Maafushi is one of the inhabited islands of Kaafu Atoll and the proposed capital for the Medhu Uthuru Province of the Maldives. The Island Maafushi is popular for the Maafushi Prison.
The Maafushi Island was heavily damaged by the 2004 tsunami which impacted on over 100,000 of the Maldives 300,000 population. The International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies, supported by the Irish and American Red Cross Societies, began work on a mains sewage system on 10 August 2006. The International Federation has also funded the building of homes for those who lost theirs during the tsunami. Both schemes are carried out in partnership with commercial contractors and with the support and involvement of the local community
Transport System In Mafushi
Maafushi is connected by ferry service from Malé.
It’s possible to arrive by public MTCC ferry and it cost is about 22 MVR, there are two options:
311: This ferry departures from the new extension in front of the Villingili Ferry Terminal of Malé. It departures at 15:00 all days except Friday and the trip is about 1h45.
310: This ferry departures from the Villingili Ferry Terminal of Malé. It departures at 10:00 on Sunday, Tuesday and Thursday.
There are some speed boats that links Malé and Maafushi in 30 minutes, the cost is about 25$.
Public ferry timings
Sunday: 10:00, 15:00;
Tuesday: 10:00, 15:00;
Thursday: 10:00, 15:00;
Friday: not available.
Saturday: 07:30, 12:45;
Monday: 07:30, 12:45;
Wedesday: 07:30, 12:45;
Friday: not available.
Available daily, Male-Maafushi, the cost is $25, departs at 9:15, 13:30, 19:00, 22:00.
Maafushi-Male at 8:00, 12:00, 13:30, 17:00, 21:00 and runs to the airport.
Available at any time. Price is $US 170 per way.
Tourism in Maafushi
From year to year, there are less and fewer locals are living on the island. The reason is simple – they either open another hotel by themselves or lease land with a house and move to Male or Hulhumale.
Tourism has been started in 2012 from President Nasheed. In fact, this man did a lot of things to establish the budget segment of tourism in the Maldives, and he began with Maafushi.
As of August 2016 there were in excess of 55 visitor houses in Maafushi and it is the main neighborhood occupied island with generally number of visitor houses and visitor beds in the nation. The visitor houses give the island direct business, and numerous other roundabout financial advantages to pretty much every family in the island. Most visitor houses are subsidized by direct speculations by neighborhood occupants of the island. Be that as it may, as of late there have been ventures by money managers in Male’ and somewhere else.
Visitor houses give different journeys, including, swimming, fishing, water sports, and outing island trips. There are additionally three plunge communities in Maafushi.
The fundamental target of permitting visitor houses in neighborhood islands by the public authority in 2009 is to make monetary development more comprehensive. As visitor houses permit neighborhood occupants to make a living straightforwardly while living in the island, it additionally makes the travel industry receipts more comprehensive, and pay circulation all the more even. Earlier this strategy, traveler foundations were permitted distinctly on independent uninhabited islands, and they are generally called “Resorts”.
Most these hotels are claimed and worked by barely any financial specialists in the nation, and the rest are possessed and worked by unfamiliar organizations. Thus, the genuine advantages of the travel industry were not entered to the neighborhood residents of the nation. This was apparent by the latest monetary review led by the Government, which uncovered that over a time of 5 years, the pay dissemination of the nation has gotten more lopsided, despite the fact that the nation’s GDP has extended.
Things to do in this Island
Bikini Beach and house reef
The beach area on Maafushi, in comparison with Thoddoo or Ukulhas, is small and is divided into two parts by a breakwater. One part is surrounded by a fence, and in the second there are several restaurants, a dive center, and hotels. Due to a large number of tourists even during the off-season, the beach can be crowded. Therefore, no privacy out there.
The house reef is almost dead (it’s pretty far from the beach). But guest houses organize snorkeling safaris at 1,2,3 different sites. The average cost of such a trip is $ 25-40 per person.
Sand Bank Trip
Head out to a stunning sandbank for a picnic lunch, an awesome spot to snap heaps of beautiful pictures, and enjoy the clear waters. You won’t be alone on a picnic island. Nowadays, a lot of nearby sandbanks and picnic islands are occupied by ner island resorts. So only near Rihiveli is one of few places to visit.
At Maafushi you can try any kind of water sports: kite surfing, windsurfing, parasailing, water skiing, jet ski and much more. In this regard, Maafushi favorably stands out among other local islands, because such centers can be found not on every island.
