Thoddoo island: How our stay turned into a total nightmare – are local islands in the Maldives a safe destination for solo women travellers?

Posted In: blog | Maldives

In this article, we will tell you about our shocking experience we had on Thoddoo island in the Maldives while staying in Serene Sky Guest House/ Relax Residence Guest House.

The Maldives, the country of astonishing coral islands in the Indian Ocean, is blessed with fantastic white sand beaches and spectacular turquoise colour of the sea. These heavenly beautiful islands are well-known as a luxury destination, mainly for honeymooners. 

Having said that, the scene has changed over the past few years and plenty of guest houses have been built on local islands so visiting the Maldives has become more affordable and has enabled travellers to experience the real Maldives.

We visited a local island Mathiveri last year; the sea was spectacular but the people who worked in the guest house and the other locals were hostile to us and the service was terrible. 

We gave the local Maldivian islands second chance this year because we believed that last year Mathiveri island was just a bad choice.

We chose to visit a local island again because we wanted to get to know the Maldivians and their culture, which wouldn’t have been possible if we had stayed at a resort.

It was hard to find a local island and a guest house which wouldn’t have negative reference on booking sites. Very often we read negative reviews that had been written by women saying that the staff of the guest house who are always men were touching them on a snorkelling trip (although she was with her husband) or were trying to make them have sex with them in exchange for free nights. 

After hours of reading reviews on various local islands and guest houses, we decided to travel to Thoddoo Island in Alif Alif Atoll where guest houses had very good reviews and if there was a negative review, it didn’t have anything to do with harassment. 

Thoddoo island

One of the beaches of Thoddoo island


Immediately after landing at Hulhumate International Airport, everything was so interesting again. We took a local boat to Male, the capital of the Maldives, a bustling Islamic city which is the most densely populated city in the world. The population of Male is 153, 379 and the whole city covers an area of 5,8 km2.

While strolling in narrow streets of Male, we could see that a lot of various merchants had gone across the gorgeous islands in the past.

We were looking at the faces and were guessing where who was originally from.

India? Sri Lanka? The Middle East? Africa?

It was interesting to watch the Maldivians. As descendants of merchants from neighbouring countries, their faces revealed the culturally different backgrounds.

The Maldives is a Muslim country (and also the smallest Muslim country in the world) but until the 12th century Buddhism and Hinduism was practised in the islands. Islam was later brought by Moroccan traders.

Most of the local women were wearing black abaya (dress covering the head, shoulders and a body) . They sometimes had their face covered too and we could just see their eyes through black transparent  cloth.

Some younger women had jeans, long sleeved tops and colourful scarves on.


Unlike our stay on Mathiveri island, since the very first moment when we jumped into the speed boat taking us from Male to Thoddoo island, local people were very friendly and greeted us with big smiles. The sea was a bit rough after the rain and when we started jumping in the boat, men sitting behind us immediately offered us their seats.

The locals on Thoddoo island were lovely and made us feel very welcome. They smiled at us and greeted us when we were on our way to the beach, a shop or were just strolling around the village. Children waved at us every time we were passing by their houses.


We received gifts from people we just met. Some locals wanted to shake our hands even if this is not their custom. They were smiling and holding our hand as if they never wanted to let us go. It was a bit funny, but unexpectedly pleasant. 


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local islands in the M

The life on Thoddoo island is very relaxed and the island itself is quiet. It was nice to wander the streets of the small village and to talk to the locals. Even if some of them didn’t speak any English, they never forgot to greet us by saying Hello or just Yes and smiled.

When we visited Thoddoo island in September/October 2015, an annual Muslim festival called Eid took place on the island.

Thaara and Baandyia, traditional Maldivian music and dance, were the main part of Eid.

Women performed Baandyia; they were dancing with pots called bandias in Dhivehi, the Maldivian language and were playing on them. Men were drumming, singing and dancing; Thaara means tambourine in Dhivehi.

During the two weeks foregoing the date of the festival, the local people were practising Baandyia and Thaara every evening. We were allowed to watch the preparations and rehearsals of Thaara.  It was amazing to be a part of all of this and we really felt very privileged to witness this amazing performance that dates back to the 17th century. Thaara is still being practised on very few Maldivian islands.


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Everything was going well on Thoddoo island and we were enjoying our stay. We were waiting for the main show Thaara which took place on the last day of Eid. Our plan was to leave the night after Thaara by night cargo boat and go to Male to catch the flight to India. 

When we started packing up, we realised that we didn’t feel like leaving Thoddoo yet. We felt like staying and relaxing for a little longer before travelling to India. We made a quick decision to stay two more weeks, change the date of our flight to India and extend our visas for the Maldives.

How our stay on Thoddoo island turned into 

a total nightmare


Just a few days after Thaara we knew that we should have left Thoddoo island

by the night boat the day after Tharra.

Our stay on Thoddoo island turned into a total nightmare.

Our opinion on the safety of foreign women on local Maldivian islands changed completely.

The following incident was just the beginning of 2 weeks full of awful and dangerous situations.

As the Maldives is a Muslim country,  it’s prohibited to swim in bikini on public beaches.

On most local islands, there’s a so called guest beach or a bikini beach, which is an area of the beach where visitors are allowed to swim in bikini. 

Right from the first day, we felt uncomfortable on this beach even if this beach was supposed to be a nice place for guests to enjoy the sea. Almost every day there were boats going very close to the shore and the only reason for the local men in the boats to come so close was to stare at foreign women in bikini.

Several times we saw the men in the boat taking photos of us or other women on the beach, and three times there was a drone flying above the bikini beach too! We never saw the owner of the drone, he was probably hidden somewhere in the bush taking a video of women in bikini.

What’s more, an older local man who was responsible for cleaning the bikini beach, was all the time staring at foreign women too. 

So we spent most of the time by the sea on public beaches. We were told in our guest house Serene Sky Guest House – also called Relax Residence that it was OK for us to be anywhere on the island, but dressed properly – we always had a T-shirt covering our arms and light long trousers on. 

Some days, when we wanted to have a swim in bikini, we stayed on the bikini beach.

One day when we were swimming in the sea 3 metres from the guest beach with other tourists, suddenly all of us saw a boat coming very fast towards us. We all stayed like frozen in the sea. The boat went very fast among all of us and parked nearby, on a public beach. 
We immediately dressed and went to find the man. We asked him whether he could next time avoid the area for guests because he could have easily hit or even killed somebody! We tried to explain to him that the guest beach for tourists is only a very small piece of shore where tourists can swim in bikini, enjoy the sea and it’s supposed to be an area safe for tourists, while he can use all the rest of the island. 
He immediately became very rude and started shouting at us: 
We were totally in shock while he was screaming: 
“Who do you think you are?”
“What are you doing on my territory?”
“Do you think we are the same? Women and men are the same?” 
“I don’t care! I don’t care about tourists at all. I just don’t care!” 

