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Discovering the Maldives: Location and Hidden Secrets

Where Maldive located makes it the most secluded and beautiful exotic destination in the whole world.

Once a destination reserved exclusively to those willing to pay a small fortune for a holiday, Maldives is today accessible to everyone searching for new adventures and experiences.

Maldives is an independent country, the smallest from the Asian continent, but for sure the most spectacular, secluded and incredible place I have ever seen.

Where is the Maldives located

The stunning islands of the Maldives are located in the Indian Ocean, north of the Equator, in the southwestern part of India and Sri Lanka.

The archipelago has 1.192 islands grouped under 26 atolls and not all the islands from the most beautiful atolls are inhabited.

Some of the islands, about 120 are resort islands owned by the person who owns the resort, while others are owned by the Maldivian state and are inhabited by Maldivian people.

Maldives or the Republic of Maldivian as it is officially named is an independent country with more than 200 inhabited islands.

The local population is called Maldivian, while the official language spoken in the archipelago is Dhiveli.

Besides the Dhiveli language, locals also speak English, and because most of them work in tourism and have great international exposure they also speak other foreign languages like Arabic ones, Asian ones, and German and Italian.

The Maldives Islands Sea Plane

The Maldives Islands Sea Plane

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Atolls of Maldives

There are 26 atolls and a few hundred islands spread over 90,000 square kilometers into the Indian Ocean.

The word atoll comes from the language of the Maldives, and refers to an island chain in the Indian Ocean famous for gorgeous beaches and coral island reefs.

All these atolls and islands are actually grouped under 3 main parts:

  • Northern Atolls
  • Central Atolls
  • Southern Atolls

All these 3 main atolls, but especially the Northern and the Southern ones are home to many islands resorts, out of which the most famous one is Maafushi atoll from the southern part.

As a general thing, the southern islands are perfect for those of you searching for diving experiences and snorkeling, while the northern atolls are suitable for surfing as the currents are stronger and the waves bigger.

Maldives Resorts Islands from Sea Plane

Maldives Resorts Islands from Sea Plane

The Central Atoll is the place where is located the capital island, Male and this atoll is less crowded than the other two.

On this atoll are located an important number of guesthouses so if you plan to visit Maldives on a budget this is where you most probably stay.

Where Maldives island located and getting there

Getting to Maldives is not very complicated but it definitely requires more effort than getting to other exotic places in the world.

First of all, you need to take an international flight that will land at Velana International Airport, the main gateway to the world, an airport located on the Male islands.

The Maldives map all atolls

Where Maldives located in world map The Maldives map all atolls

From here, depending on your budget or location of the resort you will stay you have the following options:

  • Take a speedboat, if the resort is located quite close to the Male International Airport
  • Take a seaplane, which is a little bit pricier, but definitely faster, more comfortable, and the best choice if you plan to stay on a remote island far from Male airport
  • Domestic flight if the resort is located on the islands where domestic airports are located
  • A combination of domestic flight and speedboat for those of you who don’t want to use the seaplane but choose to stay on a remote island

The good thing is that the resorts generally take care of and plan your transfer from the airport to your final destination.

Where Maldive located makes it to be quite hard to get, but definitely worth the effort and the time spent on the planes and speedboats to explore the archipelago from north to south.

What I can tell you for sure is that the view from the seaplane is indeed breathtaking and resembles perfectly with postcard pictures which you saw on the internet.

How to get around Maldives?

Most of the islands are incredibly small and don’t have roads so you get around by bicycle or on foot.

There are a few islands which are bigger, especially the capital Male where there are cars and moving from one part to another is done with cars but mostly with motorcycles and scooters.

To get from one island to another you have to use speedboats or normal boats, depending on the distance.

The Maldives Islands Sea Plane

The Maldives Islands Sea Plane

Where Maldives island located, nature surrounded the area with a beautiful coral reef so big ships and cargo cannot access the area.

That is why planes are the only mean of transportation to get to Male, the capital city of Maldives, and then seaplanes for moving between islands.

As locals said if you don’t have a boat you are a dead man in the Maldives, as this is the main transportation means to get around this paradise.

And there are also private seaplanes, planes, and helicopters that can be rented upon availability if you have enough money and you like to travel in style.

I guess now is clear for everyone where Maldive is located, how you can get there, and how you get around this beautiful place.

It’s time to discover its hidden secrets and see why people fell in love with this archipelago from the moment they get there.

Hidden secrets of Maldives

The deserted islands

With such an incredible number of islands spread in the Indian Ocean, Maldives is the best place to live your own Robinson Crusoe adventure.

Rent a boat or take a guided tour to a deserted island and enjoy the beautiful scenery, the beach, and the ocean just for yourself.

The good news is that finding a deserted island in this archipelago is much easier than you can imagine so this dream can come true without a lot of effort and money.

