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Surf Across The Maldives - Part One

This is the first in a two-part miniseries featuring sixteen surf locations across the Maldives' archipelago, as endorsed by local pros.

Aminath Farah Ahmed and Rae Munavvar
27 May 2018, MVT 12:29
A surfer waits to catch the last wave of the day. PHOTO BY SARAH HALEEM @sarahhaleemphotography on FACEBOOK
Aminath Farah Ahmed and Rae Munavvar
27 May 2018, MVT 12:29

A selection of dreamy swells and waves from the Maldives as recommended by local pros

Map of Surfing Spots in Maldives. IMAGE: SAFFU / THE EDITION

If you’re looking to catch some amazing swells in the most blissful settings, the Maldives has over forty stunning surf sports to choose from.

Each break, though invariably picturesque, offers something different for surfers based on proficiency, preference and the changing seasons.

The winds, currents, direction the waves break on the reef and the type of slope on the reef all play a part in creating perfect surf breaks, naturally.

Maldives, by no means, lacks any of these conditions. We have our fair share of reef breaks; however, in Maldives, what attracts the upmarket surf tourists is its warm waters and the uninhabited breaks.

Browse our collection of surf breaks across the archipelago, supported by recommendations given to The Edition by those who know these waters best - our professional Maldivian surfers.

Randha Raalhugandu (Cokes) / Thulusdhoo / North Male’ Atoll

Cokes is home to some of the most consistent waves in the Maldives. PHOTO: MICKEY NATTS

Known for having some of the most consistent waves in Maldives ranging from heights of 2ft to 9ft +, Randha Raalhugandu as the locals know it, also called Cokes, is recommended for intermediate and professional level surfers.

The swell direction is from South East, with winds heading from the South West, on a sea bed that is described as not too flat nor too rocky though shallow at low tide.

Quote by local surfer and guide Horce and local bodyboarding champion, Jaatte'. PHOTO (LEFT): ABLO LATHYF/SHADOW. PHOTO (RIGHT): UKNOWN/JAATTE'. IMAGE: SAFFU/EDITION.

Sultans / Thamburudhoo / North Male’ Atoll

Thamburudhoo offers some amazing swells and great conditions. PHOTO: MICKEY NATTS

Declared an official surf reserve by the Tourism Ministry, Thamburudhoo is one of the most famous and consistent surf breaks in Maldives with a wave height ranging from 2 ft to 8 ft +, although during the season waves tend to go even higher.

Swell direction ranges from South to South-East and the sea bed here is flat and not rocky. This makes this surf break beginner friendly, as it has an easy take off. But the wave can also be challenging and unforgiving when it gets big, producing a barrel on the inside section.

Quotes by local bodyboarder Lujain Hasan and Bodyboarder Sofian Manik. PHOTO(RIGHT): MOHAMED RASHEED/SURFING RAALHUGANDU/FACEBOOK, PHOTO (LEFT): SARAH HALEEM/SA HALEEM/FACEBOOK. IMAGE: SAFFU/EDITION

Raalhugandu / Male’ City / Central Male’ Atoll

Raalhugandu, Male': The now lost, and heavily mourned, surfing location closest to the Capital City, that offered a variety of waves and the best possible conditions. PHOTO: MOOSA MOHAMED

An honorary mention on this list, Varunulaa Raalhugandu has three sections; the right is known as ‘Second Reef’, the middle ‘Dhekiru’, while the left is called ‘Padan’.

Boasting excellent consistency especially during surf season, for all kinds of conditions it has waves between 2 ft - 7 ft in height, even 10 ft on good days. The swell direction is from the south east, with westerly winds (southwest, west, northwest) and the sea bed is flat on the outside, though a bit rocky on the inside.

This spot, though currently inaccessible due to the construction of the China-Maldives Friendship Bridge connecting Male’ City to Hulhule’, is the premier training spot for all surfers and bodyboarders due to having a variety of waves. When the waves are on the smaller side, it is perfect for beginners and when it rises to full glory over 3ft, it makes for the ideal professional challenges.

