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Maldives Island Experience

Pure tropical heaven and island vibes

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Group Size: Max 16

Trip code: TTML

Duration: 8 days

Twin accommodation
Group adventure in the Maldives
Best of beach and culture

Think coconut palm-fringed islands, sparkling white beaches, tranquil lagoons, turquoise blue waters studded with coloured corals and an abundance of marine life - The Maldives is the destination of dreams.  Spend your days immersed in Maldivian life, learning all about the culture and traditions of this island while tingling those tastebuds with delicious cuisine. Encounter an array of unique and diverse wildlife, from dolphins to sea turtles and manta rays to whale sharks. Uh-huh, sounds incredible, right?

Trip highlights

  • Comfortable twin-share rooms throughout the tour
  • Spot dolphins, turtles and swim with whale sharks
  • Give back to the community by participating in beach clean ups
  • Explore the local culture with visits to mosques, farms and communities
  • Explore a well known luxury beach destination on a backpacker budget
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What's included
  • 8 nights accommodation
  • Tour guide
  • Airport transfers
  • All transport on trip
  • 7 breakfasts and 2 dinners
  • Presidents Park & Mosque visit
  • Reef Conservation Project visit
  • Beach clean up
  • Snorkel with Reef Sharks & Turtles
  • Whale Shark Snorkelling
  • Manta Ray Snorkelling
  • Sea Kayaking
  • Paddleboarding
  • Cultural Dinner & Dance
  • Forest Trek
  • 24 hour emergency support
What's not included
  • Flights
  • Visas
  • Insurance
  • Some meals and drinks
  • Optional activities
Further trip information

Day 1 - Welcome to the Maldives

Fly into Velana International Airport, Male & we’ll meet you there! Visit the stunning Friday Mosque, the famous president’s palace and Sultan Park before we send your senses alive, stopping by the bustling fish and vegetable market. Your jaw will drop as we experience aerial city views from one of Male’s tallest buildings before stopping for a delightful lunch. Grab a speedboat to our guesthouse on the local island of Ukulhas North Ari Atoll. It’s around a 2-hour journey, see if you can spot fun-loving dolphins along the journey. We have a delicious first dinner together; get to know the group and your guide before running through our plans for the week!

Day 2 - Tropical Island Life

We kick start today with a presentation on Maldives Coral Reefs and Marine life before cruising via speedboat to nearby reefs - snorkeling in the Maldives is out of this world We have a safety briefing on responsible snorkeling before grabbing our gear and jumping into the warm azure waters. Late afternoon we explore Ukulhas. Immerse ourselves in community agriculture before visiting a Mosque to understand how Islam plays a large part in Maldivians’ daily lives. Fishing plays a vital role in this island's history, so we listen to local fishermen’s tales. We end our island tour with traditional afternoon tea - Hedika. Delicious bite-sized balls of tuna, onions and grated coconut wrapped in flatbread type dough followed by black tea. Later in the evening, we grab dinner together with our group followed by stopping for coffee in a local cafe to discuss the importance of seagrass in the Maldives.

Day 3 - Snorkelling anf Sea Turtles

It’s a beautiful morning, so slap on that biodegradable ocean-friendly suncream, grab your favourite sunnies, and we’re up and out to meet the locals responsible for developing a coral nursery. We’re here to learn about their exciting projects and give a helping hand where we can! A truly unique, educational experience. We also have the opportunity for house reef snorkeling. The area is known to be home to our favourite green-shelled, humble, long-living pals - Sea turtles, so keep an eye out. How do you round off a perfect day? We board a fishing dhoni late afternoon, and as the golden orange sun goes down, we spend our evening with the locals learning the art of line fishing before devouring a delicious dinner onboard.

Day 4 - Beach Day

Feel the white sand between your toes, listen to the tropical sway of the tall palm trees surrounding you. Today is your day. It’s been an epic few days exploring local islands, so it calls for a beach day! If energy is bursting out of you outrageously or you get wriggly just laying on a sunlounger for too long, try out the hotel's water sports activities or diving expeditions! Late afternoon, rent a kayak or stand up paddleboard; we’ll show you the moves and how to perfect your balance skills before gliding across the aqua blue lagoon where we can enjoy the world-famous Maldives sunset. In the evening we head to the beach with a couple of our local friends to share Maldivian folk tales and even learn a Maldivian song or two.

Day 5 - Island Hopping

After a delicious breakfast, we take a private speedboat south through Ari Atoll to the island of Dhigurah. Fun fact Dhigurah actually means long island, and at 3km, it’s the longest island in the atoll! Postcard worthy, stunningly picturesque, Dhigurah has a long white beach, a protected turquoise lagoon and a white sandbar. When you think of the Maldives, this is it. A tropical paradise. Lay out on the glistening white beaches knowing there’s nowhere else you’d rather be. Dhigurah is a haven for divers and snorkelers as the surrounding areas are home to whale sharks, mantas and the world-renowned reefs making this location one of the best for diving in the Maldives. Take a stroll and explore, feel the sun on your shoulders as you walk this tropical bliss. Grab those snaps for the gram before checking into our idyllic guesthouse located a short walk away from the island’s hub. With a population of about 600, Dhugurah is an authentic local experience not to be missed. When in paradise, explore paradise, right? We’re heading out on a forest exploration walk. Time to get hot and sweaty! After exploring the luscious green vegetation, learning about local agriculture, we head back to the beach to watch the beautiful sunset and have a refreshing dip in the ocean. After indulging in some tasty Maldivian cuisine, we have a presentation on the Maldives Whale shark research program to prepare us for our Whale shark safari tomorrow!

