Detailed information and maps show where is Maldives located on world map. Map of Maldives shows local islands, resorts, airports etc. Maldive is chain of 1190 islands located south-west of Sri Lanka and India in the Indian Ocean. The islands are so tiny that many world maps do not show Maldives. It is an independent country of about 350,000 in population. Maldives is a member of the United Nations (UN), South Asian Association for Regional Cooperation (SAARC), Commonwealth and many other international organisations. Major economic activities are tourism, fishing, construction. The economy is mainly based on foreign currency generated through tourism, 99% of household goods are imported from other countries. The local currency is called Rufiyaa but US Dollar is widely accepted throughout the country.
There are two maps below, one shows where is Maldives located in world map and other shows the islands on Maldives map with airports marked by flight symbol. To quickly locate the main international airport scroll down and see mid-section of the Maldives map where there is double flight-symbol. Hulhule' is home to Ibrahim Nasir International Airport or formerly known as Male' International airport. Tourism is most develop in atolls close to this airport. Hulhule' also home to world's business seaplane operation. See Maldives Airport Guide
Maldives is an Asian country. The closest countries are Sri Lanka and India. It takes about an hour to fly from Srilanka to Maldives, a little bit more than an hour from Trivendrum of India. Every island is surrounded by water and totally disconnected from other islands. It takes about 5 hours to fly from Malaysia, Singapore and Thailand. About 8 hours from Guangzhou of China.
For further information on Maldives there is an FAQ section at the bottom.
Now you know where is Maldives and blow is the map of Maldives islands, including all residential islands, resorts, uninhabited islands, airports etc. If you are looking for the location of a specific island it is not easy to spot from 1190 islands. But, if you know the atoll it is easy. Just scroll down till you reach the atoll and then search that particular area. If you are planning your holiday in one of these islands you can check which are the closest islands near your chosen destination and plan trips accordingly. In case you have booked more than 1 resort to stay, you can see check location of the other resort and anticipate what you might see during the journey.
There are 1190 islands in the Maldives and this map shows them all. The country is naturally divided into 26 atolls or chain of islands. You can see this very clearly on the map. For administrative purposes the government has divided it into just 20 atolls. Scroll down to Kaafu Atoll to see the international airport at Hulhule' or you want to explore a separate map of the one of the popular dive atolls in the Maldives, see North Ari Atoll
The capital of Maldives is Male' (with apostrophe) which is pronounced as Maaley. On internet it is sometimes spelled as Male (without apostrophe) which is not the right spelling. Below is the map of Male (or Male')
Between airport and Male' there are ferries every 10 minutes, this is from 5am till midnight, after that ferry operations are not frequent till next morning.
Distance between Maldives and Sri Lanka from closest point: 717km
Distance between Maldives and India from closest point: 430km
Distance between Maldives and Seychelles from closest point: 1950km
Distance between Maldives and Malaysia from closest point: 2970km
Distance between Maldives and Thailand from closest point: 2750km
Distance between Maldives and Japan from closest point: 5800km
Distance between Maldives and Hong Kong from closest point: 4760km
Distance between Maldives and Germany from closest point: 7200km
Male' Maldives to Colombo Sri Lanka: 750km
Male' Maldives to Trivendrum India: 645km
Gan Maldives to Colombo Sri Lanka: 1120km
Gan Maldives to Trivendrum India: 1146km
Distance between Maldives and Minicoy of India from closest point: 128km
Distance between Minicoy and mainland of India from closest point: 378km
Distance between Minicoy and other Indian islands from closest point: 200km
Surprisingly some people tend to think Maldives is a part of another country. It is the Republic of Maldives, which is an independent sovereign country with its territorial waters and land defined, and recognized by international bodies such as United Nations, Commonwealth. Maldives is widely known throughout the world. Maldives have foreign relations with all major countries of the world.
The country is headed by a democratically elected president. Judiciary and parliament are independent bodies of the state. Maldives is divided into 20 atolls which are run by local councils, atoll councils or city councils, under the Constitution of the Republic of Maldives.
Maldives is one of the many countries located on the equator which divides North Pole and South Pole. The country is stretched narrowly from north to south of the globe and equator crosses between Fuvahmulah and Gaafu Dhaalu Atoll in the southern parts of the nation. Out of over 1200 islands in the Maldives each has has unique characteristics in terms of geography and people's lifestyle. Fuvahmulah is one of those unique islands which has native fish and a bird which is not found in anywhere else in the Maldives. But, nothing seems to be remarkably different just because of the equator, except that the people speaks a different dialect of local language which most of the other locals dont understand at all. In fact the atolls at the equator such as Addu Atoll, Fuvahmulah, Gaafu Dhaalu and Gaafu Alif Atoll (collectively called Huvadhu Atoll or Huvadhoo Atoll) have a different dialect in each atoll. The dialects are similar, but also different to a significant degree.
