Fulidhoo Island in the Vaavu Atoll of the Maldives offers an authentic island experience. Fulidhoo Island is one of only 25 local islands with tourism infrastructure. And, at only 35 miles from the capital of Malé, near the popular island of Maafushi, it’s easily accessible to travelers. But what’s the diving in Fulidhoo Island like?
Far from the resort islands common in the rest of the Maldives, Fulidhoo is much more laid-back, with only a handful of guesthouses. The diving and accommodation around the island are generally more affordable than elsewhere in the Maldives. The island is a little less than half a mile long (700 m) and a little over a tenth of a mile (200 m) wide with between 300 and 400 local inhabitants. It will take you only about 10 minutes to walk around the island. Here are our picks for some of the best dive experiences in Fulidhoo Island.
Dive sites near Fulidhoo Island
Several sites around Fulidhoo make for spectacular night dives. Alimatha is notorious for the hundreds of nurse sharks that typically join divers each night. The dive is usually a drift dive between 16 to 82 feet (5 to 25 m). The sharks hang around an area where local tourism operators used to feed them — the practice ended years ago but the sharks still visit in their masses. For a bonus experience, you can try a fluorescent night dive with special torches.
Miyaru Kandu is better suited for experienced divers, as there can be mild to strong current. The dive starts with a drift along a slanted reef to the channel. Here you can see gray reef and whitetip reef sharks and possibly manta rays. Miyaru Kandu features depths ranging from 33 to 100 feet (10 to 30 m).
Faru Kolhu is a drift dive for all levels of divers. The reef, between 33 to 100 feet (10 to 30 m), is home to sharks, sailfish, schools of tuna, and barracuda. Kunaavashi Kandu is a channel dive with possible strong currents but is still dive-able for divers of all levels. The depth ranges between 16 to 100 feet (5 to 30 m) and you can see schools of gray reef sharks, eagle rays, and sometimes manta rays. An abundance of soft coral attracts many turtles to this reef.
Other sites around Fulidhoo
Fulidhoo Caves lies between (20 to 30 m) and is a relaxed wall dive with many overhangs where macro life hangs out. This site makes a good sunset or night dive.
Endheri Thila is a good reef site to dive year-round. The depth of the reef ranges between (5 to 25 m). Divers may spot turtles, bait fish and fusiliers against the backdrop of black coral covered reefs.
Reefs are usually quiet, with few divers and there are many uncharted areas that you may be able to explore for new dive sites.
The Maldives has two main seasons, Iruvai and Hulhangu. During the Iruvai season the wind usually blows from the northeast, bringing the best diving conditions. Iruvai is from November to April. Hulhangu is between May and October and brings wind and rain. During this season the visibility around the Maldives is not great, however Fulidhoo Island is situated on the northern tip of the western atolls, which can mean good diving year-round. The water temperature ranges between (27 to 30 C) with visibility between 50 to 130 feet (15 to 40 m).
Fulidhoo is a quiet little island in the Maldives where you can experience the local culture and relaxed island feel. The diving is some of the best that the Maldives has to offer—with the price to match.