Building Dhonis. A knowledge passed down from generation to generation
Built in Maldives, their construction follows ancestral guidelines, transmitted orally from one generation to another.
The Atoll of Raa hosts most of the shipyards where highly talented and respected carpenters still build them with sometimes no plan.
Traditionally made of coconut wood, the Maldives most common tree, trusted for its incorruptibly and solidity, the Dhoni shape was very probably inspired from the ancient Arabian sailing dhow, which was commonly used as a trading ship in Indian Ocean around the 11th Century AD.
Today, for more convenience and speed, the shapes, construction techniques and material have changed through the times and most of the dhonis are equipped with diesel engines and built with imported wood. Their size can vary from 3 to 4 meters (14 ft), the rarest, up to 30 meters (100 ft) and even more.