Where Are The Maldives?

Where are the Maldives and why are people always talking about this beautiful vacation spot. Can you even go there?

By Rick Gonzales | Published

where are the maldives

The name sounds fancy enough. In fact, the Maldives sound like a place that would be a wonderful vacation spot. To that point, the rich and famous love to venture to the Maldives and do so frequently. So, where are the Maldives located? When you get there, do you need a big bundle of cash to have fun or can we common folk enjoy time in the Maldives and not have to take out a second mortgage on our home? Let’s Mal “dives” in.


While you may think the Maldives is one specific location, it is actually a series of nearly 1,200 islands located in the Indian Ocean. This island country takes up over 510 miles running north and south while only taking up 80 miles from east to west. The northern-most section of Maldives is located about 370 miles from India’s mainland.

The placement of the Maldives has it running across the equator. Most of the 1,200 islands that make up the Maldives are simply small coral islands and sandbanks. In fact, of all the islands calling themselves the Maldives, only 200 of them are inhabited. These islands can be found grouped in atolls or in clusters. Of these 200 inhabited islands, many are used for resorts and hotels. Some of the islands, though, are used strictly for agriculture or industry.

If you are wanting to know where are the Maldives located, then you are also going to want to know that the capital of Maldives is Malé. It is also the most populous place in the Maldives. In fact, with its population climbing up to over 253,000, Malé is known as one of the most densely populated cities on Earth. Malé is only 3.21 square miles in size. It almost seems like too tight a fit and stands in sharp contrast to other parts of the Maldives.

Another amazing feature concerning the Maldives is that of the 1,200 or so islands that comprise it, they are all considered low-lying with not a one rising greater than 6 feet above sea level. Being where they are located in the Indian Ocean, there is plenty of concern for adverse weather. The Maldives is home to many a monsoon, but barrier reefs provide constant protection from the oft-times wild Indian Ocean. The Maldives calls the timeframe of May-August as their rainy season, and this is when the southwest monsoons make their appearance. From December to March, the northeast monsoon takes over and with it dry, mild winds. Not as much moisture comes in from December to March.

As you can imagine, the Maldives is both hot and sunny throughout the year, even during monsoon season. The average temperature is between 74°F and 88°F. The average rainfall for the Maldives is around 84 inches per year but if you are looking to travel there and hope to avoid the rain, the driest months are typically between November and April. That timeframe presents visitors with plenty of sunshine, warm air, great seas, and very little rain.


So, now that we know where the Maldives are located, it’s important to know about the locals. The population is considered to be Maldivian, which is the result of a number of different peoples settling on the islands. The first settlers were thought to be peoples from southern India and Sri Lanka – Tamil and Sinhalese. Throughout the centuries, the Maldives also welcomed traders from, Malaya, Madagascar, Indonesia, China, and Arab countries. These people are who made up the make of the island chain.

The official language of the Maldives is Dhivehi also known as Maldivian. The language is Indo-European. Dhivehi is not the only language spoken as locals also speak Hindi, Arabic, and English. Again, the Maldives have had so many inhabitants over the centuries that there’s become quite a mix.


where are the maldives

To know where the Maldives are located is to also know how expensive the Maldives are. Like most tropical resort destinations, the Maldives can be as expensive as you wish. With that in mind, you can also make it to the Maldives on a budget as well.

Over the years, though, the Maldives has been gaining a reputation as the place to go, especially for celebrities. For example, the Baa Atoll is home to one of the most luxurious resorts, Amilla Maldives Resort & Residences. Complete luxury awaits those who can pony up enough cash to make a stay in the place. Those who have it and graced the resort with their presence include Kate Moss, Leonardo DiCaprio, the Beckhams, Gordon Ramsey and his family, Kate Winslett, Paris Hilton, Lindsay Lohan, Orlando Bloom and Katy Perry, and Cara Delevingne & Ashley Benson.

The One & Only Reethi Rah is another Maldivian resort that not only has seen some of the above celebrities spend time at the resort, but so did Tom Cruise, Milla Jovovich, Russell Crowe, and Idris Elba. Not shabby for a resort that some consider a bit tame by Maldives standards.

Another wonderful spot in the Maldives is called the Gili Lankanfushi. There are many things to love about this place from it only having 46 villas and is located a short 20-minute speedboat ride from the Malé airport. When you first get on the boat to Gili, you are asked to remove your shoes. From then on, barefoot is the preferred recommendation while at the resort. As in, barefoot all the time. Hard to argue with that.

It is hard to get an exact number when looking at getting to the Maldives. Airline tickets vary widely depending on the season, the cheapest time to go would be in February. Choosing where you will stay is another question mark as to how much you can spend. With as many celebrities that make their appearances in the Maldives, you can imagine you can spend as much as you wish for luxury. But there are plenty of places in the Maldives that can be had for a few hundred dollars a night.

Knowing where the Maldives are should also let you understand that getting food and merchandise to all the resorts can be a pricey proposition. This means that some of that cost is handed over to customers. Prices are not cheap when it comes to food, clothing, and essentials. Price is also not too cheap for those who wish to take an excursion or two. But, you are in the Maldives. You should expect to be paying some exorbitant prices.


Undoubtedly, the Maldives is a place for tourists to enjoy. As with many tourist spots across the globe, the Maldives offer the same type of recreation and entertainment seen in popular locations. Above the water, Maldives has plenty to do. Depending on where in the Maldives you end up, you can find golf, you can find wonderful shopping, and you can find great water sports.

One thing you will not find, especially on Malé, is alcohol. Right? Many of us go on our vacations to relax, and relaxation most times include sipping an adult beverage. But the state religion is Islam which means the sale and consumption of alcohol are prohibited. This not only includes the locals, but also the tourists who come to visit.

Now, while it sounds like a massive downer not being able to partake in a bev-y or two, there are actually some places in the Maldives that allow you to get away with this ban. You will not be able to purchase alcohol in the Maldives since it isn’t sold in stores, but they do allow alcohol at some island resorts and the floating bars you sometimes see. Be forewarned, though, you will be paying a premium price for a drink.


Sometimes it feels as if being an American traveling outside the United States means you’ve got a bullseye painted on your back. We have all seen the horror stories of bad things happening to Americans abroad and if you plan on traveling to the Maldives (or any place not in the US), then you should know and understand the risks.

The Maldives are no less unsafe than many of the other popular international tourist destinations. Of course, people wonder because the official state religion is Islam and the US’s recent history has not been overwhelmingly favorable. The best thing to do is to always check with US Travel Advisory. At the present time, the website is advising travelers heading to the Maldives to “exercise increased caution” due to terrorism. Should this frighten you off? That is a call you would need to determine and not an easy one. As with whatever trip you are planning outside of the US, doing research on your destination is the best way to proceed.


So, now you know where the Maldives are located. Hopefully, you understand the pros and cons of such a trip. It has become a more and more popular vacation spot for celebrities, so that may tell you all you need to know. Plan accordingly, do your research, and if you plan on taking that trip, enjoy.