Last updated on August 3rd, 2019 at 06:47 pm
Maafushi island is the most popular island for traveling on a budget in Maldives. We will let you know all the things to do in Maafushi, how to get there, where to eat, where to stay in our Maafushi Island travel guide.
Maafushi Island is located 26 kilometers far from Male the capital of Maldives. The island is 1.2 kilometers long and only 300 meters width. It’s easy to walk around and you can reach most of the places in 15 minutes walking distance.
Maafushi Travel Guide
How to get to Maafushi
Maafushi is close to Male and it will take 2 hours by public boat less than $2 USD and 30 minutes by speed boat $25 USD to reach there. We will explain the different ways to get to Maafushi with details. So you will choose the one adapting to your comfort and budget.
Getting to Maafushi by Public Boat
If you want to get by public boat to Maafushi Island. You have to get to Villigili ferry terminal in Male. There are daily boats leaving to Maafushi at 3 pm except Fridays. The ticket costs $1.5 USD. The trip will take you around 2 hours and it’s stopping by Gulhi island first to drop passengers.
Getting to Maafushi by Speed Boat
There are a few speed boats leaving from Male and the airport to Maafushi Island. It takes 30 minutes to reach there and the prices are $25 USD. The best way to arrange them is thru your guesthouse in Maafushi Island.
This option can be great if you are traveling in a group. Prices can be around $200 USD to reach Maafushi from the Velana International Airport.
Read here a full blog post how to get to Maafushi Island!
Best time to visit Maafushi
You should make sure to visit Maafushi Island on its sunniest months. The dry season begins in December and lasts until April, so this would be the best time to visit Maafushi Island. This is the peak season for tourists and lands on important holidays like Christmas, New Year and Easter. If you visit on May to August, you can experience Maldives’ monsoon season. The country may not be at its best but can still be enjoyed. Especially if you’d like to get discounts in hotels for as much as 40% as this is Maldives’ low season. Click here to know more about the weather in Maafushi!
ATM in Maafushi Island
There is one ATM in Maafushi if you are planning to stay longer or running out of cash can be useful. Make sure you bring cash enough since there is only one ATM in the island just in case it’s not working.
Visa And Currency in Maldives
Maldives is Visa-friendly. You will get 30 days free visa when landing in Maldives. You just get a stamp and you’re good to go! The official currency in the country is the Maldivian Rufiyaa and the exchange rate is around $1=15.4 Rufiyaas. Click here to know the exact exchange rate before you visit.
Wifi and Internet Connection in Maafushi Island
Internet connection was working great in Maafushi Island! We managed ourselves for work with the wifi of our guesthouse. We recommend you to buy a local Sim card in Maldives. So you will enjoy of data connection when wifi is intermitent. A local Sim card costs $30 USD for 14 days with 17 GB and $20 USD for 7 days.
Daily Budget Travel in Maafushi Island
You can get snacks for 2-3 RFY ($1=15.4 RFY). It´s very common for locals have tea with these snacks. You can have rice with fish curry for 25 RFY where they will give you a kind of chips for free, perfect for sharing the food. Most of the dishes have fish and curry but you can also find chicken here A bottle of water costs 15 RFY while cookies and small snacks go for 5-10 RFY. Foreigners’ meals cost $7-10. It’s mostly just pizza and pasta, though. There is also Chinese food for around $5-6 USD per dish.
If you decide to do activities will cost you $30 USD per person for snorkeling and visiting the sand bank. If you decide to visit a luxury resort in a day trip with activities and lunch included will cost you $100-150 USD per person. In our opinion much better if you travel as a couple find a great deal and stay in the resort. Click here to find the best hotel deals in Maldives with Agoda.
There are cheap hotels in Maafushi Island starting from $40-60 USD depending on the season. Most of them included breakfast so take advantage of that freebie. We did Airbnb in Mafushi Island click here to get $30 USD of your first booking with AirBnB.
Read here our review of Kuramathi Island Resort!
How Many Days Should I Spend in Maafushi Island
We will recommend you at least 3 days in Maafushi Island if you time for it. You can stay for a week if you plan to have daytrips or you just want to relax in Maafushi. The first day you will arrive on time for the sunset if you are coming with the public boat.
You can explore the island sunrise and sunsets are amazing! The colors of the ski are totally worth it. Watch out at noon the colors of the water are insane so clear and blue everywhere. During the day can be crowded the bikini beach in Maafushi since there are many guesthouses and most of the tourists are going there.
If you are leaving with the public boat you will leave at 7 30 am so you have to take note 2 nights will be very little time. Actually would be a day and a half. If you are planning to stay longer and you have budget you can go for day trips for snorkeling, sand banks, fishing or other activities. Of course watersports are quite popular in Maafushi island. Prices of the guesthouses are around $40-60 USD depending of the season that you are going to Maafushi but you can find package deals if you stay longer.
