Gnaviyani Atoll is one of the Maldives’ administrative divisions. It corresponds to Fuvahmulah, a natural atoll located in the Equatorial Channel (Addu-Mulah Kandu) between Huvadhu and Addu atolls. The atoll is located in the Maldives’ south and has a distinct geography and culture that distinguishes it from other atolls in the Maldives.
The atoll is known for its unique features, such as Bandaara Kilhi, the Maldives’ only freshwater lake, and a variety of endemic flora and fauna. Fuvahmulah is also the only Maldivian atoll formed by volcanic activity rather than coral, making it an important geological site in the Maldives.
The population of Gnaviyani Atoll is approximately 12,000 people, the majority of whom live on the island of Fuvahmulah. With a bustling local market, traditional industries such as fishing and coconut processing, and modern amenities such as schools and hospitals, the island is a hive of activity. Fuvahmulah residents are known for their distinct culture, which has been influenced by the atoll’s isolation from the rest of the Maldives as well as its history of trade and exchange with neighboring regions.
The Bandaara Kilhi, a freshwater lake that is home to a variety of endemic fish and other aquatic creatures, is one of Gnaviyani Atoll’s main attractions. The lake, which is surrounded by dense vegetation, is a popular location for picnics and recreational activities.
The Fuvahmulah Museum, which showcases the atoll’s unique history and culture, is another popular attraction. The museum houses a collection of artifacts and exhibits that highlight the natural history of the atoll as well as its cultural traditions and practices.
The atoll is also known for its unique wildlife, including the endemic Fuvahmulah heron, which is a symbol of the island’s biodiversity. The Fuvahmulah giant gecko, Fuvahmulah flying fox, and Fuvahmulah painted frog are among the atoll’s other notable wildlife species.
Gnaviyani Atoll tourism is still in its early stages, but the atoll has the potential to become a popular destination for travelers interested in experiencing the Maldives’ unique culture and natural beauty. The atoll is accessible via domestic flights from Malé, and there are a few tourist-friendly guesthouses and resorts on the island of Fuvahmulah.
Finally, Gnaviyani Atoll, also known as Fuvahmulah, is a one-of-a-kind and fascinating atoll in the Maldives. Its volcanic origins, freshwater lake, endemic wildlife, and distinct culture make it a must-see destination for visitors looking to experience the Maldives’ diversity. While tourism in the atoll is still in its infancy, it has the potential to become a popular destination for those seeking a unique Maldivian experience.