In June 2011, Baa Atoll became a UNESCO World Biosphere Reserve – recognized alongside places like the Galapagos Islands as a unique area where conservation, research and development successfully interconnect. In keeping with the tenets of UNESCO’s Man and the Biosphere Programme, Voavah gives you an all-access pass to encounters, as well as experts dedicated to achieving a harmonious balance between man and nature.
- Baa Atoll is home to the world’s largest known population of manta rays and one of its richest coral reef systems. Resident dolphins, turtles and rays visit Voavah’s lagoon daily, while green and hawksbill turtles nest nearby. Snorkel with manta rays at world-renowned Hanifaru Bay from May to November or at nearby Raa Atoll from December to April.
- Preserving cultural heritage is key to long-term sustainability. Voavah supports the employment of local Boduberu (big drum) bands to promote cultural dance; a cooperative on the nearby island of Fulhadhoo that produces the coral frames used in its Reefscapers coral propagation project; and the Maldives’ last remaining lacquerware artisans – a group of five families from Thulhaadhoo, Baa Atoll – through on-site workshops, demonstrations and sales.
- Given its location, environmental preservation is central to Voavah’s ethos. Your stay includes privileged access to the expert Four Seasons–based conservationists – including 15 full-time marine biologists and Manta Trust scientists – who’ve spent more than a decade protecting the region’s natural treasures. Help them rehabilitate turtles, restore coral reefs, photo-identify mantas and much more.