Maldives liveaboard diving for beginners (Beginner liveaboards & dive sites)


Maldives Aggressor II liveaboard with beginner dive tours
Maldives Aggressor II liveaboard – image courtesy of Liveaboard.com. This post contains affiliate links, which means I may receive a small commission, at no cost to you, if you make a purchase through a link.

Are the Maldives suitable for beginner scuba divers?

Whilst The Maldives is a great place for beginners, you have to choose your dive sites carefully. If you’re staying on one of the hundreds of islands in the Maldives, you’ll find that you can pick and choose where you dive as a beginner. However, if you’re diving from a liveaboard boat, you need to choose your liveaboard carefully.

Maldives liveaboard diving for beginners: Not all liveaboard diving in the Maldives is for beginners, as many of the dive sites have strong currents which make them unsuitable for newly certified divers. But some Maldives liveaboards offer dive trips for beginners like the Sheena, Blue Shark One or the Amba liveaboard. But get drift diving experiences first.

Maldives liveaboard diving for beginners

The Maldives is one of the best dive destinations in the world. With the chance to see manta rays galore and the likely chance to see whale sharks (at the right time of year).

In the right season the waters are warm and the visibility is fantastic.

However, not all dive sites are suitable for beginner scuba divers. Many of the dive sites in the Maldives can be deep dives of 25+ metres (82+ feet).

Plus there are many time strong currents in the waters around the Maldives, which would mean either a drift dive or diving on a hook to avoid being swept off the dive site.

However, having said all that, there are liveaboards suitable for beginners. Let’s take look at a few of Maldives liveaboards suitable for beginners.

  1. Maldives Sheena Liveaboard.
  2. Blue Shark One.
  3. Amba liveaboard.
  4. Maldives Aggressor II liveaboard.
  5. The Maldives Emperor Serenity liveaboard.
  6. Maldives Scubaspa Ying liveaboard.
  7. Maldives Scubaspa Yang liveaboard.

1. Maldives Sheena Liveaboard

Maldives Sheena liveaboard for beginner divers
MV Sheena Liveaboard – Maldives liveaboard dive boat – image courtesy of Liveaboard.com.

The reason why the Sheena liveaboard is suitable for beginners is because the often put on a specific tour for beginner divers.

In my review of the Sheena liveaboard, the review in 15 seconds details the following:

This 24 metre (79 feet) Maldives liveaboard accommodates up to 14 scuba divers across 7 cabins. The Maldives Sheena liveaboard was custom-built for scuba divers and has en-suite cabins with air conditioning. Local food served buffet style served indoors or alfresco outside and there’s also an air-conditioned saloon and bar. The scuba diving ranges from itineraries of 8 days 7 nights to 13 days 12 nights with some of the best diving in the Maldives. The chance to see whale sharks and other sharks, manta rays, eagle rays, turtles wrecks and much much more.

More Reading: Best Place To Scuba Dive With Whale Sharks (The Biggest Fish In The Oceans)

The liveaboard tour suitable for beginners is this one:

Beginner tour from Filitheyo to Male – 8 days 7 nights trip. Approx. 17 dives in total. Open Water certification – 5 minimum logged dives required.

To read the full review of the Sheena liveaboard: Maldives Sheena liveaboard review

You can check the Sheena liveaboard availability and prices for this Boat here.

2. Blue Shark One

Maldives Blue Shark One liveaboard for beginners
Maldives Blue Shark One liveaboard – image courtesy of Liveaboard.com.

Whilst not all tours are suitable for beginner divers, the Blue Shark One liveaboard does do a tour suitable.

In my review of the Blue Shark One liveaboard, the review in 15 seconds details the following:

This 30 metre (98 feet) Maldives liveaboard accommodates up to 16 scuba divers across 9 cabins. The Maldives Blue Shark One liveaboard was custom-built for scuba divers and has en-suite cabins with air conditioning. Western and local food served buffet style served indoors and alfresco and there’s also a saloon and bar. The scuba diving ranges from itineraries of 8 days 7 nights to 15 days 14 nights with some of the best diving in the Maldives. The chance to see whale sharks, manta rays, eagle rays, turtles and also tiger sharks.”

