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History of tourism in Maldives

As you might have already known, Maldives is one of the best tourist destinations counted upon the entire world. It has won commendable titles such as, “The sunny side of life” and “Paradise on Earth.”. Since this is so, Maldives has developed in an enthralling rate in the field of tourism. The industry of tourism has opened innumerable job opportunities for the young generation of Maldives. Nevertheless, it is a prime issue that only a minority of people are wholly aware how this excellent industry paved its way to the level it is now. This History of tourism in Maldives  however, is not at all a mystery. Hence, it is vital to make a short emphasis of this History of tourism in Maldives.

Travel aficionado

The Italian traveler George Corbin was the first to make his way to the South Asian Countries. He visited countries such as India and Sri Lanka as well. He found Maldives has a breathtaking collection of islands and he saw a potential in this archipelago that would one day make it a perfect traveling destination. The history of tourism in Maldives first points at this travel enthusiast. He met Kerafa Naseem in the Maldivian High commission and was highly impressed by the information about Maldives. Hence, the possibilities of bringing guests to Maldives were rationally discussed. An Italian photographer who was known by the name Frenchesco Benini also accompanied Corbin throughout his journey. They realized that Maldives could be a tourist heaven and that its beauty is yet to be developed. They photographed the Maldivian islands and wrote texts about this wonderful paradise. As soon as they left Maldives, Corbin began writing articles about Maldives

Tourists in Maldives- The first batch

Corbin definitely saw that Maldives has the potential to be an excellent destination for tourists and began making preparations to allow the first group of tourists to set their feet in white gold sandy beaches of Maldives. This was the second stage of the history of tourism in Maldives. Although Corbin was highly determined to send in tourists to Maldives, the issue of not having a suitable place to stay in the beautiful isles of Maldives and the fact that there was no fine facility of flying to Maldives still bombarded in his mind. Nevertheless, his flair and courage along with the support of the Maldivian companions alleviated these obstacles and moved on to bring the first batch of tourists in Maldives. They arrived to Hulhule’ and were taken to Male’ by Mr.Hussein Afeef. During the 12 days stay in Male’, they enjoyed fishing or snorkeling and were even spellbound by the beauty of the Maldivian islands!!

Spear fishing- Main sport!

Spear fishing turned out to be one of the best enjoyed sport by the tourist group who traveled to Maldives in the year 1972. Maldives is also identified as one of the best places for spear fishing according to the articles published by Corbin and the tourist group who visited Maldives. The excitement of spear fishing seems to have created substantial memories inside the first batch of tourists and inevitably the interest to visit to this isolated paradise aroused!! This is the third point in the history of tourism in Maldives.

First travel agencies.

According to the history of tourism in Maldives, the first travel agency initiated is the Muman agency which also worked in the innovation of Kurumba resort in Vihamanaafushi. This resort, after being established began the provision of services. Soon after the year 1972, the second travel agency known as the Cresent Tourist Agency was initiated. It is also stated that one of the shareholders of this agency turned out to be one of the former Maldivian presidents, Honourable Mr.Ibraahim Naasir(late). This agency had a share of the construction of the other Maldivian resort, Bandos Island Resort. In addition to that, this agency had share in the building of other numerous resorts. It also leased an island in Maldives to a foreign realm to build a resort there.

Beginning- Vihamanaafushi

Honestly, it may be worth wondering why Vihamanaafushi was opted over the other Maldivian resorts. It is a fact that Corbin and his companions visited the other Maldivian islands, namely an island called Meerufushi. Nevertheless, its distance to the airport was extremely big and hence, it would obviously not be viable to begin a resort in such an island as of then. Hence, Vihamanaafushi was suggested. Other than the fact that Vihamanaafushi is closer to the airport, it is an excellent island gifted with beaches full of white gold sandy banks and lush green tropical vegetation. According to the entrepreneurs of that time, Vihamanaafushi was opted.

The second journey

Bandos Island Resort turned out to be the second resort built in Maldives. The development of this resort was first with 32 rooms with 10 room blocks. Bandos Island Resort however reached its point of super development by the year 1972. It came around with 220 rooms and dive schools and a modern conference hall. All the modern amenities available in one point. This pumped up a boast in the tourism industry of Maldives and is the last of the chapter of the history of tourism in Maldives.


Even today Bandos Island Resort is one of the best of the Maldivian resorts and it continues to enthrall us with its extreme splendor. Nevertheless, now… let us leap to the current state of tourism in Maldives. Tourism has spread far across Maldives and you would find one person working in this industry in every family. Hundreds of resorts flourished over time and hundreds of hotels and liveaboards make Maldives one in a million tourist destination. It is true what Corbin saw in Maldives was a real gem and he was the one who made it glitter forever!!




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