The Maldives - ¨WAVES FROM THE HEAVENS¨
The Republic of Maldives is a group of 26 atolls in the Indian Ocean; an Island nation located about 700 km south-west of Sri Lanka and India.
The Maldives’ features 1,192 islands, roughly 200 of which are inhabited by local communities. More than 100 of these are used as resorts. The islands stretch for about 800 km from North to South, 130km at the widest point with no geological feature higher than 4 feet above sea level.
Water Temperature – Water temperatures range from 26-30°C/80-86°F year-round.
Weather – Tropical, hot and humid with loads of sunshine and temperatures around 24-33°C/75-91°F year-round.
WAVES (SW-SE swells)
Typically the reefs passes are deeper than in Indonesia and the South Pacific with classics set-ups abounding.
Swells travelling south-west from big storms and cyclons of the South Indian Ocean and the Antartic sea, across to Indonesia, bestow part of their energy on this fantastic chain of islands(Maldives) before continuing their journey.
Separated into the North Atolls and South Atolls (the south has the most powerfull spots, ideal for advance surfers) The region boasts year-round swell with the high period being March-April(south-east and central-south atolls), July (all Maldives. SW & SE swells) and November(central & south-west atolls).
The peak of the swell being in June/July/August for all Maldives(SE and SW coasts. And getting crowded in the North & South Male Atolls.
To understand a little bit more. There are 2 monsoon seasons, the north-east monsoon from December to April and the south west monsoon, from May to November. This breaks up the surfing season shifting the focus from north to south accordingly.
Predominantly reef-breaks waves. (There just few Travelixir secret spots of beach breaks)
The Maldives experience a similar surf season to Indonesia and Sri Lanka, receiving decent and consistent swells
In our experienced, March, April, June, July, November are the best times to visit and surf in the Maldives. There can be consistent surf of up to 12 ft. This is also the mixed dry-wet season so it's best time to visit during this time of year.
We have been recording the weather and waves conditions for the last 7 years.
In our statistics and records we come to the conclusion that: May is the rainiest month, followed by September...
As we have said, the biggest swells likely to occur in April/June/July/August/November and you may still have amazing waves in December and beg of January from the southwest swell and offshore winds(NE).
February is the flat period, a month to avoid Maldives for surfing. Ideal for begginers, for lessons, longboards or SUP in the Central-South atolls (1-3feet).
The wet season brings storms and lots of wind (NW, W and WSW winds), often blowing out any swell that may appear. In general, if you are after super clean waves, and great weather, arrive before early May, or in November-December. Most of July is qood.
The surf throughout the Maldives generally ranges in size from 2-9 feet, (average of 4-6feet), however bigger days have been experienced. A great variety of reef breaks exist ranging in intensity from quite mellow and enjoyable shreddable walls to gnarlier
hollow sucking dry pits.
It is a tropical island paradise and you will have no complaints taking your non-surfing partner for a couple of weeks here.
It's also a great place to relax if you arrive during a flat day.
What should I bring?
There just a few surf shops in Male, so we suggest to bring all the boards you might need. However, a two board quiver is sufficient, with a short board and a semi-gun (6’6” to 7’2”) for bigger days. It is very rare that the surf exceeds 10 feet. Bring your booties to protect yourself from the reef cuts, even if most people surf without them. Indeed, the take off zone is usually deep enough and the reef flat and dead. Wearing a helmet is recommended for bigger days. A wetsuit or a shorty is not necessary in this warm and crystal-clear water. A rash guard or long sleeve T-shirt is highly recommended for sun protection. Bring along plenty of solar cream with high SPF because you are on the equator.
Is it a dangerous destination for surfing?
This paradise is exposed to the same swells as Indonesia is, except that its higher latitude and its South-East exposure offers cooler and less hardcore surfing. The waves break on mostly dead reef, and very rarely will you come in contact with it unless you are surfing on a very low tide. So it makes an ideal destination for intermediate surfers.
Are there more lefts or rights?
The Maldives have in general more rights than lefts (60% – 40%) and the most consistent wind is off shore for the rights and cross shore for the lefts; it means that you probably will surf more rights than lefts. However it is possible to surf some incredible world class lefthanders.
How are the waves in Maldives?
