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Fuvahmulah (Gnaviyani Atoll)

Overview

Fuvahmulah is an inhabited island in Fuvahmulah city (Gnaviyani Atoll) administrative division and geographically in the Fuvahmulah Atoll in the southern part of the Maldives. The the island itself is an atoll. It is a city-level administrative constituency in south province, governed by the Fuvahmulah city Council. Fuvahmulah Airport also located in this island.


Fuvahmulah is a unique atoll that has filled up completely to form one large island. The island lies in the Equatorial Channel, 40km south of Huvadhoo Atoll. The Equatorial Channel, one of the oldest sea routes of the world has been used by mariners journeying from Africa to China and the Arabian Gulf to Malaysia.


Ruins on the island show that the island has been settled for thousands of years. Fuvahmulah is about 6km long and 3km wide. The land and the vegetation of this island are quite different from that of the rest of the islands in the Maldives. The soil is fertile and mangoes, papayas, lime, bananas and even oranges and pineapples flourish on the island.


Visitors to the island throughout history have commented on the natural beauty of the island. Towering above the coconut trees is a famous landmark known as Redhinge Funi. Redhinge Funi or Redhin’s Hill is a Hawitta that measures 20m in height and 75m in circumference. H.C.P Bell who visited the island in 1922 concluded that this was a Buddhist Stupa on a square platform.


Mosque in Dhandimagu Village is another historic site on the island. The sunken ceremonial bath near the mosque, 5 metres square and 1.3 metres deep made of fine fitting coral stones, shows the extraordinary building skills of the people who built it a millennia ago. The coral blocks of different sizes are cut and fitted with such precision that it is impossible to slide a knife blade between them.

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