Maldives

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The nation also known popularly as Maldive Islands or simply Maldives is located in the Indian Ocean north-south of India’s Lakshadweep Islands, between Minicoy Island and Chagos Archipelago. It is formed by a double chain of twenty six atolls. It is the smallest Asian country in land area as well as population. With an average height of merely 1.5 meters above ground level, it is also the lowest country in the world. It also has the lowest natural highest point among any country in the world with it’s highest point at only 2.4 meters above sea level. Maldives is mostly popular around the world for its beautiful island resorts and pristine natural beaches. It is one of the most popular tourism destinations in the world among any island nation with over 600,000 visitors visiting it annually. Tourism started in Maldives on a large scale only in 1972 when the first island resort was opened. Since then, the number of resorts and tourists has increased rapidly and there are nearly a hundred resorts spread across the various islands as of now. Maldivians reside in only 200 of the 1,192 islands present in the island nation. The other islands are mainly used for economic purpose of which the main ones are tourism and agriculture. The tourist resorts in Maldives consists of an exclusive hotel in its own island, where only tourists and workers are allowed with no local people or houses. In addition to its beach encircling the island, each island has its own “house reef” which serves as a coral garden and natural aquarium for scuba divers and snorkelers. The shallow water enclosed by the house reef also serves as a large natural swimming pool and protects swimmers from the ocean waves and strong tidal currents outside the house reef. The buildings on a typical resort includes rooms and suites reserved for use by its guests, restaurants, coffee shops, shops, lounges, bars, discos and diving schools. A portion of the island also contains staff lodgings and support services such as catering, power generators, laundry, and a sewage plant. On-island shops offer a wide range of products, such as souvenirs and artifacts.
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