Located just south of the Indian subcontinent, the Maldives are a gorgeous chain of islands in the Indian Ocean-Arabian Sea area consisting of 26 atolls. Travel to the Maldives and see why the islands have become so popular in recent decades (especially as a honeymoon destination) and why Maldives travel is always an unforgettable experience. The Maldives are well-known as a world-class diving destination with crystal blue waters teeming with a diverse array of ocean life. There are also plenty of private bungalows and resorts abutting the islands’ white, sandy beaches, though in recent years cottages and apartments in the Maldives’ major towns have become more prevalent. Of particular note is the islands’ capital, Malé, which sits at the epicenter of Maldivian culture and features dozens of colorful pastel buildings and great local restaurants. Visit Maldives and take in its vibrant local life, which has been influenced by the cultures of adjacent nations like India, Thailand and regions of the Middle East, and yet remains wholly unique. Let Travel + Leisure’s Maldives travel guide lead the way.
Things Not to Miss in the Maldives
• Go scuba diving or snorkeling and explore the islands’ gorgeous coral reefs or view them from within the popular Whale Submarine
• Take part in water sports like windsurfing and water-skiing
• Charter a boat and go on a fishing expedition
• Explore Addu City, the southernmost city in the Maldives and its second largest town
• Plane hop from atoll to atoll by chartering an air taxi
• Spend the day touring the National Museum
• Take a picnic to the Sultan’s Park, located on the grounds of a former palace
• Eat traditional Maldivian food at the islands’ many hotaa’s, or cafés
• Surf great waves just offshore
When to Go to the Maldives
Due to their proximity to the equator, the Maldives experience consistently warm, even hot, weather year round with temperatures generally hovering in high 80s. However, like most countries near and in the Indian Ocean, the Maldives experience a volatile monsoon season. Precipitation is at its worst between April and October. As a result, the best time of year to visit the Maldives is during the dry season, which runs from January to April.