Malé, formerly known as ‘Mahal’, is an island and the capital city of Maldives. It is one of the world's most densest city. History reveals that the first settlers in this country came from the neighboring countries of India and Srilanka because the Maldivian linguisticand other cultural tradition highlights a strong influence of the Dravidian community. Later, the people of ‘Giraavaru’ claimedthat they were the descendantsof the first settlers. Their primary occupation back then was fishing and they were not governed by any Kings. They were headed by some local headmen and living a simple life.One day, a prince named Koimalaarrived at the shore on a big ship. When the local people spotted him arrive, they welcomed him and allowed him to settle on a large sandbank in the middle of the waters which was contaminated with fish blood. As time passed, local islanders accepted Northern Prince as their ruler and built a palace named Malé. Later, the city was ruled by the royal dynasties. It was then surrounded by fortifications and gates. In 1968, the Royal Palace where the royal family stayed was destroyed by President Ibrahim Nasir, post the abolition of the monarchy. The most common most dialect spoken is Male. The official currency is Rufiyaa.
What to See
Apart from the wonderful beaches, the city also boasts of its historic monuments and religious buildings. Some of them include the Friday Mosque, Independence Square, Islamic Center & Maldivian National Museum. The Male National museum is the 1stmuseum of the country. It was opened by the former Prime Minister at the time, Mohamed Amin Didi on November 11, 1952, on the National Day of Maldives. The main intention of setting up the museum was not only to preserve the history of the Maldives but also to invoke patriotism in people. The museum houses a precious collection of objects that depicts the history and rich culture of Maldives. The museum is located in the Sultan Park, within the 17th century Maldivian Royal Palace compound. This museum building was actually built, designed and sponsored by the government of China and was later presented to the people of Maldives. The museum is open from Sunday to Thursday and can be visited between 0900 hrs and 1700 hrs.
Grand Friday Mosque, originally known as Masjid-al Sultan Mohamed Thakurufaanu-al-A'z'am, is the biggest and the oldest mosque of the country. This mosque, along with the other Maldives coral mosques, was declared as a UNESCO World Heritage cultural site because of its unique examples of sea-culture architecture. Malé is also a great place for shopping garments and conventional souvenirs. There are several textile shops on the island which sell fabrics in every color, texture and design. Local women prefer to buy clothes from these shops instead of boutiques. They not only buy the custom-designed clothes from these shops but also customize it themselves.
Best Time to visit
The climate of Male is usually warm and it gets moderate rainfall throughout the year. However, the best time to visit the country is anytime between December and March as the weather is pleasant and cool.