Maldives is made up of 1190 coral islands dispersed over an area of 90000 square kilometers in India Ocean. The islands are naturally grouped into 26 atolls. Each island is surrounded by sea, means you will need a boat to visit the island. It is common to find many islands sharing same lagoon, in the same area there are individually isolated islands as well. Most of the islands have its own house reef that protects the beach and some atolls have outer reef that protects the entire atoll. Read more on Maldives geography and geology.
It is believed that Maldives is formed atop inactive super volcanoes, each atoll is such a volcano with islands formed on the rim. That could be the reason the islands in each atoll is somewhat circular in shape.
• Haa Alifu Atoll
• Haa Dhaalu Atoll
• Shaviyani Atoll
• Noonu Atoll
• Raa Atoll
• Baa Atoll
• Lhaviyani Atoll
• Kaafu Atoll (also known as Male’ Atoll)
• Alifu Alifu Atoll (also known as North Ari Atoll)
• Alifu Dhaalu Atoll (also known as South Ari Atoll)
• Vaavu Atoll
• Meemu Atoll
• Faafu Atoll
• Dhaalu Atoll
• Thaa Atoll
• Laamu Atoll
• Gaafu Alifu Atoll
Maldives is small but old country, historical evidence shows the Maldives is more than 2500 years old. Through out history Maldives was independent with exception of few foreign invasion that did not last long. The country had a ruler; a king, queen, sultan or president for the past 1000 years and more. Read more on Maldives history
How can I get visa to Maldives?
If you have confirmed hotel reservation you can get free 30-day tourist visa on arrival at the airport, no matter which country you are from. You do not require prior visa to visit Maldives. But you must hold hotel voucher to prove that you have confirmed reservation.
Which currency should I bring?
The local currency used in Maldives is called Rufiyaa or MVR. Usage of US Dollar is very common in Maldives. You do not need to exchange US Dollar to any other currency, you can pay by USD. Other currencies accepted at resorts include Euro, English Pound, Chinese Renminbi. Local shops only accept Rufiyaa and US Dollar, so if you have any other currency you could exchange on arrival at the airport. There is a currency exchange booth just before the exit. Banks in the capital Male' have long queues, hence its not convenient for travelers.
What credit cards are accepted in the Maldives?
All the resorts accept credit cards, but not all credit cards. Widely accepted credit cards are Visa, Master, American Express. Some resorts accept Maestro, Diners Club and other cards too. If you are planning to use cards in local islands it is advisable to use cash instead.
What to wear when visiting local residential islands?
Maldives is a muslim country. To visit local residential islands and airports you should dress modestly. Your body should be covered from shoulder to knee. You could wear top with jeans or skirt.
How to go Male' from airport?
Male' is just 10 minutes from airport by boat. There is 24-hour ferry operated between Male' and airport. When you exit the airport terminal you would see many small boats moored to the jetty. There is a small booth selling ferry tickets. If you are planning to visit Male' on your departure from Maldives, you could deposit your baggage at airport information counter, there is a charge of USD5 per baggage per day.
What are the tourist attractions in Male' city?
Male' is the world's smallest capital and one of the overcrowded cities. If you are visiting Male' you would see a large flag waving over the skyline. Take note of its location. Once arrived, head to the flag you saw while arriving and on the way you will see President's Office. If you walk straight, few minutes past the flag, you can find Fish Market and Local market. Then you can come back near the flag, around are souvenir shops. The mosque with large golden dome is called the Islamic Centre. There is a board with notice for tourists who wish to enter. Next the Islamic Centre is the headquarters of the Maldives National Defence Force. Taking pictures of MNDF is not permitted. Just ask a friendly local and you will find the national museum, old Friday Mosque and Presidential Palace in walking distance. There are many restaurants around if you need a snack or refreshment.
It was recently discovered by Maldives Finest that the islands on the north of Maldives have significantly less rainfall over the year. The northern most atoll is Haa Alif Atoll, followed by Haa Dhaalu. It is very easy to locate the islands and atolls because these are at the very top of the map. Scroll up and see the first atoll. Yes, it is the northern parts of the country. Capital Male' is in the middle and bottom of the map is Southern atolls.
To visit Haa Alif Atoll you can fly to Hanimadhoo from Male' International Airport, by domestic flight. If you are seeking islands in the north reachable by seaplane, there are many resorts in Noonu Atoll and Baa Atoll. Seaplane takes about an hour to Noonu Atoll from Male', and Baa Atoll it is approximately 45 minutes and varies depending the exactly island you wish to visit.
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