He was approaching us and screaming so we left and went back to the guest beach. 

Later we found out that this man is an owner of Vacation Home Guest House and that everybody in the village knows that he is a rude and aggressive person.


The complete reluctance to ensure the safety of guests of Serene Sky Guest House and Relax Residence on Thoddoo island was shocking.

We were victims of sexual harassment on the public beach on Thoddoo island. The complete reluctance and lack of interest to ensure our safety, safety of other guests at Serene Sky Guest House/ Relax Residence and other female travellers on Thoddoo island was absolutely shocking! 

One day, when we stayed on a local beach (dressed properly – like always in the village and on a local beach), within 15 minutes two local men came, were disturbing us and masturbated in front of us!

They came separately and we were so shocked when we saw the first one, that we were not fast enough to take a photo of him, however we could remember him very well. When he saw we were taking our camera, he ran away. 10 minutes later, another man came and did the same – twice. We took photos of this one at least. We quickly picked up our stuff and went to the guest beach which was only about 2 minutes by walk.

We immediately told Ahmed Karam, the manager of Serene Sky Guest House and Relax Residence, about what had happened. He said it was disgusting and that we had to report it to the council at once. At the beginning it all looked like he wanted to help us to identify the men so that it couldn’t happen to us or other foreign women again.

It wasn’t true what he was saying.

Later that day, Ahmed Karam told us that he was not going to tell the council and the police but that he would help us to find the men – which was a lie as it turned out during the following days.

He said that he didn’t want the police from another island to come, as then all people from other islands would know about what had happened to us on Thoddoo and it would destroy the reputation of this island and would ruin the tourism on Thoddoo island. His main argument was that once the police knew about it and this case appeared on news, tourists won’t come anymore!

We would like to point out that there was no police station on Thoddoo island.

We knew exactly how the perverts looked like and knew circumstances too. We even had 3 suspects because we knew many people from Thoddoo island already (we had been staying a couple of weeks on the island at that moment). It would have been so easy and fast to find the men on such a small island !

Ahmed Karam and Ibrahim (the other manager of Serene Sky Guest House/Relax Residence) preferred business to the safety of tourists staying on Thoddoo island and those coming in the future!

Ahmed Karam was lying to us every day and was saying that he was looking for the suspect but nothing was happening. We told him that we wanted to see the three suspects. He promised us to bring them and he never did that, and we couldn’t find them on our own.

He even tried to persuade us that he had found the first pervert. He claimed that one local man had told this story to his friend and this friend had called Ahmed Karam. He even told us the name of this man and promised us to send a photo of him. He was postponing sending us the photo of the man every day.

We didn’t wait for him anymore, found out the address of this man and went to visit him in his house. To our surprise, it was not the man from the beach! This man was much more older than our suspect and looked completely different.

Ahmed Karam made the whole story up so that we would stop searching for the perverts and this disgusting event would simply be swept under the carpet.

We insisted on finding them so that they couldn’t scare any foreign women anymore. Ahmed Karam kept repeating: “You will leave this island and go to another country, but we will stay.” 

Ahmed Karam and Ibrahim really didn’t want to understand and didn’t care at all that those men will do it again and it could even be worse. We knew that there had been cases of child and teenage girls abuse on Thoddoo island in the past but the men had been caught by the police.

We realised that Ahmed Karam and Ibrahim didn’t care about the safety of tourists – foreign women – at all.

During the days that followed the incident, we were meeting managers of other guest houses on Thoddoo island and talked to them. Most of them had known about what had happened to us on the beach and said that they couldn’t do anything because we didn’t stay at their guest house and Ahmed Karam and Ibrahim said that they would sort out this issue and would find the suspect with our help. All managers were very surprised to hear that nothing was happening and that Ahmed Karam and Ibrahim were completely reluctant to find the suspect, didn’t want to inform the council and the police and were actually waiting for us to leave Thoddoo.

We were shocked to hear that managers of other guest houses hadn’t informed their female guests. Mainly we talked to Abdullah, the manager of Thoddoo Retreat, about the incident and asked him whether he would help us to find the perverts. He refused it and said he was “in the same kind of business” as Ahmed Karam and Ibrahim from Serene Sky/Relax Residence and didn’t want this incident to ruin their businesses on Thoddoo island. The other shocking thing he said was that “he couldn’t help us”, as then he would have had problems with Ahmed Karam and Ibrahim. 

Tourists coming to Thoddoo island don’t stick only to the guest beach but go for a walk around the island too. We saw many women wandering on local beaches on Thoddoo.

No tourists on the island knew what had happened to us. We told this awful story to other solo female travellers about what had happened and that it was not safe to walk around the island anymore. All of them were very upset that nobody from their guest house had told them about it.

We went to the council on Thoddoo island where we reported what had happened. They didn’t help us, either. They didn’t care about this case at all. One of the staff of the council was reading messages on his phone while we were telling them the disgusting story and the other one looked quite amused. We were told that the head of the council was not on the island and that they didn’t have the right to call the police.

The 5th day after the incident on the beach, when we still kept insisting on calling the police, Ahmed Karam said he would inform the council. Later that day he said that Thoddoo council called the police and that they should come the following day, which didn’t happen. We are sure none of this was true.

In conclusion to this point, the perverts who masturbate in front of foreign women on beaches of Thoddoo island are still wandering around and nobody has done anything to find them and punish them.


Ahmed Karam’s lies and postponing the return of our passports.

Ahmed Karam, the manager of Serene Sky/Relax Residence Guest House offered us to arrange an extension of our visas because we wanted to stay longer on the island, of course before the incident on the beach happened.

We agreed because it was easier for us and we trusted him at the beginning.

We knew that the extension takes only 2 working days to proceed but we didn’t get back our passports until 2 weeks later!

He gave our passports to an agent in Male. He had not informed us beforehand he was going to hand over our passports to a third party. We thought he would arrange it himself within 2 days while staying in Male.

Neither of them paid or cared about the extension of our visas. Ahmed Karam lied to us every day saying that he had already paid for the extension and that the delay is the fault of the immigration office.

After we called to the immigration office 12 days later when we started worrying about our passports and really wanted to leave Thoddoo island after the incident happened on the beach, we found out the truth.

The fee for extending our visas hadn’t been paid yet,  and that’s why the officer couldn’t proceed the application.

We immediately called Ahmed Karam and made him pay and arrange everything about the visas.

If we hadn’t called that day the Immigration office, we wouldn’t have had the visa extensions ready before the day of our departure from the Maldives.


Invasion of our privacy and dreadful service / absolutely incompetent and uninterested staff of Relax Residence Guest House


We moved from Serene Sky Guest House to Relax Residence before the awful incident on the beach happened.

