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The "Best" time for scuba diving in Maldives

From Daily Dive

You plan to visit Maldives and of course you want to travel in the best period. To decide what is the “best period” you first have the divine “best”.

Generally, for many tourists the best is – most sun, less rain but for a Scuba Divers the best time can be something totally different.

The best time to see Manta Rays, the best time to see Whalesharks, the best time to see Hammerhead sharks, the best time for great visibility or the best time to make a trip in the North Maldives or a trip in the South Maldives.

To understand “the best time” we do have to know that the Maldives from North to South is about 960km and from East to West is about 120km, with 22 geographical atolls comprising of about 1200 islands each part has is OWN best time for something.

Reef Maldives

If we first look at the climate, basically the climate is divide by 2 different monsoons.

The North-East Monsoon "Iruvai". A Dry and Sunny Season, runs from October to April.

The South-West Monsoon, "Halhangu" A Rainy and Windy Season, runs from May to September.

But, the climate is not all over Maldives the same, there is a huge different between the North Maldives, Central Maldives and the South Maldives and that’s understandable like we know that the distance between North and South is almost 1000km. When you look in your own country and compare the climate between 2 places with a 1000km distance between it, you also see a different climate.

“Best” Weather

So yes, in general for Maldives we can say that the best time to have the most hours of sun and the less volume (mm) rainfall, will be between February and April, but like you can see in the charts there are some differences between north, central and south Atolls in Maldives.

Hanimaadho = North Maldives
Hulhule = Central Maldives
Gan = South Maldives

raining graph Maldives

“Best” Diving

There is NO best time for Diving in Maldives, we have a high season and low season in tourist arrivals but this is not based on the best time for diving in Maldives. Every Atoll or a part of it will have there OWN “best” time and even when it’s not the “best” time it still can be great diving in all other months.

What have to be understood is, there are 2 possible ways to dive in Maldives, Diving land based and diving with a liveaboard.

The liveaboard will plan their routes in first place on weather conditions. A liveaboard will dive at many highlights during the trip, but they have to cross channels and not all channels are safe to cross 12 months a year, that’s the reason for example that we do see liveaboards during the north-east monsoon in the deep south and not during south-west monsoon.

Land based dive centers, on resorts and local islands are not moving anywhere, and they will offer diving 12 months in the same location and this can be also an advantage. Dive Centers who are located land based, are diving 12 months a year, for years the same dive sites in the area and are mostly the experts in this area.

Reef in the Maldives

To know what’s the “Best” time for diving in the area, you should simply ask the land based dive center in the area (Atoll), like I mentioned each part of Maldives is different with their own “Best” time for something like, visibility, Manta Rays, Whale sharks, Tiger sharks or whatever.

Remember that during high season you will always be with more divers at the same dive site as with low season, and this fact can make the low season the BEST time for diving (photographers), at the end we all want to see marine life instead of 100 divers at the same spot.

Coral reef in the Maldives

Our advice

Check Maldives from North to South, and ask a local dive center for the local dive conditions or your Liveaboard Operator, your Scuba Diving Travel Agency for the “best” chances of ...., to make an unforgettable scuba diving dive trip to Maldives. We mention chances, the Indian Ocean is not an Aquarium, but with the right advice it will comes close to it.