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Updated by Joanna James on Mar 16, 2024
Headline for Top Street Markets in Maldives – Bargain Deals & Souvenirs Galore
Joanna James Joanna James
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Top Street Markets in Maldives – Bargain Deals & Souvenirs Galore

While one normally thinks only of shimmering azure waters and plush ivory sands when the Maldives comes to mind, shoppers will be delighted to find several street markets to enjoy here as well.


Where Can You Find These Markets?

If you've been keeping an eye out for these street markets while roaming around one of the resort islands such as Velassaru Maldives, you've been looking in the wrong place. While there are plenty of things to do in Maldives island resorts, these street markets can only be found on one island, which is Male; of course, you can always make a trip to the capital during your stay at a resort. Being the capital of Maldives, Male is where the majority of Maldivians reside, and it features a range of shops, restaurants and street markets. Let's move onto the main four markets you can find in Male and what their wares are.


Chaandanee Magu

Chaandanee Magu is not your typical street market in the sense of open-air stalls lined up along the street. It is actually a collection of small shops which are commonly known to sell a lot of souvenir items, in addition to goods imported from countries like Singapore. This last fact has given rise to the market's local nickname of 'Singapore Bazaar'. While you are there, pick up local handicraft items such as boats, stationary and traditional Maldivian mats called 'thudu kuna' which you can take back home as mementoes for family and friends.


Majeedhee Magu

Majeedhee Magu is a street which is lined with small shops selling all and sundry from clothes and textiles to electronics and fancy jewellery. If you are looking to do some last minute souvenir shopping in Male before you catch your flight out, this is one of your best options. Make sure to always bargain for better prices as rates usually vary across shops.


Male Local market

The Male Local Market is the capital's main market for all manner of items ranging from fresh produce such as fruits and vegetables to knick-knacks such as lacquerware and seashell ornaments. Other souvenir options also include slippers made out of coconut and palm tree leaves and miniature 'dhoni' or boat ornaments. When you've worked up a sweat from all the walking and bargaining, you can cool off with a reinvigorating drink of fresh King Coconut water, which you can drink straight from the shell with a straw.


The Male Fish Market

Last but not least is the Male Fish Market. If you decide to spend a day or two in the capital and are looking to procure fresh seafood, you've come to the right spot. The sheer variety of fresh fish and seafood items on display here is sure to be mind-boggling, especially if you hail from cold-climate countries which often have limited selections of locally sourced seafood. Tuna, grouper, shrimp, octopus and crab are common finds here. Even if you don't plan on purchasing any of the seafood on display, consider checking out the market anyway just to experience the unique atmosphere. There are certainly many photo opportunities! Most vendors won't mind you taking a few selfies with their wares.