Blessed be the land with waters as clear as the sky and beaches as white as the clouds! Thinking of the Maldives? You bet I am. If you’re thinking of spending your holidays at this picturesque location, you need to tick some boxes first. Number one, cash. Number two, patience. And most importantly, number three, knowing the best time to visit Maldives.
There isn’t just one best time to visit Maldives. There is something to do all around the year. But you need to figure out what you don’t want to miss for the world.
Although, nothing worse than marching up there with a sunbathing rug and getting soaked in the rain. So let’s learn a little bit about the best time to visit Maldives before making plans.
November to April
If you’re looking for warm temperatures and little humidity, you better make it somewhere from November to April. That’s the best time to visit Maldives for most people. Please don’t take my word for it; try and make a last-minute reservation. It’s the peak season, resorts and ferries are jam-packed, and you mostly don’t stand a chance.
Starting from January, you have the dry season. The climate is warm, and the weather is mostly sunny. That’s just the kind of day you need to relax on the beach.
At the same time, it’s not very humid, and it doesn’t rain a lot. So you don’t have to worry about getting sweaty and uncomfortable.
May to October
Sometimes, avoiding throngs of people is just worth the bad weather. The period from May to October is called the wet season or rainy season. These months feature occasional rainfall and high humidity.
But the islands display a different kind of beauty under shady skies. Plus, you might avail of off-season offers and discounts.
May to October can be called the best time to visit Maldives for some reasons. At this time of year, the climate is just perfect for surfing. The winds and waves are just right.
You can plan an adventurous trip in the morning and lie down with a premium cocktail by dusk. So if you are a surfboard person, the off-season is actually the best time to visit Maldives.
The crystal clear sea at the Maldives offers more than a scenic view. Swimming, snorkelling, and diving are very popular activities among tourists.
Their popularity is that they allow sightings of exotic life like manta rays and whale sharks. Some of these species show up seasonally. So the best time to visit Maldives is the dry season.
Over 2000 species of fish in the Indian ocean can be spotted in the waters around the Maldives. Some eye-catching creatures include the moray eels, oriental sweetlips, and colourful reef fish. You may also spot a green turtle or leatherback turtle. Turtles lay eggs on the local islands.
Manta rays are another reason why the dry season is the best time to visit Maldives. The manta rays are usually spotted from November to April. They are seen in the waters around coral reefs. They feed on the plankton in the water around this time.
Manta rays are a species with large flat, triangular wings and eyes on the sides of their head. They look like they are flying underwater. That’s why their presence feels majestic and unforgettable. Although they are huge, manta rays are totally harmless.
The strong tides brought by the Southwest Monsoon push water from the depths of the ocean to the space around the reefs. The water is rich in plankton.
Plankton is basically lunch for the manta rays. This usually happens somewhere from July to November. Also, the water is warm enough to dive.
Baa Atoll and Adu Atoll are the best scuba diving spots for seeing reef manta rays. An atoll is basically an island of coral. On Baa Atoll, Hanifaru Bay is the perfect spot for swimming with the manta rays. It is a prime location for feeding the manta rays.
Oceanic manta rays are a rarer sight. If you’re lucky, you may spot them passing by along the southern side of the Maldives.
The only concern is the threat to their lives posed by commercial activity. Manta rays are hunted for meat and gill plates. Sometimes they get caught accidentally with other targeted species. As a result, their population is dwindling.
The Maldives is home to more than twenty species of sharks. The Black Tip, White Tip, and the Grey Reef Shark are some of the most sensational ones. Swimming with these giants is a once-in-a-lifetime experience. Another member of this eye-catching family is the whale shark.
Unlike manta rays, whale sharks are not picky about showing up for tourists. They are spotted moving about under the currents all around the year.
Whale sharks are the largest living species of fish. They are known for their giant size and the eye-catching patterns on their back. If you are just for the sharks, you don’t have to worry about the best time to visit Maldives.
For all their size and overwhelming features, whale sharks are totally harmless. In fact, they are so docile that they even allow divers to hitch a ride on their backs. But it is not a good idea to do that, mostly because it causes disturbance to the sharks. Also, it isn’t polite!
While there is no particular season that’s best for seeing whale sharks, it’s better to check schedules. Tour operators work only on certain days of the week. The South Ari Toll is considered the best place for whale shark watching. May, November, and December is the best time to visit Maldives for whale sharks.
Time to Feast!
Maldivian cuisine is also called Dhivehi cuisine. It is very close to people’s food habits on Minicoy, an island in Lakshadweep, India. It is a savoury fusion of recipes and tastes from India and Sri Lanka.
Seafood from the ocean and coconut from the beach palms is a staple. So even if you couldn’t catch the best time to visit Maldives, these delicacies will make your trip memorable all around the year!
Soups and curries
If you’re into traditional dishes, do try Garudhiya. It is clear tuna fish broth that is eaten with rice or roshi, a type of flatbread. What makes the dish tasty is the perfect touch of lime, onions, and chilli. Although that’s not how the locals eat it, spices and curry leaves give it a tangy spin.
Snacks and treats aside, there are things best reserved for when you are ravenous at meal-time. The top dish on the main course is fish curry. It is creamy, spicy, and filling. Fish curry is made from different varieties of tuna-like skipjack, yellowfin, and mahi-mahi.
While tuna is a major ingredient in the cuisine, it does have competitors. You’ve got lobster, reef fish cutlets, and the slow-cooked, broth-like rihaakuru.
Tuna, tuna, tuna!
Tuna fish is a local favourite. It appears in multiple recipes. Shredded tuna is stuffed inside flatbreads, spring rolls, cheese dumplings, and a lot of other stuff. It is stuffed with onions, cabbages, eggs, curry leaves, or chilli.
Shredded and smoked tuna is served with flatbreads for breakfast. It is garnished with coconut shavings. Tuna and coconut are also stuffed inside flatbreads called maroshi.
Another popular tuna dish is Bis Keemiya. It is shredded tuna and egg stuffed inside a spring roll with sauteed onions. Do you know what’s a great dish to go by the side of this roll? Fries!
A lot of restaurants and cafes in the Maldives serve yam fries. Crusty on the outside and soft on the inside. All you need is a savoury sauce or dip, and you’re in for a delectable snack!
While you chill out on a deck or a beach, you’ve got a whole array of flavoured tropical cocktails to choose from. You will find thousands of fruity flavours, including apricot, orange pineapple, melons, and cherries. Added with a dash of rum, vodka, or brandy, you are all set to feel the right kind of tipsy.
For Your Sweet Tooth
When it comes to dessert, Maldivian cuisine abounds in sweet delicacies. A popular favourite is Saagu Bondibai, a pudding made from sago, laced with condensed milk. Warmed with coconut milk and garnished with cardamom and rose, it tastes heavenly.
The next item on the list is Aluvi Boakibaa, a sweet cake made of coconut and cassava. Cassava is a root vegetable native to the islands. The sweetness of tender coconut in this cake is best complemented by rose or jasmine water.
Apart from these, Indian delicacies like jalebis and gulab jamuns are also quite popular.
Now that you know the best time to visit Maldives, you can start planning right away. Be it a honeymoon, post-retirement vacation, or a silent getaway; we’re gonna tick a lot of items off your bucket list. Plan your tours, meals and stay ahead of time to have the best experience there.
Travelling to the Maldives is an incredible privilege and an amazing experience. So enjoy that best time to visit Maldives, it’s time to travel!
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