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Question about air and boat traffic noise

Vancouver, Canada
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Question about air and boat traffic noise

Just a quick question about relative noise and traffic levels in the various atolls.

How bad is the noise for resorts close to the Male airport? Are the international planes that much louder and disruptive compared to the seaplanes travelling to and from more distant atolls?

Some people who have stayed near the domestic airports reported not being affected by the noise at all compared to the seaplanes (in the atolls too far for seaplane transfers), so I was just wondering how the larger jet planes at the Male airport compared.

I'm guessing speedboats would be the least noisiest, but those that are accessible by speedboats are often the ones closest to Male. The density of resorts in the Male atoll also means a much greater number of speedboats in the water at all times.

Am I correct in assuming that the resorts with the least amount of disturbance are located in the northermost/southermost atolls? These islands are usually located within speedboat distance of a domestic airport, but I imagine the domestic planes wouldn't be as disruptive as the seaplanes due to them flying at a much higher altitude .

My understanding is that seaplanes land and take-off right at the resort islands, and they also have more flights scheduled throughout the day. Even if there is only one or two arrivals and departures for a particular resort per day, there may be other seaplanes flying past the island en route to other islands. Some people even report having more noise in the Ari atoll than the Male atoll due to the number of seaplanes flying here. I read a report where someone experienced much more noise at Mirihi (South Ari atoll) versus Angsana Ihuru (North Male atoll) due to seaplanes alone.

Divide, Colorado
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1. Re: Question about air and boat traffic noise

a Twin Otter louder than a Boing 767 ... i am still chewing on that one ... are you being serious or kidding ?

i am not going to volunteer to measure decibles but i would encourage you to visit your nearest international airport and stand below a landing or departing commercial jet.

lots of seaplanes at mirihi? more traffic than in the male atolls ? ok.. sorry but i am smelling a bit of a joke thread

Vancouver, Canada
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2. Re: Question about air and boat traffic noise

My questions were the result of reading several reviews/reports which mentioned seaplane noise in the Ari atoll. A jet plane is obviously louder than a seaplane when distance is the same, but my question was for resorts 20-30km away from the airstrip in the Male atoll. Seaplanes land and take off much closer than jet planes do in most cases, so the answer isn't really clear without prior experience in these resorts.

Divide, Colorado
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3. Re: Question about air and boat traffic noise

ok... well.. let me put it like this ... i have stayed on a number of islands in the north and south male atolls and something extraordinary would have to happen to make me return to them .

traffic is one consideration. the jets making a huge racket ... the sheer number of seaplanes coming and going constantly (during daylight) and the boat traffic (including freighters and tankers) is way too much for me. however .. a lot of people enjoy this as it creates an ever changing interesting scenery.

in the ari atoll , i have never heard more than 3, 4 planes a day. since you chose the example of mirihi.. my apologies .. but you really picked the most ludicrous island to claim seaplane noise .. there are only 36 rooms ..plain logistics will tell you that not a lot of people come and go each day.

and no.. there is not a lot of traffic going by. once in a while you see a seaplane heading to or from rangali or angaga in the distance .. but you cannot hear them.

the seaplanes take off and land most often from little pontoons off the island - nowhere close. you hear a low humming that builds up a bit as the plane takes off and then very quickly fades in the distance.

however .. the larger islands do have a higher turnover each day .. so i could believe about hearing a number of seaplanes from places like kuredu, meeru, etc

speedboats can be very annoying simply because you can hear them forever .. like 20 minutes or more as they approach the island .. the same as they leave.

another thought is that to most of us the seaplanes are almost a symbol of the maldives .. they "belong" ... while watching the belly of a huge jet is a pretty rude awakening from the robinson island feeling

Edited: 27 June 2012, 00:08
Los Angeles
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4. Re: Question about air and boat traffic noise

Here was the post in question if anyone is interested:

"Disturbance; I didn’t notice any noise from the air at Angsana [Ihuru]. In fact, I think there was more air noise at Mirihi from the seaplanes buzzing around transporting tourists to and from Mirihi and the surrounding resorts."

And a few about islands close to the domestic airports being quieter than seaplane bound islands.

