Welcome to Addu Atoll!
Heart-shaped Addu Atoll, just south of the equator, is the most southern point of Maldives. There’s a splash of late-colonial flavour here – the island of Gan was used as a British military base until the 1970s – and an independent streak flows through the locals, who speak a different dialect of Dhivehi to that spoken in Male.
The six inhabited islands here are known collectively as Addu City due to the fact that all but one are connected by bridges and causeways, creating at 14km the longest continuous stretch of land in the country. Addu is the main economic and administrative centre in the southern atolls, and the only place to rival Male in size and importance. There are just three resorts down here, a few guesthouses and some superb diving opportunities.
The Unique Addu City
This is the 'second city' of the Maldives, and the resorts here is the best base from which to visit traditional Maldivian island communities.
In recent years the unique bird has been proudly used as a symbol by its inhabitants to represent Addu - The White Tern (Gygis alba), a small seabird confined to Addu has all its body white with a black eye-ring and bill.
Addu City "local Islands" is open for tourism and there are new tourism investment projects going on, to develops "local" Addu City in a new holiday destination in the Maldives.
(texts copied www.lonelyplanet.com)
Places to visit:
Eedhigali Kilhi – one of the largest wetlands and mangroves in the nation.
Cemetery called Koagannu – 1000 years old cemetery located on the island of Meedhoo known as the oldest cemetery in the Maldives.
The Ranin Hanaa Fengandu – also known as the Queen’s Pond, is a large natural pond surrounded by coconut palms and lush tropical foliage, located in the environmentally protected area.
Nature Park of Hithadhoo Island - the lake at the far end of Hithadhoo is the biggest in the country and attracts varied birdlife to its shores. It has been incorporated into the Eedhigali Kilhi and Kottey Protected Area, which at 570 hectares is the largest of its kind in Maldives. There are 28 bird species present here, making it popular with birders.
The British war memorial - this simple memorial commemorates the British servicemen who served at the various incarnations of RAF Gan between 1941 and 1976. The site also includes two WWII cannons.
Ideas for your leisure time
Morning Fishing / Sunset Fishing with barbeque
Bottom line fishing is the unique fishing style in the Maldives tradition. This is one of the main methods for reef fishing by using live bait, cut bait or deep drop jigging are popular. Bottom fishing in the morning/ sunset time will get you mostly different types of Groupers, Tuna, Emperors; Dolphin fish, Barracuda, Squirrelfish, Rainbow runners and lots of other types of exotic fishes are also common. Fishing excursion is one of the chosen activities of many tourists in the Maldives.
Watching the dolphins chase directly from the boat or underneath the boa, and watching them flip and occasionally spin out of the water. The Maldives ranks among the top five places on earth for watching whales and dolphins. Spinner Dolphins and bottle nose dolphins are the commonest species. Addu really is one the best places in the Maldives for whale and dolphin watching.
Island Hopping and reef snorkeling
The Addu Atoll westernmost islands are connected by roads over the reef; the total length of the road is 14 km except two inhabited islands named Hulhudhoo and Meedhoo. During this trip we can visit Hulhudhoo and Meedhoo Historical places. While returning we can have snorkeling on the beautiful reef in the lagoon.
Protected area Nature Park
Hithadhoo is the Capital of Addu and is home to Eedhigali Kilhi and Koattey protected area. Eedhigali Kilhi is one of the largest wetlands in the Maldives and the site is especially famous for the abundance of water birds. Birds such as the eastern grey heron, the endemic Maldivian pond heron, the little egret and the white tern can be spotted throughout the year. Of these the white tern locally known as Dhondheeni has been recognized as the symbol of Addu, as only until recently was it spotted only in Addu city.
Sunset Cruise with Photo shoot (especially for couples)
A sunset cruise in the Maldives on a traditional Dhoani will take you on an epic journey around the islands surrounding Addu Atoll. The boat traditionally made by master craftsmen of wood. During this cruise you get to watch the sunset over the Maldivian horizon a bit closer than from the island! It is absolutely a breathtaking experience to watch the hues of colors spreading across the width of the sky and reflected upon everything in view. During this trip our guides will help click photo for you.