Scuba Diving in The MaldivesKnown for its crystal clear waters and picturesque water bungalows, the Maldives is a unique coral-based archipelagic haven that’s popular with travelers, honeymooners, and scuba divers. It’s the perfect paradise for those seeking peace, tranquility, and relaxation in the middle of the Indian ocean.
Geography of The Maldives
One of the most famous diving sites in all of the Maldives, Maaya Thila is a great spot for divers of all levels due to its varying currents. Dive during the day or at night and discover an abundance of mysterious caves and overhangs, as well as fascinating marine life that include gray reef sharks, white tips, barracudas, angler fish, octopus, and turtles, among many others.
Located in the northern part of Ari Atoll, Gangehi Kandu is recommended for advanced scuba divers. While its currents can be unpredictable, it’s one of the best spots for spotting sharks—including white tip reef sharks, gray reef sharks, and leopard sharks. Large pelagic fish also frequent the site and divers can expect to see triggerfish, nudibranch, and moray eels amid colorful coral formations.
Ranging in depth from five to 30 meters in North Malé Atoll, the Banana Reef was the first dive site to be discovered in the Maldives. It remains popular due to its colorful coral formations, interesting pinnacles and overhangs, and extensive variety of fish. Currents can be strong around the reef, so surface balloons can really come in handy.
Cocoa Corner Thila
South Malé Atoll’s Cocoa Corner (Cocoa Thila) holds the best shark show around Malé Atoll. When dive conditions are right, divers often cross Cocoa Corner to nearby Kandooma Thila, during which they maintain a minimum depth of 25 meters. Marine attractions include grey reef sharks of all sizes, as well as eagle rays and jack fish. The dive ends at the top of the Thila where divers continue their journey in shallower waters.
Ideal for more advanced divers, Bodu Hoholha features a wall dive with a reef measuring about five to eight meters and a near vertical drop past 30 meters. Feast your eyes on beautiful purple sea fans along the walls and an abundance of fish and corals at around 10 meters. Caves and overhangs are also waiting to be discovered at past 25 meters. The deep water near the side of the reef offers opportunities to see bigger pelagic animals, making it an unforgettable Maldivian dive experience at all depths.
Dive at the biggest wreck in the Maldives and discover the World War II oil tanker known as British Loyalty. This supreme dive spot is 135 meters long and starts from around 15 meters down to 35 meters deep. Beginners can easily enter the right side-lying wreck through the biggest opening in the engine room, while more advanced divers can access other openings for full penetration wreck diving.
Marine Life in The Maldives
As its islands are situated in the open ocean near the reefs, the Maldives is home to pelagic animals. Water channels connecting the Indian Ocean to the lagoons bring in organisms and nutrients that attract incredible marine life.
- Planktons - These organisms are unable to swim against currents, so it’s common to find bioluminescent planktons, making Maldivian shores glow in the dark.
- Manta Rays- This species of massive flat fish is just one of the many large aquatic animals that feed on plankton.
- Sharks - As their primary source of food is plankton, you’re bound to encounter several species of whale sharks.
You’ll find healthier reefs and macro life forms in the northern areas of the Maldives while sharks are more frequently spotted in the southern areas. But in general, the islands are surrounded by vast reef formations, dolphins, eagle rays, hammerhead sharks, butterfly fish, oriental sweetlips, tuna, parrotfish, groupers, snappers, turtles, moray eels, blue marlins, and other reef fish and pelagic animals.
- Malé Fish Market - Among the top things to do in the Maldives is to visit the busy fish market in the capital city of Malé. It’s a fascinating place for food lovers who love to watch fishermen unload the day’s catch—including some really large tuna, octopus, and grouper.
- Whale Submarine - Take in the beauty of the underwater world by going on a 45-minute underwater tour inside the Whale Submarine in Malé. It’s the perfect chance for families and kids to see colorful corals and beautiful marine species without actually having to go scuba diving.
- National Museum - This three-storey museum holds a large collection of galleries and historic artifacts that trace the long history of the Maldivian Islands. It welcomes tourists, history buffs, and art experts daily (except Fridays) at 10am-4pm.
How to Get to The Bahamas
Malé International Airport (previously known as Ibrahim Nasir International Airport) is the port of entry into the Republic of Maldives. It serves a wide array of flights to and from nearby countries like India, Sri Lanka, the United Arab Emirates, China, and major airports in South East Asia, as well as an increasing number of charter flights from Europe.
Best Time to Visit The Maldives
Required Trainings & Certifications
The Maldivian rufiyaa (abbreviated as MRF or Rf) is the official currency of the Republic of Maldives. The law requires resorts to price their services in US dollars and often require payment in cash or credit card. If you’re heading to Malé or the other inhabited atolls, rufiyaa would definitely come in handy.
The official language of the Maldives is Dhivehi. English is also widely spoken, especially in resorts and in other tourist areas.
The Maldives observes Maldives Time (MVT) all year and never uses Daylight Saving Time.
Driving in the Maldives is on the left-hand side of the road.
Dialing +960 will allow you to call the Maldives from another country.
ISO 3166 code
SO 3166-2:MV is the entry for the Maldives in ISO 3166-2.
SO 3166-2:MV is the entry for the Maldives in ISO 3166-2.