Central Maldives Surf Guide
The Central Atolls of the Maldives may not be as well-known or as frequented as the North or South Male Atolls, but the region has been increasing in popularity as surfers look to escape the northern crowds. Although the central atolls requires more travel to access than the Male Atolls, the area continues the Maldivian tradition of providing consistent surf and pristine barrels. Meemu, Thaa, Dhaalu and Laamu Atolls lie south of the capital Male and are littered with medium-sized reef breaks with Ying Yangs, a world class right hander, one of the biggest drawcards. There are excellent surf charter boat and amazing resort options to explore the Central Atolls.
The Maldives are Open for International Arrivals!
The Maldives have a unique geography where each resort is on its own island, a form of natural isolation. This is the basis for Covid-19 Safe Procedures that balance the needs of international travellers, the local tourism industry and the health of all. This world-leading approach shows the way forward for travel and tourism based on living with the virus, minimising risk yet still getting on with life and business.
To read more about the current situation and procedures for travel to the Maldives, read the latest here.
What we love
Remote and uncrowded waves. Lose yourself in the Indian ocean.
Stunning, luxurious resorts. Resorts with a wave that you can paddle to.
Surf charters with experienced guides and crew to maximize your surf time.
Stunning underwater life for diving and fishing.
Where to surf
Meemu, Thaa, Dhaalu and Laamu Atolls offer spots exposed to all wind directions and for all levels. All spots in the Meemu Atoll are on a coastline facing to the east. There is always a left or a right hander well protected from the predominant south westerly wind directions, but south easterly or even easterly winds may affect all spots negatively. All spots are close to each other so you can change spots within a few minutes!
Dhaalu Atoll is located on the western side of the Maldives and picks up south and south west swells. Niyama resort now located at Vodi surf break offers the luxury of a Maldives resort with a world class left out the front. Marouf’s or Kasabu is just across the channel and offers a qulaity right hand break when wind conditions are light or from the north west.
Vodi at Niyama – Dhaalu
A good quality, private and uncrowded left-hander off the resort that you can paddle out to any time. It works on all tides; mid to high tide offers the best conditions, but it’s still a fun wave and a good ride on a low tide. On big swells, you can get a nice almond barrell on take-off, and come out for a few more turns. Or you can easily avoid the barrell and just do turns for 100-150m.
Thaa Atoll picks up south east swell and may be even bigger than spots on east facing coastlines of other atolls. Due to its secluded location it is almost guaranteed that you will not even spot another surf charter during your stay. The spots are well protected from North to Northwest winds. Conditions may be fickle with other wind directions. This area will be chosen only in very stable weather conditions.
Inside Mikados / Farms – Thaa
One of the Maldives more playful waves and considered one of Maldive’s best waves. Protected from south & south-west winds you can hide from bad weather behind Kanimeedhoo Island.
Malik’s – Thaa
When the wind is from the southeast and the swell is large from the southwest you should head to the island of Hirilandhoo. The left hand reef pass there can produce some great barrels on long and speedy walls.
Spots in the Laamu Atoll are spread from the south facing coastline along the east facing up to the north east corner where waves wrap around. As a result you will find spots protected from all wind directions except a rare straight easterly breeze. The first resort on the atoll has now opened and you can now stay at the luxury Six Senses Resort, which is directly across the channel to Ying Yang surf break.
Muli Inside / F1 – Meemu
A very fast right, with long walls, hollow, barreling, can be shallow, but still with a safe ending.
requires SE swell and it’s best on SW wind. This wave is all around wave, s long right-hander that picks most of swell that comes into Meemu Atoll. It is especially fun for longboards and to practice your curves.
Veyvah – Meemu
Perfect left hander with a long wall for turns. Has an easy take off so great for low intermediates. Not too heavy and super fun and even has a barrel with the right conditions.
When to go
The prime swell months in the Central Atolls are from March through October. The main atolls that are referred to as the Central Atolls are Meemu, Dhaalu, Thaa and Laamu, and they mostly great for having fun whilst also providing endless high-performance waves.
The coconut palm and the yellow-fin tuna, symbols of the Maldives, say a great deal about this nation of more than a thousand islands. As expected, a major drawcard is the scuba diving. Inside the atoll lagoons, rock pinnacles – thila – rise up from the depths to scratch the water’s surface. In the channels, there are swim-throughs, caverns and overhangs festooned with colorful sponges, invertebrates and gorgonians to explore. The Maldives is one of the best places in the world to spot manta rays and whale sharks; this should be more than enough to convince anyone to travel there, but there is more. Reef sharks including whitetip and grey reef are quite common, together with big tunas, Napoleon fish, eagle and stingrays. Maldives is a very famous destination for weddings and honeymoons. During the wet monsoon, it’s also a good place for windsurfing, kitesurfing and sailing.
The Maldives is made up of 1192 miniscule islands called atolls spread over 800 km from north to south and straddling the equator. Roughly one hour’s flights southwest of Sri Lanka or 4hrs from Singapore, most of the atolls are idyllic, sun-drenched, palm-fringed Gilligan’s Island style set ups. Countless pristine, white, sandy beaches are surrounded by shallow, crystal clear lagoons and vibrant live coral reefs perfect for diving. This is life stripped down to simplicity – bright blue skies, year-round sunshine and fantastic diving and snorkeling in lagoons the temperature of bath water. The Maldives is the smallest Asian country in terms of both population and area; it is the smallest predominantly Muslim nation in the world. With an average ground level of 1.5 metres above sea level, it is the lowest country on the planet. It is also the country with the lowest high point in the world, at 2.3 metres.
Fly into the capital Male’s Velana International Airport (MLE) from all the major airports including Dubai, Singapore, Bangkok, Kuala Lumpur, Paris, London, Hong Kong and Sydney. From there it can be a nine to 24 boat ride or a fast seaplane.