Many people have their hearts set on visiting the Maldives. Travelers from all over the world are frequently drawn to the cruise, the unique resorts, and the breathtaking natural beauty. But the Maldives is more than just a usual glamorous tourist destination every traveller knows. On top of the prestigious and extraordinary resorts and hotels, the Maldives also has many nearby islands that host several humble abodes and local tourism and activities for a cheaper price. There is quite a few that stand which can make it a challenge for a novice tourist to choose from.
Sometime in 2009, new government regulations for non-resort islands, known as ‘local islands’, were allowed to provide tourist facilities so local people can get jobs and allow them to benefit financially from the tourism industry. This birthed local tourism to stand out and be acknowledged and appreciated by many.
In no time, tourist stopovers such as guesthouses, coffee houses, and restaurants start appearing on local islands. Bit by bit, like-minded travellers were heading to the Maldives to look for and experience a more raw and uncomplicated piece of heaven. Since these islands are more cultivating the culture of the land, Muslim and Western culture can easily be adapted but still has a level of respect for each.
Tourists can select a guesthouse according to their itinerary. From here, locals will provide all necessities if it applies to what the island has to offer. Water activity enthusiasts will still get their adrenaline rush from water sports such as diving, kayaking, and surfing. Local cuisine is something to look forward to as the dishes are more inclined to taste and cooked in a usual Maldivian household. Aside from eating, one can also be taught of the Maldivian way of cooking. If anyone wants to be "one" of the locals, learning the Dhivehi from locals or getting a language-speaking course would be a great option. Drink some sai and eat some hedikaa to satiate the thirst and hunger from doing all sorts of activities. Ask a local to teach you how to craft and dance if you want to touch that artistic side. One is expected to be flexible in terms of convenience since the manpower could be more "natural" in terms of hosting someone in their homes.
Out of all the local islands, Maafushi is one of the most well-known and well-liked tourist destinations. Several stores, restaurants, and guesthouses are pretty reasonably priced. Another island that is nearby in the Northern Ari atoll, is Ukulhas. The island provides inexpensive tourism with a selection of guesthouses and min-hotels. It is renowned for its incredible marine biodiversity, cleanliness, and ecology.
Expect daily morning prayer calls, locals doing their day-to-day activities, and Muslim practices observed. Since the Maldives is a Muslim country, everyone is expected to understand the culture and respect it while in it. This shouldn't be a problem as locals are already used to tourists within the islands - they will be more than happy to teach tourists their island ways and will let you live a life how a Maldivian will. Something priceless that can be brought home and reminisced.