The liveaboard tour suitable for beginners is this one:

Cruise – Snorkel and dive tour – 8 days 7 nights. 12 dives in total. Open water certification required or similar + no minimum logged dives. Easy diving for all levels of experience, including beginner divers.

Divers will see a variety of marine life. This includes nudibranchs, moray eels, large schools of reef fish, eagle rays, various shark species, turtles, manta rays and whale sharks.

To read the full review of the Blue Shark One liveaboard: Maldives Blue Shark One liveaboard review

You can check the Blue Shark One liveaboard availability and prices for this Boat here.

Search for your favourite Maldives Liveaboard here:

3. Amba liveaboard

Amba Liveaboard - Best Budget liveaboards Maldives
Amba Liveaboard – Best Budget liveaboards Maldives – image courtesy of Liveaboard.com

The reason why the Ama liveaboard is suitable for beginners is because the often put on a specific tour for beginner divers.

In my review of the Amba liveaboard, the review in 15 seconds details the following:

This 33 metre (108 feet) Maldives liveaboard accommodates up to 22 scuba divers across 11 cabins. The Maldives Amba liveaboard was custom-built for scuba divers and has en-suite cabins with air conditioning. Local food and western style served buffet style served indoors or alfresco outside and there’s also an air-conditioned saloon and bar. The scuba diving ranges from itineraries of 8 days 7 nights to 12 days 11 nights with some of the best diving in the Maldives. The chance to see whale sharks and other sharks, manta rays, eagle rays, turtles wrecks and much much more.

The liveaboard tour suitable for beginners is this one:

Male Atolls (Male-Male) – 8 days 7 nights trip. Approx. 17 dives in total. Open Water certification – No minimum logged dives required.

To read the full review of the Amba liveaboard: Maldives Amba liveaboard review (Review rated 8.7 out of 10 & Fabulous)

You can check the Amba liveaboard availability and prices for this Boat here.

4. Maldives Aggressor II liveaboard

Maldives Aggressor II liveaboard
Maldives MV Aggressor II liveaboard – image courtesy of Liveaboard.com.

The reason why the Maldives Aggressor II liveaboard is suitable for beginners is because the often put on a specific tour for beginner divers.

In my review of the Aggressor II liveaboard, the review in 15 seconds details the following:

This 41 metre (135 feet) Maldives liveaboard accommodates up to 22 scuba divers across 11 cabins. The Maldives Aggressor II liveaboard was custom-built for scuba divers and has all en-suite cabins with air conditioning. Western and local food served buffet style served indoors with a saloon and bar. The scuba diving is second to non and includes two itineraries of 8 days 7 nights or 11 days 10 nights with the best of the Maldives diving. The chance to see whale sharks, manta rays, eagle rays, turtles and more.”

The liveaboard tours suitable for beginners include:

Both of the following tours do not require a minimum number of dives, which is why they are suitable for beginner divers.

  • Best of the Maldives – 8 days 7 nights. 18 dives in total. Open water certification required or similar + no minimum logged dives. The ‘Best of the Maldives diving. This includes areas of North Male, South Male, North Ari, South Ari, Vaavu and Rasdhoo. Which includes spectacular channel-drift dives, wrecks, pinnacles and night dives. You have the opportunity to see mantas, hammerheads, eagle rays, Napoleon wrasse, grey reef and white tip sharks, turtles and in the right season the chance to see whale sharks.
  • Best of the Maldives – 11 days 10 nights. 27 dives in total. Open water certification required or similar + no minimum logged dives. With similar range and areas covered as the 8-day trip, but with more dives and time spent underwater.

