Male: Smallest Capital City in the whole World

Imagine a capital city that you could walk from one side to the farthest end in less than 30 minutes. That’s how small this capital city is. And yes, it’s Male; the capital city of Maldives.  
 

Exploring this compact size Male is the only chance for you to meet Maldivians on their own turf. The whole Male is an area less than six square kilometres with a total population of 150,000 citizens and that is why it is currently ranked as the world’s smallest capital city.   
 

This town is built on a grid pattern and is heavily urbanized. However, thanks to its grid pattern, roaming the town is easy and you will never get lost when exploring the city. The streets fill with a mix of shops, old and new apartment blocks with traffic jams here and there.   

 
Most of Maldivian is Muslim, hence visitors are advised to dress casually. Exploring Male will definitely take you away from the beach and vacation vibes you spend on the other island scattered all around the Maldives.   

 
When visiting Male, there are no definite and mandatory attractions for you to visit. Rather, this is a casual town for visitors to wander and to fill their curiosity about this city.   

 i) Activity to do  

  • National Museum  
    If you are fancy about learning the unusual history of this island, you are more than welcome to come and visit this museum. This museum holds a large collection of historical artefacts where you could learn all of its glorious eras.   
  • Old Friday Mosque  
    This is actually the oldest mosque across the entire country. The unique thing about this mosque is that the structure of the mosque is made up entirely from coral stone.  
  • Grand Friday Mosque  
    The golden dome of this modern mosque dominates the skyline of Male and already become the symbol of the city. This mosque happens to be the biggest mosque in the whole country and it is built with white marble and free from decoration.   
  • Fish Market  
    Since Male is surrounded by the vast seas, Fish Market easily becomes the soul of Male. There are tons of tuna, octopus and grouper all over the place. The price is cheap and if you wish to buy it, you can talk to the locals and purchase some from them.   
  • China – Maldives Friendship Bridge  
    If you are from the airport going to Male, you will not miss this incredibly impressive piece of engineering that connects Male to Hulhule. This project which cost about USD250 million was the agreement Maldives made with China. Maldivian have a mix feeling regarding this bridge; some says connecting the capital to the airport is important infrastructural to Male while some see it as a huge waste of money as they think the traditional ways of transportation is very much preferable.  

ii) Shopping District  

 Shopping in Maldives is not a compulsory thing to do. However, all their merchandise and goods are way cheaper than the one you find on other islands. So, if you are looking for mementoes that will instantly remind you about your lovely Maldives trip, head over to these spots to satisfy your shopping needs.  

  • Male Local Market  
    Situated on the northern side, Male Local Market is a huge market and one of the most popular streets markets in Maldives. This market is ideal to buy local products, handicrafts, mementoes and gifts items. Apart from that, this market also has kiosks selling delicious local snacks.  
    Time: 8 AM to 11 PM  
  • Majeedhee Magu  
    Situated in the city’s heart, Majeedhee Magu is a street market in the Maldives. Primarily, this area is popular for clothing, cosmetics, electronic goods, shoes, watches and others. There are also a few restaurants you could spot along the road.  
    Time: 9 AM to 11 PM  
  • Malls and Supermarkets  
    Maldives do not have a lot of large and luxurious malls. However, if you search for one, your best bet will be the Centro Mall situated in Hulhumale island. This mall hosts over 30 brands outlet, foods and games all under one roof.   

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