Showing you a side to this island archipelago that isn’t seen much atoll…

Snap shots and tales of visitors who have ventured to the white sands and crystal-clear waters of the Maldives are enough to get anyone dreaming of booking a flight to this dazzling atoll network nation.

As an archipelago of 1,190 coral islands in the Indian Ocean, you certainly won’t be lacking options. The fun begins with finding the right one for you. Research is key, and if you fancy following a path less often travelled, here are three less famous islands, each with their own unique charm and fully deserving of your attention.

Male, Maldives

The capital of the Maldives located in the Kaafu Atoll is a spot you must visit, even if it is just for a day. Home to some prominent icons and landmarks, the city is packed with Maldivian culture and history. Here’s our top things to do

Sultan Park

Male Sultan park

If you’ve thoroughly enjoyed a sumptuous feast of Creole cuisine for lunch and want to walk off the calories, head to Sultan Park. Built on the demolished grounds of the Royal Palace, you’ll be treated to a gorgeous green oasis. You’ll find it next to the Grand Friday Mosque.

Masjid-al-Sultan Muhammad Thakurufaanu Al Auzam

Maldives Mosque

Next up, the Grand Friday Mosque – one of the biggest houses of worship in the whole of the Maldives. The impressive exteriors are made from grand white marble topped with a striking gold dome, while the inside showcases intricate ancient woodwork. Non-Muslims can enter the mosque relatively freely during its opening hours (arms and knees need to be covered), but access during prayer time is restricted.

Malé Fish Market

A visit to a fish market isn’t something you’d see on most Maldivian itineraries, but remember, fishing is the original lifeblood of this island nation and around 30 per cent of the population work in the fishing industry. Pay a quick visit and watch the catches of the day being hauled in and cleaned. It’s the closest you’ll get to experiencing the local life.

Crossroads Maldives

Crossroads Maldives

Located about a 20-minute speed boat ride away from Malé is the Maldives’ only multi-island destination. It is home to two stunning family-friendly resorts – SAii Lagoon Maldives, Curio Collection by Hilton and the Hard Rock Hotel Maldives, each occupying its own island but connected by a bridge over clear turquoise waters.   

Home to spacious rooms, stunning over-water villas, studios and suites, each offers pristine views of the turquoise waters, the resorts are perfect for families, couples and even single travelers.

Maldives Crossroad Maldives

Away from your room, you’ll find a number of restaurants serving up various delicious dishes, spots to shop and spas. Want to travel between the islands? It’s walkable, but there are also buggies to shuttle you back and forth – perfect for when the little one’s feet are tired after a day of exploring.

If you just want to soak in the serenity, pick a sun lounger by the beach where you can enjoy sip on a drink, read a book or maybe take a nap under the sun.

Rates from Dhs1,200 per night.

*What’s On travel news and guides*


For the more experienced swimmers and divers, (or if you are keen to learn how to take a plunge), Fuvahmulah should be on the top of your Maldives island bucket list. 

Located on the Gnaviyani Atoll, you will need to hop on a flight and head to the southern region of Maldives. Your flight will take you passed the equator, and to celebrate the occasion, you will receive a certificate complete with your name and flight details. It’s an occasion that has been celebrated for centuries by sailors and definitely a memory for the showcase.

While you’re there, here are few extra must-dos…

Koda Kilhi


Get down and dirty with a mud bath in the wetland areas. Since the island is of volcanic origin, the mud is rich in minerals and is a relaxing and fun experience. To get to the natural mud bath requires a bit of trekking, but more importantly you need to watch where you step. We suggest going with a tour guide who will be able to take you to and from the mud bath safely.

Thoondu Beach

Thoondu beach

Above: Unsplash / Hussain Faruhaan

After your fun mud escapade, you can clean up in the shallow waters at Thoondu Beach. Located on the north of the island, the beach is famous with the locals and tourists for one unique feature: the white sand isn’t really sand at all, rather it is made of up coral pebbles. Sadly though, it is not recommended that you swim here as the currents are quite strong, but surfers can enjoy showing off their skills here in August.

Extreme Dive Fuvahmulah


View this post on Instagram


A post shared by Ahmed Irufan (@ahmed_irufan)

You might also like

Travel Guide: Montenegro
Travel guide: AlUla, Saudi Arabia
Travel guide: Why you should visit Oman this monsoon season

At the five-star PADI dive centre-certified Extreme Dive Fuvahmulah, you can learn from the best with Extreme’s experienced and professional team. It features a 4.5 metre-deep swimming pool where you will practice breathing techniques, equalising, and all the important hand signals. The diving centre is stocked with all the necessary equipment for you to rent, so show up and give it a go. Once the team thinks you’re ready it’s time to enjoy a…

Tiger Shark Dive


The Extreme Dive Fuvahmulah team offers a number of dives each day (suitable weather conditions permitting). During your experience you are likely to come face-to-toothy-face with several different shark species along with other fascinating sea creatures. But you won’t be alone, as every dive is accompanied by the experienced diving centre team. Non-swimmers are welcome to stay on the boat and enjoy spotting plenty of marine life from above.

Getting there 

Emirates offers four daily flights from Dubai to Malé, Maldives. Prices over the summer start from Dhs2,940.