This website is part of the description of my journey through the Baa Atoll. Besides Maalhos I visited the following islands: Fehendhoo, Fulhadhoo, Goidhoo, Thulhaadhoo, Kamadhoo, Dharavandhoo and Dhonfanu. At the end of the website you will find the link to the next island.
Since the local ferry had been cancelled due to a storm, I took a private boat from Thulhaadhoo to Maalhos Island, my next destination. I was lucky. As the boat owner picked up tourists from the nearby airport on Dharavandhoo island, I could cover the 25 km distance at a reasonable price.
Maalhos is a small island, about 700 meters long and about 500 meters wide and has about 600 inhabitants. There are several hotels and guest houses on the island and an excellent diving center. Dhaanu and Kate from “Maldivers Dive Centre” are very nice and helpful people. The Bikini Beach is about 200 meters long and is located on the north coast of the island. The southern part of the island is mostly forest.
At the Bikini Beach, maintenance work is also done on ships.
In the village I often met women who made mats and other objects in the traditional way.
Larger ships are also built on Maalhos.
The house reef of Maalhos has an impressive biodiversity. I saw turtles, rays, moray eels, lion fish, a barracuda and octopuses among many other sea creatures. Impressive was the night snorkeling with Dhaanu and Kate from the dive center.
The best entry point is at the old cemetery in the southern part of the east coast, where in former times the inhabitants had cut a path into the coral-covered seabed so that the ships with the dead could moor directly at the cemetery. In the beginning it takes strong fin strokes to get through the waves to the end of the reef, where the seabed gets deeper quickly. At the Bikini Beach the entry is much easier. However, in this case the snorkeler misses an interesting reef section.
Afterwards, with the light current to the north, the whole snorkeling area along the east and north coast can be discovered.
A giant moray eel
A Yellow longnose butterflyfish
Most of the time, There were two hawksbill sea turtles on the reef.
Redtail butterflyfish with bluestripe snapper in the lower part of the picture
The Chinese trumpetfish on the left accompanied the Coral rabbitfish for a long time.
A Freckled hawkfish
A Blue blanquillo
A Sand perch species
The Blue tang surgeonfish is very common.
Crocodile needlefish, also called Hound needlefish
A Bluefin trevally
A Parrot fish species
Large-eyed sea bream
The night snorkeling with Dhaanu and Kate from the dive center was the highlight of my stay on Maalhos. Many animals are nocturnal and are therefore not visible during the day. As Dhannu had a strong underwater lamp for taking pictures, his photos were much better than mine, so I show here the pictures of Dhannu, which he kindly provided me with.
Right at the beginning we met this octopus. Because these animals can change their color, they are very well camouflaged. Most octopuses are nocturnal. During the day they hide in caves and are therefore very seldom seen when snorkeling.
I have not yet encountered a Undulate moray eel while snorkeling.
Giant moray eel
This White-lined lionfish is also a new discovery for me.
A Hermit crab
Maalhos offers one of the best snorkeling reefs in Baa Atoll, but the island is also varied despite its small size, with a bikini beach and a forest area. The locals are friendly. Especially helpful were Dhannu and Kate from Maldivers Diving Centre.
After four days I took the local ferry to Kamadhoo Island.
This text is an automatic English translation from the German original by deepl.com