All that you need to know before planning a trip to the Maldives
Bored of sitting at home for a very long time? Searching for a safe place to visit during the pandemic? A lover of beaches and exotic islands? If your answer to all these questions is a “Yes!” then the Maldives is the best place to visit in 2021!
Located at the Indian Ocean, the Maldives is one of the smallest countries in the whole wide world. The pristine beaches and the scenic beauty of the exotic islands have made the Maldives, the next top destination for beach lovers and for millions of travelers worldwide. However, with 1,190 islands to choose from and the chaos that surrounds the land transit, the food to eat, and the activities you can do on a small island makes planning for a trip to the Maldives a herculean task.
But don’t worry, in this blog I will break down all that you need to know as a beginner who’s planning a trip to the Maldives in 2021!
1. The best time to visit the Maldives
Let’s start by discussing the best time to visit the Maldives. Remember to always plan a trip to Maldives keeping in mind, the weather. The months ranging from November to April is the peak season of tourism in the Maldives. With great weather and a burst of endless soft sunshine during these months, you will have to pay high prices on everything ranging from accommodation to travel and other activities. If you are looking forward to planning for a budget-friendly Maldives trip, then it is best to travel during the shoulder season, that is, the season between the peak season and off-season. The weather during the shoulder season will be very pleasant as well as with a limited number of people in resorts, you will be offered appealing discounts and great services! You can also travel during the off-season (rainy season) to cut down on your expenses, as it would not rain every single day.
2. Visa for the Maldives
To enter the islands of Maldives, a pre-arrival visa is not mandatory. The Maldives has a visa on arrival policy for all tourists. In order to get a visa on arrival, it is compulsory to have a passport with six months the validity, a confirmed return ticket guaranteeing that you will not stay back in the country and a confirmed hotel reservation. The airline you will be traveling with will issue you a Maldives immigration form which will require you to fill in basic details regarding your passport, your arrival, and departure dates and a declaration that you are not bringing any liquor with you while visiting the Maldives. The immigration process at the airport is simple. Make sure to have a printout of all the bookings as well as a copy of your return ticket and hotel reservation.
3. Transportation in the Maldives
The transportation from the airport in Male to the respective resort islands is either done by a seaplane or a speed boat. A speed boat is used to carry tourists to islands that are nearer to the airport and a seaplane is used to transit guests to islands that are located further away from the airport. You can opt for a seaplane to travel to the islands if you’re not traveling on a budget as the prices for traveling in a seaplane are extremely high! If you are planning your trip on a budget and you want to cut on any unnecessary expenditure, then opt to travel by speed boat. Most of the time, the cost of the seaplane and speedboat rides will be included in the total accommodation cost of the resort, so always make sure to confirm with the resort.
4. Do not visit Male
Yes, you heard that right! Male being the capital of the Maldives is the second most congested and one of the most populous cities in the world. With small and congested roads, there is nothing much to see and explore in Male. Pedestrians find it difficult to walk across the roads without being hit by any scooters, as the roads are only big enough for two scooters to pass.
5. Planning your stay
If you are traveling to the Maldives on a budget, then it would be nice if you stay at the guest houses or boutique hotels on the local islands. The local islands are as beautiful as the resort islands, the only difference between them is that the resort islands are neater! You will be able to enjoy the beauty of the islands without having a lot of tourists around and you would be able to explore the islands and interact with the locals daily. The only disadvantage of staying in a guest house or boutique hotel is that there would not be much to do after the sunset. The prices of hotels and guest houses vary from $40 to $80 per day. And if you are planning to stay in a good resort, the prices would range from $100 to $150 per day. Make sure to stay at a resort closer to the airport, if you want to save some money. The advantage of staying at a resort in the Maldives island is that they would plan various activities for you each day and all you have to do is sit back and chill!
6. Dressing up in the Maldives
Dressing up modestly is one unsaid rule in the Maldives that a lot of tourists overlook. As the Maldives is a Muslim country, the religious rules associated with dressing up in the country should be respected. While staying on a resort island, you can wear whatever you want to wear on the beach. But if you are staying on a local island, you would not be allowed to wear a swimsuit or a bikini. You should always make sure to wear a dress that covers your knees while you are staying on a local island and you would only be allowed to wear bikinis on certain beaches where wearing a bikini is permitted.
7. Food in the Maldives
As the Maldives is 99% water and 1% land, the availability of food is a serious issue. The local Maldivian food consists of fish and coconut. Since they export a lot of materials from Srilanka and India, the local Maldivian food is very similar to Srilankan and Indian food. Also, Alcohol is not available in any local islands and is only available in resort islands.
8. Activities to do in the Maldives
You can do all sorts of water activities you can imagine in the Maldives! You can take up local excursion trips, fishing trips and even enjoy some cultural programs staged on certain islands. If you are staying in a resort, then you need not worry about anything! The resort will plan out fun activities for you like shark feeding, mantra rays watching, belly dance shows, and other activities.
So, these are some of the things that you have to remember while you plan for a trip to the Maldives. Hope you like them!