Welcome to Maafushi Maldives! People say that the Maldivian islands are where they find their inner peace and calmness; so much so that the entire country’s economy is literally built around the hospitality business. But you’ll have to experience the sudden change of pace, from your flight to the hustle and bustle of the capital city of Maldives, to the utter change of pace that you’ll experience on a remote island in the Indian Ocean to fully understand what this means.
About 90 minutes away from Malé by ferry boat, Maafushi Island is a favorite that’s frequented by a lot of backpackers. Located in the South Malé Atoll, the island is relatively large, compared to other islands in the same atoll, but also suffers from erosion on the northern shoreline.
There are more than 40 guest houses in Maafushi as at December 2015, and it is the only local inhabited island with most number of guest houses and guest beds in the country. The guest houses provide the island with direct employment, and many other indirect economic benefits to almost every family in the island. Most guest houses are funded by direct investments by local residents of the island. However, recently there have been investments by businessmen in Male’ and elsewhere.
Guest houses provide various excursions, including, snorkeling, fishing, water sports, and picnic island excursions. There are also three dive centers in Maafushi.
The small sandbar towards the north, on the same reef as Maafushi is a lovely place to spend a day snorkeling and sunbathing. Accessible by just walking in the sea during low tide, this tiny island has just about a couple of coconut trees, some shrubs and broad vistas of the Maldivian seascape in every direction. There is another sandbar named Furafathi, in the middle of the sea towards the west, but requires a boat for access. Snorkeling here is lovely as there are lots of fish, and the reef around the isle is alive and healthy.
Guesthouses in Maafushi provide water sports activities like catamaran rides, while others have a colorful and exciting display of local cultural dances like ‘Bodu-beru’, during a barbeque of your catch of fish.