The mighty Indian Ocean stretches thousands of miles away from the Sub-continent. This great ocean also uncovers the beauty of a unique creation of “chain of pearls” – the Maldive islands. At the southern tip of this archipelago, a striking one-island atoll named Fuvahmulah exist. It is the most beautiful island in the archipelago. I am proud to be born in this enigmatic island.
As a lover of the sea and beaches, for me the most magnificent creation lies at the northern end of my island. There is uniqueness in the beach and its surrounding environment. Let me start from the sand formation. A broad sandy beach locally known as Thoondu is located here. The sands are formed by white small round pebbles. These small formations are smooth, shiny and are found exclusively in Fuvahmulah.
There is a natural spectacle occurring in this area. The phenomenon called Bissaaveli to form at the Thundi. Bissaaveli forms when part of the sand of the beach moves away from the shore towards the border of the reef, creating a lagoon, enclosed by sand and the shore of the island. This occurrence was frequent a decade or so ago. In recent times, we could rarely see these formations.
During the southern monsoon, at sunset you could witness flocks of pugnacious
Frigatebirds (locally known as Huraa) heading towards Huvadhoo atoll after satisfying their appetite. One could witness hundreds of frigate birds ascending thousands of feet into the sky, like US “B-52 bombers”, and disappearing in minutes after they takeoff from off the coast of thoondu.
Beneath the surface of the sea adjacent to thoondu unearths the exquisiteness of the natural wonders of the underwater life. The reef adjoining the deep ocean is an underwater garden. If you dive into this garden, you could witness sharks, especially Thresher shark, the second largest predatory shark in the world. Thoondu is unique for the presence of sharks. It is also a place where oceanic manta ray, eagle ray, turtles, giant trevally and many other smaller fish can be observed, even during snorkeling.
Thoondu is also a famous place for Medun, a fishing method in which fishing hand lines are released around 200 feet away from the beach and fishermen or fishing enthusiasts stay several hours on the beach, beginning at sunset till midnight. In this method of fishing ,octopus or part of eels are used as bait. Most frequently, the fishermen’s are surprised by striking attacks of huge sharks and Giant trevally (Maamudu) on the bait.
Fishing is common in Thoondu area. One of the most common type of fishing is catching yellow fin tuna using the traditional technique called Koshaagen. Fishing vessels approach Hodhokede area and throw chopped fish to attract yellow fin tuna. A fishing dhoani will release three or four lines, each around 100 meters in length, into the deep ocean.
You could see craved fishermen’s sensation awakened as lighting when their loosely deployed fishing lines transforms into hardened steel as 30 to 100kg yellow fin tuna strikes the bait and sway with whirlwind making the fisherman exhausted and trembled.
Uniqueness of waves is a blessing for surfers in thoondu. Quick waves are a trademark of the waves breaking in the beach here.
Thoondo is also place for fiesta; a place for enjoyment during special events and occasions. Hundreds of people visit the beach, especially during eid. Anyone who wish to absorb into the serenity of a tranquil island should visit the area. A single moment in thoondu would give a soothing sigh, no matter it is day or night. This is one of the most sensational beaches one could ever uncover.