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Liveaboard Diving in Felidhoo Atoll
What To Expect On A Felidhoo Atoll Liveaboard
Liveaboards to Felidhoo (Vaavu) Atoll, just south of Male Atoll, will take you to one of the smaller members of the Central Atolls, but its appeal for Maldives liveaboard diving has become huge in recent years. In the waters around Felidhoo's relatively undeveloped 19 islands, deep, fast-flowing channels promise abundant sharks and big pelagics like manta rays. At this easternmost area of the country, the Fotteyo barrier reef stretches for 50 kilometers along the open ocean, offering plenty of opportunities to see large marine life.
Felidhoo Atoll Underwater
While kandus (channels from the open ocean into an atoll) and thilas (pinnacles, or sea-mounts) characterize Maldives diving throughout the archipelago, Felidhoo boasts one of the best kandu scenes in the country. Liveaboard dive cruises visiting Felidhoo have channel diving as a priority, knowing that big fish and sharks frequent these passages. As you set out in your dive dhoni, make sure to prepare yourself for some fast currents. Your dive guide should be able to give you tips for each site; one strategy is to take a break from the current in reef overhangs and caverns every so often. Besides kandu diving, Felidhoo also offers a well-known night dive.
Dive Sites Of Felidhoo Atoll
Fotteyo Kandu is a must-do dive for most Felidhu liveaboards; it's considered one of the Maldives' top sites, and is a country-wide favorite among visitors. Within this narrow channel, reef sharks and plenty of fish can be expected, including big groupers, and (if youíre very lucky) hammerheads during the early morning. There are plenty of overhangs and swim-throughs, which add variety to the dive and give photographers plenty of opportunities for nicely framed shots.
Bodu Miyaru Kandu, or simply Miyaru Kandu, is another Felidhu dive site found on virtually every itinerary. In this channel, schools of grey reef and whitetip reef sharks are common, as well as a variety of other big pelagic and reef fish. Overhangs, small caves, and hard and soft corals diversify the channelís topography. Miyaru is known as a good site for mantas, and in general, the entire Felidhoo Atoll provides good manta sightings, especially between May and July.
At Alimathaa Island, two kandus named Devana and Dhekunu offer the chance to see pelagic rays in the blue water, as well as sharks, tuna, and big schools of reef fish. The current in these channels can be very strong. For a slower-paced, but no less thrilling experience, Felidhu liveaboards often visit Alimathaa Jetty for a night dive with nurse sharks and stingrays. Hopefully, the local resort has stopped fish feeding at the jetty, since this practice can drastically destabilize the ecosystem by interrupting normal marine food chains.
Top Tips For Divers
In the Maldives, a Green Tax of 6 USD per person per night applies for every tourist in the country. The official language is Maldivian, also called Dhivehi.
Gear to bring includes your own mask, booties, fins, and dive computer. These are personalized pieces of equipment which we donít recommend renting. An ill-fitting mask or pair of fins can make diving virtually impossible, and a dive computer is your most-important piece of safety equipment.
Getting To Felidhoo Atoll
Like anywhere in the Maldives, Felidhoo Atoll is best dived by liveaboard; in no other way can you access so many dive sites, often near uninhabited islands or far from land. The length of liveaboard itineraries in Felidhoo Atoll usually ranges from 7 to 11 nights, with a wide-ranging budget from around 170 to 350 euros per night. The variety of budgets reflects the variety of itineraries; some are short trips limited to the Central Atolls, while others travel to the deep south or the Northern Atolls. Maldives liveaboard visiting Felidhoo usually spend at least one full day in the area, if not two.
Male is the main liveaboard departure location for Felidhoo Atoll liveaboards. However, for Felidhoo trips which include the Maldivesí deep south atolls, Kadhdhoo and Koodoo are sometimes used as ports of departure. A domestic sea plane from Male can get you to these destinations. Male is accessible by direct flights from Dubai, Singapore, and Colombo. Longer international flights from Europe, America, China, India, and Australia often connect through the regional airports mentioned above.
Diving Felidhoo Atolls is possible all year round, but the northeast monsoon from January to May allows the calmest surface conditions and the lowest chance of rain. The water temperature usually stays between 27 and 30 C, with good visibility of 20 to 30 meters. Whale sharks can be seen at certain times of year; contact Felidhoo liveaboard operators for the most up-to-date information on the locals season.
Felidhoo Atoll Diving Reviews
- 9.1 Superb
- 13 Verified Reviews
Overall quite good. No point in doing housereef dives on a liveaboard. Housereef dives you do from a resort. The beauty with liveaboard is the possibility to get to the less crowded places.
Diving Felidhoo Atoll in January on the Nautilus One
We managed to say HI to a juvenile male Whale Shark; what more can you ask for?! The nurse shark night dive on top of that made this our favourite part of diving in the Maldives!
Diving Felidhoo Atoll in September on the Blue Force One
Challenging currents but very good. Visibility of 30 meters or so.
Diving Felidhoo Atoll in May on the Blue Force One
Exciting - Sharks and current - A visit to Davy Jones locker! And a unique night dive with the Nurse sharks at Alimatha Jetty.
Diving Felidhoo Atoll in February on the Soleil 2
interesting nurse shark dive at Alimatha with all the nurse sharks, although a bit artificial
Diving Felidhoo Atoll in January on the Soleil 2