Must see attractions in Northern Atolls

  • Top ChoiceSights in Haa Alifu

    Utheemu Ganduvaru

    This small palace – now a museum – was the childhood home of Maldivian national hero Mohammed Thakurufaanu, who, alongside his brothers, overthrew Portuguese rule in 1573. Visitors are escorted around the complex by a museum staff member to see the fascinating 500-year-old wooden interiors, including swing beds (used to keep cool in the heat), lamps that burn coconut palm oil and elaborate wooden carvings, plus a large palm-thatch shed used as a sleeping room for guests.

  • Sights in Haa Alifu

    Kandhuvalu Mosque

    The date of construction for this stone-and-wood mosque is unknown, although national hero Mohammed Thakurufaanu is known to have prayed here in his youth, meaning that it's been here since at least the mid-16th century. It's a tiny place with a beautiful teak interior that can be glimpsed from the entrance. Sadly, entry is not possible for non-Muslims. Thakurufaanu's father is buried in the cemetery here.

  • Sights in Haa Dhaalu

    Hanimaadhoo

    Hanimaadhoo has the atoll airport on it, and also has the best-developed guesthouse scene. It's an attractive and friendly island with some excellent beaches.

  • Sights in Noonu

    Landhoo

    This island houses the remnants of a hawitta (an ancient man-made mound) supposedly left by the fabled Redin, a people who figure in Maldivian folklore. The 6m-high hawitta is known locally as maa badhige (great cooking place). Norwegian ethnographer Thor Heyerdahl wrote extensively about the tall, fair-haired Redin in his book The Maldive Mystery. He believed they were the first inhabitants of Maldives, living there as long ago as 2000 BC.