Relax Residence is a guest house that belongs to Ibrahim’s family. It is the Block C of Serene Sky Guest House.

Our stay at Relax Residence wasn’t relaxed at all, but was a total nightmare, together with the incident on the beach and the issue with our passports. 

Firstly, somebody went through our messages on the phone when we had left the telephone charging in the room and went for a snorkelling trip! It could have been the cleaner or anybody from Ibrahim’s  (the owner’s) family who had the key.

Members of Ibrahim’s family were constantly entering the plot, sometimes were even sitting there late in the night and were disturbing us by talking loud. They often entered the plot of the guest house without saying ‘Hello’ and overall pretended like we were not there.

We had only cold water in the bathroom. There was something wrong with the boiler and even if we told Ahmed Karam, they didn’t repair it.

After 5 days of our stay, when we asked the staff to clean the outdoor space and the kitchen, they came and were shouting at 7 a.m. in front of our room, so we told them not to come anymore and we cleaned it ourselves.

The woman who was supposed to bring us food in the morning, was trying to get in our room one morning at 7 am, but we were locked. She came back at 8 am, knocked very loudly at our door without a reason and run away!! We though something urgent had happened, so we opened the door, but she was gone. We saw her running away through the window!

Some days there was no food for breakfast in the morning, so we had to call them and wait for them to come and bring us something to eat.

Once we even got old mouldy bread for breakfast!!

They were giving us rain water every day and didn’t tell us that it was rain water, so we were drinking it and got sick.

……the list is endless! We just couldn’t believe all of this, it looked like somebody wanted to make a big “fun” of us!

When we finally met Ibrahim, one of the managers of Relax Residence and Serene Sky Guest House,  and complained to him, he said to us that we were lying and that we were “fucking liars”!

If we had had our passports, we would have left the island much earlier and wouldn’t have to suffer from these disasters.


Aggressive manager of Serene Sky Guest House / Relax Residence Guest House

Ahmed Karam’s aggressive behaviour and his attempt to beat us up!

When we finally – after 14 days (!) – got back our passports, we moved from Relax Residence to New Breeze Thoddoo Inn, another guest house, for the last night.

Two days before moving there, we went to New Breeze Thoddoo Inn to visit two friends from the USA who we had met on the beach. That place looked wonderful and the staff was very welcoming, although we didn’t stay at their guest house.

Ahmed Karam came to pick up GoPro camera that we had borrowed from Ibrahim’s brother and forgot to give it back in the course of the terrific events of the last days. The Go Pro camera was not his, and picking it up was just an excuse so that he could enter New Breeze Thoddo Inn and bother us.

After all of these horrendous experience, we decided to pay only for the little amount of food for breakfast we were given and electricity that we consumed in Relax Residence Guest House.

Ahmed Karam became furious when he heard that.

He was screaming at us:

“You are an old filthy woman.”

“You don’t have any single cent to pay.”

“I will not let you leave this island if you don’t pay me.”

“I have reported this case to the border immigration and they will not let you leave this country without paying.”

“If you write us a bad review, we will write you a bad review too and you will have many problems then.”


Then he became even more aggressive, he was coming closer and wanted to hit us!

Fortunately, Raushan, the manager of New Breeze Thoddoo Inn, protected us.

If Raushan wasn’t standing between Ahmed Karam and us,  Ahmed Karam would have beaten us up!


The last thing we heard from Ahmed Karam before he finally left New Breeze Thoddo Inn was:

“I don’t want any money from these two lesbians.”   


He called us lesbians because we didn’t jump into his bed, which he obviously hoped for, as the majority of managers of guest houses on local islands in the Maldives – the reviews of Maldivian guest houses on Tripadvisor say it all. Most managers of guest houses see foreign women travelling solo as “an easy catch”.

We left Thoddoo island three hours after this last horrendous experience by a night boat completely exhausted. The only thought we had at that moment was: We’ll never go back to the Maldives!


And what is the conclusion?

Are local islands in the Maldives a safe destination for solo women travellers?

After our experience from 2014 and from 2015, we don’t think that local islands are safe and comfortable destination for solo women travellers.

If you really desperately long for visiting the Maldives and don’t have much money or don’t want to spend money on staying at a resort, then travel as a couple, find a male travel partner, or travel in a group.

The local tourism in the Maldives is at its beginning. Locals are not used to seeing tourists, mainly women travelling solo. Actually we don’t think that time can change the attitude of most of the Maldivian men to foreign women.  

On some islands, locals, both women and men, can be very unpleasant, as we heard from other travellers and as we experienced on Mathiveri island. This year, we were very lucky with the locals at least; people on Thoddoo island, who were not connected with the tourism, were really nice and friendly.

Based on our experience, we think that if you get into troubles on any local island in the Maldives you won’t get help because women don’t mean much there, the locals behave like cowards and authorities will completely ignore you.


UPDATE: In February 2016 a Maldivian person shared our article with Facebook friends. During the next 6 days, the article was read by tens of thousands of Maldivians. We received a lot of interesting  comments and supportive e-mails. You can read the comments below. 

On February 23, 2016 we sent a complaint to the Ministry of Tourism of the Maldives (

As there was no answer from them, we sent the Ministry of Tourism a repeated complaint on March 13, 2016 (, Until now we have not received a reply. 



  • Jo (The Blonde)
    October 28, 2015

    OMG! This is absolutely disgusting! I cannot belive that these men masturbated in front of you! and that guesthouse owner? What a terrible, terrible man. Thanks for writing it all up. I travel solo from time to time and Maledives always sounded like a good idea. If I ever go there, I think I will just pay a little bit more and stay in a resort.

    • Simply Nomadic Life
      Jo (The Blonde)
      October 28, 2015

      Thank you for your comment, Jo. The whole experience was shocking and even more shocking was the attitude of the managers of the guest house we were staying at (Serene Sky Guest House) who were responsible for the safety of their guests and should have taken an action! These men are still wandering around the island and next time it could happen again and it could even be worse.
      The sea around the Maldivian islands is exceptionally beautiful, but after our two experience from local islands we strongly recommend solo female travellers to stay at a resort that has only positive reviews.

  • Nafi
    February 1, 2016

    Absolutely disgusted about your story. Sorry to hear all those bad vibes.. However i know quite good guest houses, who provides good services in the local islands! You just need to get contacts of a local who knows alot of places! Any was as a Maldivian im saddened to hear these kind of un-proffessionalism by a service provider… Maybe next time if you wanna come, do let me know.. Ill help you guys find a good place to stay!