To read the full review of the Aggressor II liveaboard: Maldives Aggressor II liveaboard review

You can check the Maldives Aggressor II liveaboard availability and prices for this Boat here.

More Reading: What to pack for a liveaboard dive trip (Liveaboard essentials)

5. The Maldives Emperor Serenity liveaboard

The Maldives Emperor Serenity liveaboard for beginner divers
Maldives Emperor Serenity liveaboard – image courtesy of Liveaboard.com

The reason why the Maldives Emperor Serenity liveaboard is suitable for beginners is because the dives require an Open Water certification or similar and they have a ‘No minimum dive’ requirement.

In my review of the Sheena liveaboard, the review in 15 seconds details the following:

This 40 metre (141 feet) Maldives liveaboard accommodates up to 26 scuba divers across 13 cabins. The Maldives Emperor Serenity liveaboard was custom-built for scuba divers and has en-suite cabins with air conditioning and some have sea views. Western and local style food served buffet style both indoors or alfresco outside and there’s also an air-conditioned saloon and bar. The scuba diving includes itineraries of 8 days 7 nights with some of the best diving in the Maldives. The chance to see whale sharks and other sharks, manta rays, eagle rays, turtles wrecks and much much more.”

The liveaboard tour suitable for beginners is this one:

Best of Maldives 7 Nights – 8 days 7 nights trip. Approx. 17 dives in total. Open Water certification – No minimum logged dives required. Divers will see a variety of marine life. This includes nudibranchs, moray eels, large schools of reef fish, eagle rays, various shark species, turtles, manta rays and whale sharks.

To read the full review of the Emperor Serenity liveaboard: Maldives Emperor Serenity liveaboard review

You can check the Emperor Serenity liveaboard availability and prices for this Boat here.

6. Maldives Scubaspa Ying liveaboard

MV Scubaspa Ying Liveaboard – Maldives liveaboard dive boat – image courtesy of Liveaboard.com

The reason why the Maldives Scubaspa Ying liveaboard is suitable for beginners is because the dives require an Open Water certification or similar and they have a ‘No minimum dive’ requirement.

In my review of the Scubaspa Ying liveaboard, the review in 20 seconds details the following:

This 50 metre (164 feet) Maldives liveaboard accommodates up to 40 scuba divers across 19 cabins. The Maldives Scubaspa Ying liveaboard was custom-built for scuba divers and has en-suite cabins with air conditioning and some have sea views. Local style food served buffet style and as fine dinning both indoors or alfresco outside and there’s also an air-conditioned saloon and bar. The scuba diving includes itineraries of 5 days 4 nights and 8 days 7 nights with some of the best diving in the Maldives. The chance to see whale sharks and other sharks, manta rays, eagle rays, turtles wrecks and much much more.”

The liveaboard tours suitable for beginners include:

  • Best of Maldives – 5 days 4 nights trip. Approx. 9 dives in total. Open Water certification – No minimum logged dives required.
  • Best of Maldives – 8 days 7 nights trip. Approx. 15 dives in total. Open Water certification – No minimum logged dives required.

To read the full review of the Scubaspa Ying liveaboard: Maldives Scubaspa Ying liveaboard review

You can check the Scubaspa Ying liveaboard availability and prices for this Boat here.

7. Maldives Scubaspa Yang liveaboard

Scubaspa Yang liveaboard diving - Exceptional Maldives liveaboard
Scubaspa Yang liveaboard diving – Exceptional Maldives liveaboard – image courtesy of Liveaboard.com

The reason why the Maldives Scubaspa Yang liveaboard is suitable for beginners is because the dives require an Open Water certification or similar and they have a ‘No minimum dive’ requirement.

