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Snorkeling in the Maldives, along with diving, has always been, is and will be a favorite pastime of tourists. The secret lies in the fabulously rich underwater world of the Indian Ocean and the stunning natural conditions that are found on the reef islands. What is snorkeling? Why is it so popular? Where is the best snorkeling in the Maldives? How much such entertainment can cost? Everything you need to know is discussed further in order.

What is snorkeling?

Snorkel (from German: Schnorchel) is a breathing tube that is used when swimming near the surface of the water. Hence the name of such entertainment - snorkeling (or snorkeling). This is a type of scuba diving with shallow diving (up to 10 meters). Like freediving, snorkeling is a type of diving. Its basis is the observation of underwater inhabitants in their natural environment. Snorkeling is very popular in tropical latitudes, as well as the Maldives.

Sebastian Pena Lambarri
Sebastian Pena Lambarri

Snorkeling equipment

It is comfortable to dive in warm waters without any additional clothing and equipment. Snorkeling in the Maldives, as in other regions, can be done using several equipment pieces - the mask itself, snorkels and fins, if necessary.

How to choose snorkeling equipment

Snorkeling mask. This is a basic element, the convenience of which does not depend on the cost. There are both expensive and cheap brands that are not very different in quality. Of course, in order to choose the mask that suits you, you need to try it on. That is, inhale through your nose and remove the hand that pressed the mask to your face. The size that suits you will not slip.

A good mask must have:

  • “Tempered” text on the glass (or simply T). This means that the portholes of the mask are made of tempered glass.
  • Elastic seal. The edges of the mask should fit snugly against the face.
  • Wide view. To do this, choose a mask with an obturator made of transparent silicone. The colored border will distract you and limit your view.
  • Small internal volume.

To prevent the mask from fogging up during swimming, the inside of the glass is treated with a special agent – anti-fog before use. On the advice of experienced swimmers, you can simply smear the glasses with saliva.

A tube. An equally important attribute for snorkeling. You can also swim with a mask, holding your breath while diving. Nevertheless, a tandem mask plus a snorkel helps to maintain strength. The tube should not be too long - this makes breathing difficult. However, a snorkel that is too short will be difficult to manipulate when diving. Choose the middle tier.

Important! You can choose a snorkel for yourself with a special purge valve. It pushes out water that gets into the tube when splashed. The second option is a tube with a removable nozzle. In any case, it is worth checking everything so that there are no difficulties with breathing already while swimming.

Flippers. Not required, especially in shallow water. Fins are needed for easier maneuverability in the water. They increase speed and maintain strength during the dive and ascent. Choose fins that are not very long and light, which will not weigh down your legs. Good diving fins can work for snorkeling too.

Innahura Maldives Resort
Innahura Maldives Resort

Best snorkeling spots in the Maldives

The best snorkeling in the Maldives is where you can find as many species and forms of marine life as possible. The tropical waters of the Maldives archipelago are home to a great variety of variegated and bizarre fish parrot fish, butterfly fish, clown fish, barracuda, moray eels. While snorkeling, you can also see turtles, manta rays and stingrays, nurse sharks and reef sharks. Corals in the Maldives are also full of variety. The warm currents of the Indian Ocean facilitate the delivery of nutritious plankton to the islands. It, in turn, promotes the growth of young coral gardens.

Snorkeling can be local or away to other islands. The excellent house reef provides more opportunities for free snorkeling. Snorkeling trips to other islands are carried out in an organized way, but often require extra time and financial costs for the transfer.

Some examples of hotels with a good house reef in the Maldives:

Lily Beach Resort & Spa

Lily Beach Resort & Spa

Snorkeling in Hanifaru Bay

The most popular snorkeling destination in the Maldives is Hanifaru Bay in Baa Atoll. It is part of a marine reserve, the only one in the Maldives that is included in the UNESCO list of natural sites. Hanifaru Bay is a place to snorkel amidst the incredible nature of the ocean while watching a huge number of manta rays at the same time. These amazing animals come to the bay to feast on blooming plankton. Many resorts in Baa Atoll offer snorkeling trips to Hanifaru, which makes them even more attractive. By the way, diving in Hanifaru Bay is prohibited.

