Maldivian Islands are located south-west of Sri Lanka in the Laccadive Sea of Indian Ocean. Maldives is unusual not only because this is the lowest country in the world - highest point is 2.3 meters (7.55 ft) above sea level but also it has no mainland as many other island countries. Maldives simply consists of over 1000 islands that form 26 atolls stretching over many hundreds of kilometers. Only one fourth of the islands are inhabited. Maldives is the smallest country in Asia and the smallest Muslim nation in the world. This country has no natural resources; even wood for carving has to be imported. To raise national income the Islamic government of Maldives dedicated 35 islands as tourist enclaves where visitors can enjoy topical scenery without obeying many of Islamic laws. Staying on any island that is not for tourists requires a special permit.
travel tip: Monuments. Maldives is probably the only state in the world where so little places of historic significance exist. Capital city of Malé is the less interesting capital in the world. Not even one worth visiting historical landmark can be found here.