Gan (Laamu Atoll)

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Gan
Inhabited island
Gan is located in Maldives
Gan
Gan
Location in Maldives
Coordinates: 01°54′55″N 73°32′35″E / 1.91528°N 73.54306°E / 1.91528; 73.54306Coordinates: 01°54′55″N 73°32′35″E / 1.91528°N 73.54306°E / 1.91528; 73.54306
Country Maldives
Administrative atoll Laamu Atoll
Distance to Malé 247.02 km (153.49 mi)
Dimensions
 • Length 7.800 km (4.847 mi)
 • Width 3.400 km (2.113 mi)
Population
 • Total 2,516
Time zone MST (UTC+05:00)

Gan (Dhivehi: (ގަން) is one of the inhabited islands of Haddhunmathi Atoll, administrative code Laamu and the proposed capital for the Mathi-Dhekunu Province of the Maldives. Gan is the longest island of the Maldives. It is divided in wards, the northernmost of which is called Thundi in middle Mathimadhu and at the end Mukurimagu. Gan is connected with Maandhoo, the uninhabited island at its south. Maandhoo is linked with the regional domestic airport at Kadhdhoo by a short causeway. Kadhdhoo adjoins at its south with Fonadhoo, the capital of the atoll. The causeway which links between Kadhdhoo and Fonadhoo has almost one kilometer. The four islands Gan, Maandhoo, Kadhdhoo and Fonadhoo where it is linked with causeways stretches up to about 18 kilometers in length making up the longest lengthen of dry land in the Maldives.

This island should not be confused with other Maldive islands called "Gan" in Addu Atoll and Huvadhu Atoll.

Development[edit]

Gan is the most developed island in the Laamu Atoll. After the 2004 Tsunami the French Red Cross and other foreign governments built new buildings, including a new School, a Multi-Purpose building, a new Hospital, Bank, Primary and Secondary School, Water Plant, Police Station and Power Houses. Tourism has started growing and is going ahead successfully.

Tourism[edit]

Gan is the largest island in the atoll and in the Maldives. The island is on the eastern fringes where most islands in the atoll are located. The island Gan is nestled with astounding beaches.The island also has impressive mounds from a pre-historic Buddhist time. The mounds known as “Hawitta” is a pyramid like structure built in pre-Islamic times and have a history of over 600 years. Away from home, experience the unique and the unspoilt natural environment of the beautiful Maldives through our adventure holiday tour. This opportunity will expose the visitors to the Maldives history, culture and livelihood engulfed in the natural marine environment, where Sun, Sand and Sea form the frame of this unspoilt paradise.

The Reveries Diving Village developed by Bison Maldives Pvt Ltd was officially opened by President Mohamed Nasheed 1 February 2011. As it is the first of its kind in the country due to it being developed on an inhabited island. Reveries with 23 guest rooms, restaurant, internet café, swimming pool, Roof Top Café, Conference facilities, Spa, Padi Certified Dive School and Water Sport facilities will offer a new kind of tourism.

Health Facility[edit]

Gan Regional Hospital provides Preventive and Curative Health services to all the people residing in the South Central Province and also to all the people who approach GRH for its services. GRH had a humble beginning as an Atoll Health Centre on the 7th of November 1993. The demand for services increased and it expanded to an Atoll Hospital on 11 June 2001. Further upgradation took place in the form of facilities and staff. On 1 August 2002, GRH achieved Regional Hospital status. GRH provides preventive and curative health care facilities to all the islands of south central province and serves as the highest referral centre for this region.GRH celebrates its 8th anniversary on 1 August 2010.

Archaeology[edit]

The temple compound at one of the Buddhist sites in Gan Island

Gan Island has large ruins from the historical Maldivian Buddhist era.

  • A ruin called “Gamu Haiytheli” is situated on Mudhin Hinna in the Mukurimagu ward of the island. It is 91.5 m in circumference and 7.3 m in height. Local tradition says that this was the last Buddhist temple of the Maldives.
  • Ruins called “Munbaru” in an area called Kuruhinna. These were investigated by H. C. P. Bell in 1923 and a report with photographs was published in his monograph of 1940.[1]

The ruins in Gan were the best preserved ruins from the Buddhist past in the Maldives when H. C. P. Bell excavated some of the island's Buddhist remains, especially one of the stupas and a vihara at Kuruhinna. Recently, however, much vandalism has taken place at those unprotected sites and only scattered stones and mounds of coral rubble remain. [2]

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ Hasan A. Maniku, The Islands of Maldives. Novelty. Male 1983.
  2. ^ Xavier Romero-Frias, The Maldive Islanders, A Study of the Popular Culture of an Ancient Ocean Kingdom. Barcelona 1999.
  • HCP Bell, The Maldive islands. Monograph on the History, Archaeology and Epigraphy. Reprint 1940 edn. Malé 1986.

Gan Hand Book 2000