Sun-worshipers seeking a tropical paradise can try out the gorgeous and scenic Maldives. This archipelago of 1,192 coral islands clustered into 26 atolls in the Indian ocean are steeped in magnificent natural beauty. Regarded as part of Southern Asia, they lie south-southwest of India.
Kick-start the trip by heading out to the exotic capital of the island country - Male. The largest city of the nation is brimming with attractions that ought to be visited. Some of them are: the Old Friday Mosque - intricately carved with Arabic writings and ornamental patterns, iconic Republic square - city's centerpoint is marked by a flagpole with a huge Maldivian flag, Islamic Center - houses the Grand Friday Mosque and Hulhumale Island - artificial island where the cosmopolitan life is seen with swanky buildings dotted in the area. Don't forget to catch a glimpse of the underwater universe with the windowed 'whale' submarine where one can view the gentle giants as well other fascinating marine creatures.
Divers need to take a trip to the gorgeous Addu Atoll, the most southerly of the Maldives island groups. Here, the coral is said to be the finest in the nation. Those who love the adrenalin rush can try their hand at windsurfing at Lhohifushi and Dhonveli in the North Male Atoll. Visit Fua Mulaku - housed in the southern province of the Maldivian archipelago. Even though it is the tiniest of the atolls with simply one island, Fua Mulaku is home to the biggest island in Maldives. This solo island is extremely fertile and cultivates fruits and vegetables, that are otherwise not grown in the country, like mangoes, oranges and pineapples.
Do stop over at the Mihiri Island whose name has been derived from a local flower. This quarantined island is dotted with an exclusive house reef and a gorgeous beach. Considered as one of the most famous tourist beaches in Maldives, it is ideal for honeymooners. The entire island is lined up with towering palm trees and boasts of super-soft pristine white sands. The water bungalows add sparkle to the overall charm. Head over to Banana Reef - one of the most ancient dive sites in Maldives that is globally renowned. The area is home to some of the most gorgeous beautiful caves, cliffs and coral growths. One can catch glimpses of numerous species of exotic fish and other gorgeous marine life like the squirrelfish, soldierfish and Maldivian grubfish.
When it comes to shopping, be on the look-out for lacquered wooden boxes, Maldivian handicrafts, stunning reed mats and so forth. As for cuisine, do try out local delicacies such as Banbukeylu harisa (Curry of steamed breadfruit, chilli, onion and coconut) and Bis keemiyaa (Pastry filled with tuna and hardboiled egg).
The stay options of Maldives are abundant with the best luxury hotels, rental apartments and cheap accommodations available for the tourists to decide which kind to opt for depending on their budget and taste.
Maldives experiences tropical-monsoon climate. It is a year-round destination. The summer season is from December - April, considered to be peak tourist season for it sports dry weather.