Milaidhoo Island Maldives Resort
Milaidhoo Island Maldives Resort

Snorkeling season in the Maldives

Snorkeling in the Maldives will be comfortable throughout the year. But the months from November to May are considered the most favorable time for snorkeling. During this period, the northeastern monsoon predominates. Starting in June, it changes to the southwest, and monsoon rains begin.

Snorkeling in the Maldives and dangers underwater

The underwater world of the Maldives has countless natural resources. You can verify this by looking at photos taken by ordinary people during snorkeling or diving in the Maldives. All reef dwellers are beautiful in appearance, but some of them can be dangerous to humans.

Corals. The sharp ends of some coral species may contain poisonous matter. Therefore, even a minor cut takes a long time to heal. Any scratch should be treated with an antiseptic.

Fish-stone. Alternatively, stone fish. It looks very much like a dead coral. However, this is only a successful disguise. The long thorns of the stonefish are very dangerous as they contain poison. If you accidentally step on it, the consequences can be very painful or even fatal.

Sea urchin. It resembles a beautiful underwater flower with thin, long petals. However, these are very sharp and fragile spines of the sea urchin. If you accidentally step on, a shrapnel will remain in your leg, which will have to be removed at the hospital.

Sea anemones. Unusual marine organisms of amazing beauty. Nevertheless, they cause burns on contact with human skin. If such a nuisance does happen, you can treat the burn with lemon juice.

Lion Fish. An extraordinary and beautiful striped fish, which is often photographed by divers. However, you cannot approach it in any case. The lionfish attacks when it feels threatened and uses very poisonous thorns. The injection can cause respiratory paralysis and death.

If any of the above situations happen to you while swimming, be sure to consult a doctor.

Yang Wewe
Yang Wewe

Safety rules while snorkeling in the Maldives

In order not to spoil your snorkeling experience in the Maldives, follow basic safety rules.

  • When snorkeling, try not to touch the marine life or touch the corals with your hands.
  • You should not swim alone, especially if you are a beginner. Changes in currents may not be noticed.
  • If you do not feel confident in the water, it is best to wear a life jacket for snorkeling.
  • To protect your feet from being cut by the sharp edges of the corals, wear special shoes when snorkeling.
  • Try to keep a distance of at least 1.5-2 meters from fish and other aquatic life unknown to you.
  • Listen to the advice and guidance of local sailing guides. They know the reef as well as possible and will guide you in choosing a more suitable place for swimming.

Lily Beach Resort & Spa
Lily Beach Resort & Spa

How much does snorkeling cost in the Maldives

House reef snorkeling can cost anywhere from $ 8 to $ 15 for one day of equipment rental. If this is a field trip, then the price, together with the transfer, is from $ 30 to $ 60. It all depends on the distance.

You need to know

  • Many resorts provide snorkeling equipment free of charge for the entire stay. Sometimes even offer a free shuttle to nearby coral gardens.
  • If you plan to spend a lot of time with a mask, the best option would be to stay in a villa on stilts, with an individual descent into the water.
  • When choosing a resort, be sure to ask if the island has a good house reef.

Meeru Island Resort & Spa
Meeru Island Resort & Spa

Do I need a certificate for snorkeling?

Snorkeling is a type of amateur swimming at shallow depths. Beginners need to listen to the advice of instructors, follow safety precautions and learn how to choose the right equipment. However, no mandatory training certificates are required. Everything is much easier than preparing for diving.

The resorts have instructors who can teach you all the basics of snorkeling, test swimming and help with gear selection.

Snorkeling is a great outdoor activity popular in the Maldives. Communication with the nature of the ocean gives courage, new impressions, rest from everyday life and even a lot of pleasures!


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