    • Simply Nomadic Life
      February 5, 2016

      Hello Nafi, thank you for your comment and support. Best wishes, Petra and Veru

  • M
    February 1, 2016

    It is disconcerting to hear that you had such a terrible experience. As a Maldivian one can only hope that local tourism would take a better turn towards respecting foreign and domestic travellers alike. It is true, that local tourism has just begun in the country although it is not an excuse to ignore ethical norms, standards and basic human decency. I hope you guys have a better experience exploring the Maldives in the future and I also apologise that you guys had to go through that, such a major letdown. Love and light -M

    • Simply Nomadic Life
      February 8, 2016


      thank you for your comment. You do not have to apologise at all. Yes, there is no excuse for what happened to us and how people responsible for running Relax Residence/Serene Sky on Thoddoo, Karam and Ibrahim and Ibrahim’s family, treated us, and how the council that is supposed to be an authority (mainly in case there is no police) was completely uninterested was shocking. Best regards, Veru and Petra

  • Victor
    February 1, 2016

    As a Maldivian I am extremely saddened and shocked to hear this. There was a time when we took pride in how we treated people, and we treated people with extreme care. I am personally sorry that you had such a terrible experience as this, and I hope some authority here takes notice and does something about it.

    • Simply Nomadic Life
      February 5, 2016

      Hello Victor, thank you for your comment and interest. We really hope that some guest houses in he Maldives, particularly Serene Sky/Relax Residence on Thoddoo island will learn how to treat travellers with respect, real care and as welcomed guests. Our experience there was horrendous. Best wishes, Veru and Petra

  • Anonymous
    February 1, 2016

    I’m from Maldives. I am so sorry for whatever happened here. You are not the only one that felt unsafe in here. In my experience sometimes we also feel unsafe to stay in Maldives that I feel like to fly somewhere else from here. Specially on some islands. I am a girl and I feel very afraid to walk alone or to travel anywhere by taxi on the roads even in day time also, sometimes driver stop somewhere and take advantage and they walk freely no one can do anything. Many cases are here like that. However resorts are pretty good and much welcomed. I am very happy that you left the island safe and next time if you visit Maldives please consider a good resort that is very far from capital city (Male’) 🙂 , because Male’ and some nearby islands are very very dangerous.
    Once again I am very very sorry I feel very sad also hearing these kind of things specially from a foreigner, but I would say that there are nice people also in here :).


    • Simply Nomadic Life
      February 11, 2016

      Hello, thank you for your comment. We are really sorry to hear that you do not feel safe in Male and some islands. Karam, who is responsible for running Serene Sky on Thoddoo,told us that what happened to us could happen only to foreigners and that it does not concern the Maldivian women. As we can see from your comment and from the comments of other Maldivian women, it is quite common in the Maldives and we do hope if we all point to this topic the authorities will take action so that the Maldives become a safe place for women. Best wishes, Veru and Petra

  • Ahmed irufan
    February 1, 2016

    Sorry for what happened to you guys in Maldives but all are non like that over here. In every country there are such cartoons really feeling awful. If you had made a little more effort and contacted tourism ministry they would surly have your problem solved and arranged you a better way and would have closed that guest house for their ill behaviour.

    • Simply Nomadic Life
      Ahmed irufan
      February 11, 2016

      Hello Ahmed, thank you for your comment. We agree that in every country you can find good and bad people. We do hope that our article will help to improve the safety situation in the Maldives for women, both foreign and local. Best wishes,Petra and Veru

  • Yumi
    February 1, 2016

    I’m really sorry to hear about this. I am actually from Maldives and live in the capital city of Male’. It is is actually more sad to say that local girls living here have also become victims of sexual harassment in the streets. It is so normal to find yourself hearing cat calling and no one would raise a hand to defend the victim. Hospitality is something I’m majoring in and I’m ashamed to hear of such cases. Resorts in my opinion is the most safe and best choice for female travelers

    • Simply Nomadic Life
      February 11, 2016

      Hello Yumi, thank you for your comment. We really did not know that sexual harassment is so common in the Maldives. All victims, either foreign women or local, should not be afraid to report the perverts and laws have to become strict. Then the the perverts would think twice before showing their penis and masturbating in the streets. Best regards, Petra and Veru

  • Ikram
    February 1, 2016

    I can assure you this type of behavior is not accepted in our country , and I would like to be the first to extend my deepest apologies for your negative experience. Of course an apology is not enough, I would be furious if I spent a ludicrous amount of money to visit a destination only to be treated this way.

    This is my first time hearing of such a story, and can only assume such underhanded and disgusting practices take place in the more rural and less developed areas of our country. This is just shameful, I am beyond words. Your post and blog is currently being shared and posted to the Police Service and being called to investigate the situation by many individuals through social media, we as Maldivians wont tolerate such cowardly and demeaning behavior, especially to our valued guests ( We highly value guests in our country and strive to treat them with the respect they rightfully deserve, as is commanded both in our religion AND our culture to treat guests either at home or in your country with utmost respect and hospitality. )

    In the meantime, the only advice I could offer to any future tourists considering Maldives is to avoid rural and/or shady inns. Your experience will be greater near more developed centers of the country or authentic resorts or well known guest houses.
    This is not taken lightly at all and we wont rest until this cowardly and disgusting man is brought to light by the authorities involved.

    Also, I may, I would like to point out that although you are allowed to have multiple wives, this is frowned upon by the modern and upcoming generation, it might have been viewed in better lights by the previous generations of our people but that is no longer the case, as the culture is being more westernized and Polygamy is viewed in a much harsher light, both in terms of social norms and social status.

    Yours sincerely, Ikram.
    And once again, I apologize once more by the bottom of my heart, this is disgusting and I feel ashamed that a guest in our country would be treated so poorly.

    • Simply Nomadic Life
      February 5, 2016

      Hello Ikram, thank you very much for your kind comment. We really appreciate your interest and you do not have to apologize at all. It is not your fault. The experience was just like a very, very bad nightmare, and completely unexpected after the beautiful first month. We always try to remember the first part of our stay that was wonderful. Lovely people, the incredibly beautiful sea. Thank you very much. Best wishes, Veru and Petra

  • Anonymouse
    February 1, 2016

    Hi, I’m from Maldives and I will share this and try to spread it to others as well. ( I didn’t read the whole thing, I skimmed it)

    What they did was unacceptable and what the manager of the Guest House did brings us all shame. If it’s not a bother to you, or if you have a photo of these men, please send it to the Maldives Police Service ( and I’m sure if any good soul knew about these struggles they would have volunteered to help you to get out of the situation.

    • Simply Nomadic Life
      February 5, 2016

      Hello, thank you very much for your nice message and support. Fortunately we found one good soul at the end of the stay as we wrote in the article. Thank you very much again. Best regards, Petra and Veru

  • Apologetic Maldivian
    February 1, 2016

    The Maldives has transformed in the past 10 years from a live-and-let-live society to a male supremacist xenophobic society thanks to Saudi Arabian influence and funding of their radical Islam. Women are now covered up head to toe and any sign of flesh is enough for many men to get an erection and rage off.

