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The Best Places to Eat in the Maldives

Feast Through Maldives

Here are several establishments you should visit during your stay in the Maldives.

Ithaa Undersea Restaurant

The Ithaa Undersea Restaurant offers a unique, high-end dining experience that you’ll never forget. The restaurant claims it is the first all-glass undersea restaurant in the world with 180-degree panoramic views of the ocean. Located 16 feet below sea level, the Ithaa Undersea Restaurant is connected to the Conrad Hilton Rangali Island resort in the South Ari Atoll. The restaurant was named Ithaa because it means “mother of pearl” in the country’s native language of Dhivehi. The restaurant was crowned the “Most Beautiful Restaurant in the World” by New York Daily News in 2014.
The upscale restaurant specializes in contemporary European cuisine and serves four-course lunches and six-course dinners. Guests rave about their reef lobster stuffed with calamarata pasta and lemongrass veloute sauce entrée. You should also order the coconut crusted légine which is served with steamed sea beans, curry bisque, and spicy sea snails.
The setting provides a very cozy and intimate atmosphere, so this is perfect if you are traveling to the Maldives with a loved one. Be advised that the restaurant has a strict dress code so please wear slacks and a button-down shirt or a nice dress if you would like to be seated. Overall, the best part about dining at the Ithaa Undersea Restaurant is that you can watch sharks, dolphins, sea turtles and other fish swimming nearby while you eat.

Shell Beans

If you are looking for a casual yet trendy café, you should visit Shell Beans. The café has been operating for over a decade and has two locations on both sides of Malé island that attracts tourists and locals alike.
Shell Beans serves breakfast, lunch, and dinner so you can easily grab a cup of coffee or a quick meal before you go snorkeling or hop on a jet ski. Their large menu selection includes both traditional Maldivian food and international cuisine.
The café’s signature dishes include the Mediterranean beef stew and Chinese Chicken fried rice. If you’re homesick, you can order their classic American pancakes, chicken quesadillas, pasta, and pizza. If you’re feeling adventurous, you can get the Taste of Maldives for breakfast, which includes two eggs with fish and a fresh fruit platter. And if you’re in a rush, you can always place an order through the Shell Beans mobile phone app and pick it up when you arrive.

Subsix

Subsix is another restaurant known for its breathtaking underwater views. The gourmet restaurant is located 19 feet below sea level on the private island of Niyama. Subsix is very secluded, so much so that you need to charter a speedboat if you want to dine there! Once your boat reaches the restaurant’s landing, you will need to walk down a three-tier staircase to enter the subaquatic restaurant.
You will be impressed as soon as you step inside. The circular shaped dining room has the floor to ceiling windows provides a stunning panoramic view of the ocean, giving you the perfect opportunity to gaze at brightly colored fish, turtles, and eels while you enjoy a gourmet meal. From the sophisticated black color scheme to the capiz shells hanging from the ceiling and the furniture made to resemble sea urchins, Subsix is a sight to behold.
They are revered for their Spiny Lobster Medallion appetizer dish, which includes lobster cromesqui flavored with watermelon and drizzled in a balsamic glaze. Another meal that received rave reviews is their poached salmon with butter, chorizo, crushed potatoes, coconut, and tamarind coulis. Subsix also makes homemade ice cream, parfait, and other dessert treats. The restaurant also hosts an “Underwater Glow Party” every Wednesday and Saturday for guests.

Jazz Café

Another casual dining option in the Maldives is the Jazz Café. According to the locals, the owners of the restaurant were inspired by the famous American music genre and wanted to recreate the spirit of New Orleans by giving the café a jazz theme. The café serves as a cultural hub and is a popular hangout for local Maldivians and tourists due to its live jazz musical performances every week. They also have frequent open mic nights if you’re feeling brave and want to perform.
As soon as you enter you’ll be impressed with the café’s classic European style decor. Jazz Café serves international cuisine from New Zealand and Thailand as well as traditional Maldivian meals. Their breakfast, lunch and dinner menus include everything from hamburgers and French fries to lasagna and other types of pasta. They also have different flavors of smoothies and gelato for dessert!
The Jazz café is the ideal place to sit back and relax with your loved ones while listening to a live jazz band. You can either have a seat at their wooden tables in the main area or venture upstairs if you would like to look out over the city of Malé.
If you want a tranquil vacation, you should consider traveling to the Maldives. Tuna, spicy fried fish, lobster, and other seafood are a staple ingredient of Maldives cuisine. However, you can easily try international cuisine if you don’t like seafood. Luckily, there are many different types of restaurants available that can fit a wide variety of tastes and price points. As you just learned, you can eat comfort food in a small cafe and chat with the locals, or you can go to an exclusive underwater restaurant for a once-in-a-lifetime dining experience. The options are endless in the Maldives! Before you pack your bags, remember not to bring any alcohol. The Maldives is a Muslim nation where alcohol is banned for locals. Most of the resorts offer alcohol to its guests, but the government will confiscate it if you try to enter or leave the country with it.

