I have done many tours literally around the world, but this tour was one of the best tours I’ve ever had, and here’s why: They truly care about the environment. My guide Archie was honest, on time, responsive, educated, and genuinely passionate about preserving the Maldives. He was perfect for the job
Engage with the locals
Escape to the beautiful island paradise of the Maldives and indulge in the ultimate island-hopping adventure. Immerse yourself in the rich culture and history of the Maldives. Stroll along white sandy beaches, encounter turtles, whale sharks and a host of tropical marine life. Participate in traditional activities including cooking and local games. Lose yourself in natural surroundings and learn about the importance of marine and environment conservation in the truly unique and breathtaking central atolls of the Maldives.
- From USD 1999 per person
- Private tours
- Contact us to confirm availability
- Arrival on day 1 by midday
- Velana International Airport (MLE)
- 8 days & 7 nights
- Minimum 1 person
- Maximum 8 persons
WHAT ARE THE MALDIVES ENTRY REQUIREMENTS?
- Travelers must have a confirmed accommodation/tour booking.
- Travelers must have a passport or travel document valid for a minimum 30 days from date of entry to the Maldives.
- Travelers must have a return flight ticket.
- The online traveler declaration form IMUGA must be completed within the 96 hour period prior to arrival in country.
- 7 Night standart deluxe room accommodation including breakfast
- 7 Dinners
- 1 Picnic lunch
- Airport and domestic transfer assistance
- Inter-Island transfer by public ferry
- Island tours and Hedika Experience
- Visit to Rinbudhoo including two way transfer
- SUP or kayak rental
- 2 Snorkeling tour including equipment
- Whale Shark Safari Snorkeling tour including equipment
- Cultural experiences –cooking class and bashi playing
- Optional beach clean
- Services of Secret Paradise Tour Leader
- Local Tax (10% service charge, 16% GST and $3 Green tax per person per night)
- 7 Lunches
- Domestic Transfer Male to Dhaalu Atoll
- Domestic Transfer Thaa Atoll to Male
- International Flights
- Travel Insurance
What to bring
- All this together with full details on everything you need to know about travel within the Maldives will be provided in our welcome information pack.
- The Maldives is a Muslim country and therefore alcohol is not available on local islands.
- Bikinis are not allowed to be worn on local island beaches; however, all of our guesthouses offer either private gardens, balconies or tourist beach areas for guests where bikini swimwear can be worn.
Visit the island Rinbudhoo famous for jewelry making
Kayak to a deserted island for a traditional picnic lunch
Snorkel marine rich tropical waters
Join in with local environmental conservation activities
A chance to snorkel alongside whale sharks and gather data
What to Expect
Upon arrival at Male International Airport you will be greeted by your tour leader and transferred by public speedboat or domestic flight to the island of , in the central atoll of Dhaalu. This small fishing island with a population of 600 is an island that can still be classed as remote.
Settle in after your flight before taking your first steps on the sands of this tropical paradise for a sunset swim before dinner.
The Maldives is rich in marine life but unfortunately, our marine life is under threat because of activities carried out by us humans. Over a coffee your tour leader will highlight the harmful practices that are pushing the balance in the ecosystem and what we can do to limit the impact.
Following breakfast depart on a speedboat for an exciting snorkeling safari, there will be the opportunity to encounter turtles and reef sharks, as well as a multitude of colourful fish. Your tour leader will provide a safety briefing on responsible snorkeling and act as your ‘spotter’ pointing out marine life that may not have caught your eye. Coral reefs are fragile ecosystems so learning how to snorkel responsibly can help minimize your impact on the marine environment and protect the delicate balance of marine life. Your tour leader will assist less confident or inexperienced snorkelers, ensuring your equipment is comfortable and you feel safe in the water. They will assist less confident or inexperienced snorkelers, ensuring your equipment is comfortable and you feel safe in the water.
As the afternoon cools down, spend time exploring the island with your tour leader. There will be plenty of opportunities to learn about the local way of life, including a visit to the Mosque. Visit the harbor and learn how the common wooden boat known locally as a ‘dhoni’ is built, look out for the local fishermen bringing in their catch of the day! Stop by a local cafe to sample traditional hedhika – Maldivian savory and sweet treats served with black tea.
Following breakfast, travel by boat to Rinbudhoo known as the Jewellers island. People of Rinbudhoo are among the most skilled silver and goldsmiths in the Maldives. The art of jewelry making goes back to ancient times on this island. Mostly working from home, jewelers here make traditional items like fattaru-bae, long gold necklaces worn at special occasions, and fattaru, a kind of silver belt, but also modern pieces that appeal to contemporary tastes.