    Not all of Maldives or Maldivians is like that though and the larger islands and islands with a longer history of guesthouses and tourism has become more open and progressive.

    Thoddoo should be ashamed and should be exposed and shamed publicly like your article has. I am so so sorry to hear of your terrible experience.

    • Simply Nomadic Life
      Apologetic Maldivian
      February 5, 2016

      Hello, thank you very much for your comment. Of course, that we know that not all Maldivians behave in the same way. We met a lot of friendly and nice people on Thoddoo, too. A few bad people caused us big troubles there but we do not want innocent people from Thoddoo to be put together with those bad people, hypocrites and cowards. Best wishes, Petra and Veru

  • mohamed riyaz saeed
    February 1, 2016

    This is typical Maldives things. I am sorry some of the people are like this. And i hope in future we can avoid such matters. So next tym plx dont bother with excuse of others and even if you have to go to police and report it. Also take tourist police number from male before going islands.

    • Simply Nomadic Life
      mohamed riyaz saeed
      February 5, 2016

      Hello Mohamed, thank you for your comment. We do hope that the situation in guest houses on local island will improve and people running them will learn how to treat and appreciate every single guest. Otherwise tourists will not come, or will go to resorts. Best regards, Veru and Petra

  • Fathun
    February 1, 2016

    I understand how you feel. Unfortunately, it is something most of us Maldivian women experience. Just recently, a man came near our group of all girl friends and masturbated right by the road looking at us with a smirk on his face. We feel so helpless in this society.

    • Simply Nomadic Life
      February 11, 2016

      Hello Fathun, thank you very much for your comment. We are very surprised to hear that sexual harassment is quite common in the Maldives as we can see not only from your comment but also from others. We are very sorry to hear about your experience!
      We hope that our article will help to talk about this topic with Maldivian authorities. These have to take action against perverts to punished them. We were told on Thoddoo by Karam from Serene Sky that what happened to us was only an exception, and that it could happen only to us because we are foreigners, that it did not concern local women. Best wishes, Petra and Veru

  • Mari
    February 1, 2016

    Am sorry on behalf of all Maldivians,, that’s a horrible horrible way to treat guests .. my guess is these people are very ignorant and their behaviour is disgusting and there’s no excuse for it but at the same time I assure you not all Maldivians are like that as in all cultures you find the bad and good . But I will also recommend to stay in resorts where the staff are used to seeing women in bikinis ,, as I think the local islanders are not ready for it . Once again apologise for your experience .

    • Simply Nomadic Life
      February 11, 2016

      Hello Mari, thank you for your comment. You do not have to apologise. We agree that in every country there are good people but unfortunately also bad people. You are right, islanders are not ready for it and honestly, from what we have seen, experienced and from what we have read on TripAdvisor (reviews of other foreign women) we do not believe that time will change it because the cultures are very different. Best wishes, Veru and Petra

  • Bunny
    February 1, 2016

    This article made my mouth open wide in utter disbelief and shock. But I don’t deny any of this as humans can be candy and devils at the same time. Bread and butter for people who run local tourist guesthouses come from what tourists spend at their places. And it’s totally sick and disgusting even if one from the community pays such disrespect to people who are the source of income for them, or people from whom the whole community benefits from.
    This not the hospitality that our forfathers gave to our guests and this is just so low. White or black, straight or homosexual, everyone has their own dignity and respect. This is another hurdle for local tourism investors, this means cancellation of bookings, this means shortening of long term holiday plans, this means the salary of the ordinary man will be reduced, this means loss of business, which all in the end is a loss for the Maldivian community.
    Once again my heartly apologies to you two lovely ladies on behalf of people who are responsible for both the incidents.
    And thank you for keeping your hopes high and daring to visit us a second time even after the first bad experience. I hope guest house managers would take notes from this article to prevent any such issue and help the tourists with the authorities in the worst case scenario.
    With love and care

    • Simply Nomadic Life
      February 13, 2016

      Hello, thank you for your comment. You do not have to apologise, it’s not your fault. Of course we know there are so many nice people in the Maldives. Just our experience was really “unique”. Thank you again for your interest. Best wishes, Petra and Veru

  • Ahmed Mifrah
    February 1, 2016

    Sorry this happened to you. I too being a maldivian apologise to you sincerely for the disgusting behaviour of some individuals. I am a cabin crew working for the seaplane. So i come across guests on a daily basis and how you were treated simply is not acceptable. Please advice anyone in Maldives they themselves can communicate with the police too rather than depending on another person.

    • Simply Nomadic Life
      Ahmed Mifrah
      February 13, 2016

      Hello Ahmed, thank you for your comment. We really hope that the situation in the Maldives will improve so that foreigners coming to see this beautiful country do not need to call the police. Kind regards, Veru and Petra

  • ahmed nafiz
    February 1, 2016

    sorry to hear this.

  • Sanne
    February 1, 2016

    I hate having to say this but I’m happy you wrote this post! It’s good to finally read something about the other side of tourism in the Maldives. I lived in the Maldives for about a year and I have to start by saying I’ve made some amazing Maldivian friends; both male and female. Unfortunately I’ve also seen and heard of a lot of sexual harassment and other injustice while I was there. The Maldivian culture is very different from the Western culture and unfortunately some men seem to have very little respect for “those rich women and their freedoms”. And the worst part is that after all that I have seen and learnt about the Maldives while living there I have no reason to believe this will improve soon…

    And if you think the way some Maldivians treat foreign women is bad, you should read about what happens to some local women… It is so sad. 🙁 And maybe even more so because the country itself is so beautiful and really could have been paradise….

    Interesting detail: I found this post because a Maldivian friend shared it. She and many of her friends reacted as shocked as any of us.

    Thank you Veru & Petra for sharing this honest story!

    • Simply Nomadic Life
      February 13, 2016

      Hello Sanne, thank you very much for your comment. That is so sad to hear how the local women are treated. The cultures are very different, that is true. But if you and other people commented on this post that the sexual harassment and even physical abuse are quite common in the Maldives then the origin of this issue is not only in the difference of cultures. You are right, the Maldives is an exceptionally beautiful country and if everybody there knew how to behave and respect women it would be a paradise. It is a real shame. We do hope that things will change in the Maldives and local men will respect women. Take care, Sanne and safe travels! Petra and Veru

  • Y.H
    February 1, 2016

    As a Maldivian, I am disgusted with how my fellow countrymen have treated you and your friends. Though I can’t say I am shocked because though there are some good people here, there are also far too many people who are greedy and ignorant and contribute nothing positive whatsoever to society. I hope you find better accomodations elsewhere because there are still too far many people here who need to grow up.