In my review of the Scubaspa Yang liveaboard, the review in 20 seconds details the following:

Scubaspa Yang liveaboard diving offers some the best diving, the best dive sites and the ultimate in liveaboard luxury. Rated 9.6 out of 10 and with 5 stars, the Scubaspa Yang is one of the most highly rated liveaboards in the Maldives, if not the world. Built for divers and accommodating up to 40 guests across 19 cabins with 24 bathrooms. Food includes local style food served both fine cuisine or buffet style as alfresco dinning.”

The liveaboard tours suitable for beginners include:

  • Best of Maldives – 8 day 7 night trip – Approximately 15 dives in total; Experience required is PADI Open Water (or equivalent); No minimum logged dives required. Diving includes the ‘Fish Tank’, Rasdhoo Atoll, Rasdhoo Madivaru Channel, Rasdhoo Madivaru and Moofushi Point. Marine life expected (but on guaranteed) includes the following: Whale sharks, manta rays, scorpionfish, glassfish, reef sharks, Napoleon wrasse, green turtles, beautiful corals and dolphins.
  • Best of Maldives – 5 days 4 nights trip – Approximately 9 dives in total; Experience required is PADI Open Water (or equivalent); No minimum logged dives required. Diving will include ‘Fish Tank’, ‘Rasdhoo Madivaru Channel’, ‘Rasdhoo Madivaru’ and Moofushi Point. Marine life expected (but not guaranteed) includes: Whale sharks, manta rays, scorpionfish, glassfish, reef sharks, Napoleon wrass, green turtles, beautiful corals, dolphins, hammerheads.

To read the full review of the Scubaspa Yang liveaboard: Scubaspa Yang liveaboard review for diving (Exceptional Maldives liveaboard)

You can check the Scubaspa Yang liveaboard availability and prices for this Boat here.

Maldives dive sites that a good for beginners

If you are wondering which dives sites are suitable for beginners in the Maldives, let’t take a look at a few:

Lankan Beyru (Manta Point)

Lankan Beyru which is also known as Manta Point main attraction are manta rays. They use the site as a cleaning station during the southwest monsoon. Where the mantas come in to be cleaned it is a large coral block covered with anemones and is full of fish life, some of which are the ‘cleaner fish.’ In the video below, you’ll see the little fish go out to the manta ray and clean its skin.

The reason why this dive site is suitable for beginners is because it’s relatively easy to access and has small currents. The cleaning station itself is a large coral block covered with anemones and full of fish life. This dive site is also commonly visited by whitetip sharks and turtles.

Rasfari Corner

Rasfari is a known for sharks and in particular grey reef sharks, whitetip reef sharks and silvertip sharks. But it is also home to one of my favourites, the eagle ray.

But one of the reasons this site also makes a good beginner diver site is the manta rays. When manta rays are present at Rasfari Corner they tend to be near to the surface. And bearing in mind beginner scuba divers with an Open Water Certification, this is ideal.

If the manta rays are present divers are directed to stay close to the cleaning station to observe the rays. However, it’s always a good idea to stay in one place and stay still to avoid scaring the mantas away. This is a popular dive site, so divers should pay close attention to the dive boats on the surface.

One of the other reasons why this dive site is good for beginners is the area is protected from the current.

Kandooma Thila

Kandooma Thila is located at South Male and is one of the Maldives most famous dive sites. This is yet another manta ray cleaning station, but you are also likely to encounter grey reef sharks, eagle rays and green turtles too.

The currents in Kandooma Thila can range between medium to very strong. Which may count this out as a good dive site for beginners. However, if you get some experience in drift diving before hand and do the necessary training first, you may be okay under guidance.

There are also some beautiful reefs here which are shallow enough for snorkelling too.

Rasdhoo Madivaru

Rasdhoo Madivaru is a dive site known for its stunning reefs, reef sharks, eagle rays and an abundance of schooling fish.

But also between November and April you can watch manta rays at the cleaning station known as Manta Block. But if you’re an early riser, or if the liveaboard gets to Rasdhoo Madivaru first thing in the morning, you might be lucky and spot hammerhead sharks too.

