The Maldives, a string of beautiful coral islands, is a tropical paradise. With its warm, tropical climate and evocative landscape, it is no wonder that people from all over the world flock to these pristine atolls to experience their serenity.
Maldivian culture is rich with tradition and a number of influences that are largely derived from Sri Lanka and South India, as well as African slave ancestry. This is reflected in music and dance, which is highly rhythmic, as well as in language that is reminiscent of East Africa.
Fish & Coconut
The key ingredient in Maldivian cooking is tuna, with grated coconut also an important part of many dishes. There are a variety of seafood dishes to choose from, including a traditional fish broth called Garudhiya which is served with rice, lime, chili, and onions. Other favourites include theluli mas (deep-fried fish), bajiya (a pastry filled with fish and coconuts) and kulhi boakiba (a deep fried fish cake).
Savouries & Snacks
Another essential Maldivian dish is hedhikaa, or snacks, which are often eaten as an appetizer at meals. They range from a fried fish cake called theluli mas to a savoury fish soup called rihaakuru.
Other snacks are samosas, kebabs, and a sweet dish called dhonkeyo kajuru. The closest that any Maldivian gets to alcohol is a toddy called Raa, which is tapped from palm trees and fermented, leaving it slightly alcoholic.
Maldivian food is not only delicious, but also extremely healthy. Its diet consists primarily of fresh fruit and vegetables, fish, poultry, and grains. You’ll find a wide range of vegetarian and vegan options at most restaurants, but make sure you check the ingredients before ordering as some may contain eggs or dairy products.