The Maldives started as a chain of oceanic volcanoes.Over millions of years the volcanoes subsided into the ocean often leaving just part the crater exposed. As the volcanoes sank reefs were formed by tiny organisms. Sometimes the volcanoes sank faster than the reefs could grow leaving them under water. In other instances the reefs were left exposed and formed atolls.
Today the Maldives consists of 1192 islands or Atolls as they are commonly known.
The indigenous people of the Maldives were the Giraavaru. In the 12th century a visiting Prince from Sri Lanka settled on the neighbouring island of Male and having adopted the Islamic religion ruled the country for 13 years.
The Giraavaru were forced to move from their native island due to changing weather patterns that took the bulk of their island back into the sea and in 1968 they were ferried to Hulhule Island and then eventually forced into apartment blocks in an isolated part of Male.
Today the Giraavaru are almost extinct.
Kuredu was uninhabited until 1987 when construction of the resort began.
Kuredu is located in the Lhaviyani Atoll (Map) and is the northernmost resort in the Maldives and also one of the largest. 80 miles north of Male it is a 45 minute journey by seaplane.
The average year round temperature is 25 – 30 C. May to October is the rainy season although the rain is usually short-lived and often a welcome relief from the humidity which is consistently at around 80% all year. November to May is the dry season.
The local currency is the Rufiyaa but no-one seems to want it. The US Dollar is the preferred currency.
It is customary to tip at the end of your stay with the exception of the man that delivers your luggage to the room who will expect a tip immediately.
Tips are normally given to your cleaner, waiter/waitress and bar favourite barman. $10 for a seven night stay and $20 for a fourteen night stay will be adequate. The average wage for the island staff is around $100 per month.
You should tip the snorkelling and diving instructors direct but also leave a tip in the “tin” in the ProDivers shop for the men that do all the carrying of tanks and equipment etc.
Kuredu uses a 13 amp 240v system as in the U.K. You do not need any electrical adaptors.
There are internet and email facilities at the resort and every island in the Maldives appears to have a mobile telephone mast! It is quite surreal to be sitting on a beach in the Indian Ocean calling your folks back home.
Apart from the hundreds of varieties of fish there are fruit bats, rabbits, lizards, herons and a wide variety of bird-life.