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“An average museum” 3 of 5 stars
Review of National Museum

National Museum
Sultan Park, Male
(960) 332 2254
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Ranked #6 of 17 things to do in Male
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Attraction details
Owner description: Sun-Thu 08:00 - 18:00
Sydney
Senior Contributor
44 reviews 44 reviews
18 attraction reviews
Reviews in 17 cities Reviews in 17 cities
34 helpful votes 34 helpful votes
“An average museum”
3 of 5 stars Reviewed May 6, 2013

As I visit museums all the time no matter where I go, just thought of checking this one as well. They charge you 50 rufiya for entrance ticket and another 10 for the camera.
This is a quite big building in the heart of the city, which is quite spacious. Someone will follow you around as you walk around the 2 levels they have. I have to admit, despite the fact that this is a small museum, they do some some interesting artifacts. You can cover this entire place in under 1 hour if you are in a hurry or not.

Visited December 2012
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154 reviews from our community

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Date | Rating
  • Chinese (Simplified) first
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English first
Krungthep Mahanakorn
Top Contributor
280 reviews 280 reviews
94 attraction reviews
Reviews in 132 cities Reviews in 132 cities
752 helpful votes 752 helpful votes
“Most Informative in Male but Average by Asian Standards”
3 of 5 stars Reviewed May 6, 2013

We went to this Chinese-funded museum at 10 am sharp on a Sunday morning and had the entire collection to ourselves, but for the price we paid (50 rufiyaa), it's rather disappointing. The building's gigantic size for such a small country is somewhat misleading as the galleries occupy only two floors. With little left from the pre-Islamic era (you will see why below), its most interesting objects are from the sultanate; the highlights include costumes, turbans and wooden chairs of the Muslim monarchs and an engraved wooden plank from Hukuru Miskiiy. Also on display is almost everything first-in-the-Maldives: the republic's first needle, typewriter, telephone, and computer donated by the United Nations. Kids will love the skeleton of a rare Longmans' beaked whale, yet to have been sighted alive in the ocean, although the museum’s natural history section is awfully small.

Anyone with the slightest interest in Maldivian history should visit this attraction but don't expect too much. The artefacts are well labelled in English but what upsets us most is their lack of protection; tourists can easily break some of the invaluable items on display. The saddest moment in the museum's existence occurred in February 2012 when Islamic extremists severely damaged virtually the whole collection of 30+ Buddhist and Hindu sculptures dating from the 6th to 12th centuries. According to the museum staff we talked to, it would be impossible to repair all but a few pieces because they were made from brittle coral.

Visited April 2013
Was this review helpful? Yes 4
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Melbourne, Australia
Top Contributor
255 reviews 255 reviews
135 attraction reviews
Reviews in 84 cities Reviews in 84 cities
177 helpful votes 177 helpful votes
“Not that much to see”
3 of 5 stars Reviewed March 9, 2013

We were a little disappointed with the museum. It has an entrance fee of MRF50 (US$3.30), locals pay only MRF20 for adults and MRF10 (US$0.70) to use a camera without flash.

The building is quite spacious inside with a relatively small number of articles on display compared to the available space. Most of what we saw had been sourced from the Maldives, or was historically based.
There are further items on display on the 2nd floor, accessible by stairs or elevator.

If there had been other more interesting sites to visit we would not have bothered going to see the museum.

Visited March 2013
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Mumbai (Bombay), India
Senior Contributor
47 reviews 47 reviews
38 attraction reviews
Reviews in 12 cities Reviews in 12 cities
29 helpful votes 29 helpful votes
“Bland at first but an experience as you go along”
4 of 5 stars Reviewed February 26, 2013

The national museum is a good place to visit after passing through Sultan Park and the Islamic Center. It will look bland at first and I wont blame you as the artifacts are few and unevenly spaced out making you jump through history as if in a continuous time warp.

The fee is 50MVR and an additional 10 MVR for photography w/out flash.

But if you do go there and want the experience that is true Maldivian style, you will have to experience its hidden life blood. Please ask for the guide named Myeha Adam Zahir!! She is a real star. Her frank facts and witty humour will make time fly real fast and you will go back with nothing lesser than an experience if not your money's worth. She has the passion and ability to take the museum to the next level.

But I must mention that its real sad that the Museum relics are not given due protection and assistance considering that some Buddhist statues were desecrated some days ago on the grounds of being unislamic.... to me thats just sick... History and cultural heritage is worth more than what a few ignorant people think!!!

But in all, its worth a visit especially if you want a good glimpse into its last Monarchy

Visited February 2013
Was this review helpful? Yes 3
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Oslo, Norway
Reviewer
5 reviews 5 reviews
3 attraction reviews
Reviews in 5 cities Reviews in 5 cities
10 helpful votes 10 helpful votes
“Much more to see under the sea...”
2 of 5 stars Reviewed January 13, 2013

Really not too much to see and filled with items donated from other countries... The real delusion was not the size, but the lack of Maldivan items or historical evidences.

Visited January 2013
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