Getting Around Maldives
The best way to get around the Maldives is to walk. The capital city of Male' is only one square mile, and whichever resort you pick will be walkable as well. Island-hopping at your own leisure really isn't an option since the ferry (or "dhoni") network is not very extensive. That said, if you are traveling by yacht, you'll be able to navigate these waters. Once you arrive at Ibrahim Nasir Male' International Airport (MLE) on the island of Hulhule', you’ll most likely be escorted by a representative from your resort to the island where you are staying. You will have to take a ferry, an air taxi, a speedboat or some combination of the three to reach your final destination. This final jaunt is sometimes included in the cost of your hotel stay.
|On Foot||Once you're on your island of choice, walking is the most convenient option. All of the resort islands, as well as Male', are easily manageable on foot.|
|Yacht||For the rich and famous, this is the only way to travel. Yachts glide through this archipelago and provide the best access to remote islands and isolated reefs. Many resorts have their own docks for the convenience of seafaring travelers. You should know that visiting non-resort islands is generally prohibited by the Maldivian government, so be careful where you choose to anchor. Although you can charter a yacht once you get here, we suggest that you simply bring your own. That said, licensed tour operator can bring you to islands that are usually off-limits to tourists.|
If you are trying to get somewhere in a hurry, take a seaplane. You're resort may use one to transport you to and from the airport. On these brief jaunts, you'll enjoy a scenic bird's-eye view of the reefs and islands. For an island hop by air, compare the rates of Trans Maldivian Airways and Maldivian Air Taxi.
The local ferry network is very limited. You'll find the four routes with set schedules on the government's transit website. From less populated islands, you may be able to find a dhoni (or boat) to shuttle you to your desired destination, but this is uncommon and unreliable.
|In Male', you'll spot a few motorbikes zooming through chaotic traffic and narrow streets. For safety reasons, we advise you not to hire one. And after all, you are never more than a 15-minute walk away from anything in Male'.|
|Taxis||You'll also spot some taxis in Male', and these can be useful if you have luggage or get caught in a thunderstorm. You can either hail a taxi or call for one. A trip usually costs around 20 MVR (about $1.30 USD) with a 5 MVR (about $0.30 USD) fee for bags.|
Entry & Exit Requirements
The Maldives requires that international visitors have a valid passport and proof of sufficient funds and an onward travel plan. You will automatically be granted a 30-day visa, which can be extended to 90 days if requested. You will also have to pay a $25 USD Airport Development Charge at the check-in counter when you depart. Lastly, vaccinations for Hepatitis A, Hepatitis B, and Typhoid are recommended prior to arrival. For more information, check out the U.S. State Department's website.