The Maldives is a tropical nation in the Indian Ocean composed of 26 ring-shaped atolls, which are made up of more than 1,000 coral islands. It’s known for its beaches, blue lagoons and extensive reefs. The capital, Malé, has a busy fish market, restaurants and shops on the main road, Majeedhee Magu, and 17th-century Hukuru Miskiy (also known as Friday Mosque) made of carved white coral.

Spread over 34,749 sq miles (90,000 sq km), the Maldives is a flat series (or chain) of coral atolls, consisting of coral reefs and sand bars. There are no rivers and no lakes. Approximately 1,200 islands make up the Maldives, and the topography of each varies from mostly sand to marshy wetlands.

Key Cities

Key cities in the Maldives include Male, Fuvahmulah,  Hithadhoo,  Kulhudhuffushi, Thinadhoo,  Naifaru,  Hulhumale,  Dhidhoo,  Maafushi, and Viligili.

Historical, Cultural facts & Religion

The Maldives (formerly called the Maldive Islands) was first settled in the 5th century B.C. by Buddhist seafarers from India and Sri Lanka. According to tradition, Islam was adopted in 1153. Originally, the islands were under the suzerainty of Ceylon (now Sri Lanka).

The culture of Maldives is influenced by the proximity of the island nation to India and Sri Lanka. The state religion of the country, Islam, also dictates various cultural aspects of the people. Elements of African culture can also be observed in the Maldivian culture

Islam is the official religion, all citizens must be Muslims, and the practice of a faith other than Islam is forbidden


Brief Country History

Except for 15 years of occupation by the Portuguese in the 16th century, Maldives has been an independent state throughout its history, especially from the time when the Portuguese were driven away by warrior-patriot named Mohammed Thakurufur Al-Azam in 1573. After the 16th century, the country was rocked by political meddling of colonial powers Portuguese, the Dutch and French until the 19th century when it became a British protectorate.

The Maldives island, according to some historians, was first settled by the Aryan immigrants in 500 BC long before the people, who were originally Buddhists, were converted into the Islamic faith by Sunny Muslim Abu Al Barakat, who venerated tomb in the Hukuru Mosque in Male, is now a testimony to his role in the Maldivian people’s conversion to Islam. The mosque is the oldest in the Maldives, having built-in 1656. After the conversion, rulers of the islands were called Sultans of six dynasties coming one after the other. These dynasties included the Maley Dynasty which lasted 235 years under 26 different sultans, while the Hilaii Dynasty ruled for 170 years under 29 rulers. Diplomatic relations between the Maldives and other countries began in the Hilaii Dynasty when Sultan Kalhu Mohammed invited heads of foreign countries to visit the Maldives.

The Huraage Dynasty was the last to prevail in the islands until 1968 when the Maldives became a republic and established diplomatic relations with Sri Lanka. By that time, Maldives had already gained total independence from Britain, although the British still maintained an airbase in the Gan Island.

Also, in 1968, the sultanate in the islands was abolished through a referendum. In 1970, two years after the proclamation of the second republic, the country fell into an economic crisis following the collapse of its export of dried fish to Sri Lanka. The closure of the British airfield in Gan worsened the economy further resulting to the issuance by the government in the years that followed a decree to suppress Islamic radicalism in the islands.

Language (s) Written & Spoken

The official and common language are Dhivehi, an Indo-Aryan language closely related to the Sinhala language of Sri Lanka.

Important Types of Commerce in the Maldives

The Maldives is an island country consisting of over 1,190 coral islands grouped in double chains of 26 atolls. These islands spread over an area of approximately 35,000 square miles, making the Maldives one of the most dispersed countries in the world. Only 198 of the islands are inhabitable. It is also the lowest country in the world, with an average elevation of fewer than 2.5 meters above sea level. The Maldives, in the past, faced several challenges that affected its growth and development. These challenges included political instability and environmental challenges posed by climate change. The rising sea level has forced the government to declare the Maldives a carbon-neutral country.

According to the World Bank, Maldives has a middle-income economy. Although the Maldives was one of the poorest countries in the world in the 1970s, the government initiated some economic reforms in the 1980s such as lifting import quotas and granting investment opportunities to private sectors. During this period, several industries emerged and the existing ones improved their capacity and productivity. Important industries in the Maldives include:

  • Tourism
  • Agriculture
  • Fishing
  • Manufacturing

Language Services US and others will provide working with the Maldives

Tourism is the main service industry and the largest source of foreign exchange. This increases the need for language services. The areas, where the services of native Dhivehi translators are especially in demand, are marketing (naming, slogans localization, copywriting, etc.), law, localization of corporate sites and internet portals text content, software, and manuals localization. Translating and localizing the products/services to Dhivehi will allow faster growth by removing any language or cultural barriers that would prevent potential clients from understanding what a business is offering. This opens up a new opportunity for both travelers and website owners. Companies that offer a multilingual site will find an increase in traffic and, consequently, will be able to convert all those potential leads into sales.

Looking for a Dhivehi translation company? Look no further. American Language Services (AML-Global) offers certified translations, native interpreting services, and turn-key localization solutions for any language. Call us today @ 1-800-951-5020 for further information, visit our website or for a quick quote click


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