Male Island is the capital of The Maldives. This thriving micro metropolis lies in the heart of the island chain and is a hub of activity and the best way to understand more about the Maldivian way of life. Towering multi coloured buildings are packed onto this island, contrasting beautifully against the surrounding aquamarine waters. There are plenty of places to explore in the Maldivian capital, such as beautiful parks and squares, interesting museums, gold crowned mosques and bustling streets and markets.
When travelling to the Maldives, you will inevitably pass through Malé. Most divers pass through on their way to a liveaboard or island resort, but if you do have an opportunity to stick around, then there are some interesting places to explore.
The climate in Malé is tropical, hot all-year-round, and dictated by the monsoons. Temperatures and humidity stay steady throughout the year. Expect daily highs of 30°C, nighttime temperatures of 25°C, and 80% humidity.
Wet Season – May to December
From May to September the South-West Monsoon brings high volumes of rainfall accompanied by strong winds. These are felt a lot more heavily in the northern islands and can discourage activities such as diving due to rough seas and cloudy conditions.
Dry Season – January to April
During this period, rainfall tends to be below 100mm per month, with thunderstorms in the late afternoons and evenings. These are the driest, sunniest months of the year.
The majority of liveaboards begin and end in Male, although there are land-based options available, we highly recommend that divers going to the Maldives go with a liveaboard to really get the most out of the diving here. The Maldives is 95% ocean with 26 atolls spread over 35,000 square miles! There are so many dive sites to explore that being on a liveaboard is the best way to make the most of these stunning marine ecosystems. Many of the dives throughout are drift dives, because of this we recommend that only advanced or experienced divers dive here.
The nutrient-rich currents that flow through the Maldives attract a wide range of marine species to the area, especially larger pelagics such as mantas, whale sharks, and reef sharks. You will also find colourful reefs packed with hard and soft corals and a boggling array of critters and reef fish.
24-30°C – Rashie or 3 – 5mm wetsuit
North Male Atoll
You will find a stunning underwater landscape here, with caves, drop-offs and overhangs, all of which are teeming with life. You will have the opportunity to see mantas, sharks, trevally, morays, grouper, soldierfish, squirrelfish and many more!
South Male Atoll
There are six channels here to explore. The whipping currents that flow through attract schools of fish and pelagics, including whitetips, eagle rays and mantas. The Kuda Giri wreck is also located here.
The world-renowned Hanifaru Bay is within the Northern Atolls. This is a hotspot for whale sharks that come for the plankton blooms between March to December. Although coral growth can be varied across sites, the amount of fishlife found here is staggering.
Far North Atolls
Not many liveaboards venture this far, subsequently dive sites are rarely visited, often far quieter and boast pristine coral formations. There are numerous shark species to be found here, such as leopard, white tip and black tip, as well as mantas.
Explore crevices, caves & swim throughs and experience some amazing drift dives that these atolls offer. The area is abundant with plentiful coral and fish life such as sharks and rays. You may even encounter the odd Whale Shark, Hammerhead, Tiger, Oceanic Whitetip or Thresher Shark in the right conditions.
The Maldives is known around the world as a fantastic honeymoon destination, with several stunning resorts nestled on white sand tropical islands. However, it is worth noting that liveaboards are not recommended for non-divers, as there is little else to do onboard. For those wanting to explore Male here are a few of our recommendations;
Head to Old Friday Mosque, the oldest mosque in the country, dating back to 1656. The building has some exquisite carvings. For those interested in learning more about the Maldives the National Museum is worth a visit, as is the National Art Gallery. Newport is an excellent spot for a bit of exploration and an excellent spot for a relaxed coffee and a bite to eat.
There are numerous tours departing from Male that will allow you to experience this beautiful island, including canoe tours, dolphin cruises, island hopping, guided snorkelling and walking tours around the islands.
Start your Dive Adventure here!
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