Top highlights of Maldives
If you’re looking for a Muslim-friendly holiday destination, Maldives is the place to be, with some of the best resorts in the world, unparalleled beaches in every nook and corner and adventures that lasts a lifetime. Let’s explore some of Maldives top highlights to add in to your list if you’re planning on visiting the exotic archipelago,
1. Hanifaru Bay
Photo Credits @br.ranger
Swim in the clear waters of Hanifaru Bay located in the Baa Atoll UNESCO Biosphere Reserve and snorkel your way to witness masses of giant Manta Rays in their natural habitat. It’s one of the best spots to snorkel as the water is crystal clear and draws a great number of plankton eaters such as the Whale Sharks. There’s plenty of resorts close to Hanifaru Bay and inhabited islands offering a variety of excursions. You also get professional snorkelers to guide you and teach you to snorkel if you’re inexperienced and this is a great activity for the entire family to engage in.
2. Old Friday Mosque
Photo Credits @travelma57er
A significant landmark in the archipelago, this stunning structure was built in 1656 which is also the oldest mosque in Maldives. It is ornamented with coral stone with intricate decoration and Quranic carved script. Even the Non-Muslims are allowed to enter the premises with the permission from an official of the Ministry of Islamic Affairs. Right outside the mosque is the blue-and-white tower of the munnaaru- the squat minaret and a cemetery with intricately carved tombstones. The Muslim traveler can pray in this mosque during prayer hours and a several other mosques that are accessible in Male.
3. Snorkeling Trips on a jetty
Photo Credits @sotti
There are three top snorkeling spots that you mustn’t miss and almost all the snorkeling excursions are offered with the required equipment such as the masks and fins and a professional to guide you throughout the journey. The Ari Atoll would be a great start with 82 islands out of which 26 are resort islands and is the most visited Atoll in the archipelago. So if you’re planning to take up on a day or two snorkeling trip you can opt-in to stay in Maafushivaru, Vilamendhoo, Bathala, Velidhu, Kandolhu or Mirihi islands. The resorts you stay in will offer many snorkeling excursions and you will get to witness an array of marine life such as manta rays, clownfish, blacktip reef sharks, anemones, angelfish, green turtles and hawksbill sea turtles to name a few and over 70 species of coral during your time in the waters.
4. National Museum
Photo Credits @karo.a.ibrahim
The National Museum was gifted by China to the Maldives featuring a host of historic artefacts holding a wealth of information on the history of the islands. On the ground floor you will get to explore galleries containing articles from the medieval periods of Maldivian history such as weaponry, religious paraphernalia and household wares as well as many impressively carved Arabic- and Thaana-engraved pieces of wood commemorating the conversion of Maldives to Islam in 1153. Upper floor is all about the modern Maldives including pieces of the technology and highlight being a 6m-long skeleton of the very rare Longman’s Beaked Whale.
Photo Credits @Tm
Dhigurah is perfect for the Muslim honeymooners and for those who are looking for budget-friendly stays as the local island has about 10 guesthouses. This island is home to an exotic white sand beach, a massive sandbank, couple of cafes and many souvenir shops on the main street. You can take long walks on the beach, purchase some souvenirs to take back home and stay in some wonderful beachside guesthouses. You can partake in snorkeling, diving and enjoy an uninterrupted beach holiday in Dhigurah.
Photo Credits @backpackerbanter
An industrious island in the Maldives, Thulusdhoo is known for its big drums, salted-fish warehouse and the Coco Cola factory. You get almost 30 guesthouses in this island and some stunning stretches of beaches for those who are looking for some unlimited time in the ocean. Almost all the hotels and guesthouses are Halal-friendly along with Halal-friendly amenities as Maldives is predominantly a Muslim country