Spend the day exploring two of the capital islands with TripAdvisors' leading Hulhumale tour company. Your morning will be spent visiting key points of interest in the capital including the fish market, local market, Sultan Park, Presidents Palace, Friday Mosque with an optional museum visit (entrance fee not included) as well as discovering a few points off the beaten track! Stop for lunch at one of the many restaurants overlooking the water front before taking the public ferry to Villimale’ to discover the quieter side of city life. Before returning to Male’, sample traditional ‘hedika’ at a local café on the beach.
Your tour starts with an overview of Male and the harbour area, a very important aspect of any island nation.
Passing by the oldest school in the city, learn about the education system and why the Maldives has a 98% literacy rate. Visit Hukuru Miskiiy - Old Friday Mosque and the tomb of Abu -al - Barakaath and learn why the Maldives converted to Islam and how the Islamic faith underpins everyday life.
Stop for a refreshing cup of traditional black tea at Royal Garden Café, a popular spot for locals. Housed in a rare example of a ‘ganduvaru’ a nobleman’s house, it provides a great example of traditional dark carved wood interiors.
Stopping at the November 3rd Memorial, hear the story of how 8 brave military servicemen died in the protection of their country from a terrorist attack in 1988. Wander through Sultan Park, a reference to the time the Maldives was governed by a sultanate with an optional visit to the National Museum. (Note: Entrance fee not included.)
Walking back towards the harbour area, pass by the Grand Friday Mosque and the Islamic Centre, Male's famous architectural landmark and onto Jumhooree Maiden - Independence Square. From here, learn the meaning of the Maldives national flag and pick out key government buildings.
Heading west along the harbour, visit the bustling fish market and the local market, where the sights, sounds and smells will fill your senses. Chat with the local stall holders and taste tropical produce and homemade sweets.
Your guide will provide a selection of lunch time restaurant options based on your tastes.
Following lunch jump into a taxi with your guide in order to reach the terminal where your ferry departs to Villimale from.
The island, once a resort and also a prison, was 'developed' to assist with the ever growing population of Male. It offers the ideal escape from the ever busy capital city. Wide, open streets, an abundance of greenery so unlike Male, two local beaches and peaceful almost tranquil atmosphere.
Stepping off the ferry in Villimale, you may not be stepping back in time but you will be able to understand and visualise how the city islands would have been prior to urban modernisation. After an introduction to the NGO Save the beach representative, they will conduct a 60-minute walking tour of the island, which will allow you to understand and appreciate the local way of 'city' life.
Sample 'hedika' local savoury snacks served with black tea and allow your taste buds to discover Maldivian flavors. Before returning to the 'big city,' we take time to sit back and relax in true Maldivian style and watch the sunset colours fill the sky.