It is true that renting a boat might be quite expensive but if you are part of a bigger group then the costs are more than reasonable.

The experience of having an island just for yourself is something you have to live in this life and definitely worth the cost.

Atoll Maldives Islands from above Indian Ocean

Maldivas mapas Atoll Maldives Islands from above Indian Ocean

You can even pack a sandwich, fruits and some water with you so that you can spend more time there and enjoy the white sand and the turquoise water.

Submarine diving

Where Maldive located makes it a great place for experiencing submarine diving, which gives you the unique opportunity to see the underwater world without getting wet.

If you don’t know to swim or you are simply afraid of water, then you definitely have to book a seat at this adventure.

The “Whale submarine” as the vehicle is known can reach depths of 150 meters and it is a great opportunity to observe the marine life that most people don’t even know about their existence.

Scuba Diving Maldives

Scuba Diving Maldives

The cabins of the submarine are equipped with air conditioning that keeps a constant and pleasant temperature in the room.

You can breathe normally and relax on your seat while the submarine goes deep into the ocean.

An impressive number of creatures will display in front of you, some of the impossible to see even during a snorkeling session.

Even if the submarine experience is one of the best that you can have during your Maldivian trip, not many people heard about it so yes, we can say that this is one of the Maldivian best-kept secrets.

Swim with the giants of the sea

The reefs that surround the Maldivian archipelago are home to an impressive number of marine creatures, including turtles, fish, sharks, and even the beautiful and giant manta rays.

These creatures might reach up to 7 meters and can be seen in the shallow waters around most of the islands between May to October on the eastern part of the archipelago and from November to April on the western part.

Locals and experts know that the best places to spot these giants and even swim with them are in Addu Atoll and Baa Atoll.

Red Lionfish Maldives Atoll Fish Snorkeling Indian Ocean

Red Lionfish Maldives Atoll Fish Snorkeling Indian Ocean

The movement of these creatures is mainly dictated by the plankton movement and most diving centers from the resort adapt their scheduler so that you have higher chances to swim with these fascinating creatures.

Besides the giant manta rays, you can also see eagle rays, which are considerably smaller ( can reach up to 1 meter only) and they are visible everywhere all year round.

The waters around the Maldives are clear and have a beautiful color and these things amplify the intensity and the beauty of swimming along with these giants.

There are certain areas from the Maldives where diving with manta rays is forbidden and snorkeling is allowed only for 45 minutes and accompanied by a certified guide.

Coral Reef Atol Maldives Islands

Coral Reef Atol Maldives Islands

All these things happen because the areas are considered special areas for manta rays and people do whatever they can in order not to disturb these gentle giants.

So, if you are really interested in such an experience you’d better check with your hotel if there are any restrictions related to this subject.

Sleep underwater

The Maldives is home to one of the most stunning and luxurious hotels in the whole world and if money is not a problem for you then this is the place where to go to experience luxury and many stars treatments.

Among the plethora of luxurious and unique hotels that are spread all across the archipelago, one really stands out. And here I am talking about Rangali Island, Conrad Maldives Rangali Island that features a two levels villa for a memorable experience.

This is a new and unique concept even for the Maldives, a triumph of modern technology and design.

The villa has 3 bedrooms displayed on two different levels and can accommodate up to 9 people.

It comes with a huge living area, a bar, and a dining area, together with a gym and an infinity pool.

The villas sit below and above the turquoise waters of the Indian Ocean and are definitely the ultimate experience for those rich and famous.

Dive with whale sharks where Maldive located

I know it sounds dangerous, but I can assure you it is completely safe, and you definitely have to try it.

When you hear “diving with whale sharks” you most probably think of a stainless-steel cage, you are inside of the cage and slowly dive in the middle of the sharks.

But in reality, things are not like that, and the Maldives changed completely the classical experience of diving with sharks.

First of all, I want to tell you that whale sharks are not dangerous; they are some very gentle creatures, curious and cute that are not dangerous for people.

So this is the main reason why you don’t need to dive into a cage and you can feel free and have direct contact with these creatures.

These are the new essentials you have to pack for your trip

What is also true is that these creatures are really big, much bigger than most of the sharks, no wonder why they are called whale sharks.

They can have up to 40-45 feet long and can weigh up to 21 metric tons, so it is quite normal to feel fear when you are around them.

These gentle, docile, and playful creatures can be found in the waters around the islands of Maldives and there are special scuba diving tours and snorkeling tour that offers the unique experience of swimming with these creatures.

Surf in paradise

Many people don’t know, but the Maldives is ranked among the best-surfing destinations in the world.

Some of the hotels have special holiday packages for surfers and is one of them.

Not all the resorts from Maldives are great for surfing, but this one has the perfect location for this sport.

Best time to visit Maldives where Maldive located

Best time to visit Maldives where Maldive located

The hotel is located on North Male Atoll, just 20 kilometers away from Velana International airport, which means about 30 minutes speedboat ride.

