Maldives epitomises luxury and romance at its best. However, there are so many things that tourists can do which do not fit into these two categories. If you are looking to travel on a budget or simply go backpacking – or island hopping as they call it – there are so many amazing activities you can fit into your itinerary without the fear of emptying your wallets.
- Take a trip to a sandbank: Enjoy the crystal clear waters while snorkeling or simply get your tans on in this tiny piece of heaven in the middle of nowhere.
- Play football with the locals: Football is a sport enjoyed by almost all Maldivians and it is a common sight to see youngsters and adults enjoying a friendly game of football on the beach.
- Drink a coconut on the beach: Enjoy the simpler things in life as you drink a fresh coconut picked right from the palm.
- Have some hedhikaa (short-eats): Short-eats are a Maldivian speciality available in almost all tea shops and local households. Grab your favorites and savor them with a hot cup of black tea.
- Eat like a local: Maldivian food is readily available in all local islands and resorts. Some of the most delicious food ranging from crunchy snacks to short eats to Maldivian curries are offered. One of the most famous meals is Mashuni (grated coconut, tuna, onion, chili and lemon) and Roshi (chapati), typically eaten in the mornings.
- Learn to cook something new: It is fascinating to see how Maldivians prepare food using age-old techniques and unique ingredients. There are many island specialities you can try your hand at. Freshly available fruits and vegetables are usually available and if you are lucky, you can attempt to make theluli banbukeyo (fried breadfruit slices) – one of the most loved snacks of all time – during the breadfruit season.
- Learn a few Dhivehi phrases: Dhivehi is the official language of Maldives. While it may seem very difficult to learn, you can always stick to the most commonly used phrases and surprise the locals on your next trip to the country.
- Go for bicycle ride: The roads are usually vast and empty making it the perfect place to hop on a bicycle and take a ride through the island.
- Sunrise yoga: Wake up to the call of roosters on the island, grab your paddle board and go for a relaxing yoga session on the water, or simply settle yourself down on the beach and stretch yourself.
- Sunset cruise with the dolphins: A stay on any island is incomplete without a cruise alongside majestic dolphins while enjoying an amazing sunset.
- Try your hand at local handiwork: Traditional handicraft in Maldives includes mat weaving, lacquer work and embroidery which you can attempt with complete guidance and support.
- Eat freshly caught fish (fishing/barbecue): Cook a meal from freshly caught fish in the middle of the ocean or barbecue them on shore once you are back on the island.