With over 1000 islands in The Maldives, it is hard to know which local islands are a must visit. Don't worry - this blog post will go over the essential islands you should explore on your visit to this stunning country.
The low-lying coral islands of Maldives consist of both inhabited and uninhabited islands. Visiting a local island on your Maldives getaway is probably one of the best decisions you will make. It is affordable and you will have so much to discover. The beautiful island nation is rich with exquisite natural beauty, robust culture and the friendliest of locals you would ever meet!
Of course, the next question would be, “Which Island should I choose?” The answer is indeed very hard but read on as we make it easy for you with our picks on the 10 best local islands to visit.
1. ADh. Dhigurah
The name Dhigurah literally translates to “Long Island”, and it is obvious as to why. It is one of the longest islands in the Maldives which ends with a far stretched sand bank. The length is about 4km, while the width is just about 300m.
Dhigurah is known for its pristine beach and was among The World’s 50 Best Beaches by FlightNetwork, but this is not the only reason to visit this island. The surrounding waters of Dhigurah is home to whale sharks and manta rays. You can go diving in the famous Kudarah Thila, just 10 minutes away from Dhigurah and explore the rich underworld and swim with sharks and manta rays. The sandbank in Dhigurah is an Eden of pristine natural beauty and the best place to watch a sunset. The best way to watch the sunset here is by being at the narrowest point of the sandbank!
2. AA. Thoddoo
Thoddoo is the watermelon hub of Maldives. You can ask any local where you can get the best watermelon in Maldives, and they will tell you that it is Thoddoo. No doubt about that. This is one of the biggest islands in the Maldives and due to this, a vast land is dedicated to the agricultural industry.
When in Thoddoo, it is best to hire a bicycle to get around the island. The rides are spectacular with views of the green landscapes of farmland and palm trees. Thoddoo Ruhgandu provides frame to one of the most tropical photos you could ever take! It is a pathway with palm trees and rich greens on both sides.
3. GA. Kondey
Unknown to many but the beauty of this island speaks for itself. Kondey is situated in the Northern Huvadhu Atoll of Maldives, far away from the central Male’ region. This quiet island has a lot to offer than just the beautiful white sandy beach. It has historic ruins and a vast mangrove which is situated in the thick green forest that surrounds the island. The natural beauty of this island has been preserved very well, thanks to the comparatively few locals that still live on this island.
4. HDh. Nolhivaram
Situated in Thiladhunmathi Atoll, this island is the perfect getaway from the hustle and bustle of city life. The island’s natural beauty remains untouched, and this is visible from the island itself. As you walk around the island, you can see the island is not densely populated and there is ample space in the houses and roads to roam around.
The beach in Nolhivaram is gently secluded from the rest of the island by trees, so you can expect to have a private beach all to yourself if you are visiting here. This island is also home to 2 mangroves located on opposite sides of the island.
5. V. Thinadhoo
V. Thinadhoo is a relatively small, but a beautiful island located in Felidhu atoll, featuring one of the best and cleanest of beaches in Maldives. The white sandy beach is almost spotless with crystal clear water splashing against the shore.
You can enjoy snorkeling in the reef which is easily accessible from the beach. Despite the size of the island, it is particularly famous among tourists as Thinadhoo features some of the best hotels and guesthouses among local islands. You can visit multiple uninhabited islands near Thinadhoo that are just a boat ride away.
Just 30-minutes away from the Velana International Airport, lies this tiny yet mesmerizing island with a beautiful beach. With several guest houses and home stays, this island is popular among tourists and locals.
Locals say that tourism in Gulhi started a long time ago, even before local tourism was officially introduced in Maldives. A mini market is situated few minutes away from the beach, where local women sell different types of souvenirs and garments. You can lounge under the tree shade or get tanned in the sun at this vast beach.
Rasdhoo is a well-known island for diving and snorkeling among locals and tourists as there are several dive points nearby. An uninhabited island and a sandbank named Madivaru and Madivaru Finolhu, is just a short boat ride away from Rasdhoo making this the best island for an adventure seeker. Excursions can be easily arranged from the island to any of the dive points, sandbanks, or uninhabited islands.
8. ADh. Omadhoo
Among the pristine waters of South Ari Atoll, lies Omadhoo, a quaint island with a beautiful beach and a lot of breadfruit trees, perfect for the ultimate island getaway. There are two islands with this name in Maldives, one being an island located in Thaa Atoll and the other being in Southern Ari Atoll.
It can easily be confusing as both the islands are unique and beautiful on their own. Lounging by the beach in Adh Omadhoo is great on its own but snorkeling in the house reef is something you would not want to miss. Uninhabited islands and sandbanks are also nearby if you are feeling adventurous!
Thulusdhoo is the capital of Kaafu Atoll. Offering some of the nicest stays among the local tourism industry, Thulusdhoo is known to be a hub for surfing, excursions and affordable water sports. It is also home to the Coca Cola Factory of Maldives. Among the several beaches in the island, the sunset beach in Thulusdhoo is the best, giving us the spectacular view of the Maldivian sunset, this beach is the perfect place to end your day with.
10. K. Maafushi
If you have googled what local island to visit in the Maldives, Maafushi would be among the top for sure. Maafushi is not known to have the best of beaches in the Maldives but it sure is a famous local island among tourists and locals.
The island offers a variety of activities, guesthouses, cafes, and restaurants to choose from and at night, it is lively unlike other local islands. Maafushi is easily accessible as transfer options are endless with speedboats operating frequently from Velana International Airport and Male’.
We hope you found this useful! Feel free to contact us for any more information.
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Blog Post written by Aishath Maesha