- Dive reefs, channels and pinnacles that attract pelagics and manta rays
- Easy access to two of the Maldives’ best surf breaks - Cokes and Chickens
- Experience island culture and laid-back local island life
- Enjoy a range of excursions, from dolphin watching to snorkeling trips
Canopus Retreat is a charming Maldivian guesthouse on the laid-back local island of Thulusdhoo, North Male Atoll. You’ll enjoy easy living with local people and authentic culture – a refreshing alternative from the polished private resorts. Idyllic, yet affordable, this lovely guesthouse offers delicious cuisine, tempting mocktails and comfortable rooms - as well as easy access to exciting diving, and some of the Maldives’ famous surf breaks.
About Canopus Retreats
Situated just 23km away from Male’s airport on the local island of Thulusdhoo, Canopus Retreat is an affordable local guesthouse and surfers’ paradise right on the beachfront in North Male Atoll. Just a short walk from the 'bikini beach', the two-storey property boasts magnificent views of the lagoon and beach. For surfers, the island is famous for being close to two of the Maldives’ best surf breaks - Cokes and Chickens - but the atoll is also home to a number of others, including Honkeys, Jailbreaks and Sultans, all easily accessible by speedboat.
This affordable guesthouse offers all you’ll need for a relaxing holiday - a lovely spa, comfortable rooms and a sumptuous restaurant serving up local and international delights. When you’re not enjoying the island life, or lazing under a coconut tree, you can snorkel the local reef, dive with turtles, mantas and sharks, or take an excursion - you’ll be free to do as much or as little as you desire on this peaceful island.
Explore the resort
Each cosy ensuite room comes with air-conditioning and is just steps from the sea. The comfortable shared lounge and the lovely beachfront are perfect for relaxation, and the Fusion Restaurant serves Italian cuisine, delicious local dishes, exotic Southeast Asian curries, seafood and more. You can dine indoors, out on the beach, or enjoy a romantic candlelit dinner or sandbank picnic. There’s also a tempting juice bar serving freshly-squeezed juices, mocktails, and a range of teas and Café d’Italia coffees.
Between soaking up the sun on the beach, there’s plenty to see and do on the island. Friendly staff can arrange dolphin-watching and snorkeling or interesting land tours. Guests can also rent bicycles to explore the island, as well as stand-up paddleboards, kayaks and surfboards. Snorkelling gear is complimentary - perfect for exploring the colorful house reef. And you won’t want to miss out on Thulusdhoo’s famous surf breaks! Take a surf lesson and experience the waves, or, relax and indulge yourself in the spa with its tempting menu of massages and treatments.
Diving at Canopus Retreats
Canopus Retreat partners with several dive centres on the island, who all offer professional teams of experienced guides and instructors who’ll show you the atoll’s dive sites. Both PADI and SSI dive courses are available, from entry-level to divemaster, along with full rental equipment. Divers can explore the local reefs, or head out on single or two-tank boat trips. Plus, night dives are usually available on request - just drop in and ask the friendly dive centre staff.
There are plenty of local sites to explore, as well as some exciting reefs further afield. From relaxing reefs with turtles, reef sharks and exotic fish, to current-swept channels and pinnacles that act as pelagic magnets, there’s something to tempt every kind of diver. The famed Manta Point is one of the highlights - a seasonal site where manta rays are spotted from June to December. Other popular sites include Aquarium, Colosseum and Chicken Corner - a fantastic local site where eagle rays, sharks and napoleon wrasses can be seen.
- The best time to surf is between April and October, when the swell is at its best. March and November are considered transition months, and surfing during this time can still be excellent.
- For a lazy afternoon soaking up the island atmosphere, order a mocktail, grab a good book and lounge on a ‘joali’ - a hand-woven lounge chair or a swing made of coir rope.
- For the best chances of spotting manta rays, visit between June and December. Sightings tend to peak at around October to late November!
- Thulusdhoo is a local island, so it’s important to be respectful of Maldivian culture. Save swimwear and revealing clothing for the ‘bikini beaches’.
Diving in North Malé Atoll
Manta RaysYear round
Eagle rayYear round
Schooling reef fishYear round
Soft coralsYear round
Number of rooms
Official dive center rating
PADI & SSI partner dive centres
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