Our opinion try not to stay longer in Maafushi and give the chance to explore neighboor islands like Gulhi which is more calm and beautiful. So you will have different experiences to compare. You can also visit in a day trip to Gulhi Island. It’s only 30 minutes boat ride leaving 7 30 am public boat and coming back around 4 pm from Gulhi to Maafushi in the public boat. Each trip will cost you $1.5 USD.
Things to do in Maafushi
1. Visit Bikini Beach
The bikini Beach in Maafushi isn’t really big and it’s so crowd. Still beautiful the colors of the water and there is space enough for everyone. You can go for a swim, sunbathing and enjoying snorkeling around the area.
If you decide to leave the island for activities you have to try diving in Maafushi Island. The resorts offer tours going there and be ready to enjoy! Prices for 2 tank dive is around $150 USD.
3. Sunrise in Maafushi
The only time that you will find quiet the bikini beach in Maafushi is at sunrise. Great time for taking pictures and enjoying the colors of the sky before the crowded is coming to the beach.
4. Sunset in Maafushi
It’s so beautiful the colors between the bikini beach and the port you will enjoy an amazing sunset. Locals and tourists are watching before having dinner!
Just grab your snorkeling gear if you don’t have you can ask to your resort or renting around the island. The water is so clear and you can spot sharks, fishes and take nice shots. If you want to join to a snorkeling trip prices are around $30 USD.
6. Fishing Trips
The resorts offer fishing trips during the day and sunset time 1-2 hours and the prices are around $30 USD. You can go on a speed boat. And also they have the option of go for fishing in a traditional dhoni. The best time is at sunset and if you fish they will cook for you and you will have fresh dinner.
7. Sand Bank trip
We didn’t join for a sand bank trip in Maafushi since we did in previous islands. But prices are similar and it’s so worth it the experience. Better going early morning or at lunch time to avoid the crowd. Prices are around $35 USD per person.
8. Day Trip to Gulhi Island
You can get the public boat at 7 30 am going to Gulhi Ilsand only 30 minutes boat ride. The next public boat will be around 4 pm to go back to Maafushi Island. Prices of the boat is $1.5 USD (22 Rufiyaas) each way. You will enjoy a calm day at the bikini beach in Gulhi which is more beautiful than Maafushi and less crowded.
Read here a full travel guide to visit Gulhi Island.
9. Visit the Floating Bar
Alcohol isn’t allowed in Maafushi island but they allowed in the floating boats. It’s only 5 minutes boat ride from the port. A few companies offer a free ride just ask around the port or in your guesthouse. Prices for a beer in the floating bar $8-10 USD make sure you go before sunset sometimes there are happy hours!
10. Turtle snorkeling
If you want to try turtle snorkeling you will have to join a tour organized for the guest houses. Prices are around $30 USD per person. The trip will take 1-2 hours.
11. Dolphin watching
One of the most popular things to do in Maafushi Island is dolphin watching at sunset time. The activity costs $30 USD per person and it will take 1-2 hours.
12. Water Sports
There are a few sports that you can enjoy like jet ski. You can rent and going around the beautiful waters of the island.
13. Day Trip to a Luxury Resort
There are tours going to luxury resorts and prices are going from $100-150 USD per person depending how many people are joining with lunch included, snorkeling and visiting sand banks. The most populars day trip to resorts are: Rannalhi, Fihaalhahi and Olhuveli.
In our opinion 2 people paying $150 USD will be $300 USD and if you click here you will find offers to stay one night for $300-400 USD in a luxury resort and enjoying the paradise of Maldives. Who isn’t been dreaming with this?
Read here our review of Park Hyatt Hadahaa in Maldives!
Where to Stay in Maafushi Island
There are prices for all the budgets starting from $40-60 USD and more luxury $100 USD. We stayed in a local guesthouse by Airbnb and everything was great wifi, breakfast and the staff was so friendly. You click here to get $30 USD of your first booking with AirBnB.
If you want to take a look to the other places to stay in Maafushi luxury and budget options. Click here to compare prices and check availability!
If you want to check more places to stay in Maafushi, click here to see what works better with your budget and comfort.
Where to eat in Maafushi Island
This is the best part of Maafushi Island when you go our for eating there are more options than in the other islands on a budget in Maldives. There are local restaurants on a budget. And also seafood buffets, Chinese and Western food. You will find almost everything in Maafushi remember pork isn’t allowed and alcohol in the island.
As a local restaurant we were eating at Hard Rocket prices were cheap. Dishes $4-5 USD for local orders. They are serving the typical Maldivian snacks coffee and tea. Many locals going there we liked the vibe. Some of the locals order betelnut in the restaurants.
You can find seafood buffets for $15 USD per person. Western meals like pizza and pasta can cost $8-10 USD. There are also Chinese dishes in the restaurants around $6-10 USD.
Hope you find useful our favorite things to do in Maafushi Island and feel free to share our Maafushi Island travel guide with your friends going to Maldives. You will enjoy paradise for affordable prices.
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