Off-beat Places in Minicoy Island: Exploring Minicoy Island

 In Adventure, Lakshadweep, offbeat places, Places To Visit, Travel

Minicoy Island is a remote place offering more than just its stunning beaches and turquoise waters. Beyond being a popular tourist spot, this island is a treasure trove of hidden gems waiting to be discovered and the best places to visit in Minicoy Island are here. 

One of the unique attractions of Minicoy is its traditional village settlements known as ‘Avahs’ where you can experience the local way of life. These villages offer a glimpse into the island’s culture by celebrating colourful festivals, traditional music and age-old customs.

The island is also home to a historic lighthouse that offers stunning views of the seascape, perfect for sunset moments. Additionally, Minicoy is filled with attractive coconut groves and plantations providing a peaceful backdrop for bike rides and walks. 

For those who are looking for off-beat places in Minicoy Island, it promises an authentic experience away from the typical tourist trials, making it an ideal destination for those looking to explore a lesser-known gem in the Indian Ocean.

Top 10 off-Beat places in Minicoy Island

  • Tidal Bridge (Pathiyam)
  • Traditional Avahs
  • Giant banyan tree
  • Tuna canning factory
  • Ayesha Kota lighthouse
  • Fish market
  • Rashtretta Bazaar
  • Boduhavalige
  • Lagoon snorkelling and diving
  • Viringili Island

1. Tidal Bridge

Image source: Orange County Register

The Tidal Bridge, locally known as ‘Pathiyam’ is a natural wonder on Minicoy Island. This unique feature emerges during low tide, connecting the main island with a smaller islet or sandbar. The bridge is made of coral boulders that become visible as the water recedes, rebuilding a pathway that can be crossed on foot.

Visitors can experience the thrill of walking across the tidal bridge during low tide, enjoying the standing views of the ocean and intertidal zone. It is a unique opportunity to witness first-hand the nature of the coastline and the interaction between land and sea and it is the most famous thing to do in Minicoy Island

Local guides are available to assist visitors in timing their visit to coincide with low tide, ensuring a safe and enjoyable experience on the Tidal Bridge. This natural spectacle is not only a miracle but also highlights the ecological biodiversity making it one of the off-beat places in Minicoy Island.

2. Traditional Avahs


Traditional Avahs are the special village settlements found on Minicoy Island, each representing a close-knit community with its own cultural identity and customs. These avahs are characterised by coral stone houses with colourful murals and intricate woodwork, which showcases the traditional architecture of the Maldives.

Each avah is centred around a mosque, reflecting the island’s Muslim population. The mask serves as a focal point for communal gatherings and religious activities, playing a significant role in the village.

One of the unique features of avahs is the ‘Semiya’ system, which involves community members coming together to assist in various tasks such as fishing, construction and farming. This cooperative spirit fosters a sense of unity and solidarity among the villagers.

Visitors to Minicoy Island then explore these traditional avahs taking a walk through the narrow lanes, observing the local way of life and interacting with friendly residents and is one of the off-beat places in Minicoy Island. 

Suggested Read: Resort and Hotels in Minicoy

3. Giant banyan tree


The giant banyan tree, located at Elangi is one of the off-beat places in Minicoy islands. Known for its remarkable natural attraction that holds cultural significance in the local community, This ancient tree estimated to be several centuries old stands as a lofty centrepiece in the heart of the island.

Trees stretched-out branches provide shade over a significant area, creating a cool and peaceful environment beneath its canopy. Its massive trunk with aerial roots that descend to the ground adds to its awe-inspiring presence. The islanders consider it a sacred site and gather here for various cultural and social activities.

Visitors can explore the giant banyan tree and its surroundings soaking the remarkable sheer size and beauty of the tree. Many locals and tourists come here for picnics, relaxation and to witness a living symbol of Minicoy’s natural heritage.

4. Tuna canning factory

Image source: Tumblr

The tuna canning factory on Minicoy Island is a vital economic hub and fascinating attraction for visitors interested in learning about the island fishing industry. Tuna fishing is a major occupation for the locals and the canning factory plays a crucial role in processing the catch for export and domestic consumption. 

Visitors to the tuna canning factory can see the entire process of canning tuna, from the arrival of freshly caught fish to the final packaging of canned products. The factory process is different species of tuna including skipjack and yellowfin, which are abundant in the waters surrounding Minicoy.

Guided tours of the tuna canning factory provide insights into the island’s fishing practices, the significance of tuna to the local economy and the role of the factory in sustaining livelihoods and Minicoy. Visitors can also purchase freshly canned tuna products as a souvenir and it is one of the off-beat places in Minicoy Island.

5. Ayesha Kota lighthouse


The Ayesha Kota lighthouse is a historic landmark situated on Minicoy Island and is one of the off-beat places in Minicoy Island. The structure was built during the British colonial era and remains a significant symbol of Minicoy’s maritime heritage.

The lighthouse, named after Ayesha Beevi, a local woman who assisted in its construction, serves as a vital navigational aid for ships travelling the Indian Ocean. It is located on the Southern tip of Minicoy, offering a sweeping view of the island’s coastline and surrounding waters.

Visitors to Ayesha Kota Lighthouse can climb up its spiral staircase to reach the top, where they can enjoy stunning views of the island. From this vantage point, one can enjoy the view of the beaches in Minicoy Island, coconut groves and coral reefs that define Minicoy’s natural beauty.

Suggested Read: Top Photography Spots in Minicoy

6. Fish market


The fish market is one of the off-beat places in Minicoy Island where the fishing community gathers to sell and trade their daily catch. Situated near the coastline,

The market is busy with activities, especially in the early morning when fishermen return with their fresh Haul from the sea.

Visiting the fish market is not just about buying seafood, it’s a cultural experience that offers insights into the island’s traditional way of life. Local specialities such as tuna, refresh, squid and lobster or often available source directly from the ocean surrounding Minicoy.

For those interested in culinary experiences, there are vendors at the fish market of freshly cooked seafood snacks, allowing you to taste authentic Maldivian flavours right by the sea. The fish market in Minicoy is not only a place to buy seafood, it’s a cultural immersion where you can connect with island fishing heritage and interact with friendly locals.

7. Rashtretta Bazaar


The Rashtretta Bazaar, also known as the main market, is the busy heart of commerce and community on Minicoy Island and one of the off-beat places in Minicoy Island. This market is a lively hub where locals gather to buy and sell a variety of goods, ranging from fresh produce to handicrafts and everyday essentials.

Visiting the Bazaar offers a glimpse into daily life on the island. The market is usually teeming with activity, especially in the mornings when fishermen arrive with their fresh produce. 

Apart from seafood the market also has stalls selling fruits, vegetables and spices grown locally or imported from neighbouring islands. You will find vendors offering handmade crafts such as oven mats, coconut shell artefacts and traditional Maldivian souvenirs.

You can experience the island’s warm hospitality by interacting with the friendly vendors and sampling local snacks and delicacies sold at the food stall. Exploring the bazaar is an authentic cultural experience that allows visitors to connect with equal heritage and way of life and is another one of the off-beat places to visit in Minicoy Island.

8. Boduhavalige


The Boduhavalige is a traditional Maldivian Canoe that holds historical and cultural significance on Minicoy Island. Crafted from coconut wood, these canoes are skilfully constructed by local artisans using traditional methods passed down through generations.

These canoes feature a unique design optimised for navigating the island’s coastal waters. They are often embellished with intricate carvings and decorative motifs, reflecting the island’s maritime heritage and artistic traditions. The Boduhavalige is typically propelled by paddling or sailing, using a triangular-shaped sail known as the Olla.

Islanders use these canoes for various purposes, including fishing expeditions, transporting goods between villages and participating in cultural events and ceremonies. 

Today Boduhavalige remains a symbol of Minicoy’s connection to the sea and its heritage. Visitors to the island can experience a ride in these traditional canoes, guided by knowledgeable local boatmen who share stories about the island’s tradition and the importance of the Boduhavalige in Minicoy’s history.

9. Lagoon snorkelling and diving


Lagoon snorkelling and diving on Minicoy Island presents a spectacular underwater world waiting to be explored. The island has lagoons with crystal-clear waters, making it an ideal playground for snorkelers and divers.

Snorkelers can glide over bright coral reefs filled with a kaleidoscope of  Marine life, clued in colourful fish, sea turtles and rays. The shallow lagoon offers excellent visibility, allowing you to witness the underwater beauty up close.

For diving enthusiasts, Minicoy offers deeper dive sites where you can come across larger marine species such as reef sharks, Moray eels, and even Wales sharks during the right season. Explore underwater caves, swim throughs and drop-offs enhanced with stunning coral formations that provide shelter to many aquatic species.

Guided tours and diving excursions are available for both beginners and experienced divers, ensuring safe and unforgettable underwater adventure activities in Minicoy’s attractive lagoons.

10. Viringili Island


The Viringili Island, located near Minicoy is another off-beat places in Minicoy Island. It is a peaceful paradise offering clean beaches and crystal-clear waters.

A short boat ride from Minicoy can access it, Viringili Island is a hidden gem known for its untouched beauty and atmosphere.

The island has soft sandy beaches lapped by gentle waves, which is perfect for sunbathing, swimming and beach combing. Visitors can explore the coastline, dotted with coconut palms swaying in the sea breeze, creating a tropical setting.

Viringili Island is an ideal spot for relaxation and solitude away from the busy mainland. Spend a day on the shores listening to the soothing sounds of the Ocean or take a leisurely walk along the shoreline.

Unique attractions on Minicoy Island?

Minicoy Island offers several unique attractions beyond its beaches like Tidal Bridge, avahs, Viringili Island and Ayesha Kota Lighthouse.

Where can I find secluded beaches on Minicoy Island?

For secluded beaches, head to Viringili Island, an islet near Minicoy accessible by boat. 

Tranquil spots to visit in Minicoy Island?

Tranquil spot to visit in Minicoy Island is the Giant Banyan tree located in the heart of Minicoy.

Undiscovered places to visit in Minicoy Island?

Undiscovered off-beat places in Minicoy Island include a fish market, a tuna canning factory, and Boduhavalige rides.

Lesser-known attractions in Minicoy Island?

Lesser known attractions on Minicoy Island are Rashtretta bazaar and lagoons for snorkelling and diving.

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