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- Univercity of life, University of Oxford
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The island is about 4.5 km by 1.2 km with a submerged reef (Rashikedefaro) extending for about three km in a SE direction. In the past Fuvahmulah was a small coral atoll whose southern end was open at a spot called Diyarehifaando and the inside of the island was a saltwater lagoon forming a natural harbor. There is a spot on the southern end known as Kudhuheraival (forest of a small islet), which indicates there was a small separate islet over there in ancient times.
The channel connecting the lagoon with the ocean was closed by massive coral boulders in the past. Thus the inside of the island is lower than its edges. In time the inner lagoon lost its saltiness and all that remains today are two small lakes, wetlands and marshy taro fields. In this respect, Fuvahmulah is like the island of Nukutavake in the Central Pacific.
The northern lake of the island is known as "Dhadimagi Kilhi" (lit. "Lake of Dhadimagu" or "Dhadimagu Lake" since the lake is located in Dhadimagu ward of the island) and the southern is "Bandaara Kilhi" (lit. "State Lake" since the lake has been under State custody throughout history).
Lacking a lagoon and being subject to ocean swells, Fuvahmulah was often inaccessible to seafarers in the past. In the early 2000s a harbor was built at the SE tip of the island, which minimized the problem to a certain extent. The construction of a domestic airport in the island in 2011 has gradually opened the island to the rest of the country.