Thoddoo is an isolated inhabited island that administratively belongs to North Ari atoll, Maldives. It's quite large by Maldivian standards, it will take about an hour to circumvent it. In 2014, it had a population of about 1,500 people (including foreigners).
Thoddoo Island is surrounded by a wonderful beach. The locals are very friendly and very welcoming, but due to Muslim restrictions you can only swim at the designated tourist beach which sometimes is called the bikini beach. While outside the tourist beach it advisable to wear beach clothing rather than bikinis or swimming slips.
The film Ghosts Can’t Do It was filmed the Island of Thoddoo. The cast stayed at tents on the beach.
This island is a farm island: mainly passion fruits and papayas are grown, and they are among the tastiest and freshest you can eat. Mangoes, watermelon, eggplants, zucchinis, tomatoes, lettuce are grown very limited.
Island can be reached by a fast boat from Malé everyday at 16:00, trip takes 1 hour and costs USD30-35 (as of Jan 2017). In the opposite direction to Male it leaves at 07:00. This schedule is not very reliable so it's better to check with your guesthouse in Thoddoo for the timing and pricing. Companies operating on this rote:
- Relax Speed
- Ramzu Express
Three times weekly (Sa M W at 07:00) there is a public ferry to Rasdhoo, trip takes 1 hr 15 min, costs Rf 21. The boat then proceeds to Ukulhas, departing at 13:00, trip takes 55 min and costs Rf 21. And other islands of North Ari Atoll: Bodufulhadhoo (trip takes 1 hr 30 min from Rasdhoo), Mathiveri (2 hours), Feridhoo (3 hours), Maalhos (3 hr 30 min) and Himandhoo (4 hours).
1 Ferry dock. It doesn't have a building or anything of that sort. Just a marine with handful of boats.
You can see the Fresh fruit farms
- 1 Bikini Beach.
- Snorkeling; just swim few meters off the beach and you will encounter wonderful underwater views. If you swim around 100 meters you can reach the outer reef as well. Bear in mind that when swimming to the outer reef, there may be strong a currents. During the full Moon there will be a low tied and you can walk halfway to the outer reef.
- Fishing; you can do morning and night fishing with boat. It is not easy catch fish off shore. After fishing ask your guest house for BBQ.
- Diving. Contact the Thoddoo diving center.
Lots of grocery shops with very extensive range of products, big variety of fruits and vegetables.
There are no ATMs or banks. It also worth to note that any place on the island will readily accept US dollars as a payment, but not credit cards.
There are a few souvenir shops in the island.
Some guest houses allow you to use their kitchen.
- 1 Thin Ari. One of the cheapest and yet quite decent places to eat. Although don't go to their toilet - there lives huge (fist size) spider. The place itself overlooks the harbour and in spite of all other restaurants is not fenced with a high wall. Fried rice and noodles Rf 50-90, short eats Rf 3-8, tea Rf 5.
- 2 Coco Mero, ☏ . Cook is Bangladeshi and thus can prepare delicious and best on the island chicken briyani, fried rice is OK, western food is better to avoid as they have very vague idea of how it should be cooked, spaghetti should be avoided at all costs. Briyani Rf 65, rice dishes Rf 50-90, juices Rf 30-50.
- 3 Sunrise Cornet. Average food that costs substantially more than in other places. Long waiting time. Rice dishes Rf 60-120, briyani Rf 150 + 9% taxes.
- 4 Mint Garden. The food is average, every dish comes with tons of tomato sauce on top. Although menu is quite big which allows to pick something eatable. They make good brewed coffee. Also this is the only restaurant on Thodoo that has WiFi but yet they refuse to share its WiFi password. Rf 60-90.
- 5 Black Salt. 12:00-17:30, dinner buffet 19:00-21:00. Restaurant with perhaps the best food on the island and yet with the prices two times more than in other places. The owners call it "the only European restaurant on the island" and in general it's a truth. Food are of very good quality, if one orders fried fish - he gets real fried fish and not fried canned tuna as it happens in Maldives. Portions are quite large. USD8-14 per dish +22% taxes, dinner buffet USD11.
About twenty of accommodation options exist, most of them are very simple guesthouses. Price range is roughly USD50-80 (2016), it gets much cheaper during off season and doubles during peak season.
- Resten Inn, Huraveemagu, ☏ . A family run wonderful guesthouse. Very comfortable beds and you can use the free bicycles to get around the island and to the beach. Has air conditioning, fan fridge and safe.
Both mobile operators (Dhiraagu and Ooredoo) operate on the island and offer LTE connection.
Guesthouses tend to have WiFi with a very slow and sometimes nonexistent Internet. While restaurants either don't have WiFi or refuse to share their WiFi passwords with customers not staying at their hotel.