A tour of the island is a tale of artistry as you wander between a collection of street murals, Local artists, including our very own guide, Shark were given the freedom to paint whatever inspired them, resulting in detailed scenes of Maldivian folklore, reflections of Rinbudhoo’s artisanal history, and lifelike portrayals of the country’s natural environment.
The local ladies will demonstrate how to make mashuni and roshi. There will be an opportunity for you to test your skills at making both as well as tasting the end results for lunch!
As the afternoon cools down before returning to Maaenboodhoo, ladies from the island will show you how to play Bashi – an ancient game played exclusively by women. A woman is facing backwards to the opposite team, stands with her back to the net and serves a tennis ball over her head backwards. On the other side of the net, a team of girls try to catch the tennis ball.
Today we voyage from Dhaalu Atoll to Thaa Atoll. We first take a slow boat to Kudahavadhoo Island which is the capital island of Dhaalu Atoll with a population of around 3,000 It is best known for its architectural importance due to the presence of mysterious mounds called ‘hawittas’. These mounds are believed to pre-date the Islamic period and are actually ruins of excavated Buddhist temples. There are also the preserved remains of an ancient mosque with coral-stone carvings and signs of excellent ancient masonry.
After lunch we jump aboard the public ferry to cruise to the top of Thaa Atoll when we jump off at Buruni. There will be time to explore this small untouched island famous for the classical romance story, Dhonhiyala and Ali Fulhu, today you can visit the historical places like the “Kamana beach” and the fields of “Koamas” where much of the story took place.
Our final stage of travel will be by speedboat south through Thaa to our overnight destination of Gaadhiffushi a small pretty island which retains its local feel with all single story buildings. Here we will be welcomed with a refreshing local kurumba drink.
Today you paddle by SUP or kayak to an uninhabited island to experience your own Robinson Crusoe moment. You will be coached on how to paddle and maneuver the kayak before heading off. We paddle our way alongside tropical fish and over coral reefs, to the sandy shores. As you step onto its shores, you will feel like an intrepid explorer, discovering a place that feels like it belongs only to you. The island’s beaches will invite you to wander and explore their hidden corners. Experience ‘majja’, a traditional Maldivian beach picnic and time to relax and sunbathe before returning to Gaadhiffushi .
Before we return to Gaadhiffushi we spend time completing an island clean. The act of cleaning is a powerful reminder of the importance of responsible tourism and environmental stewardship. Your reward will be a refreshing ocean swim!
After breakfast, travel by speedboat west across the atoll to Thimerafushi. A developing island, now home to the atoll’s domestic airport, Thimerfushi was once reliant on fishing and remnants of this industry can be seen on the island. Today a more modern fish processing factory is in place.
This afternoon we will snorkel close to Thimarafushi where there is a ‘young’ shipwreck to explore at about 5-8 metres. Wrecks like the coral reefs of the Maldives are inhabited by diverse marine life and are teeming with colorful fish and corals. Keep your eyes open for turtles, sharks and rays you never know what may be in the blue!
Your tour leader will introduce you to the work of the Maldives Whale Shark Research Program. Gain an insight into their environmental monitoring and whale shark studies, preparing you for our whale shark safari!
There is only one way to spot whale sharks and that’s the old fashioned way of being out on the boat and looking! So we head out in search of the ocean’s largest fish. We may see 2 sharks in half an hour or maybe only one for the whole time we are searching, (sometimes we may be unlucky and not encounter, but there is always another holiday!) The unpredictability all adds to the excitement! When we do spot them, following the whale shark code of conduct we will snorkel alongside them. A truly magical experience.
Together we will collate all data and encounters and input to the MWSRP database, as well as identifying the individual sharks or other megafauna such as manta rays we may see while we snorkel. All encounters will feature on MWSRP online portal as well as contributing to the Big Fish Network.
After breakfast transfer back to Male international airport by public speedboat or domestic flight which is where the tour ends.
Your Trip Accommodation
Rindali Maldives, Maaenboodhoo, Dhaalu Atoll
Rindali has 7 rooms including a family room, a dining area, shared lounge with sand under foot and a private garden and beach area. All rooms are equipped with private bathrooms, AC ceiling fan, tea/coffee making facilities.
Bambukeyho, Gaadhiffushi, Thaa Atoll
The 8 rooms at Bambukeyho are modest, clean and are all situated at ground floor level around a private inner courtyard. All rooms are equipped with private bathrooms, AC ceiling fan, tea/coffee making facilities.
Stay Mikado, Thimarafushi, Thaa Atoll
Stay Mikado offers deluxe, spacious accommodation across three floors. There are 12 standard rooms, 2 family suites and a roof terrace with a TV lounge area. All rooms are equipped with private bathrooms, AC ceiling fan, tea/coffee making facilities.