One of the good things about Rasdhoo Madivaru is that if offers something for all levels of scuba diving experience. There are shallow lagoons and gentle reef dives for the beginner divers though.

Maaya Thila

Maaya Thila is another one of the Maldives dive sites that is suitable for all levels of scuba diver. But in particular if you’re a beginner scuba diver the bottom is at 30 metres (98 feet) and the pinnacle rises up to a depth of 16 metres (52 feet).

You’re likely to spot eagles rays, grey reef sharks, moray eels, octopuses and turtles. There are also stingrays, but unless you’re the more advanced diver you are unlikely to see them as they will be on the bottom at 30 metres.

Fish Head or Mushimasmingili Reef

Some would argue that the currents are too strong at Fish Head or Mushimasmingili Reef as they are unpredictable, whereas other don’t seem to think it’s a problem.

However, depending on the timing of when you get to this dive site on your liveaboard trip you may be okay as a beginner to diver. If you have drift dive experience and the necessary training, you may be allowed to dive, but this will depend on the dive master and their assessment of your diving ability.

Fish Head is one of the most beautiful dive sites in Ari Atoll, which is partly due to the shear number of fish. It is sometimes described as like diving in fish soup. It is often impossible to see your dive buddy when they are just a few meters away due to the walls of fish. This is the most famous in the whole of Maldives.

Video of Fish Head and Maaya Thila

Maamigili Beyru (Whaleshark Search)

Maamigili Beyru which is known as Whaleshark Search is also located on Ari atoll and is within the Marine Protected Area.

Maamigili Beyru is both shallow and very easy to dive, which makes it ideal for beginner scuba divers. But what’s great about Maamigili Beyru is the very exciting prospect of seeing whale sharks. In fact this dive site is known as the best location in the Maldives for spotting the biggest fish in the world; the whale shark.

The whale sharks here can be seen cruising along the reef all year round. Your liveaboard will most likely look for the whale sharks from the surface, and once spotted, they will get you to enter the water.

Alimatha House Reef

Alimatha House Reef is considered one of the best night diving sites in the Maldives. So depending on whether you’ve had the experience or training for a night dive will depend on whether you’re okay to dive this site.

The depth is limited to 15 metres (49 feet), so will be within your beginner depth limits. However, you need to be a confident diver before attempting a night dive for the first time.

You need to have complete confidence with your diving equipment and with your buoyancy control. So long as you have these under control and the dive master is happy for you to go on a night dive then this should be okay.

The reason why it’s such a great night dive is that every night there the opportunity to see a large number of nurse sharks, stingrays and massive jacks. However, the site has become a victim of it’s own success as it does get a bit overcrowded with divers.

Baa Atoll

Due to the the diverse marine life around its reefs has an UNESCO status This is also partly down to the submerged islands or thilas, the overhangs and swim throughs.

In addition to the excellent underwater topography, you can expect to see colourful reefs surrounded by plenty of reef fish. But also you have the chance to see manta rays and whale sharks among other amazing sea creatures like sting rays, large groupers, bat fish and turtles.

More Reading: Best Place To Scuba Dive With Turtles (Where To See Turtles Underwater)

The two spots suited for beginner divers at Baa Atoll are Horubadhoo Thila and Nelivaru Haa.

I hope you enjoyed this article about Maldives liveaboard diving for beginners

I’d love to hear from you. Tell us about your adventures of diving and snorkelling. Please use the comments section below. Please also share your photos. Either from your underwater cameras or videos from your waterproof go-pro’s!

If this article hasn’t answered all of your questions. If you have more questions either about snorkelling or scuba diving (or specifically about Maldives liveaboard diving for beginners), please comment below with your questions.

There will also be many more articles about scuba and scuba diving safety tips (and on snorkelling too) for you to read and learn about this fabulous sport.

Have fun and be safe!

Leave a Reply

Recent Content

%d bloggers like this: