K.Gulhi welcomes first tourists

Tourists at K.Gulhi beach | photo: Booking.com

K.gulhi, Maldives – K.Gulhi which is one of the many islands of the Maldives progressively working towards the develop and expansion of the tourism industry has opened and welcome tourists to the island.

In order to prepare for the arrival of the tourists, all necessary facilities and equipment required as per the guidelines of Health Protection Agency (HPA) have been installed in the island. In addition to this, the tourists also arrived with the approval from council as per the tourist guidelines set by the Tourism Ministry.

Gulhi initially opened with only two guesthouses after being closed for over six month due to the Covid-19 pandemic. The two guesthouses are Tropic Tree Hotel Maldives and Sandy Heaven Maldives out of which the first tourists were booked at Sandy Heavens.

Gulhi launched several social media platforms as well as a website under the name gulhi.com as part of their advertising strategy after the reopening of the island. The website contains information about the guesthouses, the details of the restaurants as well as the new facilities installed under HPA guidelines.

K.Gulhi which is 20 minutes from the capital city Male’, is famous for its tropical beaches and had tourists arriving from the neighbouring islands Maafushi and Guraidhoo as well. Gulhi had a total of seven operating guesthouses till the Covid-19 pandemic.

During the initial stage of the pandemic, guesthouses were first closed in Maldives. At that time there were around 600 operating guesthouses in Maldives wheres there are currently 119 hotels and 2,884 guesthouse rooms currently operating since guesthouses were allowed to reopen on October 15th.

A total 67,564 tourists have arrived to Maldives since the reopening of the national borders on July 15th and 27,182 tourists have arrived till the 25th of this month. The number of tourists is expected to further increase as the tourism industry arises from the losses incurred due to the Covid-19 pandemic.

According to the latest statistics, 62,501 tourists arrived in Maldives since 15th of July. These include the 1,752 tourists who arrived in July, the 7,628 tourists who arrived in August, along with the 9,538 arrivals in September, and the 21,515 arrivals in October, as well as the 22,119 arrivals during this month so far, adding this year’s total to 445,348 arrivals in total.

During the five months since opening borders, the most number of tourist arrivals have been from Russia, with 12,961 tourists, while UAE, America, UK, Spain, German, France, Brazil, Ukraine and Egypt have also contributed majortly to the country’s industry.

Currently fifteen airlines are operating to Maldives and an additional ten airlines have planned to start their operations before the end of this year.

Tourism Ministry has also established a tourism help desk at Velana International Airport’s arrival terminal. The purpose of this help desk is to provide information and assistance to the tourists who visit Maldives during this time. 

Ministry highlighted that through this counter, all information on Health Protection Agency (HPA) and Tourism Ministry’s rules and regulations set amid the Covid-19 would be available. In addition to this the counter would also facilitate in assisting tourists to solve any issues which might arise between them and resorts, guest houses and safaris. 

Ministry also stated that as the airport was the first entry point to the country which is heavily dependent on tourism, and that by having a help desk at the arrival terminal would allow tourists to solve any issues which might arise and give them a warm welcome to the country. According to the ministry, the help desk would also increase the safety of the tourists more than now.

The Desk will be open for flight operational hours and travelers and operators who need assistance may call +960 9423131 to get their assistance.

After the borders have opened, Tourism Ministry has been proactively doing various activities and taking measures to promote tourism in the country including promotional events and high safety standards in the tourism sector to prevent spreading of Covid-19 virus in the resorts and other tourist facilities. 

Maldives also got certified as a “Safe Travel” destination which is safe for tourists to travel to in September. This stamp is provided to countries which are the safest with regards to Covid-19.

Only a negative PCR test not exceeding 96 hours is necessary to enter Maldives, and travelers of every nationality are offered a free tourist visa of 30 days on arrival. Split stays among exclusive tourist resorts, guesthouses on local islands and safaris.