MALDIVES SNORKELING

Simple and free

Snorkelling is the first step into seeing a different world. Anyone who can swim can do it, it’s cheap (and often free) to use the equipment and the rewards are immediately evident. The colours of the fish and coral are far better at shallow depths, because water absorbs light. This means a visual feast awaits any snorkeller on any decent reef.

WHERE TO SNORKEL

Usually an island is surrounded firstly by a sand-bottomed lagoon, and then by the reef flat (faru), a belt of dead and living coral covered by shallow water. At the edge of the reef flat is a steep, coral-covered slope that drops away into deeper water. These reef slopes are the best areas for snorkelling – around a resort island this is called the ‘house reef’.

The slope itself can have interesting features such as cliffs, terraces and caves, and there are clearly visible changes in the coral and marine flora as the water gets deeper. You can see both the smaller fish, which frequent the reef flats, and sometimes much larger animals that live in the deep water between the islands but come close to the reefs to feed. You can also take a boat from your resort to other snorkelling sites around the atoll.

The best resorts for snorkelling have an accessible house reef around at least part of the island, where deep water is not far offshore. There are usually channels you can swim through to the outer-reef slope. To avoid grazing yourself or damaging the coral, always use these channels rather than trying to find your own way across the reef flat.

Maldives Snorkeling
Vilamendhoo Island House Reef
Vilamendhoo Island House Reef
Vilamendhoo Island House Reef

SNORKELING SCORE

We have the snorkeling environment of the Maldives islands in five grades (1~5), 1 worst (completely no snorkeling House reef), 5 best (snorkeling House reef 100% around the island).

  • If you just sneak out, there is not much demand – the island of Snorkeling 3/5 can be satisfied.
  • There are certain requirements for snorkeling, but it is not demanding – the island of Snorkeling 4/5 can be satisfied.
  • If you are a snorkeling enthusiast, the most extreme, then no doubt – the island of Snorkeling 5/5 is the only choice.

SNORKELING 5/5 RESORTS

MIRIHI ISLAND RESORT

Mirihi Island Resort

Five-star resort, Beach score 5/Max 5, Snorkeling 5/Max 5, by seaplane 30min.

DUSIT THANI MALDIVES

Dusit Thani Maldives

Five-star resort, Beach score 4/Max 5, Snorkeling 5/Max 5, by seaplane 35min.

KANDOLHU MALDIVES

Kandolhu Maldives

Five-star resort, Beach score 5/Max 5, Snorkeling 5/Max 5, by seaplane 25min.

LILY BEACH RESORT & SPA

Lily Beach Resort & Spa

Five-star resort, Beach score 3/Max 5, Snorkeling 5/Max 5, by seaplane 25min.

DIAMONDS THUDUFUSHI

Diamonds Thudufushi

Five-star resort, Beach score 5/Max 5, Snorkeling 5/Max 5, by seaplane 25min.

DRIFT THELU VELIGA RETREAT

Drift Thelu Veliga Retreat

Four-star resort, Beach score 5/Max 5, Snorkeling 5/Max 5, by seaplane 35min.

AMARI HAVODDA MALDIVES

Amari Havodda Maldives

Five-star resort, Beach score 5/Max 5, Snorkeling 5/Max 5, by domestic flight+speedboat 55+10min.

ROBINSON CLUB MALDIVES

Robinson Club Maldives

Four-star resort, Beach score 3/Max 5, Snorkeling 5/Max 5, by domestic flight+speedboat 55+20min.

SNORKELING EXCURSIONS

If there is no House reef for snorkeling on the resort island, then it is usually a few trips a day to a good snorkeling spot nearby, but this is inconvenient because you are limited in time. And usually not a person. But the advantage is that a snorkeling trip can take you to the best snorkeling spot in the atoll. Experienced snorkelers can easily sneak 5m or more without difficulty, if visibility is very good, you can enjoy the scenery about 10m underwater.

SNORKELLING SAFELY

Don’t snorkel alone, and always let someone else know where and when you’ll be snorkelling. Colourful equipment or clothing will make you more visible. Beware of strong currents or rough conditions – wind chop and large swells can make snorkelling uncomfortable or even dangerous. In open water, carry a safety balloon and whistle to alert boats to your presence.