A dream for a new beginning, is what Hulhumalé has become for the congested capital city of Maldives, Malé. After walking around in Malé on narrow paved streets with pavements so narrow you’ll have to walk single file, Hulhumalé at 20 minutes away is more like 20 million miles away.
The island, dredged out of the Farukolhufushi Lagoon is the ephemeral dream of a country that has very little land to begin with. About 20 minutes away by ferry boat, the island was built to be higher than all others, making it the first safe island in the Maldives, as it is designed to prevent tidal flooding that adversely affects some islands when the sea gets rough during high tides.
The ferry system from Malé offers two modes of travel, that is, the slower moving ferry boat, or the faster speed boat. The speed boat is usually very comfortable and the journey takes only 5 minutes unless the sea is rough, in which case it would be far sensible to take the ferry.
You can also get to Hulhumalé by land, if you’re not in the mood for the hassle of a couple of ferry rides with your entire luggage. Simply take the bus or a taxi from Hulhulé, and reach Hulhumalé within 15 minutes
Whichever way you arrive at Hulhumalé, you will notice a stark difference from the rather industrial setting of the Ibrahim Nasir International Airport and the urbanized capital city. Tall Casuarina trees grace the paved streets and wide sidewalks, and hedges all around lend a polished look to the well-designed city, and the profound lack of traffic on the streets paint a picture of utter, laid back leisure.
Walking down “Huvandhumaa Hingun”, or the Jasmine Walk which is the street that cuts across the width of the island, one would feel utterly at ease… perhaps because the broad vistas on the western side of the island haven’t been occupied by buildings. Joggers and people who love to collect herbs, wildflowers and photographs flock these plains that are mostly dredged coral bits bleached by the endless progression of seasons. Click here for more info about Hulhumalé.