot more wallet-friendly when you have all of your meals and drinks included in your stay. It also means that you don’t have to worry about having a hefty bill on check out, and you can wine and dine until your heart’s content. One of our favourite inclusive resorts is Centura Grand Island Resort – click here for the latest deals.
Other options to take into consideration if all-in isn’t your thing include half board and breakfast only. You can check this article for advice on what you need to know before you book an all-inclusive package holiday to the Maldives.
Are you sold on booking your trip to the paradise destination that is the Maldives? Do you need a little extra help and advice on some of the best Maldives resorts? Then worry not, we’ve done the legwork for you by reviewing and creating a list of some of the most incredible places to stay in the region. Check out this article for our favourite five-start resorts as well as this one for Maldives adults-only options some valuable Maldives insights. Happy travels!