Gan-1 monastery, (on) Gan Is., Gaafu Dhaalu, MV

Raw data

Gaafu Dhaalu Atoll - Southern Huvadhu Atoll or Gaafu Dhaalu is an administrative district of the Maldives formed by the southwestern section of Huvadhu Atoll.

"Gan (Huvadhu Atoll)
Gan is one of the uninhabited islands of Southern Huvadhu Atoll, in the Gaafu Dhaalu Atoll administrative division of the Maldives.
Gan Island was formerly inhabited, but its inhabitants moved to neighboring islands after a severe epidemic at the end of the 18th century. Before that point, there is evidence of continuous human habitation since very ancient times. There are still large cultivated fields of yams, manioc and coconut trees on this island, which are used by neighboring islanders from Gaddu.
The origin of the word "Gan" is in the Sanskrit word "Grama", meaning "village". This island should not be confused with other Maldive islands called "Gan" in Addu Atoll and Haddummati Atoll.
There are several ancient Buddhist ruins in this island, including one of the largest stupas in the Maldives:
x A large ruin called “Gamu Haviththa” located at the centre of the island is 73 m in circumference and 18 m in height. Local tradition says it was a Buddhist place of worship.
x Another mound 55 m in circumference and 1.5 m in height is situated on the western shore of the island.
x Another mound with a circumference of 15 m and a height of 1 m is on the northwestern shore of the island.
x Another mound with a circumference of 58 m and a height of 9 m is on the southeastern shore of the island.
x On the northwest of the centre of the island is a mound with a circumference of 42 m and a height of 6 m.
x There is another mound near the latter with a circumference of 37 m and a height of 3 m.
Thor Heyerdahl visited this island and investigated one of the ruined stupas there in the 1980s accompanied by Mohamed Lutfi. This included the foundation of the perimeter of the vihara or temple compound. However, most ruins have not yet been well researched.
Lat 0.277222, Long 73.432778"

Maldives - administrative subdivisions
Input by: tmciolek, Sep 18, 2012

Final data (and their sources)

Last updated: 14 Jan 2013

Lat/Long coordinates' accuracy:
The monastery in question is assumed to be situated actually no farther than 200m from the point defined by the coordinates below.

Location of Gan-1 monastery, MV.

General location of the Gan-1 monastery, MV.
Lat 0.2791 Long 73.4369
Mapping & images: Falling Rain Genomics (, 2012.

Google Map link:,%20MV)&ll=0.2791,73.4369&spn=05.0,05.0&t=k&hl=en

Final data - explanatory notes

1. Monastery's name

  • Gan-1 monastery

2. Monastery's modern country & province

  • Maldives:Gaafu Dhaalu, Gan Island

3. Monastery's alternative/historical names

  • [missing data]

4. Monastery's lat/long coordinates

  • Approx., Lat 0.2791 Long 73.4369 - based on the visual identification in maps/satellite imagery,, of the centre of the Gan island - tmciolek, 18 Sep 2012.

5. Other known nearby Buddhist monasteries

  • [missing data]

6. Modern name of the known nearest city, town, or village

7. The settlement's alternative/historical names

8. The settlement's coordinates

  • Gan island - Approx. Lat 0.2791 Long 73.4369 - based on the visual identification of the island in maps/satellite imagery,, tmciolek, 18 Sep 2012.
  • Note: the coordinates Lat 0.277222, Long 73.432778 supplied by are erroneous, as they refer to some commercial outlet on the island of Vaadhoo - tmciolek, 18 Sep 2012.

9. Monastery's major Buddhist tradition

  • Vajrayana - O'Shea (1998-2009)

10. Monastery's Buddhist sub-tradition

  • [missing data]

11. Date-early

  • [missing data]

12. Date-intermediate

  • [missing data]

13. Date-late

  • MBM chrono-tag: 1067-99p 1100-32p 1133-66c - tmciolek 14 Jan 2013
  • 1067-99p 1100-32p 1133-66c dated-l

14. Details of contacts with other monasteries

  • [missing data]

15. Type of evidence regarding the monastery

  • archaeological

16. Additional notes

  • [missing data] (incl. details of the size of the monastic population)

17. Corrections & addenda to this page were kindly provided by

  • [missing data]

18. Available Printed Literature

  • [bibliographical details of the Book/Article 1]
  • [bibliographical details of the Book/Article 2]
  • [bibliographical details of the Book/Article 3]

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