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see + do

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The Maldives see + do

Because of how spread out lodging tends to be, activities all revolve around the resorts. Spa appointments, marine-life lectures, scuba diving, and even off-island excursions are essentially monopolized by your resort, so it's best to interpret your Maldivian dreams before booking. Underwater enthusiasts won't need much written guidance—just dive in to swim among a kaleidoscopic universe of sea creatures with quirky names like Oriental sweetlips, titan triggerfish, and Napoleon wrasse, along with well-known characters like starfish, turtles, and manta rays. Those with less experience will enjoy exploring each resort's marine-filled house reefs with Technicolor live coral and can avail themselves of the excellent, multilingual dive instructors found here. Philanthropic-minded vacationers can join local marine biologists to help rescue turtles, support new coral harvesting, and monitor mantas. Or skim the sea instead on board some of the world's finest seafaring crafts, including some modeled on the wooden dhonis sailed here by the ancient Phoenicians.

Cultural travelers won't find as much here as in, say, nearby Sri Lanka or India, but those prone to island fever should schedule a day trip to the capital, Male, where the National Museum displays 11th-century sunken treasures and a city tour takes in the centuries-old mosques that remain the religious center of the predominantly Muslim population.

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Dhoni Sailing, North Male Atoll

Russian oligarchs cruise through these atolls in the latest mammoth yachts, but equally chic and considerably more environmental are indigenous sailing craft...more

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Male, North Male Atoll

Those who tire of island life may want to head to Male (pronounced "MAHL-ee"). At one square mile, it's the world's smallest capital city. Don't set aside too...more

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Surfing, South Male Atoll

Surfing may have originated in the South Pacific, but it's thriving in the Maldives with legendary waves and year-round water temperatures of 79 to 82...more

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Yachting, North Male Atoll

While underwater life deserves plenty of attention in the Maldives, even those who dive under need to come up for air. Linger atop the ocean's undulating...more

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Information may have changed since date of publication. Please confirm details with individual establishments before planning your trip.



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