26 March 2021
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See our Red Sea Section.
"There are some amazing dive sites in Israel from wrecks to marine life. Both in the Med and Red Sea. Wreck site: the Italian Submarine Sire that was sunk by the Brits in WW2 not far from Hiafa Harbor. Marine life: the area of Park Ach ziv. There's diving here all year round. Archology diving at Ceasira or Dor. There is an underwater museum at Caesara. The museum is about the ancient Roman seaport of Caesara Maritna on the Med coast. You dive along a wire with a map. Each exhibit is number so you understand what you are seeing. Fasinating place all exhibits are in shallow water no more than 7 meters. I've dived there on several occasions. "
Israel Dive Operators:
Dive Tel Aviv Diving Center
Ha Yarkon st. 117
Dead Sea Divers
"Dive in the Dead Sea like you've never dived before"
Oman now has its own diving section: for up-to-date information see Diving Oman
Oman Dive Operators:
This inland sea links with the Gulf of Oman by the Strait of Hormuz. It borders Iran, Oman, United Arab Emirates, Saudi Arabia, Qatar , the island of Bahrain, Kuwait and Iraq.
"The Arabian Gulf is mucky and not as good as the Red Sea. They do have some neat fish but that is about it. They throw buses and cars in the water as a natural coral. The visibility is about 3 meters. Stick with the red sea. "
See also: Our Saudi Arabia Red Sea section.
" In the UAE, the better dive sites are: Sharm Rocks, Energy Determination wreck (used to be world's biggest tanker) and a few other notable ones - ask a local diver. Tourists, please be advised that if you ever need a dive chamber in the UAE, you are going to struggle. The only way to get one, is to phone around the offices of the ship-repair companies, and try to "bum" and beg the use of their chamber. There are no readily accessible chambers for the public. And forget about having a chopper evac you "DAN" style- it likely ain't gonna happen, Ace! If you bend, the likely scenario is that you'll be sitting inside your hotel room for hours on end, waiting for a locally-based recreational diver to "beg" a chamber-time favor on your behalf from his informal contact network in the ship-repair industry. "
"Snoopy Island is an idyllic dive site in Fujeirah. Opportunity to see Black Tip Reef sharks, turtles, and sting-ray. Deeper dives available - but round the island great for a first timer!
We stayed at Sandy Beach Motel - cheap friendly and much more hygienic than the youth hostel! Ask for a sea view! Dive centre is next door. It costs 1600 Dirham for a full Open Water course (£240 GB May 2004). Perfect for a relaxing weekend break to get away from the hubbub of Dubai and Abu Dhabi. Professional and fun diving."
"Snoopy Island is a little island about 150 to 200 m out to sea. You can walk to it at low-tide. It's a nice, safe little place for newly licensed Open Water divers, or, for those seeking an easy "sun-bathing and dive day" at the beach. By no means, though, can it be descibed as a "top dive". I have dived Red Sea often, as well as Sipadan and Maldives, and Snoopy Island, although a pleasant little place, is probably about 45% as good as a place like Yolanda Reef in the Red Sea. You cannot even put the names on the same page!
Let's get real: with the average depth being around 10 m, you just don't see pelagics, and, the reef is nothing to write home about either. It might make it into the Top 500 dive-sites if you're lucky. Please forget about diving anywhere in summer (June to August), unless you can handle daily outside tempaeratures of not less than 45 degrees centigrade, and humidity that fogs your sunglasses.
Try diving a place called the Musandam, which is a province of a neighbouring country called Oman- a few minutes boat ride further along the same coast as Snoopy Island. Now THAT is incredible diving! Dolphin sightings are frequent, and the diversity of sea-life could get a few of the Musandam's dive sites into the Top 100 in my humble opinion.
In the UAE, the better dive sites are: Sharm Rocks, Energy Determination wreck (used to be world's biggest tanker) and a few other notable ones - ask a local diver. "
Three Big Rocks lying underwater with Teddy Bear corals. The best dive site in UAE. Many different kind of fishes in the marine life like Snappers, pufferfish, honeycomb morey eel, yellowmouth moray eel, etc. Try to look at the deep site on the rock, you will find a couple of beautiful class="taptargets"nudibranch or if you are lucky, you will see also sea turtle on the surface or underwater. "
"A very accessible, fairly shallow, small wreck site, but with luck you can find sea horses, frogfish, nudibranch and rays along with the more routine morays, and reef fish. "
"A wide range of exciting dive sites a few hours away. Pelagics as well as the reef species. "
Dibba Rock, Fujeirah
"It's a strange location to try and boast as a number 1 dive site however if you want a dive location that should guarantee over the course of a week the following, then go to Dibba Rock. Visibility is never brilliant - mostly OK. Mantas, Rays, Black tip and grey reef sharks, Whale sharks, All the usual tropical fish in huge abundance plus massive shouls of barracudas, snappers, trevallies. Loads of turtles, cuttle fish, and more. I dived Fujeurah for years - never really appreciating it until I clocekd up hundreds of dives around the world. Fujeirah itself has little to offer - but hey you're only there for the diving. Check out Freestyle divers in Fujeirah."
Brendan Coote, Ireland, 11 February 2011
Further reading: UAE Underwater Explorer: covers the top dives sites around UAE..
