Vaadhoo (Gaafu Dhaalu Atoll)

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Vaadhoo is located in Maldives
Location in Maldives
Coordinates: 00°13′45″N 73°16′30″E / 0.22917°N 73.27500°E / 0.22917; 73.27500Coordinates: 00°13′45″N 73°16′30″E / 0.22917°N 73.27500°E / 0.22917; 73.27500
Geographic atollUpper south Province
Administrative atollGaafu Dhaalu Atoll
Distance to Malé437.12 km (271.61 mi)
 • Island ChiefMr. Mohamed Abdulla
 • Total1.673 km2 (0.646 sq mi)
 • Length2.320 km (1.442 mi)
 • Width1.130 km (0.702 mi)
 • Total712 (including foreigners)
Time zoneUTC+05:00 (MST)

Vaadhoo ( Dhivehi: ވާދޫ ) is the largest inhabited island of Upper South Province, Maldives. It has its own dialect of Maldivian, which is considerably different from northern and Mid-Maldivian speech.



Important Buddhist remains have been found on this island, including:

  • A ruined stupa called “Vaadhoo Bodu Havitta” is located on the north-east of the centre of the Island. It is about 90m in circumference and 12 m in height.
  • On the north-east of the centre of the island is another mount (Vaadhoo Kuda Havitta) which is about 40 m in circumference and 7 m in height.
  • An ancient cemetery knows as “Thunndey Ziyaarai” located on the north-west side of the Island.
  • “Vaadhoo Gale Misskih” an ancient Graveyard and a mosque located on the north-east of the centre of the Island.
  • “Vaadhoo Dhanna Kaleyfaanu Ziyaarai” known as the grave yard of “Mohamed Jamaaluddin” (Vaadhoo Dhanna Kaleyfaanu) who is the founder and the first teacher of Maldives.
  • “Vaadhoo Aasaaree Misskih” An old mosque where “Mohamed Jamaaluddin” (Vaadhoo Dhanna Kaleyfaanu) started his teachings with the help of Vaadhoo Katheeb (Mohamed Fadiyahthakuru).
  • "Bulhannaab" an ancient Graveyard located on the north-east side of the Island.

Thor Heyerdahl visited this island and investigated the ancient Buddhist ruins in the 1980s accompanied by Mohamed Lutfi. Some carved coral stones representing Buddha's foot (Buddhapada) include Vajrayana symbols that were found. However, the ruins have not been well researched yet.


The island is 437.12 km (272 mi; 236 nmi) south of the country's capital, Malé.[2]


Historical population
2006 662—    
2014 661−0.2%
2006-2014: Census populations
Source: [3]


Vaadhoo Jamaaluddin School, a government primary and secondary school, which is the second primary school opened in Gdh Vaadhoo. The school is named after the famous religious scholar Mohamed Jamaluddin, better known as Vaadhoo Dhanna Kaleyfaanu and the first Educator of the Maldives. The school first name was called "Vaadhoo Makthab" later changed for "Jamaaluddin School" and currently known as "Vaadhoo Jamaaluddin School".


  1. ^ "Table PP5: Resident Population by sex, nationality and locality (administrative islands), 2014" (PDF). Population and Households Census 2014. National Bureau of Statistics. p. 36. Retrieved 14 August 2018.
  2. ^ "Coordinate Distance Calculator". Retrieved 14 August 2018.
  3. ^ "Table 3.3: Total Maldivian Population by Islands" (PDF). National Bureau of Statistics. Retrieved 14 August 2018.
  • H.C.P. Bell, The Maldive Islands; Monograph on the History, Archaeology and Epigraphy. Reprint Colombo 1940. Council for Linguistic and Historical Research. Male’ 1989
  • Xavier Romero-Frias, The Maldive Islanders, A Study of the Popular Culture of an Ancient Ocean Kingdom. 1999, ISBN 84-7254-801-5
  • Skjølsvold, Arne. Archaeological Test-Excavations On The Maldive Islands. The Kon-Tiki Museum Occasional Papers, Vol. 2. Oslo 1991.