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The Maldives is really a cluster of approximately 1200 low-lying islands, situated 220 miles off the South West of India. It is a breathtakingly beautiful travel destination owing to its tropical hot climate, and also the remarkable natural splendor from the whitened sand and islands encircled by rich barrier reefs.
Most of the islands are not inhabited, and something third from the nation's population endures the biggest island, Male.
 
Only a handful of major cruise lines call at Male, the capital city and only cruise port in the Maldives. The enticing destination -- a chain of white sand islands in the Indian Ocean -- generally features on long-haul cruise itineraries of more than two weeks in duration. Such cruises may also visit ports flanking the Indian Ocean in East and Southern Africa, the Middle East and Asia.
 
As the government offices are situated in a single area, the primary roads are lined with shops and offices. In Male you wouldn't find any beach, rather it's located by seawalls. The town is very eco-friendly and enjoyable. The roads within the areas are lined and shaded with trees, at places developing an arch overhead
 
The Maldives is an extremely welcoming and relaxing holiday destination, and also the individuals are warm and friendly. The Islands take advantage of all year round sunshine, but the optimum time to go to is mostly within the dry season between December and April.
 
Though Male may be the capital from the Maldives along with a place where site visitors almost solely arrive into and then leave in the country, it's interesting that lots of site visitors don't spend just one evening in Male. It is because most site visitors go straight to their resort island and spend many of their time there. The harbor for big ships is situated in the north finish from the Kaafu Atoll, roughly one kilometer in the airport terminal.
 
Tours/Activities/Transportation
Male is small enough to walk around in an hour, and almost all sights are concentrated on the north shore, within a 15-min walk. Public transportation in Male is limited to roving taxis, which charge a flat Rf.20 plus Rf.5 per bag.
Making your way around within the Maldives takes two forms. Taxi motorboats and ocean planes. Bicycles and motorbikes are the most typical way of road transport. The highlight from the Maldives may be the beautiful barrier atolls and underwater ocean existence. You can easily arrange a trip to among the local islands or perhaps a scuba diving trip right in the tender pier for under $50.00 per person.
 
Local Sightseeing
Depart the pier for that drive towards the three-story Islamic Center, Male's most famous architectural landmark. Its Grand Friday Mosque may be the greatest within the Maldives, and benefits greater than 5,000 worshippers. You'll then continue onto the Friday Mosque, constructed from barrier stone in 1656 AD throughout the reign of Sultan Ibrahim Iskandhar. Built from delicately created barrier stone, the mosques is famous for its fine lacquer work and elaborate woodcarvings. It hosts numerous ancient tombstones erected in memory of past sultans, heroes, and nobles.
 
Owing to Muslim tradition, conservative dress is needed for males and ladies when going to the mosque. Women must take care of themselves, shoulders, legs and arms towards the arms and ankles, along with a scarf must take care of the mind and hair. Males should also put on modest clothing suitable for the sanctity from the mosque. Shorts, short-skirts, beachwear, sleeveless t-t shirts or blouses, and revealing clothes are considered inappropriate, and never allowed within the mosque. This tour involves as many as roughly 1 mile of walking. Photographs of, or inside, the Islamic Center's Grand Friday Mosque aren't allowed.
 
Next, you'll proceed for a trip to Sultan Park and also the National Museum, formerly area of the Sultan's Structure. The museum shows items, sculptures, clothing, coins, arms, armor, along with other antiquities. After a vacation to the tomb of Mohammed Thakurufaanu, erected in memory from the nation's finest of national hero, you will notice Jumhooree Maidan, Male's most widely used spot for children, social events and relaxation. Situated across the northern waterfront, this public square features eco-friendly grass and plush plant life.
 
Points of Interest View excursions that include these sights and activities
Friday Mosque/Islamic Center
The Old Friday Mosque was built in 1656 by Sultan Ibrahim Iskandhar. Constructed out of intricately carved coral stone, the mosque is famed for its fine lacquer work and elaborate woodcarvings.
National Museum/Sultan Park
The National Museum and Sultan Park are both housed in the last surviving building of the former Sultan's Palace. View magnificent royal ceremonial robes, and artifacts dating from the 11th century.
Fish/Local Market
Bustling Malé is home to a thriving shopping district located deep in its narrow lanes. Tour the colorful fish, vegetable and fruit markets near the waterfront, and barter with locals for bargains.
Independence Square
Independence Square (Jumhooree Maidhaan) is the focal point of every political demonstration in the capital, hence the heavy security presence, and it's also a popular gathering place for locals.

Hulhumale Island is in short boatride away. Boats leave from their own terminal, next to airport ferries (upstairs of terminal building is good restaurant with great harbour views!). Hulhumale is an artificial island where new buildings are rising rapidly, but currently it's quite empty and a kind of a countryside for Male. There is also nice looking beach in the other end of the island from jetty. There are restaurants and cafes on the island.
 
National Museum/Sultan Park
The Nation's Museum and Sultan Park are generally located within the last making it through building from the former Sultan's Structure. View magnificent royal ceremonial robes, and items dating in the eleventh century.Explore the historic town of Male throughout this attractive and informative walking tour within the Maldives.
 
Across in the Hakuru Miskiiy you will notice Medhu Ziyaarath, the shrine of Abu al Barakaath Yusuf al Barbari, and Presidential Structure, or Mulee-aage, which holds official functions and benefits going to heads of condition along with other foreign dignitaries. Close to the Friday Mosque you'll find Munnaaru, a gleaming whitened minaret also built by Sultan Ibrahim Iskandhar I in 1675.
 