Day 6 - Whale Sharks and Beach Clean

This morning we head out on the boat in search of the ocean’s largest fish - whale sharks! An unbelievably magical experience. Feel the excitement as we attempt to spot these humongous natural giants surfacing through the water. If we do spot them, we put on our masks, dive in and snorkel carefully alongside them. Although whale sharks are enormous in size, they are gentle animals that only eat small shrimp, fish and plankton. So live in the very moment because this is a once in a lifetime opportunity. As the afternoon cools, we spend some time on the beach, giving back to the wonderful community that has welcomed us by supporting them with a beach clean. Protecting our oceans, sipping Kurumba (coconut water) and swimming in the crystal clear waters, now that sounds like a perfect day. This evening, as the sun begins to set, we have the option to join a night snorkelling trip on the house reef. Torches at the ready as we snorkel in the dark, watching the colourful corals and marine life come alive.

Day 7 - Lagoons and Dance Groups

We have the morning to spend as we please, so take a snooze under a palm tree, snorkel the sparkling clear lagoon or master the art of kayaking and stand up paddleboarding as you perfect your balance out onto the lagoon. Whatever you do, you’re in paradise, so enjoy it. This afternoon we will be joined by local ladies from the village for a demonstration on making mashuni and roshi, a typical Maldivian dish. After cooking up a storm, the end result will be added to tonight’s cultural dinner! Subject to Safe Tourism, we will also welcome the local Bodu Beru Culture dance group and loosen our hips to learn some traditional Maldivan moves! Learn the dance and show everyone when you’re back home.

Day 8 - Back to Male

After 8 life-changing days of learning, exploring and experiencing all the Maldives has to offer, it’s time to say goodbye. We say Dhanee! (That’s goodbye in Maldivian btw) and transfer via speedboat back to the airport. Your group leader is on hand for any onward plans you may have. Your memories will last a lifetime, your stories told for years to come.

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Arrival information

You should arrive into Male International airport in the Maldives by mid-morning on your start date, as the activities start at 2pm. You will be collected from the airport.

Your trip ends back in Male on day 8 and an airport transfer is included. Please book an onwards flight for after 12pm.

Accommodation & meals

7 nights of accommodation are included, all of which are in twin room guesthouses.

7 breakfasts and 2 dinners are included. The rest of the meals will need to be purchased locally. Often the group dines out together.

Please be aware that as the Maldives is an Islamic nation and mainly a ‘’dry’’ country. This tour specifically will not be able to purchase alcohol on the islands we visit and you will not be allowed to purchase/bring alcohol from duty free.

Minimum age & eligibility

The minimum age for this trip is 18 years old. This trip is designed for 18-39 year olds.

British passport holders can get a 30 day visa for the Maldives upon arrival. Passports must be valid for at least 6 months after your date of entry to the Maldives. Visa rules and regulations are subject to change. Please check the relevant embassy websites for up to date information.

Covid safety

This trip is designed with your safety and wellbeing in mind. As a result of Covid-19, many of our suppliers and partners around the world are introducing new policies and procedures surrounding health and safety in response to the Coronavirus outbreak. As the state of travel is evolving these new safety measures will adapt over time, and will be different for each trip. Here are some of the changes you may see on your trip:

Arrival safety meetings
Most trips have an arrival meeting on the first day where the guide or local team will run through the trip, the safety protocols, and to answer any questions you may have. Now more than ever it is important you arrive in time for these meetings.

Proof of vaccination or negative covid test
For the safety of all travellers, at the start of some trips you may be required to show evidence that you are fully vaccinated (14 days after your second dose) and/or show evidence of a negative PCR test taken within 72 hours of the tour start date in order to join the programme.

Updated hygiene and safety procedures
Our suppliers and partners have health and safety procedures in place on all of our trips. These protocols will be updated and adapted as a response to the Coronavirus outbreak, dependent on local restrictions and laws.

Transport and accommodation choices
Our suppliers and partners choose the accommodation and transport on our trips very carefully, and you may see a change to what would normally be used as a response to the outbreak. This may involve such changes as enhanced use of private transport or quieter accommodation.

Trained and knowledgeable staff
Our staff in the UK are trained to help you with your trip before you depart and answer any questions you may have. In addition, the local team and guides on our trips are there to help with any health and safety concerns and to ensure our trips run safely and smoothly.

Reduced group sizes
Some trips will run with reduced group sizes to start with. You may find that trips are more intimate and chilled, whilst still being packed with fun and adventure.

Healthcare
Your guide or the local team will be on hand to help you seek medical attention should you require it during your trip. As medical facilities and standards can vary around the world, you should ensure you have adequate travel insurance in place before you depart to cover you for any medical emergencies.

24/7 emergency support
We operate an emergency phone line for our travellers abroad. This is operated by a UK based member of staff 24/7 if you have a genuine emergency or urgent matter that you need attending.

It is important that you take measures to make travelling safer for yourself and others around you. Ensure you frequently wash your hands, cover your face when you sneeze and cough, bring and use your own hand sanitiser and facial coverings/masks, and enable social distancing where necessary. You should also ensure you listen to the instructions and guidance of the local team at all times, and follow all local laws and restrictions.