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Maldives Travel Information

Any map or satellite photograph of the Maldives speaks for itself in beauty and enchantment. That map reveals a string of pearls scattered across the Equator in the deep blue of the Indian Ocean forms a unique archipelago of over 1,100 small coral islands, known and mapped, yes, but among them only 202 are inhabited by local people, with 87 other islands currently developed exclusively as tourist resorts.

 Incredibly, the sea covers all but one per cent of this paradise republic’s 90,000 km². The 1,190 islands are spread over 26 atolls – ring-like coral formations enclosing a lagoon – that give the Maldives its remarkable “picture postcard” appearance of paradise. It is everyone’s idea of a Robinson Crusoe’s island multiplied by the dozen, stretching 820 km north to south and only 130 km at the widest points.

Beyond any map-reading, visitors holidaying to this destination abroad at one or more or the resorts will discover that none of the islands exceeds 7.2 km.and - perhaps most significantly - that they have reached the flattest country in the world – its highest point being only 2.4 m (for the connoisseur, this lies on Vilingili Island in Addue Atoll, the southernmost atoll of Maldives). 

At the heart the atoll chain is the capital Malé, the seat of government and the centre of trade, commerce, business, health and education and home to 75,000 Maldivians – about one third of the country’s population. It is the thriving hub at the centre of that map of pearls.

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