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Maldives holidays

With an average, year-round temperature of 29°C, the Maldives has all the right ingredients for a luxury break. As a favourite with honeymooners and celebrities, it’s considered one of the most desirable destinations on the planet. Holidays to the Maldives are for those who want to treat their loved ones to a slice of paradise. Kick back in complete privacy on white sandy beaches that slide gently into the azure waters of the Indian Ocean. The islands that make up this small archipelago are perfect for unwinding under the scorching sun.

 

25°C - 32°C

There’s no such thing as a chill-factor in the Maldives with temperatures rarely dropping below 25°C. May to September is classed as the rainy season, but showers normally come in short bursts, and before you know it you’ll be sunbathing again.

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11 hours
Velana International Airport (ML), also known as Malé International Airport, is the largest and busiest in the Maldives.

Weather and climate in Maldives

You’ll find sunshine, warmth and blue skies whenever you choose to go in the Maldives, but it is worth noting there are some seasonal and regional variations. There are two distinct seasons: the wet season which lasts from May to October and the dry season between November and April.

The Southwest monsoon brings rain, strong winds and higher humidity but you’ll still find lots of reasons to travel in the wet season, when prices are lower. It’s the best time to surf and you’re also more likely to see whale sharks and manta rays as the ocean is rich in plankton for them to feed on.

You’re most likely to be rained on in August and September, with a monthly average of 243mm. If you’re in the Southern islands you’ll get slightly more rain than the north of the country. But wherever you are, you’ll notice that the rain clouds blow over quickly and the sun comes out again after the short, sharp downpours. It can be raining on your island and not on the one next door. And don’t expect constant monsoon weather. Even at the height of the wet season you won’t experience more than three days of rain together, so you can still enjoy a great holiday.

You’ll find average temperatures hardly fluctuate throughout the year, ranging from 25°C to 30°C. It tends to be slightly hotter in the wet season, with the mercury occasionally hitting 33°C.

In the dry season, you can expect 12 hours of daylight and up to 10 hours of sunshine a day with beautiful blue skies and temperatures between 24°C and 30°C. The seas are calmer and clearer so it’s easier to swim, snorkel and dive between the months of November and April.

The hottest month is March while the ‘coldest’ is January (but you’ll still think it’s warm). January and February are the most popular times to visit the Maldives from the UK, when temperatures are around 28°C. You’ll find rain is rare and brief, only measuring about 50mm a month and more of a welcome refreshment than a nuisance. And of course, the contrast with the UK weather is most stark at the start of the year. You could be basking in sunshine while it’s snowing back home.

You’ll find the sea temperature change very little in the Maldives. It may drop to 20°C in December but that’s hardly cold. Most of the time it’s a balmy 28°C so you can put away your wetsuits. Pack beachwear, shorts and t-shirts plus plenty of high factor sunscreen. You won’t need a cardigan for colder nights as the temperature only dips slightly, but it could come in handy to take the chill off powerful air-conditioning in your resort.

Maldives is best for...

Honeymooners: The Maldives is the ultimate honeymoon destination, making it a beautiful setting for a date. Whether you choose to dine on the beach with a private chef, walk hand-in-hand along the sand at sunset or book yourself in for a couples’ massage, this island screams romance.

Waterbabies:There are so many incredible water-based experiences waiting for you in the Maldives.The clear waters offer amazing visibility for keen divers, giving you plenty of opportunity to spot the unique marine creatures. Back above the waves, you can stay active with a range of sports such as kayaking, jet-skiing and even seabobbing.

Beach lovers: You won’t come across many beaches that rival those in the Maldives. Expect deserted white sands lined with coconut palms and surrounded by shallow, emerald waters. Days here are all about kicking back and enjoying the view. 

Fast facts for Maldives

Language: The official language of the Maldives is Maldivian.

Currency: The currency in the Maldives is the Rufiyaa (Rf).

Local time: The Maldives is 5 hours ahead of the UK (GMT+5). 

Fly to: Velana International Airport (ML), which is located on the island of Hulhule, close to the capital Malé. From here, you’ll reach your resort with a seaplane or speedboat transfer.

Flight time from UK: 11 hours

Tourist Information: Further tourist information can be found at the Maldives tourism website.

Visa / Health: Before you travel, check the latest advice from the Foreign, Commonwealth & Development Office

Should I get a visa?

British nationals will require a Maldives visa in order to gain entry to the islands. Also known as ‘tourist visas’, these allow you to remain in the Maldives for up to 30 days, on the condition that you have a return or onward ticket and enough funds to support your stay. For more about visas, please refer to the FCDO’s entry requirements.

Should I get travel health insurance?

It’s always a good idea to have comprehensive travel health insurance if you’re going abroad. Policies offer insurance against things like the cost of medicines, medical treatment and even repatriation back to the UK. Be sure to check what your policy covers.

Getting around Maldives

Events in Maldives

Maldives safety and security

For up-to-date advice on travelling to Maldives, please visit the FCDO website.

Any other tips?

  • The islands’ capital, Malé, is quite conservative. Women should keep covered up while there and public displays of affection are considered to be offensive. Alcohol is also forbidden. However, these rules do not apply to the resort islands, so pack your swimsuit and feel free to enjoy a drink in a bar or restaurant.
  • Snorkellers can take advantage of the magical reefs. Some of the islands in the archipelago are concave, allowing snorkellers and divers to swim underneath them.
  • To combine dining with a spot of submarine spectacle on your Maldives holiday, be sure to pay a visit to the 5.8 Undersea Restaurant. You can enjoy sumptuous meals under the waves while watching a spectacular array of sea creatures going about their business.
  • While the islands themselves are beautiful, what’s under and around them can be equally stunning. It might be worth investing in an underwater camera so you can snap the corals and marine life that have made their home in the Indian Ocean.