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What to book

When planning your diving holiday to the Maldives, the choices are enormous between the atolls, islands and whether you stay in a resort, on a liveaboard or at a local guesthouse. I can't say whats the best resort, the best guesthouse or the best liveaboard. We all have different expectations and wishes, I would like to explain the difference in diving between the three of them, based on my experience as I have worked in a resort, on a liveaboard and on local island.

All three have good and negative parts, and by your own experience, you will find what suits you the most as a diver.
All dive resorts, guesthouses, liveaboards and local dive centres you will find on this website are the top scuba diving providers in the Maldives. You book a resort, liveaboard or a local guesthouse, the focus is on:

  • Dive safety
  • Environment conservation
  • A lot of fun

Aquaventure Maldives can arrange host family accommodation for you if you would like to stay with a local family. Living with a local family is a great speaking practice opportunity outside the school, and a marvellous way to find out how people live.


A resort stay

Most tourists will chose to stay in a resort when they visit the Maldives. With more than 140 resorts there is always a choice to make including different styles, star ratings and price rates. Every resort will have their own dive centre, operated by the resort and a third party. 

Most resorts have international instructors to provide courses in different languages depending on the nationality of the resort guests. Luxury resorts are very popular for beginner courses, and the PADI Discover Scuba Diving Program is a great introduction to diving for those who would like to give it a try.

With two or three dives a day, you can find a balance between diving and relaxing on the beach, swimming pool, with an international cuisine, alcoholic beverages and resort activities. At a Resort you have more options than just diving to enjoy whilst you stay in the Maldives.

Overnight and diving rates on a resort are more expensive compared with a staying in a local guesthouse, but you get something for in return – luxury and wellness.

The right choice if you want a combination of diving and some relaxing beach time during your vacation or when you decide to learn Scuba Diving.


The liveaboard experience

Book a stay on one of the liveaboards in the Maldives is the number one choice for hardcore divers. Three to four dives a day on the top dive sites that the Maldives has to offer. Most liveaboards have space for 18 to 24 divers and groups are of six to 10 divers with one dive guide. Depending on the season, you can do different routes – favourite routes are the central atolls during the west monsoon and going more south is offered during the east monsoon (February to April).

Liveaboards are for the more experienced divers, and most of them do have minimum requirements before you can join the trip. It is less individual and you have to adjust to the group.

The best diving can be made on liveaboards, as long there is a good team. They do different tours and dive many spots from north to south. You must have dive guides who know the dive sites very well.

The right choice if you are an experienced diver and your focus is 100% diving. Dive, Eat, Sleep, Repeat!


Stay in a guesthouse

Book a stay on one of the local islands will give you an experience of the real Maldives. Whilst enjoying the relaxed lifestyle, you can also get to know the local community, culture and cuisine. There are local islands with few hundreds or few thousands of inhabitants but wherever you go you will feel welcome. Explore the local restaurants and coffee shops with the traditional local food and snacks.

There are local islands with one ore more dive centres and each of them will provide leisure dives and diving courses. Check if the dive centre is registered by one of the Dive Trainings Agencies such as PADI, SSI, etc. – at least the dive centre has to fulfil some requirements and standards. English is the main international language – of you want to enjoy a scuba diving course, some local dive centres have ex-pats to provide courses in more languages than English.

Remember Islam is the state religion of the Maldives and as a tourist, you should respect this whilst on the local island.

  • You are not allowed to walk around the island in bikinis or swimsuits – some local islands have organised bikini beaches for tourists but not all,
  • Alcohol and pork meat are not available on local islands

It is possible to visit resorts – day trips – with a leisure pool, bikini beach, spa and alcohol beverages. There are some local guesthouses with a private beach and they can allow you to wear a bikini but at all times, ask for permission first.

The right choice when you want to explore the real Maldives with the focus on scuba diving, perfect for experienced and less experienced divers.