Are the Maldives Sinhalese

The most important words for a trip to the Maldives

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Here are a few Dhivehi words and expressions that will only be useful if you visit remote regions on your Maldives trip. Most of the islands speak English and you shouldn't have too much trouble communicating.

Some useful information

The official language of the Republic of Maldives is Dhivehi. This language belongs to the group of Indo-Aryan languages ​​and combines words that come from Sanskrit, South Indian dialects and Sinhala. It is said to have its origins in the very old Sinhala, a language that was formerly spoken in Sri Lanka. As a result of various invasions and the progressive expansion of Islam in the archipelago, the language has evolved significantly to enrich itself with words from Arabic. This language is taught in schools, including praying. English is spoken by the majority, except for a few remote provinces, where few tourists go anyway.


In practice

Dhivehi is written using an alphabet of 24 characters read from right to left. It's called Thanaa. In the late 1970s, the government decided to transfer the language to the Latin alphabet. Unfortunately, there are too great differences between the two systems, which means that the result is not satisfactory. The transcriptions are often very imprecise, which means that you can find multiple spellings for the same word.

Basic idioms / common expressions

GermanDhivehi
Good day good eveningasalam aleykum
How are you?kihiné ta?
Good thanks and you?vara gada
I understand / I don't understandkiké tha bouni?
sorryhithaamahuri
Good-byevakivani
Good daymaruhabaa
Many Thankschoukouriya
Yes Noahn / nouné

Trade / Buy

GermanDhivehi
How much does it cost?mi kihavaraka?
moneyfaisaa

Mode of Transport

GermanDhivehi
planemathindhaa boat
boatdhoani, boatu
trainreylu
taxiteksee
automobilekaaru
bicyclebaiskalu

Directions

GermanDhivehi
Where is ...? / How do I get to / to ...?e kobaa?
Bankbenku
railway stationisteyshan
City centermedhu rah
hotelhotaa
hospitalhasfathaalu
Left Rightvaaiy / kanaaiy
North South West Eastuthuru / dhekunu / irumathi / hulhan'gu

numbers

GermanDhivehi
one two three four five six seven eight nine tenekeh, dheyh, thineh, hathareh, faheh, haeh, hatheh, asheh, nuva-eh, dhiha-eh
twenty, thirty, forty, fifty, sixtyvihi, thirees, saalhees, fansaas, hatti
seventy, eighty, ninetyhaiythari, aahi, navai
Hundredsatheyka

Times / date and days

GermanDhivehi
What time is it?gadin kihaa ireh?
When?kon-iraku?
Yesterdayiyé
Today (tomorrow / noon / evening)miadou
tomorrowmadamma
Monday Tuesday Wednesday Thursday Friday Saturday Sundayhorma, angaara, bouda, brassfati, houkourou, honihira, aadita

To table!

GermanDhivehi
peanutsbadhan
waterfen
Tea / coffeesai / kofee

Health / Emergency / Safety

GermanDhivehi
Help!eheevun
dangernurakkaa
Updated October 8, 2018
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