Island Beaches
Beautiful Kuda Bandos has a whitened sand beach and is among the 26 barrier atolls in the area, while some mind to spectacular Resort Island to savor scuba diving, water-sports and health spa remedies.
 
If you value the shore, then don't miss this trip to Kuda Bandos, an attractive barrier island situated in North Malé Atoll. After starting your dhoni boat, you'll depart the pier for that ride to Kuda Bandos. This idyllic island features lush tropical plant life and palms, and it is encircled with a wide sandy beach and also the very-obvious waters of the azure lagoon. The quiet great thing about this tropical location complements natural splendor of Kuda Bandos. Upon arrival, you are able to unwind and relax, go swimming and explore the shore. Another beautiful beach bot to overlook this trip to Dhonveli, an idyllic barrier island situated within the North Malé Atoll.
 
Seafood/Local Market
Busy Malé features a flourishing district situated deep in the narrow lanes. Tour the colorful seafood, fruit and vegetable marketplaces close to the waterfront, and barter with local people for deals.
 
Independence Square
Independence Square is the focus of each and every political demonstration within the capital, therefore, the heavy security presence; also it's a well known gathering spot for local people.
 
Underwater Realm of the Maldives
Uncover the fascinating underwater realm of the Maldives inside a unique new way throughout this memorable submarine exploration. Depart the pier via local dhoni for that drive for your waiting for submarine. Since 90-nine percent from the Maldives includes water, the nation's most indigenous animals live underwater in colorful aquamarine gardens. Consequently, the Maldives happen to be lengthy famous like a diver's paradise.
 
You'll have a chance to see the existence of underwater life in the Maldives without being wet on the condition-of-the-art passenger submarine. After starting the submarine, you'll plunge to 120 ft below ocean level, and consume breathtaking up-close sights from the colorful barrier, seafood and underwater flora and fauna existence.
 
Where to Eat
To sample local cuisine, look for anything named teashop, cafe or hotel. Opening early and remaining open till late at night, these restaurants serve fried finger foods, soups and curried fish dishes with roshi, a flatbread based on Indian rotis. Indian cuisine also is a popular island staple, either mixed into international menus at global cuisine locals like Raanbaa or featured at Indian restaurants such as the popular vegetarian Symphony (no website; Athamaa Goalhi, Male; 011-960-32-6277). Thai food makes an impressive showing in the city, as the bright, flavorful curries and fish dishes resemble Maldivian food. Sala Thai (salafamilymaldives.com) in the classy Sala Boutique Hotel is so popular that reservations are a must most nights of the week.
 
Shopping
Male' is the busiest place for shopping, given the choice and variety of goods available in this center of commercial activity. Local  and imported handicrafts and souvenirs, cigarettes and electronic items are sold. The prices in Male' have now become highly  competitive, with minimum or no duty levied on most items. Most of the souvenir shops are in the main business area which is only a five-minute walk from the jetty where most tourists usually arrive. It is always better to browse through a few shops before choosing what  to buy. The shops recommended by guides or shop assistants volunteering to be guides are not necessarily the best places for  shopping.  
 
As you come off your Cruise ship, or start your walk along the front, you will probably be accosted by a Maldivian man who will offer to guide you around town. There is no training or accreditation yet for this so it is impossible to say if the person will be useful or a pain in the backside.
The key thing to bear in mind is that he earns his money by commission from tourist shops, so his overriding aim is to get you to a particular shop or two, rushing you past other places in which you might want to browse.
What should you do? Take control. A firm dismissal is okay. If you find somebody good, you’re lucky. Hopefully, in time, trained young men will wear certificates of accreditation.
 
Souvenir shops not so long ago, the goods that came into Male were stacked up in small stores in the bazaar behind the harbour. They were standard items on the whole, basic foodstuffs and necessary hardware. From there they filtered into the households.
Today those basic household items come in ten varieties or more and are available in small shops at every street corner. Meanwhile, the two main roads, the east/west Majeedi Magu and the north/south Chandani Magu, are lined with shops of every description, and standard items are not to the fore. This is a town that buys the best wherever it can; the top ranges and the famous brands become more and more prominent.
Most of the tourist souvenir shops are conveniently located on Chandani Magu, leading due south from Republic Square (the green with the flagpole adjacent to where most tourists disembark). As many of the shops sell the same items it is worth checking out a number of them to be sure of a competitive price. Najah Art Palace and Souvenirs (above the shops on Chandani Magu) have good variety and are well run. For modern crafts made by Maldivians make your way along the front to The Craft Shop – the touts won’t guide you there.
 
Buying big brands strolling around, you will come across famous brands in fashion, consumer electronics and beauty products, but a word of caution: as in many other Asian cities, there are plenty of fakes, copies and rip-offs around.
The big four shops that deal in genuine articles only are Reefside, Evince, Le Cute and Sonee Sports. Reefside is prominently located at the top end of Chandani Magu and Evince is down towards the end of the road. Evince and Le Cute (just around the corner from Chandani Magu, on Majeedi Magu) are impressive set-ups. It will come as a pleasant surprise to most visitors, even a shock, that Male has such state-of-the-art shops with such classy products.
Male has gone from being the capital of an isolated sultanate, closed in on itself, to being a vibrant city open to the world, as modern-minded and as market-oriented as any great city in the region. If you get the chance to spend half a day here, or even just a couple of hours, do go for it.
Shops are open from 9am until 10pm and often don’t close until they are legally required to do so an hour after that.


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