Adventure Cruises in Maldives

The Maldives have something for everyone. The beautiful waters are perfect to explore with a snorkel and there's no better way than by boat when in these stunning islands.

Gliding over turquoise waters on a cruise around the Maldives is the best way to view its numerous islands, visit different diving sites and get around the picturesque island nation. The perfect way to explore the archipelago and spend time on some of the best Maldives beaches in one holiday. There are 26 atolls (groups of islands) in the archipelago comprising more than 1200 islands/ islets composed of sand bars and coral reefs. Secluded lagoons, crystal-clear water, vibrant reefs, and magnificent marine animals have made the Maldives a tourist’s heaven. Primarily a scuba diving hotspot, the beaches of Maldives are popular with everyone from celebrities who sail in their private yachts to backpacker travelers that enjoy a more rustic and culturally enriching experience.

The country's geographical location allows prevailing currents to supply the island waters with rich nutrition from the ocean's depth, making for bountiful fishing and larger animal spotting. These stunning islands have the highest point of 6 meters above sea level and are at the mercy of the sea, hence best explored by boat. Relaxing, themed holidays sailing aboard traditional Maldivian dhonis or intimate journeys aboard small Maldivian cruises while soaking in the tropical sun and sipping fresh fruit juice are some of the best ways to de-stress.

Swim around charismatic manta rays and the seasonal whale sharks, visit local islands, partake in different water sports, enjoy delicious seafood and local cuisine or go on a hike. These are just some of the activities guests can experience while cruising around the Maldives.

Some of the places to visit

With 26 atolls and islands so abundant that it would take years to enjoy what they offer, the island nation of Maldives is a thalassophilic’s sweetest dream. The beauty lies under the sea for the smaller uninhabited islands, while some inhabited islands are rich in tradition and culture on land. This country's welcoming and smiling people are friendly and ready to share their oceanic lifestyle.

Baa Atoll

Declared a UNESCO Biosphere Reserve, Baa Atoll is the best location in the world to dive with manta rays and whale sharks. This Maldivian atoll is known for the rare biodiversity in its coral reefs and marine life. Baa Atoll is a unique formation with the world-famous Hanifaru Bay, a protected marine area that hosts manta rays in huge numbers during the season. Snorkelers can witness barrel-rolling chains of mantas and gulping whale sharks, all feeding on the plankton concentrated in the narrow bay.

Vaavu Atoll

This administrative division of the Maldives consists of Felidhu Atoll and the Vattaru Reef. Located over 60 km from the capital, Malé, it is accessible by small boat cruises and speedboats. Fishing, scuba diving, and snorkeling are popular activities at Vaavu Atoll. The Felidhu atoll includes the islands of Bodu Mora with its idyllic beaches and Felidhu’s watersports hub. Diving schools on the islands offer diving courses if you want to make the most of the magical marine life found in abundance on the reefs here.

South Malé Atoll

South Malé Atoll is a 35km long oblong shaped atoll formation comprising 22 islands and is separated from the North Malé Atoll by a very deep channel called Vaadhu Kandu. It drastically differs from its more mainstream cousin in the north as these islands are more peaceful and serene. There are many activities, like scuba diving, snorkeling, catamaran cruises, dolphin and whale watching, and island hopping. The interior of the atoll is myriad shallow coral reefs, sandbars, and lagoons that make for perfect romantic picnic spots and the best sunset views.

Meemu Atoll

Also known as Mulak Atoll of Mulakatolhu, Meemu Atoll is an administrative district of the Maldives of significant historical importance. There is a mosque on Kolhufushi island, but no Buddhist remains have ever been found. The flag-bearing Maldivian battleship Kalhu Oh Fummi’s wreck from 1570’s Maldives uprising against the Portuguese is located on the southeastern reef of Kolhuvaariyaafushi island. The islands of this atoll were greatly affected by the tsunami of 2004, with some islands having entire civilizations washed away, albeit there was no loss of life.

Best time to Visit

The Maldives enjoys a tropical climate comprising dry and wet seasons. The dry season is the best time to enjoy a cruise holiday as the humidity is relatively lower, with hardly any rain. November to April is ideally a good time to travel to the Maldives. The weather remains clear for shore excursions and smooth sailing, which makes cruising through the Maldives during these months a fantastic experience.

