...Highlights: shark action, schooling fish & big pelagics...
...Lhaviyani Atoll's diving environment: wall dives, drift diving, advanced divers, off the beaten track...
Madivaru is a site on the western side of Lhaviyani ('Faadhippolhu') Atoll that features a reef flat at about 6 to 8 metres depth which is normally the point of entry and safety stop on your dive here.
The dive is essentially along a more-or-less vertical wall which bottoms out at around 30 metres to a sandy floor. Along the wall there are nooks, crannies and ledges and the scene is teeming with life. Red-toothed triggers flutter just off the wall in multitudes, soldierfish lurk wide-eyed in groups below overhands, and hundreds of butterflyfish of numerous varieties cruise around the substrate in search of a nibble.
These little beauties are joined by larger fish such as small-toothed emperors, Napoleon wrasse and plenty of unicornfish. While in the blue you may spot a passing eagle ray or devil ray, while barracuda and tuna are always likely.
As you make your way back up the wall to the reef flat, you will notice that the benthic life is not enormous. There are no huge barrel sponges or awesome table corals here. The sessile life consists of some sea whips, black coral bushes, small fans and sponges which provide a backdrop to life such as fire dartfish, long-nose hawkfish and innumerable anthias and dottybacks.
Elsewhere at Lhaviyani, there are 2 main current swept channels that are popular with Maldives scuba divers as here you have a very good chance to see reef sharks.
Lhaviyani Atoll Reef Basics: Wall dive
Depth: 6 - 30m
Visibility: 15 -30m
Currents: None to moderate
Surface conditions: Normally calm but can be choppy in southwest monsoon
Water temperature: 27 - 30°C
Experience level: Beginner to intermediate
Number of dive sites: 4
Diving season: All year round except June
Distance: 25 km southwest of Kuredu
Access: Maldives liveaboard safari