A necklace of more than 1000 coral islands scattered in warm, crystal-clear waters, the Maldives are one of the most remote fantasy escapes in the world. This exclusive destination is the dream of honeymooners and Hollywood stars alike.
Flights to the Maldives
You’ll need a bit of patience to get to the Maldives from the US. There are no direct flights to Maldives from America, and most visitors come via Europe or the Middle East. Just about everyone who flies here will land in Malé International Airport (MLE) also known as Ibrahim Nasir International Airport. MLE is located on the capital island of Malé, and is the main gateway for tourists into the rest of the islands.
Just about every resort in the Maldives is its own private island, so getting to yours will be a bit of an adventure. Boats, ferries, sea planes aka “air taxis” and private yachts are the main ways of connecting to your final destination. Many resorts will arrange transfers for you, or you can source your own.
What to Do in the Maldives
The most important thing to do in the Maldives is just be. The white powder beaches are soft and spotless, the ocean is bathwater warm, and each resort vies with the next to offer the highest standard of glamorous pampering.
The other major activity in Maldives takes place under water: The snorkeling and scuba diving opportunities here may be unmatched anywhere else in the world. The reefs and caves surrounding each island are like jewelry boxes overflowing with the glittering colors of tropical fish, with the flash of scales and ripple of fins creating kaleidoscope patterns wherever you look.
Advice to Tourists Visiting The Maldives
You’ll need your passport, but everyone who visits the Maldives is given an automatic 30 day tourist visa. You’ll need to show proof of accommodation and a ticket showing an onward journey. Dhivehi is the official language here, but English is widely spoken in all tourist areas. The currency is the Maldivian rufiyaaehi, but all resorts price their services in US dollars, so you are unlikely to need to change money if you’re not venturing further.
The temperature here is a tropical 80 degrees just about every day of the year. High season is from December to April, and you’re unlikely to see a drop of rain, even if you stay for a month. The “monsoon” season, between May and November, is actually a great time to visit. You may run into heavy rainfall, but it never lasts for long, and both surf and scuba conditions are at their best. The reefs will be absolutely teeming with life.
The Maldives are a notoriously expensive place to visit. The sheer luxury and remoteness of this place make spending money inevitable. Economize where you can by using our free hotel price comparison tool to get the best deal on your accommodation and spend what you save on an in-room massage.
Images by Flickr/Sarah_Ackerman
Prices shown on this page are estimated lowest prices only. Found in the last 45 days.