"The close proximity to the airport was a slight worry but there is no aircraft noise and almost no visual distraction. It is actually quieter than most islands we have visited due to low boat and no seaplane traffic"

"Although the island was less than 10 minutes by boat from Gan, there was no aircraft noise, largely due to the types of planes"

Edited: 27 June 2012, 00:19
Los Angeles
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5. Re: Question about air and boat traffic noise

I should also add that I'm staying at Mirihi next year and am not in any way disagreeing with what Spammie said in her post. Just that there might be some claim to what the original poster said.

Vancouver, Canada
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6. Re: Question about air and boat traffic noise

Appreciate the serious responses this time. Yes, I should have made it clear these were not my opinions or claims. I took everything right from this forum and from repeat visitors whose knowledge I thought would be accurate.

Cannock, United...
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7. Re: Question about air and boat traffic noise

Hi,

OK, I can understand where you're coming from. I've stayed in resorts in Baa, South Ari and most recently North Male Atols. The North Male resort was Baros which is 20 minutes in a speedboat from the airport and last August I stayed at Mirihi so hope I can offer an (educated?!!) opinion.

Whilst on Baros, yes I could see aircraft landing at Male.. I reckon I saw on average 3 a day but it's well in the distance (on the horizon) and I actually couldn't hear them and only saw them because I just love looking out from the island to sea (rather than reading etc). I did see the odd boats go past too but nothing that really hindered me apart from one occassion I remember seeing a small work type boat early morning passing pretty close to the island (probably about 400m away) and thinking "thats pretty close". The rest were mainly fishing dhoni's some of which I love to see as they're the traditional boat of the Maldives and are IMO beautiful with lots of character (if a boat has character?). Specially the ones that are not exactly pristine, sparkling white should I say! Sea plane wise, from Baros, in two weeks I saw/heard less than 10.

From the other islands such as Mirihi, yes sea planes bring guests to and from the islands and they make a droning noise, particularly after landing (getting to the platform where passengers alight/board) and during take off. In case of Mirihi, as Spammie says there's only 36 rooms so on a busy day there's probably 3 sea planes.. bigger islands, more seaplane visits I guess. None of this is actually over noticeable though... in fact I used to love watching the sea planes land and take off when I stayed at Coco Palm Dhuni Kolhu as they do so right in front of the beach bar :-)

I guess the upshot of all this is that unless you're thinking of an island that is directly under the flight path of the international liners, I just wouldn't worry about it :-)

Cheers

Rob

Edited: 27 June 2012, 08:20
Swanwick, United...
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8. Re: Question about air and boat traffic noise

We have stayed on two islands in the southern atolls and air and sea traffic was noticeably lacking, not that I find seaplanes particularly bothersome. I actually enjoy watching the seaplanes and the noise is much dependent on wind direction. If one lands at your resort the sound is much like the sound of a lawnmower unless you are right next to it(Some will land at the resort jetty and others on platforms out at sea).

We have never stayed at a resort in close proximity to Male, but not noticed a huge disturbance on any day trips. We spent a day on Kurumba and one on Velassaru and I do remember seeing planes taking off, but nothing too deafening.

The two we have stayed at south are Shangri-la villingil which was close to the domestic airport on Gan. I think we spotted a couple of aircraft in the two weeks we stayed there and none flew overhead. The other, Robinson club which is a distance from the domestic airport of Kaadedhoo, we saw no aircraft and hardly any sea traffic, because there are no neighbouring inhabited or resort islands.

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9. Re: Question about air and boat traffic noise

Maybe its less about noise and more about individual expectations of that paradise interrupted concept. ? If being a tiny dot in sea of blue unbroken by noise or intrusive objects is a real priority thats totally understandable.

We have stayed close to Male and Large 'planes just dont hit my radar , quite enjoy glancing up from a book to glimpse seaplanes buzzing around.

On larger Islands , wandering up a jetty to watch fish being unloaded, and various critters looking for scraps can be the highlight of the day for some of us saddos, or just seeing happy new arrivals.

Larger Islands may have more space and/or water villas and so the feeling of crowding is also diminished , peacful interiors, I loved wandering in the quiet banana grove on old Lohi , so peaceful. and pretty walks in Kuramathi. all a bit different now I expect.

Surely its about the Island that you , or your budget, has decided on.

Cannock, United...
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10. Re: Question about air and boat traffic noise

The only negative thoughts I have about the sea planes are during my second week when generally I see people getting off them and I think lucky ............. people! as I generally assume they will be on the island when I have to go home!