    • Simply Nomadic Life
      February 11, 2016

      Hello, thank you for your comment. We completely agree with all that you wrote in you comment. And local people build guest houses and then see only money coming. Most of them have no idea how they should treat their guests, mainly an independent woman or women. They do not understand why foreign women travel and why they come to their local islands without men, which is normal and usual in our culture. It gives them completely wrong idea and then they behave like they were mentally ill. Best regards, Veru and Petra

  • Ahmed
    February 1, 2016

    Greetings from a Maldivian!

    Everything’s happened with you is totally unacceptable. I blame them because they were disgraced for everything.
    I’m also working in a guest house in hulhumale. In here we’ve strong rules. In here hulhumale it never happens.
    If you’re planning to go any local island in Maldives I’ll recommend you 4 islands. Because I know how the guest houses of these 4 islands value their customers.
    1. Hulhumale
    2. K.huraa
    These 4 islands guest houses will have alot experience.
    Islands like thoddoo and mathiveri came on this guest house bussiness very lately. So yet they’ll not have any ideas how valued customers like you (tourists) are on their business. NEXT Time is you’re planning to go any local Maldivian island to spend your holidays please do a bit research how and when that island came on the business.. Thank you for taking time to read my message.


    • Simply Nomadic Life
      February 11, 2016

      Hello Ahmed, thank you for your comment, interest and all recommendations. Best wishes, Veru and Petra

  • Abdulla Naja
    February 1, 2016

    I am a Maldivian male and I would say that everything you said was true. Women in Maldives don’t get as much respect as men. Many women are verbally and physically abused right on the streets and no one gives a shit. As most of this abusing is done by gang members and even police officers, there’s not much a common man can do. Let alone a kid like me. And I’m sorry to even say this, but the country’s goverment is corrupt to the core. I don’t think that you’d get any help even if they contacted the police. They don’t care, as long as they’re getting paid, they only protect and serve themselves.

    • Simply Nomadic Life
      Abdulla Naja
      February 11, 2016

      Hello Abdulla, thank you for your comment. We really did not know that the situation and corruption is so bad in the Maldives. Thank you again for your interest and contribution to this discussion. Best regards, Petra and Veru

  • Haiman
    February 1, 2016

    As a maldivian I feel so sorry for u…if I were there trust me I would help u..:)

    • Simply Nomadic Life
      February 11, 2016

      Hello Halman, thank you. Best wishes, Veru and Petra

  • Ali
    February 2, 2016

    I feel absolutely disgusted. And as a Maldivian I could not feel more sorry than I feel right now. I don’t usually do this but I really had the feeling to say something. I am not in the tourism business so I won’t know much about it but I know how you were treated wasn’t even close to hospitable as a tourist should be treated. And I can’t help but feel ashamed and sorry. And it’s a good thing you decided not to go back. Cause I really don’t want fellow Maldivians dragging our good name through the mud. Godspeed.

    • Simply Nomadic Life
      February 13, 2016

      Hello Ali, thank you for your comment and your support. Best wishes, Veru and Petra

  • Gooner
    February 2, 2016

    Thank you for bringing this up as authorities are sleeping and only counting their money, I was personally at some of the local islands study before investing and I was in Thodoo I was shocked to see how they treat guests. Even men and women. I m coming back from hospitality background with lot of overseas experience and I feel so disgusted of your experience as in 21st century none should accept this. We can’t always say sorry and move on. It’s time people stand up and protect this beautiful country and people who live there and people who visit. Truth is no one is doing anything and thinking that automatically things will improve.
    Shame on the authorities and people who manage guest houses and call them selves as managers.

    • Simply Nomadic Life
      February 13, 2016

      Hello Gooner, thank you for your time and the comment. Our experience was completely shocking and even now after more than 3 months we can not believe all of that really happened. Best regards, Petra and Veru

  • Fayaa
    February 2, 2016

    Shame and angry what happen to you, as a Maldivian I believe we have moral and ethics. That all human should live acceptable behavior, if anything on that behavior fail. This kinda of incidents happen. I believe anyone in Maldives or foreigner even can call police and report such incidents. I hope and wish MMPRC (Maldives market & public relations corporation) and MATi (Maldives. Association of tourism industry) and Maldives Police and Maldives tourism ministry will look into this issue and punish those who make your visit awful soon.

    I wish you will come back to maldives and we can offer you trip of lifetime 🙂

    If you need any help feel free to contact me

    • Simply Nomadic Life
      February 14, 2016

      Hello Fayaa, thank you for your comment. We do hope that if we decide to travel to the Maldives again we will have a trip of lifetime:). If we need any help we will write you. Thank you. Best wishes, Petra and Veru

  • Anonymous
    February 2, 2016

    I am from the Maldives. It is not surprising to hear this at all. Not only the Maldivian men, but its the nature of all muslim men. Men from middle east behave similar. Muslim men are hungry of sex. No ethics at all. May be because women around them are all covered. May be they don’t get enough sex. The four wives thing is just bullshit excuse they use to full-fill their sexual need.

    Whichever the reason I am very sorry to hear this as a human, not I am going to apologize for it on behalf of all maldivians because not all of the Maldivian nationals are like that.

    • Simply Nomadic Life
      February 16, 2016

      Hello, thank you for your comment and for sharing your views. Of course we know that not all Maldivians have the same type of character and behaviour. We met a lot of nice people in the Maldives too. Best wishes, Petra and Veru

  • Undisclosed
    February 2, 2016

    I am a foreigner and working in Maldives. I do not know the country that deep. To what I feel, is that for most men woman are not that important and not valued as a treasure. They are allowed to marry up to 4 times so if one marriage does not work out they can easily move away from that and go to the next one. That gives you an idea of what a woman is here. It’s true that it’s a Muslim country in the least skin you expose there always be someone who’ll be staring like crazy at you. Even if you wear a T-shirt and knee length pants. And that’s pretty uncomfortable. Now things are slightly changing in the capital city, male, I guess because of the amount of tourism which is attracted to maldives. I would say just 5 or 10% of change. So you can imagine in a local island.
    I recently got the chance to decide and travel on my own to a local island. I do not want to mention any place because I ultimately did not end up traveling. And this was thanks to my fellow coworkers,local guys who told me or suggested me that it was not a good idea for me to go alone as a woman. I argued with them, because for me male is fair enough safe most of the hours of the day. But they said it’s still not safe for you to travel alone. So I believe and experienced that people here see you alone and will straight ask you where is your partner? Or hit on you or think you are available or think that you are looking for something since you are alone. So you are basically a piece of walking exquisite tenderloin. And this is even if you walk with your partner ( husband).
    I do not want to discourage people from traveling to Maldives. The resorts are pretty nice and the local island so beautiful, my favourite ones. But you have to keep in mind that wherever you travel in this country, its going to be a Muslim country and according to how you dress you will call attention. Actually however way you dress.
    That’s how they are here. Every woman is a chance.
    To wind up, if any maldivian man is reading this, I want to express that this is how women feel although they might not tell you that. Some are okay with that, coz they like the attention but the other half don’t.