How to get to the Maldives

The Maldives has 12 airports, four of which are international. The most famous of these is the Male International Airport, also known as Velana International Airport at Hulhule Island. The second most popular is the Gan International Airport at Seenu Atoll, followed by Hanimaadhoo International Airport in Haa Dhaalu Atoll and Maafaru International Airport, Noonu Atoll.

Male International Airport is the main hub connecting the Maldives to all major countries in Southeast Asia, including India, China, and Sri Lanka. There are also direct flights to this airport from Dubai and chartered flights from Europe, China, and Singapore.

During the peak season, from October through March, British Airways offers direct flights thrice a week. If traveling through the Middle East, Etihad, Emirates, Oman Air, and Qatar Airways offer indirect flights into Malé from London Heathrow.

Maldives Trip Tips

  • Official passports, hotel booking receipts, and return tickets are the mandatory documents required at the visa desk. So keep these within reach.
  • Travelers' passports must have at least 6 months of remaining validity. The Male international airport grants a visa-on-arrival, which saves travelers the ordeal of pre-applying for visas.
  • Keep loose change handy in Maldivian Rufiyaa. Some taxi drivers accept USD payments but may not render exact change.
  • If you’re taking kids along, be sure to check with the resorts or tour operators to see if they are allowed. Some honeymoon resorts only allow kids ten years of age or older.
  • Make sure to arrive at Male before 9:30 a.m. if you have connecting transport to other islands.
  • Keep your eyes peeled for competitive prices on flights and resorts. If you’re good at bargaining, cracking deals with resorts could work in your favor.
  • Be sure to watch the bioluminescent sea waves at night! Check with the cruise captain to see if this can be viewed on the route taken during the holiday.
  • Avoid carrying alcohol while in the country.

Plan ahead, and arrive early.

Booking flight tickets in advance, especially during the off-season, gives travelers the freedom to tailor their trip within a decent budget. Some advantages of planning well in advance include substantial cost-cutting from flight fares to accommodation charges, getting documentation work in place, and saving up more.

The Maldives is home to people who are friendly and supportive of tourism. However, travelers must avoid carrying pork, alcohol, or any other banned products. More information on this is available on the Internet.

Guests should clearly understand the adventurous activities they would like to try. This can help in efficient packing and costing strategies during the planning stage.

Arriving early allows travelers to indulge in some street shopping, scrumptious Maldivian cuisine, little strolls amidst scenic island views, and much more. Reaching well before the actual check-in time lets travelers explore the outside of the islands and the streetside of the Maldives. Sprawling greenery, pristine beaches, and a vibrant culture await your arrival in the Maldives.

What to pack

Since the trip is a cruise, having high-SPF sunscreen, beach hats and cover-ups, flip-flops or water shoes, sunglasses, and swimwear is important. A reusable water bottle goes a long way in being a responsible traveler. A flashlight, camera, extra batteries, and memory cards; for drones, please enquire first. A personal first aid kit with necessary personal medication with a prescription. Preferably, biodegradable toiletries are some key items travelers should include while packing for this trip.

Snorkeling and fishing equipment

Although snorkeling equipment is provided onboard, it is best to carry along personal equipment since it would be the best fit for yourself during all the in-water adventures. Fishing equipment is carried aboard the cruises, and the staff is kind enough to give guests pointers on the best fishing methods. Catch a fish for supper or go for a catch and release.

Travel Advice

Some important personal documents include flight information, insurance information, a passport with a minimum of 6 months validity remaining, vaccination certificates, an external battery pack and a plug point converter, vouchers, and pre-departure information for cruises are a must-carry.

Maldives Reviews

  • 8.4 Very good
  • 1 Verified Reviews
  • 8.4 Very good
  • Nicky E
  • New Zealand New Zealand

Very good.. some of the coral is badly damaged but nice to see it recovering. Shipwreck was interesting sad that some companies feed the rays and sharks!!!

Cruising Maldives in July on the Gahaa