Photo by Maldives bodyboarding legend and international champion, Kuda Ayya. PHOTO: ASIPPE PHOTOGRAPHY. IMAGE: SAFFU/EDITION

Lhos Raalhu (Foxys) / Lhosfushi and Guraidhoo / South Male’ Atoll

Foxy's is a left-hander that is fast, shallow and hollow. PHOTO: MICKEY NATTS

This is a left-hander which is fast, shallow and hollow. The swell direction is South to South East, with North West to Westerly winds; however, it requires bigger South East swells for consistency.

Lhos Raalhu, also known as Foxys, produce smaller waves of about 2ft to 4ft + and the sea is rocky with significant coral cover. This wave is mostly recommended for intermediate to advanced surfers, and caution is advised since its shallow.

Surf guide and surfing tour operator Mickey Natts gives The Edition, his quote. PHOTO: CRISTIANO MINICHIELLO. IMAGE: SAFFU

Tuckey Joes (Miyaru Faru) / Gulhi / South Male’ Atoll

Aerial view of the surf break known as 'Tuckeys'. PHOTO: MICKEY NATTS

This left-hander is also fast, shallow and hollow; however the consistency of this wave varies based on swell, height and wind direction.

It typically produces waves of about 2 ft to 6 ft + with South to South East swells and North to North Westerly winds. It has a rocky and shallow sea bed, and is an ideal location for intermediate to advanced surfers.

Quote by local surfer Hoobx. PHOTO: UKNOWN/HOOBX. IMAGE: SAFFU

Skanky’s (Hadi Gillaa) / Kuda Huvadhoo / Dhaalu Atoll

Aerial view of Skankies at Kuda Huvadhoo. PHOTO: MICKEY NATTS

Most local surfers agree that Skanky’s offers one of the longest and most beautiful waves on the West of Maldives, suitable for everyone, from beginners to advanced surfers.

It has a wave height of 2 ft to 6 ft + with West to South West swells with winds heading from North West to West. The sea bed is average, and not too rocky.

Quote by local surfers, Nahu and Shadow. PHOTO (LEFT): UNKNOWN/NAHU, PHOTO (RIGHT): UNKNOWN/SHADOW. IMAGE: SAFFU/EDITION

F1 / Muli / Meemu Atoll

Young surfer shows off his skills at F1. PHOTO: MICKEY NATTS

This break also requires a bigger swell from the South East to produce solid waves, but the waves are fast occurring with an average wave height of about 2 ft to 6 ft +, on its rocky seabed.

The swell direction is from South East, with winds heading from the South West. It is recommended for intermediate to advanced surfers.

Quote from local surfer Nauphy. PHOTO: ALI SHATHIR. IMAGE: SAFFU/EDITION.

Inside Mikados (Little Heaven) / Kanimindhoo / Thaa Atoll

Riding the heavenly swells inside Mickados. PHOTO: MIckey Natts.

This is a convenient location for liveaboards since boats can be anchored close to the surf break and surfers can paddle out straight from their boats without any need of a tender boat.

It produces waves of about 2 ft to 5 ft + with Southern swells and South Westerly winds. The sea bed here starts off slightly rocky at the start of the wave, but it finishes off into the lagoon. This spot is ideal for beginners as well as advanced surfers.

Quote by local surfers, Saaxu, Mickey and Dhafy . PHOTO (LEFT): MARIYAM NIUMA/SOMEWHERE SALTY, PHOTO (CENTRE): CRISTIANO MINICHIELLO, PHOTO (RIGHT): MOHAMED SHAREEF / SURFING RAALHUGANDU / FACEBOOK. IMAGE: SAFFU/EDITION

Editor's Note: Part Two of Surf Across The Maldives will be published on May 29, 2018.

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