    • Simply Nomadic Life
      February 14, 2016

      Hello, thank you for your interest and sharing your point of view. We have not stayed at a resort in the Maldives. Bur our 2 experience from different local islands made us think that travelling as a solo woman and women to a local island is neither comfortable nor safe. We mentioned the most terrible events. There are other things to consider and we do not write them in the article. On local islands, there is completely nothing to do in the evenings, just stay in the guest house that is in the middle of the village, you even cannot go to the beach and watch the stars. If the internet is not working, which can often happen, you can just go to bed at 7 pm. The sunset is at around 6. But these are just details compared to what happened to us. Best wishes, Veru and Petra

  • Jaci
    February 2, 2016

    As a female expat, previously employed in Maldives this story comes as no surprise. I worked on a 5 star resort with an ?active? HR department… But daily suffered the humiliation from Maldivian men sexually harassing female staff. But to be honest local women in the Maldives do not share the same human rights as men on that island. I have witnessed domestic violence and sexual exploitation of women/young girls. I’ve seen local men exchange photos of guests sun bathing topless. Hence It’s my opinion the treatment you suffered was just the overflow of the local culture. I’ve never gone back to visit the Maldives. Friends often ask advice on visiting the island, I always rather suggest Seyshelles or Mauritius. Rather

    • Simply Nomadic Life
      February 14, 2016

      Hello Jaci, thank you for your comment. It very sad to hear all of this but it is good that you shared your experience here.
      We are going to Mauritius and the Seychelles this year so we are curious about both. Best regards, Veru and Petra

  • SoMa
    February 2, 2016

    As a Maldivian, I am not really surprised.

    We used to be a pretty liberal and progressive people. I grew up in the 80s and 90s and few women would wear the head coverings back then. But then came the Tsunami of 2004 and following that, the Saudi sponsored Sheikhs began banging their drums. And they should, as we had just experienced such terrible wrath from our merciful God. Of course it was our fault as we were only being punished for our bad behaviour. Then came the head coverings, abayas, jilbab, hijab, niqab, buruga, scarf… you name it, we have it. But that is how it should be right? I mean women are like lollipops and without the wraps, they attract the flies.

    The strange thing is however, with all women covered up, men have started to become more perverted. Even seeing a woman’s ankle is enough to give a man an erection. It wasn’t like this before when I grew up. Men didn’t drool and get tight in their pants whenever they saw a woman. Somehow I feel the covering strategy doesn’t work. It made things worse if anything. We have lost most of our identity and culture. We might just as well call ourselves Arabs who look very Indian. All this happened in around ten years. Scary right?

    Anyway, the Saudi’s have destroyed my country as they have many others with their madrasas and Sheikh mass production facilities. It’s all thanks to them we are now a perverted sex hungry people who view women as half brained subhumans. And I am sure the Saudi’s don’t have enough thanks to give the US and Europe for looking the other way.

    Have a nice day, free people! 🙂

    • Simply Nomadic Life
      February 14, 2016

      Hello SoMa, thank you very much for your interesting comment and sharing your views with us. It is really very sad. We do hope that things will change in the Maldives for better. It is such a beautiful country. Best regards, Petra and Veru

    • Kadhy
      March 12, 2016

      I am a Maldivian woman and I am disgusted at this interpretation. I would imagine our men would want to have better control over their own emotions. The fact that women cover, if they do out of choice, or uncover, should they choose it, should not affect a man’s respect for a woman.

      Petra and Vera. I am horrified and disgusted that you suffered such an experience. As a human being, a woman and a Maldivian I am deeply saddened. These men should be held accountable for their actions.

      And for those who make it seem to be an indication of conservative Islamic orientations. Every value in our religious doctrine is about modesty, humility, fairness and respect for women. So there is absolutely no way to justify or even understand such actions on the basis of religious fervor. They know this.

      My deep and heartfelt apologies for all you have experienced.

  • otherperspective
    February 2, 2016

    Hope the claims made by the writer will be thoroughly investigated by the concerned authorities. No one deserves such treatment!!

    And for all the apologetic Maldive commentators here….I live in Europe and I can tell you many women face harassment here too… in recent times if you wear an Islamic dress the chances of facing such incidences multiply. I myself have been physically harassed on the street, here in europe, by people I have never even spoken or looked at…
    Some commentators seem to have a theory that coz islmic men can marry 4 wives or because they are muslims they suddenly become sex crazed… if so what makes these European men act like this? Is it because they can marry only one? It seems like in one part of the world women are harassed for wearing too much and in other parts for wearing too little…quite frankly i think it has nothing to do with what women wear and everything to do with mentality of men towards women in general…

    • Simply Nomadic Life
      February 14, 2016

      Hello, thank you very much for your comment. It’s very interesting to read a respective of a Maldivian woman living in Europe, and surprising to hear what you experienced and we are really sorry to hear it. You do not mention the country. This topic is very difficult to understand and probably a good psychologist could explain why some men need to show their penis a woman they do not know. Best wishes, Veru and Petra

  • Anonymus
    February 3, 2016

    As a maldivian im really ashamed of what happened to you both. Maybe next time if ur planning to come here try to visit k.maafushi. the guest houses here are very nice and have good service. The staff are very friendly. Kind. Theres a big beach area for tourists where bikini wear is allowed. There’s a barrier between the beach area and the road. Normally local people dont go to that beach. And people in the island are used to seeing tourists in maafushi so they are very friendly . I have seen many female tourists coming solo to maafushi. So as a islander of maafushi i would like you both to come and experience a good visit in here.

    • Simply Nomadic Life
      February 14, 2016

      Hello, thank you for your comment. Maybe people in Maafushi are used to seeing tourists and the service is better, as you say. We have not been there. Anyway, thank you for your interest. Best regards, Petra and Veru

  • MvDenizen
    February 3, 2016

    So sorry to hear about your experience. I think a reaction from the Maldivian authorities is needed given that name and places are provided in the article.
    In Male’, the harrasement issue is so wide spread. A horrid state of affairs. Thought I might share this interesting documentary by Maldivian Filmmakers:

    • Simply Nomadic Life
      February 14, 2016

      Hello, thank you for your comment. We really did not know that the sexual harassment is so common in the Maldives. Thank you for sharing the link, we watched the documentary. The situation in the Maldives is alarming! Best regards, Veru and Petra

    February 3, 2016

    Dear guest,

    Here I would like to give a more in depth underlying sociological explanation. Maldives from a very early days has been somewhat an isolationist island, until quite recently. As you said we may seem to have settlers from different countries but this is recent, setters form South Asia, which has a, it of races and some from gukf middle east was the dominant settlers, slave trade has bought setters from Africa and so on true, but what I am getting at is small island inbreeding and the resulted culture. This culture as you, I got understand is very sort of tribal. The island fold hide their shame and protect each other of the I’ll deeds. This is expected norm sociologicall. We have other I’ll effects of this as well like rape and incest being covered up.

