MALDIVES

Welcome to the Maldives, where sands are white as the smiles of the locals, where fish swim happily in the warm waters of the Indian Ocean, where the weather is a dream, and the deep rays of the sun waits to engulf you in their arms.

The Maldives is a tropical nation in the Indian Ocean composed of 26 coral atolls, which are made up of hundreds of islands. It’s known for its beaches, blue lagoons and extensive reefs. The capital, Malé, has a busy fish market, restaurants and shops on Majeedhee Magu and 17th-century Hukuru Miskiy (also known as Old Friday Mosque) made of coral stone.
Capital: Malé
Area: 300 km²
Continent: Asia
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The national language of the Maldives is called Dhivehi. There are varying dialects of Dhivehilanguage, especially in the southern parts of the country. However, formal Dhivehi is used in all the official and written communications. Similarly Dhivehi is spoken in the Indian administered territory of Minicoy.

Dhivehilanguage is an offshoot of the Indo-Aryan language family. Various languages in South Asia, Europe and Arabic language in particular has contributed greatly to the evolution of Dhivehi language.

The writing history of Dhivehi language can be traced back to over 800 years. Dhivehi language is written using Thaana script, which is written in the right to left direction. Previously DhivesAkuru script was used until the 18th century for writing.

Though Dhivehi is the official language, English language is widely spoken in the country. English is also used as the business language.

Foremost resort islands and hotels employee translators who can converse in different languages. Consequently speakers of renowned international languages like English, German, Russian, Italian, Spanish, Arabic, Hindi, Chinese and Japanese can easily be located in the Maldives tourist establishments.

The rufiyaa is the currency of the Maldives. Determining the exchange rate for the US dollar and the issuance of the currency is controlled by the Maldives Monetary Authority (MMA). The most commonly used symbols for the rufiyaa are MRF and Rf. The ISO 4217 code for Maldivian rufiyaa is MVR. The rufiyaa is subdivided into 100 laari. The name “rufiyaa” is derived from the Hindi word rupiyaa, ultimately from Sanskrit rupya. The midpoint of exchange rate is 12.85 rufiyaa per US dollar and the rate is permitted to fluctuate within a ±20% band, i.e. between 10.28 rufiyaa and 15.42 rufiyaa as of 10 April 2011.

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