The waves are all reef breaks; the average size is from 2 to 6 foot with long runs and some barrels sessions. The waves are crystal clear, the water is hot and you’re surfing in front of paradisiacal islands. The Maldives have dozens of world class waves.
Is it a long way between surf spots and atolls?
No, the waves are close to each other from 15 to 30 minutes distance and there are at least 2 good surf spots in each corner. The distance between atolls is around 5 to 8 hours cruising depending on the weather.
No prior visa is required to enter the Republic of Maldives. A 30 day entry permit will be granted to visitors on arrival at designated ports of entry, based on the immigration requirements:
A valid international travel document issued by a sovereign state’s government with a minimum of 6 months validity.
A valid return air ticket and necessary visas to final destination.
A minimum of USD 50 per person per day or confirmed hotel reservation voucher.
Maldives has FREE VISA for all the tourists for 30 days on arrival.
There are many international airlines flying into the Maldives, offering good connections from Madrid, Paris, London, New York, Milan, Rome, Frankfurt, Sao Pablo, Dubai, Doha, Moscow, Shanghai, Hong Kong, Istambul, Sydney, Cape Town and Singapore to name a few.
Sri Lankan Airlines
South African Airways
*Due to seasonality, not all Airlines fly on a daily basis.
What is prohibited to import into the country?
The following items are strictly prohibited by law to Import into the country: pornographic materials in any form, spear gun, harpoons, alcohol (see next question), drugs (the penalty for importing of such drugs is severe, usually life imprisonment). More info under: www.customs.gov.mv
Can I bring alcohol and liquor into the Maldives?
You are not allowed to bring liquor to the Maldives. If you have bought liquor, beer and related items containing alcohol from a duty free shop while on route to the Maldives, these products must be bonded in the airport’s customs department upon arrival. These goods will be returned before departure. Note that alcohol can be bought on the Boats and Resorts for a reasonable price.
What happens if there is an accident?
If you are in a Resort everything is covered. With doctors in the house and Seaplane evacuation
If you are in a Boat you will be brought to the nearest resort as each one of them has its own doctor. Or the closest local island hospital/clinic. If the case is serious, you will be brought to the main hospital in Male.
We have the direct contact of the Seaplane company for emergencies (will apply an extra cost).
Anyway, all guests are required to have travel insurance, which should cover medical emergencies and repatriation if needed
What to wear when visiting local residential islands?
Maldives is a Muslim country. To visit local residential islands and airports you should dress modestly. Your body should be covered from shoulder to knee. Women should not wear skimpy tops or short skirts/shorts. Nudity is forbidden in all areas.
Which currency should I bring?
The local currency used in Maldives is called Rufiyaa or MVR. Local shops only accept Rufiyaa and US Dollar (USD). There is a currency exchange booth just outside the Arrivals Hall(International Aiport in Male). There is also an ATM from which you can withdraw local currency.
Are mosquito's a problem?
There is no malaria in the Maldives.
For Liveaboards(boats): Being anchored offshore it is not common to have mosquito's on board. Although on very calm windless nights there can sometimes be one or two. Bring mosquito repellent just in case. If you are in a local Guest House or you visit the islands in the early morning or late afternoon/early evening you will probably encounter some mosquito's.
If you stop at a Resort, there will be very few or nothing at all, since they usually spray every day
What about Hazards (Marine Life)?
(sharks, stingrays, frogfish, lionfish, jellyfish...)
There are no official records of shark attacks in Maldives.
Maldivian sharks are surrounded by a lot of marine life(food). At the same time the clarity of the water avoids confusion/accidents.
Yes we recommend avoiding surfing or swimming on the surface(open ocean) before sunrise or after sunset, especially on moonless nights.
Most sharks are reef sharks (black or white tips, the most common and do not exceed one and a half meters). They are peaceful and are often far from the waves.
If you are lucky to see some curious shark nearby, just stay calm. enjoy, and do not bother them. They will go away.
Never feed or try to feed them. It is dangerous and it is forbidden in Maldives. The few local rumors, of attacks was for it..
For the rest of the fascinating poison creatures: Stingrays, Jellyfish, Lion Fish, Frog Fish, some corals, etc... basically the same. Observe and do not touch. They will not attack you unless they are threatened.
On the unfortunate occasion that you are unintentionally affected by them, the crew will assist you with first aid to calm down the pain , and if necessary you will be transferred to the nearest local hospital.