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Updated by Joanna James on Nov 27, 2019
Headline for 6 Facts about Maldivian Culture and Heritage – Cultural and Hereditary Characteristics of the Maldives
Joanna James Joanna James
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6 Facts about Maldivian Culture and Heritage – Cultural and Hereditary Characteristics of the Maldives

The popular tourist destination bordered by beaches, the Maldives is the stuff of a travel nomad's dream. The culturally rich country lays claim to being the tropical paradise on earth.


The Language

The Maldivian language is highly influenced by Sanskrit, Arabic and Sinhalese. The native language is called Dhivehi, and it has its own alphabet. You'll also find that there are three main dialects spoken by the natives, which include Mahl, Malikhu and Minicoy.



According to historical records, it is said that the Maldivian islands have been inhabited for over 3000 years. There is evidence of Buddhism and Hinduism being the main religions before Islam became the main religion in 1153AD. The first inhabitants travelled from India and Sri Lanka and also there is evidence to prove an African settlement in the country. The country's main trade tourism commenced its trade in 1972 after opening the first resort. Now there are many best resorts in Maldives for families which include the likes of Anantara Dhigu Maldives Resort.



Needless to say, Maldivian cuisine is greatly influenced by Indian and Sri Lankan cuisines. The inclusion of spices and coconut milk is the speciality of the cuisine. Some may find it to be too spicy for their liking; nevertheless, the dishes are delicious, and the tang of novelty might be what you are looking for on your holiday. The dishes mainly consist of fish and rice; also coconut juice you get to enjoy while in the country is heavenly.


Heritage Sites

The country has been influenced by different heritages and religions. Therefore, you can see the debris of various monuments and temples across the atolls. From scrolls to copper plates and coral walls, temples and mosques, there are numerous historical artefacts to be found. When it comes to the capital city, the main historical monument is the Old Friday Mosque which is conveniently located in the midst of holiday resorts and hotels. Also, the shipwrecks and sunken boats found are home to vividly hued colourful fish and coral gardens – this makes for a nice diving session for those who are up to it.


Music and Dancing

Maldivians like to tell their stories about their culture and heritage through music and dancing. These performances are highly entertaining and include various segments. Bodu Beru is one such performance where dancers follow the rhythm of drums. Another interesting performance is Bandiya Dance which is carried out by women. If one wants to see the country come alive with dancing and music, the Ramadan period is the best time to visit.


Clothing and craft

You can see Maldivian men wearing sarongs made of cotton – cotton is the fabric that's mainly used in order to brace against the hot climate. Libaas is the female clothing item which is worn for festivals and celebrations like weddings as well as Bodu Beru performances. Some of these clothing items are hand-stitched, which are thought to be the best. Maldivian museums are famous for displaying items such as traditional Maldivian sandals which were in use up until the early 1980s.