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KNOW BEFORE YOU GO - STAY SAFE & HEALTHY ABROAD (foreign office travel advice)

Maldives

When to go

The climate in the Maldives is classified as a tropical monsoon climate, which means that part of the year the islands are sun-drenched and another part, they're rain-drenched. But the good news is, regardless of what month you set off on your cheap Maldives holidays, the likelihood of you experiencing weather around 20°C is pretty much guaranteed.

These days, predicting when that rainy season is going to begin and end is getting increasingly more difficult, but a general rule of thumb is that the dry season runs from December to April. March and April are typically the months you can count on to be dry, but because of this, they're also the most popular among holidaymakers.

Health and safety

Tap water in the Maldives is safe to drink and use for brushing teeth, but it's desalinated and purified seawater so has a strong taste and you may prefer to drink bottled water.

As with any holiday, you should take out comprehensive travel and medical insurance to cover yourself and family on your trip. If you're visiting the Maldives specifically to take part in sports or watersports, including hiking, you should make sure your insurance covers this. See our holiday extras page for more information and for the latest health and safety information visit www.gov.uk/foreign-travel-advice/maldives/health.

Passports and visas

If you're a UK citizen, you'll need a tourist visa to enter the Maldives. This visa will be active for up to 30 days, and is issued upon your arrival into the Maldives provided you have a valid return ticket. You should also ensure your passport is valid for a minimum of six months following your date of entry into the Maldives. For the most up-to-date passport and visa info, visit www.gov.uk/foreign-travel-advice/maldives/entry-requirements.

Another requirement of entry into the Maldives is that you must have a valid yellow fever certificate detailing your yellow fever vaccination history, if you've come from or just passed through a country in which contracting yellow fever is a risk. Once issued, these documents are valid for the carrier's lifetime.

Getting around

The major international airport within the Maldives is Velana International Airport. Most tour operators include transfers as part of their Maldives holiday packages, so getting to your resort is easy.

Because the Maldives is comprised of islands, the only way to get between them and reach your resort is by aeroplane, seaplane or boat. The Maldives is privy to a number of domestic airports scattered across the islands.

You can charter a traditional Maldivian boats known as a dhoni, which looks a little like a Viking ship without the sails. However, the dhoni and ferry network isn't especially vast, so travelling between islands isn't always easy without the use of a private yacht.

Once you've arrived at your resort, navigating the island by foot is typically the easiest and most convenient method of transportation, as the islands are all pretty small in size. Even the capital city of Male is only 2.5 square kilometres.

Advice for travellers with children

The Maldives is a collection of islands, so sea babies will be especially happy here. Snorkelling and scuba diving opportunities are in abundance, as there are a lot of coral reefs just beneath the surface of the Indian Ocean.

If a sudden bout of rain rushes in, there's a chance you'll be confined indoors, as the activities in the Maldives primarily revolve around the beaches. The larger resorts will have plenty of entertainment laid-on, however you may wish to bring indoor activities, especially if you're travelling in the wet season, between May and October.

Book All Inclusive Maldives holidays and you can rest assured that family-friendly dining options and transfers to your hotel are included as standard, taking the stress out of travelling with little ones.

Electricity

Connector type: It's a good idea to check with your resort in advance to see what plug type they use. There are three main types use in the Maldives – a European two-pinned plug, the typical British plug or the three-pronged circular Indian plug.

Voltage Info: 230V, 50Hz

Emergency information

Police: 119

Fire brigade: 118

Ambulance: 102

British Consulate

If you're a victim of crime or affected by a crisis overseas, or if something happens to a relative or partner, contact the British High Commission in Sri Lanka, which maintains relations between the United Kingdom and the Maldives.

Address: 389 Bauddhaloka Mw, Colombo 7, Sri Lanka

Email: Colombo.general@fco.gov.uk

Phone (from within the Maldives): +94 11 5390694

Hospitals

Medical facilities within the Maldives are limited, with hospital facilities only located on particular islands. The two largest hospitals are both located on the capital island Male.

ADK Hospital

Address: Sosun Magu, Male 20040 Phone: +960 331-3553

Indira Gandhi Memorial Hospital

Address: Kan'baa Aisaa Rani Hingun, Male Phone: +960 333-533