    But slowly with more communication and faster transport infrastructure and urban populations this inbreeding circles have been disrupted. This are changing. But it will take time. Those commments who say other wise either coveup have no idea the inner small island life.

    • Simply Nomadic Life
      February 14, 2016

      Hello Mohamed, thank you very much for the explanation. We understand what you are saying. We could see that and we knew that the perverts might have been anybody from Karam’s or Ibrahim’s family or their friends.That is why they were so scared to call the police, the same with the council and other managers of guest houses. All of them were actually protecting the perverts from being found and arrested by the police. Best regards, Petra and Veru

  • Sunny
    February 6, 2016

    Those guest houses on Thoddoo are run by some who do not have a clue of what tourism is. The guest house owners should be questioned by the Authority and cancel the operating license until the customers receive due compensation. Tourism Ministry should give operating license to Local Guest Houses on condition that the safety of the customers are guaranteed. Its sad that the Council Office, or police did nothing to help solve this issue. Tourists are coming here to relax but not to face such harrassments and go back with bad experience. Those involved should be punished including the Managers and the rest. I felt really ashamed of what the guys did to you both

    • Simply Nomadic Life
      February 16, 2016

      Hello Sunny, thank you for your interest and support. Yes, you’re right in everything you wrote. We really hope that the justice will win and all involved will have to face consequences of their behaviour. Best wishes, Petra and Veru

  • Karma
    February 7, 2016

    Iam from Maldives and from Alif Alfi we are extremely sorry for what happend back there and pls don’t blame everyone coz every guesthouse owners,workars or locals are not that type.we had a masterbating story from other island too but later we found that he was not a local and he is a Bangladeshee worker but in ur case iam not saying it’s not a local but karam shuld investigate it.this artical is use full to me enough proof or an explanation but will try my best to rise this issue and teach that karam a lesson.. pls if you got any pics of the karam and the guys annoying you people pls send it to me. let Him face his KARMA for his sin.

    • Simply Nomadic Life
      February 15, 2016

      Hello, thank you for your comment and interest. The man from the beach were local for sure. Bangladeshi men look different from the locals and wear different clothes. We don’t have a photo of KARAM, but if you would like to talk to him and explain to him how KARMA works and that he will need to face the consequences of his behaviour, he works in Serene Sky Guest House in Thoddoo island. Everybody from the island knows him. Best wishes, Petra & Veru

  • paulo
    March 12, 2016

    Why you need to go to maldives is a muslims country and we know how they treat the women !!!
    avoid muslims country and go some others place as many place better than maldives.
    Just boycott them !!!

    • Zaeedu
      July 8, 2016

      Its not because of Muslim country, in every country some are good and some are not, its a universal fact, of course Maldives is a Muslim country but there are people who doesn’t pretice correct Islam…

  • Zaeedu
    July 8, 2016

    Hi I’m from Maldives, live in hulhumale, sorry to hear d terrible happened. In most of d Maldives island people are not educated or they are not civilized enough, in your case you should call police directly n report d case by your own, if you Google also you can find all d necessary numbers, after all I’m happy to hear that you managed to leave safe, all Maldivians are not the same, some are good some are not.. Thank you for posting this incident so people will know about this. TC

  • Mohamed
    July 9, 2016

    As I have read the article about what u had experienced,I am ashamed to say I am a maldivian.I believe ur story that maldivian locals had done that bad act.even though it’s a muslim country,people of the country are not well educated .especially those guesthouse owners.this mostly happened due to their competition.guesthouse owners don’t work together and the government is not very supportive with the really very sad that u had a very bad experience in maldives which we promote as it’s paradise.I hope the local guesthouses will improve their rules and maintain them.and also must know that a single negative review would change the way how tourists and other foreigners think about us.

  • Katy
    September 20, 2016

    Thank you for posting this and sharing your experience. I came across this article as I was about to book a guesthouse on Thoddoo, and wanted to do some more research. Now of course I will look at other options.

    • Simply Nomadic Life
      November 7, 2016

      Hi Katy, thanks for your comment. We’re glad you read our post and will avoid this island. As we wrote in our article, we don’t think the local Maldivian islands are a comfortable destination for solo women travellers. Depending on your budget, you could also check out the Seychelles, Mauritius, the Cook Islands or French Polynesia.
      Safe travels,
      Petra and Veru

  • Josephine M
    December 16, 2016

    Yes thks too Petra & Veru. In fact i have already booked a guesthouse on Thoddoo but cancelled as soon as I read your article. I emailed them to let them know the reason but they denied anything bad ever happened on the Island. Thks for giving us a clear picture of the positives & the negatives of the place.

    • Simply Nomadic Life
      Josephine M
      January 3, 2017

      Hi Josephine, thank you for your comment.

      We’re happy to hear our post was helpful. Although it was quite tiring to write it all up, we felt it was our responsibility to do it.

      Safe travels!

      Best wishes,
      Petra and Veru

  • anON
    July 18, 2017

    I was quite shocked to read your article. As a single female who often travels alone I had no idea the maldives could be so bad. I actually just returned from the maldives (stayed at a resort island and a hotel near the airport), and never had a single problem with the staff at the hotel (all the men were very friendly and professional) or around about on the airport island near Male. One of the staff members at the resort I got talking to, actually suggested that I should try a guest house, as I was lamenting that I would love to come back, but my bank balance wouldn’t cope with it. He suggested a local island (that was not the one you mentioned that he knew the owners of the guest house) but to be honest I’m more than hesitant now. What happened to you sounds awful, and you weren’t even traveling alone.

    Tourism is important economically for the Maldives, it’s sad to see that certain disgusting individuals are being protected by others on the island. That is an attitude that will scare off tourists and hurt the country’s reputation. However, I agree with some of the Maldivians that have posted here, that not all the men there are the same as you had the misfortune to come across. Many of them are very respectful and friendly.

  • DP
    September 18, 2017

    Dear Petra and Veru,
    Thank you very much for this honest summary of your holiday experience. I was planning to book a mother-daughter surprise holiday and was seriously considering Maldives. However, I have had some reservations towards this destination due to an unsettling political atmosphere. This blog really reinforced my decision to avoid this place at all cost. I simply will not spend a penny in a country that tolerates abuse of women. While it is true that a few bad apples do not represent entire country, the lack of response from the police and ministry for tourism makes me very nervous. I simply will cross this place from my “wish-to-visit” list. Thanks again for sharing this with us.

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