'Amba' means 'To your health', and you will certainly feel like you are being pampered aboard this sleek boat. MV Amba received Dive The World's prestigious Operator of the Year award for 2019.
MV Amba offers nitrox diving and is the only Maldives liveaboard that operate tours in the areas of the Haa Alifu and Haa Dhaalu atolls, meaning that there will be very few other divers in the area, and you will feel like you have the whole underwater paradise to yourself.
All 9 cabins onboard Amba feature air conditioning and en-suite facilities. There are 2 standards of cabin to choose from - standard lower deck cabins and 25 square metre luxury cabins on the upper deck which afford you breathtaking panoramic views.
The spacious saloon offers comfortable sofas from which to take in a movie or simply discuss the best dive of the day. There are ample sundecks for those wishing to top up their tan or find a quiet corner to relax, and the upper deck sundeck even has its own bar so there's no need to interrupt the sun worshipping to order an after-dive cocktail!
Quite unusually for the Maldives, the languages covered on the M/V Amba include English, German and Italian. Amba caters mostly, but not exclusively, to German speakers so you can expect a mixed range of nationalities on board.
Dive experience: Required - at least 30 logged dives and advanced certification. All divers must dive with nitrox. If guests are not qualified to dive with nitrox, they must take a EANx Specialty course onboard.
Cruise price per person includes: Cabin accommodation with air-conditioning, breakfast, lunch, dinner, drinking water, hot drinks, return transfers to the boat from local airport, dives (as detailed in the tours above), 2 experienced English-speaking divemasters, tanks, weights and weight belts, nitrox for return Amba customers, 16% GST on cruise price.
Cruise price per person excludes (mandatory, unless customer provides own): Scuba equipment (US$ 212 per week), dive computer (US$ 60 per week) and surface marker buoy (US$ 16 per week), nitrox fills for enriched air certified divers (US$ 77 per week), dive insurance, Green Tax (US$ 6 per night), 10% service charge (i.e. tips), fuel surcharge (US$ 16 per night). Unless otherwise stated, all the listed items need to be paid on arrival (cash only - Euros and US dollars).
Optional extras: Snacks, soft drinks, alcoholic drinks, 15 liter tank (US$ 77 per week), torch (US$ 44 per week), private guide (US$ 33 per dive). Unless otherwise stated, all the listed items need to be paid on arrival. The price of a domestic flight to the outer atolls (should you need one) is about US$ 197 one way.
How to get there: Amba diving safaris depart from Hanimaadhoo, Male, Dharavandhoo or Ifuru. The above trips run from Sunday to Sunday but you can book Saturday to Saturday at no extra charge or any other day of the week with an additional transfer price. Amba provide a meet and greet service after exit from the arrivals hall in Male Airport. The crew will guide you to the domestic airport for the next flight check in.
For trip departures from Male, the meeting point is in front of the Burger King Restaurant at Male Airport at 2 pm. If guests arrive in Male airport after that time they will be picked up at the airport exit upon arrival.
The last dive of the trip will be at around 11 am on the second last day of the trip. Amba spends the final night of each trip in port. Guests must disembark by 7 am. Please wait at least 18 hours before flying after diving.
For more information, see our How to Get to the Outer Atolls.
Non-diver rate: None.
Single supplement (if you do not want to share accommodation): This is optional - single travellers may choose to share a cabin, or pay a supplement of 65% of the published price.
Dive clubs and group discounts: Pay for 5 guests and 1 extra person can join the cruise free of charge (total 6+ guests).
Whole boat charter rate (per night): Pay for 17 guests and 3 extra persons can join for free (total 20 guests).
There are 7 Standard double/twin bed cabins with portholes on the lower deck, and 3 double/twin bed cabins with panoramic windows on the upper deck. 2 of the upper deck cabins also have their own private deck area.
All the liveaboard cabins have:
Individual control air-conditioning and fan cooling
Enriched air nitrox - Motorised wood hull dive tender and dinghy - 50m² saloon with bar, TV, DVD player, music system, internet facility, books and magazines - 70m² shaded area - 50m² sundeck with sun chairs - Stand-up paddleboard available at extra charge
There are either 1 or 2 diving dhoni tenders accompanying the Amba on each trip. These dhonis are equipped with rinse tanks and camera tables, and also carry oxygen. All the dive gear is kept onboard the dhonis for the duration of the tour, with the compressors being onboard too. These boats will drop you at the dive sites and return you to the liveaboard afterwards.
Amba also has an additional tender for safety that doubles as a watersking / wakeboarding boat to while away those surface intervals!
With its modern 20 square matre Nirsoat kitchen and large storerooms, the Amba is certainly not a liveaboard boat that you will go hungry on. The meals are a mixture of international favourites (steak, pasta, roast chicken) and local cuisine, with plenty of fresh vegetables and tropical fruits. Once a week, provided the weather is suitable, you can venture ashore on to an uninhabited island to enjoy an unforgettable beach barbecue.
International and Maldivian main dishes.
Breakfast, lunch, dinner and snacks.
Buffet service in the indoor saloon - 2 main dishes with vegetables and rice or noodles.
Vegetarians can be catered for with advance notice.
Cakes, biscuits, soft drinks, bottled water and alcohol are available for purchase.
"Service was functional and the crew was very helpful and professional. Food was excellent. Cabins however were a little wierd." - Kimmo Kallama, Finland, 14 January 2020 ...
"Excellent , constant customer service and attention. Divemaster very aware and thorough. Boat spacious and good refreshments and food. Very relaxing." - Todd McMichae, UK, 04 January 2020 ...
"MV Amba is a large and comfortable boat, roomy cabins, good food, motivated diving staff, very helpful boat staff." - Paulina Mydlowska, Germany, 28 May 2017 ...
"The dive operator was great with wonderful dive sites. The boat was clean and spacious. The operation was first class and I would consider this liveaboard again for another vacation. The only issue was lack of non-fish menu items, though the crew tried to help accommodate." - Nick Campbell, USA, 19 July 2013 ...
"Amba is a nice, large, clean boat.. good food + crew; easy diving! Current was zero to light ... mantas were there, as advertised!" - Earl Engan, USA, 29 May 2012 ...
"The German couple running the vessel are an excellent team providing guests with an exceptional scuba diving experience on a safari boat. Their staff are very helpful and friendly and overall the boat is also in very good condition with all the amenities which one can expect. In addition the food was of the highest quality with grilled fresh fish being served nearly every day, lots of vegetables and fruit etc.
The dive sites selected were extraordinary with untouched corals as far as the underwater visibility allowed for. It was one of the holiday experiences which one could repeat over and over." - Mathias Eick, Germany, 6 May 2011 ...
Low Budget Options
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