At the resort’s watersport center you can find surf equipment for rent so you don’t have to bring with you the board.


I know it sounds strange, but Maldive is one of the very few places on Earth for a scuba spa.

Actually, it is a luxurious yacht that can be rented just for you and where you have daily scuba diving experiences in different parts of Maldives and daily spa sessions after the scuba diving.

It is indeed a relaxing and interesting experience, but it will cost you some money to rent the yacht, so gather some friends for more fun and fewer costs.

The islands and natural atolls from Maldives with their lush vegetation and white beaches, all surrounded by turquoise waters and coral reefs are perfect for yachting.

No wonder why there are so many companies that offer yachts for rent to cruise around the archipelago.

Some of the yachts come with personnel included and here I am talking about the chef, waiter, cleaning personnel, therapists, and diving guide.

The prices vary depending on the length of the stay, the size of the yachts, and the services included.

Underwater diving

Where Maldives located and its luxurious resorts make this part of the world the perfect place to experience new and unique things.

Underwater diving experience is definitely something you should experience, even if the price might seem a little bit up, at least at the first sight.

There are not many places in the world where you can try such an experience so if you have the opportunity you definitely have to try it.

Ithaa Undersea Restaurant at Conrad Maldives Rangali Island is actually the only place from Maldives where you can dine underwater and not get wet.

This is the first underwater restaurant with all-glass roofs and walls, and it is located 16 feet under sea level.

Your dining experience include lobster and caviar and there will be something to remember and tell all your friends.

Hidden in the Maldivian archipelago there is another restaurant where you can dine underwater but it is not made entirely from glass.

The Sea at Anantara Kihavah Villas has a glass floor and to amplify the effect it uses mirrored ceilings and it is located about 20 feet below sea level.

Dining in both these restaurants is a unique experience, so if you plan to travel to Maldives include this attraction into your travel list.

Spare your budget staying on a guesthouse

The good news about Maldives and something that not a lot of people know is that you can visit this magnificent archipelago without breaking your budget.

In the last years, in the Central Atoll guesthouses and Airbnb appeared and are specially designated for those who want to experience the Maldives on a budget.

Maldives Resorts Islands from Sea Plane

Maldives Resorts Islands from Sea Plane

The prices are extremely accessible, and the transportation cost is very low as most of these guesthouses are located on Male Island.

Sleeping in a guesthouse is not just a cheaper way to visit Maldives but it is also a more authentic experience.

You will be in close contact with the locals, experience their culture and traditions, and have a closer look over the Maldivian life.

Visit an inhabited island

From the total of 1.192 islands that form the Republic of Maldives only a few hundred of them are inhabited where Maldive located.

Finding an inhabited island is not very complicated and you won’t spend a lot of time and effort visiting one.

Maldives Island from Sea Plane

Maldives Island from Sea Plane

Many resorts and hotels organize trips to these inhabited islands and the experience is one of the best.

The feeling of being alone on an island is very interesting and something you have to experience on your trip to the Maldives.

You can choose to rent a boat and have a private trip, or you can choose from a group trip which is less expensive and equally beautiful.


Now it is clear to everybody where Maldive located and why you should visit it to discover its hidden secrets.

The islands are ranked among the most beautiful places on Earth and now since the guesthouses were open, this place is accessible to everyone.

A good way to make your Maldivian experience cheaper is to make a mix of guesthouses and island resorts, room types, and meal plans and still enjoy your holiday.

Logistical tips and tricks for your trip

Book your accommodation
We always use as they have the best price-quality ratio and they offer a wide range of hotels, guesthouses, apartments, and villas to choose from.

You will find here all types of accommodations, from the cheapest ones to the most luxurious.

Don't forget travel insurance
We never leave home without HeyMondo Insurance or Safety Wings Insurance as they offer the best services and a good value for money.

When we go for longer trips around the world we get Globelink Insurance as it offers a good cover for an affordable price.

Travel insurance will always protect you against unexpected costs caused by medical events like illness, injury, theft, or travel cancellation.

We never go on any trip without travel insurance and there were many cases when we had to use it.

Renting a car
We like to explore a country on our own and a car gives us the mobility and freedom to do that.

We always rent our car from Discovercars as they have free cancellation 48 hours prior to starting date and a wide range of car rental companies and options to choose from all over the world.

Tours and attractions
When we are looking for some adventure or we simply want to break up the monotony and discover new places, we always use GetYourGuide.

We love it because we always find the most amazing experiences, with free cancellation and a large variety of activities and tours to choose from.

Airplane tickets and holiday packages
Expedia is our ally when searching for the best price for airplane tickets as it works as an aggregator for a huge number of airlines and we always find the best price for our flights.

Travel tip: use Expedia when you are searching for holiday packages as they have many last-minute offers and great discounts for hotels, flights, and even the whole holiday packages.