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The Top 5 Festivals in Nepal

What comes to your mind when you think of Nepal? If you are like most people, you probably envision beautiful scenic landscapes, sacred religious temples, and brightly colored handmade goods. Nepal is also famous for its fun and vibrant festivals. If you are thinking about visiting the country soon, you should try to experience at least one event before you hop on a flight to go back home. Just remember to run errands, stock up on groceries, and do other important tasks before the festivals start, since some of the local businesses may close during the events. Below you can find more information about the five best festivals in Nepal.

The Holi Festival – March

Holi, also known as the Festival of Colors, is considered one of the most popular festivals in Nepal and marks the arrival of spring. The week-long event is primarily celebrated in the Hindu community since it symbolizes the triumph of good over evil.
The Holi festival celebrates the death of Holika, a person who tried to kill Lord Vishnu’s loyal follower Prahlada. According to an Indian religious story called Mahabharata, Holika was the sister of King Hiranyakashipu. The king was jealous and only wanted the townspeople to worship him and not Lord Vishnu. Despite his threats and intimidation, Prahlada refused to stop worshipping Lord Vishnu. In a fit of rage, King Hiranyakashipu ordered his sister to burn Holika to death for his defiance. However, Lord Vishnu protected Prahlada and allowed him to survive the fire while Holika burned to death. Once the townspeople found out about the miraculous event, they threw water and colored powder on Prahlada to bless him and denounce evil.
To this day, crowds of people honor the memory of during Holi by splashing water and throwing colored powder everywhere to bestow blessings on each other. If you want to experience the Holi festival in person, try to wear light colored clothes so you can easily see the vibrant colors.

The Buddha Jayanti Festival – April

Both the Buddhist and Hindu community participate in the Buddha Jayanti festival. The April event is supposed to commemorate the life and death of Lord Buddha, who was born on the Western plains of Nepal in a town called Lumbini. Buddhists from all over the world come to join the procession and show their respect for Lord Buddha.
The temples and monasteries in Lumbini open their doors during the Buddha Jayanti festival so people can come inside and pray or give an offering. Many people bring flowers, scarves, and candles to place on or near different statues of Buddha. You may also be able to hear the echoes of monks chanting ceremonial prayers and beating drums while you walk through the streets. Sermons promoting world peace and compassion are also commonplace during the Buddha Jayanti festival.

The Indra Jatra Festival – September

Indra Jatra is an extravagant annual street festival that is meant to give honor and thanks to the god of rain Indra. Both Hindus and Buddhists come together to celebrate the occasion for eight days in September.
The Indra Jatra festival is usually only observed in the capital city of Kathmandu. Many people flock to the city so they can see masked performers called Lakhay tell the story of how Indra came to Earth using interpretive dance. Spectators can also enjoy a parade of chariots and dance around ceremonial poles. Every year, the Hindu priests choose one young village girl to represent the spirit of Kumari during the festival. If you’re lucky, you may be able to see her riding in one of the main chariots as the Living Goddess Kumari.

The Dashain Festival – September and October

Dashain is considered to be one of the most important and longest Hindu festivals in Nepal. The event commemorates the victory of good over evil and usually lasts around 15 days. The celebration occurs between September and October and ends on the day of the full moon.
The locals usually perform many rituals (including animal sacrifice) during the festival. If you go, you’ll probably notice the villagers building a large tent-like structure with bamboo and rope. Once the base is secure, they’ll attach a home-made swing inside of it and take turns riding it. It’s also not unusual to see hundreds of colorful kites in the sky since there are multiple kite competitions over the two weeks. If you didn’t get the opportunity to swing with the locals, you can always purchase a kite from a local vendor and enter one of the competitions if you want to participate.
A common Dashain ritual is to tidy up the house so that the goddesses will be tempted to visit and bestow prosperity and good wealth onto the family. Another is to offer several gifts like animals and other food products to the goddess Durga. It’s customary for the older generation to place a mixture of rice, yogurt, and red vermillion on the foreheads of children to give them their blessings at the end of Dashain. Overall, the annual tradition is a time for everyone to feast on delicious food, open presents and spend lots of time with loved ones.

The Tihar Festival – October and November

Another festival you should try to see while visiting Nepal is the Festival of Lights or Tihar. The Tihar festival is meant to pay homage to Yama, the God of Death and Laxmi, the Goddess of Wealth. Similar to the Indian festival of Diwali, the event is celebrated during October and November and can last up to five days. Each day has different rituals and traditions.
In contrast to the wild and colorful celebration of Holi, the Festival of Lights is a time for people to sit down and reflect on the past year and what they’d like to accomplish in the next. It also marks the end of the lunar calendar. Tihar is a time of prayer and spiritual renewal to the Nepalese community. Many families come together over the holiday to eat large meals and exchange gifts with each other. People also use decorative candles and lanterns to celebrate the occasion since it serves as a visual symbol of how the light will always triumph over the darkness. If you look up into the sky, you may also be able to see colorful lanterns and fireworks that are supposed to help usher in a prosperous and healthy new year.
This list of popular festivals merely scratches the surface of what Nepal has to offer. There are a variety of national and regional festivals every month dedicated to different deities and special occasions that you can explore during your time there.