If you are going to a group of 8-12 people, it’s possible to organize an excursion to Ari Atoll to swim with whale sharks.
Diving and snorkelling:
All guesthouses and water sports center in Maafushi offer exciting trips to breathtaking reefs that are full of colorful coral gardens and are teeming with marine life. Some of the best snorkeling sites are Maavelaathu, Banana Reef, Vilivaru Corner, Turtle Garden and Maafushi Corner. All trips are with a group.
Some guesthouses organize full-day excursions in Vaavu Atoll and include snorkeling, a sandbank visit, lunch, a safari with dolphins.
Alcohol is prohibited on any local island in Maafushi. However, a safari boat is anchored near Maafushi with a bar where you can stay with a can of beer, a glass of wine or a cocktail. How does it work? It’s very simple: from Maafushi you will be taken to a safari boat, where you relax and after a few hours you will be taken back. Approximate prices for alcohol: a can of beer 0.33l 5-7 $, a bottle of wine – 30-50 $, a bottle of vodka/whiskey 1l – 100-130 $. It is prohibited to take alcohol with you.
Caught fish can be cooked for free at your hotel. But it is better to discuss all the details in advance, because it can be served with rice, greens, etc.
There are several types of fishing, the easiest of them is when they give you a reel with a fishing line and a hook. The option is more serious – big game fishing – hunting for large fish – marlin, sailfish, barracuda.
Everyone who is lucky to visit Maldives has to try scuba diving at least once. It will be an unforgettable experience! In the neighbor, apart from coral gardens, there is a wreck, but only certified divers can get there.
On Maafushi 4 dive centers, which guides have PADI certificates. If you wish, you can also take a course and get a certificate of a diver, which allows you to dive yourself (without a guide, but with a buddy). Depending on the season, you can see sea turtles, manta rays, sharks.
It should be noted that diving in Vaavu Atoll, South, and North Ari Atoll is much better. In this region, the South Male Atoll is now actively new island are building, followed by the construction of new resorts, which also affects the reef and its inhabitants.
Resort Day Visit
There are a lot of island resorts near Maafushi that allow day visits for guests. The trip includes transfer by boat, entrance fee, meals, drinks and all resort amenities. The price from $80 to $180 per person.
6 km away from Maafushi another two local islands (Guraidhoo and Gulhi) are located, where you can be taken by local ferry running from Maafushi.
OZEN by Atmosphere (with underwater restaurant);
Anantara Veli and Anantara Dhigu;
What to eat
There are a lot of cafes and restaurants for tourists on the island. Some guesthouses carry chairs and tables outside, giving the opportunity to enjoy dinner in the open.
Here is a small gastronomic vocabulary, which should help you to distinguish between different products and dishes:
Bajiya – fish pie with coconut and onion;
Baj – rice;
Bondi – pasties with coconut;
Garudhiya – fish soup and rice with lemon, onion and pod pepper;
Gula – fried meat balls with tuna and coconut;
Dhiyaa hakuru – coconut milk;
Keemia – rolls with fried fish;
Kiru sarbat – sweet milk;
Kulhi borkibaa – pasties with fish and spices;
Mas – fish;
Mas huni – dried and soft smoked fish with coconut flakes and onion;
Rihaukuru – fish paste;
Roshi – national no-yeast bread (looks like galettes);
Theluli kavaabu – croquette with fried fish;
Theluli mas – large pieces of fried fish with pepper and garlic;
Fihunumas – pepper-rubbed fried fish;
Foni boakiba – rice pudding with coconut milk;
Hikimas – dried and soft smoked fish;
Maldivian Hedhikaa – a deep-fried snack, which includes smoked fish, coconut flakes, lime juice, onion, and chili.
If you wish, in your guest house you can order a private dinner on the coast or a barbeque on one of the neighboring islands.
Where to stay in Maafushi
There are a lot of places to stay, but I advise Kaani Grand Seaview, and that’s why.
– There are 4 Kaani hotels, so you can use facilities of any of them;
– Seaview rooms;
– Super friendly staff with experience working in resorts. So high-quality service is guaranteed;
– Amazing in-house restaurant with a great variety of local and continental cuisine;
– Unlimited coffee and tea;
– Own floating bar Kaani Princes;
– Own speedboats for transfer and excursions;
– Pool and SPA facilities;
– Affordable excursions;
– Free Airport meet and greet service