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Updated by Joanna James on Jun 23, 2019
Headline for 5 unknown facts about the Maldives - Your own guide to the islands
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Joanna James Joanna James
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5 unknown facts about the Maldives - Your own guide to the islands

The Maldives is synonymous with images of paradise beaches and fun in the sun, but how many of these interesting facts about the country did you know?

1

The Atolls and Islands

The Maldives is made up of multiples atolls, coral reefs and coral islands, each so small that not more than three of them measure up to an area larger than 4 sq. Km. There are a total of 26 atolls which are divided into 20 different administrative districts. Their atolls are made up of approximately 1200 islands, each varying in size and geography. The islands that made up the different atolls are spread out in various ways, including faros, or the ring-shaped formation. While the entirety of the Maldives, including the oceans, measures 90,000 sq. Km, only about 300 sq. Km of that is land. Due to its geographic setup, visitors to the Maldives will usually have to take a boat or a seaplane to their resort after landing in the Country.

2

Many of its resorts cover entire islands

While the Maldives includes so many islands, often specific Maldives villas and resorts occupy entire islands. For example, Kuramathi Maldives is a resort, but it covers the entire Kuramathi island, one of those which make up the Rasdhoo Atoll. This means that visitors to these resorts have increased privacy, as the entire island is shared only with other hotel guests and hotel staff. There are more than a hundred of these islands that are covered by a stand-alone resort. It also means that most of these resorts provide great amenities and things to do so that visitors don't have to constantly leave the island to find entertainment. These island resorts vary in size, and in the ambience that they aim to create on the island.

3

Underwater cabinet meeting

This fact isn't a happy one, though it certainly is interesting. In 2009, the Maldivian Cabinet of Ministers, led by the President held the world's first underwater cabinet meeting. There was more to this than just making a splash, however, as the meeting sought to send a message to the rest of the world, as to the urgency of climate change action being taken. With rising sea levels the Maldivian's are the most at risk to lose their homeland, and thus they made this plea prior to the UN Climate Change Conference in Copenhagen. The 30-minute meeting took place using hand signals and whiteboards, and most of the Ministers had to take diving lessons in preparation for it.

4

Worlds flattest country

The Maldives holds the title for the flattest country on Earth, and except for the occasional points which reach up to about two meters above sea level, most of it measures only one to one and a half meters above sea level.

5

Not all its islands natural

When Malé, the capital of the Maldives became too congested, there was a major need for more space for its population. This is why the island of Hulhumalé was added to the Maldives in 2004, with the aim of eventually housing more than 150,000 thousand people, a hefty portion of the country's population. The construction was done by piling sand and concrete and today the island is already bustling with life. Thilafushi is another artificial island in the Maldives, originally built to combat the problem of garbage disposal.