Maafushi (Kaafu Atoll)

Maafushi (Dhivehi: މާފުށި) is one of the inhabited islands of Kaafu Atoll and the leading Local Toursim Island of the Maldives.

Maafushi is located in Maldives
Location in Maldives
Coordinates: 03°56′25″N 73°29′20″E / 3.94028°N 73.48889°E / 3.94028; 73.48889
Administrative atollKaafu Atoll
Distance to Malé26.08 km (16.21 mi)
 • Length1.275 km (0.792 mi)
 • Width0.260 km (0.162 mi)
 • Total3,025 (including foreigners)
Time zoneUTC+05:00 (MST)

The island’s proximity to Malé and its transport hubs has allowed Maafushi to become a popular destination for tourists visiting local islands.



Maafushi was heavily damaged by the 2004 tsunami which impacted on over 100,000 of the Maldives 300,000 population. The International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies, supported by the Irish and American Red Cross Societies, began work on a mains sewage system on 10 August 2006. The International Federation has also funded the building of homes for those who lost theirs during the tsunami.



The island is 26.08 km (16 mi; 14 nmi) south of the country's capital, Malé.[2]


Historical population
2006 2,000—    
2014 2,631+31.5%
2006-2014: Census populations
Source: [3]

According to the latest Census conducted in 2014, the total population of Maafushi is at 2,692 out of which 2,340 are Maldivians, and 352 foreigners. There has been a 17% increase in the residing population of the Island since the previous Census which was done in 2006. The population of Maafushi represents 13.84% of the total locality (Kaafu Atoll).


A photo of the beach outside WhiteShell Beach Inn.

In accordance with the recently passed Decentralization Act of Maldives, Maafushi is governed by an elected Island Council composed of five Councillors. The Council is headed by the President of the Council. The Island Council reports to the Local Government Authority (LGA). As democracy and decentralization is at the infant stage in Maldives, the councillors, and the government find it difficult to deal with important issues like land, and resource utilization. There are still many legal issues that need to be settled, before the island council can confidently perform its duties independently. There is also the issue of lack of know-how among the councillors. Most councillors are without basic education, and find it difficult to manage the day-to-day affairs of the island.



Tourists from neighboring resort islands also visit Maafushi for island hopping and Maafushi provides them with shopping opportunity with souvenir shops at assigned areas of the island.



Guest houses


As of August 2016 there were more than 55 guest houses in Maafushi[4] and it is the only local inhabited island with most number of guest houses and guest beds in the country.

Evolution of guest houses in Maafushi

  • 18/12/2017 December: 72 Guest houses
  • 09/2016 August: 55 guest houses [4]
  • 12/2015 December: 40 guest houses



Maafushi is connected by ferry service from Malé.


See also



  1. ^ "Table PP5: Resident Population by sex, nationality and locality (administrative islands), 2014" (PDF). Population and Households Census 2014. National Bureau of Statistics. p. 34. Retrieved 12 August 2018.
  2. ^ "Coordinate Distance Calculator". Retrieved 12 August 2018.
  3. ^ "Table 3.3: Total Maldivian Population by Islands" (PDF). National Bureau of Statistics. Retrieved 12 August 2018.
  4. ^ a b "THE 10 BEST Restaurants in Maafushi Island - Updated April 2022 - Tripadvisor".