Connect with local life in the best way possible: through food! Get a true local experience with a home cooked meal in a family home, where you’ll be put to work in the kitchen before digging into a fresh lunch. Visit a neighbourhood market, see where locals live, and learn how to make typical Maldivian dishes.
We’ll start our Maldives tour with some shopping, gathering the ingredients we’ll need for our delicious lunch. You’ll be taken to the local market and a fish market, where you’ll be able to browse and taste fruits and vegetables typical of this 1,200-island nation.
From there, we’ll walk along the harbor jetties to the Hulhumale Ferry Terminal, where we’ll board a ferry to Hulhumale, an artificial island settled in 2004 to meet the booming housing, industrial, and commercial development demands of the Male region. We’ll gather on board with locals making their daily trips — you can start up a conversation with some, or just take in the awesome view (you might even be lucky enough to spot some dolphins!).
The ferry ride will take about 20 minutes, after which point we’ll disembark at Hulhumale Island, the sixth district of Malé. From here, we’ll take a local bus to the family home where we’ll be hosted for lunch.
Along the route, you’ll see a bit of local life in a residential neighbourhood away from the resorts, passing by the Hulhumale hospital, local shops, small cafés, a youth centre, and a mosque.
Once we arrive at our hosts’ home, you’ll be asked to leave your shoes at the door, and your guide will teach you the traditional greeting to be made before entering a local home. You’ll meet some of the family members, and even though there may be people there who are unable to communicate with you in English, you’ll see how local hospitality transcends language barriers
Together, we’ll pull out the ingredients we picked up the market, and you’ll be invited to participate in lunch preparation, helping to chop and grate coconut.
Want to impress friends back home with your new Maldivian culinary skills? We’ll help you to make notes so you can cook up an island feast on your own.
Once all the cooking is done, we’ll set the table and enjoy a freshly prepared meal with our hosts. Sitting around the table together, we’ll share our thoughts about Maldivian cuisine, discuss local life in the Maldives, and you’ll even learn some common words that you can use during the remainder of the holiday.
After our meal, your guide will walk with you to the ferry terminal and accompany you back to Malé.