The island of Maldives is situated close to Sri Lanka, and a visit to its scenic shores can set the perfect ending to an exhilarating vacation in Sri Lanka. It shares the same tropical climate and cultural diversity that makes Sri Lanka such a beautiful place. The waters around Maldives are also home to a variety of underwater life, making it a premium destination for diving and snorkeling.
The Maldives consists of roughly 1200 islands over an array of twenty six atolls on the coral reef. Less than half these islands are inhabited, and it is possible to swim or wade between many of them. The landscape in Maldives appears to be right out of a travel journal; with palm trees casting their shade over the white sand as they look towards the serene blue waters beyond.
The Maldives' main industries are fishery and tourism, and despite being the smallest country in Asia, it is considered one of the top tourist destinations. Global warming has delivered a very real threat to this beautiful country though; as its islands do not rise much above sea level, it is at risk of being flooded, and the government guides efforts to reclaim land from the swelling ocean.
Owing to the number of different communities that have come to settle in the Maldives over the years, its culture is extremely colourful and many activities are centered on the ocean. Boat building, for instance, is a key part of the local culture, as is fishing. As Maldives is an Islamic country, it celebrates all the traditional Muslim holidays such as Ramadan and Eid, which are celebrated with grand festivals.
Maldives does not impose any visa requirements, and all visitors with valid travel documentation will be granted a 30-day tourist visa upon landing. In accordance with its Islamic customs, dogs, pigs/pork and pornography are forbidden to pass through customs. Alcohol is also forbidden unless you possess a valid license, although if declared at customs, it can be reclaimed on departure.
Due to the sunny climate, you are encouraged to pack light clothing to keep cool and enjoy the beaches. While the weather is generally mild, during the rainy season there is an occasional risk of cyclones drifting in from the ocean, so be aware of weather conditions when travelling.
Activities in Maldives
The most famous tourist activity in the Maldives would be island hopping. These tours to the different islands will allow you to experience the Maldives to its fullest and drink in the local culture. You could also take one of the regular cruises to the capital island of Male, which has many important sites of interest.
Water sports like windsurfing, jet skiing and parasailing are popular in the Maldives, the foremost being scuba diving. With a diverse collection of marine flora and fauna, the reefs hold numerous secrets to be discovered on a diving expedition in the Maldives. The beaches are also great for surfing near North and South Male, while some tours will give you a chance to discover new surfing locations on the surrounding shores.
Visit the Maldives today, and experience the numerous wonders this little oasis has to offer.