A Seafaring Culture
The culture, traditions, and heritage of The Maldives is shaped by the ebb and flow of the tides. As one of the oldest and most vibrant maritime civilisations of the world, The Maldives has a rich history of trade and exploration and these journeys are reflected in our language, art, and lifestyle. Our music and dance display strong influences of East Africa, Arabia and the Indian subcontinent. There exists a rich tradition of Maldivian crafts; lacquered wooden ornaments not unlike the ornaments of ancient China, finely woven reed mats, and coral carvings unique to the Maldivian islands’. These traditions are passed through generations - and in a changing world, the Maldives is firmly holding onto the unique maritime culture.
‘Sail the Seas of Time’ Breakout Session
The “Sail the Seas of Time: Thousands of Years of Maldivian History” breakout session at Crossroads Maldives during Visit Maldives Storytellers’ Conference 2023 will take you back in time to the age of our ancestors. The breakout session is curated to transport you into a world of vibrant colours and intoxicating sounds. Seated on cushions and mats on the beach at Crossroads, you will be greeted by a troupe of traditional dancers performing ancient rhythms and dances.
Participants can witness the art of ancient Maldivian embroidery weaving (Kasabu Viyun) and explore the timeless craft. This is followed by a display of traditional Maldivian attire, including differences between the old and new dhivehi libaas used for special ceremonies. The highlight of the cultural breakout session is a live roleplay retelling of one of the most popular folk stories in the Maldives the tale of the star-crossed lovers Dhon Hiyala and Alifulhu. The story, passed down orally for generations, is brought to life by talented actors who perform the tale with great passion and emotion.
Participants are also given the chance to participate in a traditional way of wish-making - writing a short note on palm leaves and planting them on the shoreline. The practice, which is said to bring good luck and prosperity, is a wonderful way to connect with the natural beauty of the Maldives and the ancient traditions of its people.
The Cultural breakout session at Crossroads Maldives is not just a chance to learn about the Maldives; it's a chance to experience it, to feel the heartbeat of this vibrant and dynamic culture, and to leave with a deeper appreciation of the rich tapestry of the Maldives.
MMPRC and The Local Tapestry of Culture
Maldives Marketing & Public Relations Corporation, the official tourism promotion board of the Maldives, has been actively promoting the country's culture and traditions through various initiatives. One of their key strategies is to encourage visitors to experience the local way of life through the promotion of the local guesthouse industry, where they can interact with the locals, visit local markets, and taste traditional Maldivian cuisine.
MMPRC also promotes local Maldivian products, handicrafts, woven mats, lacquer work, as well as local Maldivian brands. MMPRC aims to provide visitors with a deeper understanding and appreciation of the craftsmanship of the Maldivian artisans.