The Maldives is a nation of coral reefs. Twenty-six atolls adorned with more than 1,200 coral-shrouded islands rise from the seabed, creating a lifetime of diving possibilities. From calm coral gardens within protective barrier reefs to fish-laden pinnacles and adrenaline-pumping drifts along steep walls, there is something for divers of all abilities and interests. Whale sharks feed on plankton carried by life-giving currents. Reefs are home to more than 1,000 species of fish and 200 varieties of coral. Divers can choose between luxury liveaboard boats and idyllic resorts on small islands, many with rooms that perch directly over the water.