Al Boom Diving, Al Wasl Road, Dubai, Tel: 04 342 2993, Fax: 04 342 2995, firstname.lastname@example.org
Pavilion Dive centre, Jumeirah Beach Hotel, Dubai, Tel: 406 8827 Fax 348 4754, email@example.com
Scuba Dubai, Trade Centre Apartments, Block C, Dubai, Tel: 04 3317433, Fax: 04 3310680, firstname.lastname@example.org
Scuba International, Heritage & Diving village, Dubai, Tel: 04 393 7557, Fax: 04 393 7883, email@example.com
Scubatec, Sana Building, Dubai, Tel: 04 334 8988, Fax: 04 336 6461, firstname.lastname@example.org
Blue Dolphin Diving Center, Inter Continental Hotel, P.O. Box 5204, Dubai, Tel: 04 666 9392, Fax: 04 666 6800
Freestyle Divers, Dibba (Royal Beach Hotel) Dive Centre, Tel: +971 9 244 5756, Fax: +971 9 244 5836, e-mail: email@example.com
Scuba 2000 Diving Resort: Rating
Al Bidiya Beach, Half way between Khorfakkan and Dibba, Tel: +971 9 2388477, Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
Have 2 comfortable rooms accommodation only for divers. Book in advance. 200 dirhams (2005).
Sandy Beach Motel
Sandy Beach Motel has an onsite dive facility, that was very well run by a company called Al Boom Marine. For some reason, Sandy Beach ejected Al Boom perhaps 3 years ago. Sandy Beach Motel now runs the operation- or, what's left of it. The retail shop has degenerated into an empty shell, with hardly any equipment on sale. Their website still advertises them as a "5 Star PADI Diving Centre", and a "PADI Training Centre". I really do not see how. The reality of the situation is that there are no class-rooms, and until about 6 months ago, there were no instructors nor dive-masters either. The boat skipper would simply ferry you out to the dive-site, and provide a rudimentary briefing about the site. No-one would accompany the divers at all. Diving with Sandy Beach is ok if you do not need hand-holding, and if you are a resident expat in the UAE, who accepts that you aren't going to get many world-class diving facilities in these parts.
Divers Down: Rating
Oceanic Hotel in Khor Fakkan on the UAE's East Coast.
Good value for money by UAE standards. This is the closest dive operator to the sites such as Martini Rock on the East Coast of the UAE. They also organise regular weekend liveaboard visits to the dive sites of the Musandam Peninsular. They are a full PADI Gold Palm and IDC centre with well qualified staff and high standards and in our experience take great care of their clients.
We have a new Brazil diving section containing loads of info on Brazil...
The Grenadines are a chain of small islands that lie on a line between the larger islands of Saint Vincent and Grenada in the southeast Windward Islands of the Lesser Antilles. The country comprises the main island of Saint Vincent and the northern two-thirds of the Grenadines, a chain of 32 islands including Bequia, Mustique, Union Island, Canouan, Petit Saint Vincent, Palm Island, Mayreau and Young Island. To the north is Saint Lucia, to the east Barbados and to the south Grenada. (The southern third of the Grenadines belongs to the country of Grenada.)
"Wonderful dive sites in this small island which still has unharmed coral reefs "
Gordon Ollivere, UK, September 2015
The Crane, Mustique
"There is a flat area with a drop off and further along you run into a old wrecked crane that has hundreds of lobster in, you will see: lobster, trigger fish, barracuda, lobster and stingrays. "
Christian Lilley,March 2021
Los Testigos Islands
"Water a little murky as fed by rivers. However, very large wildlife: lobsters, sharks, turtles, all oversized (lobsters up to 15 lbs). depth range 50-150 ft, large rocky bottoms, boulders, formed shallows where life is abundant. very remote "
"Murkiness was okay because of all the creatures. "
"The National Park the Roques is located about 150 km north of the Central Coast of the state Vargas of Venezuela. The Archipelago the Roques, comprises about 42 small barren islands and 200 keys and banks of sand that include a surface of but of 221,000 Hectares and separated of the neighboring islands and the continental coast by depths superior to the 1000 m.s, bathed by warm oceanic waters (25º-30º C) all the year and under the tradewinds influence that blows of the E or of the E-NE. The coralline, ambient reefs are exceptionally varied in habitat where small spaces of rompientes and calm waters are generated and zones of lights and total shades of nutrients. Of great commercial value they are the pargos, rabirrubias, carites and mere; and greater value still has the thorny lobster, since more from 90% of the national production it comes from the Roques."
Pedro R Marquez G, Eco-Challenge Ecotourism and Adventure company
Venezuela Dive Operators:
Learn Spanish and Dive, Jakera Lodge, Playa Colorada, Venezuela. email@example.com
"30 ofshore islands, untouched, real! Very good value for money - spanish, accommodaton, meals and diving all for about $300 USD per week. Not as touristy as other places - diving was very good - lots of fishlife. Would rank it in the top 10% of my dives - but not top! "
Tara Burke G
Blowing Rock, Big Corn Island, Nicaragua
" Big fish, turtles, pinnacle out in the middle of the Caribbean, untouched. "
Book British Virgin Islands Liveaboards
British Virgin Islands Dive Sites:
Dive sites of the idyllic British Virgin Islands include Long Bay, Virgin Gorda Island, Chikuzen Wreck, Muskmellon Bay, Guana Island, The Dog Islands, The Blinders, Round Rock, Ginger Island, Cooper Island, Salt Island and Peter Island.
The Wreck of the RMS Rhone
"The Rhone because it is blanketed in color -- encrusted in coral and sponges. You almost always see turtles and barracuda and it's teeming with fish: sergeant majors, angelfish, parrotfish, durgon. But it's a popular dive site for other reasons as well. It is the wreck of a 310 foot steamer that went down in a hurricane in 1867. She's in two sections. The bow is about 150 feet long and at about 70-80 feet of water. You can swim inside. You can see the bowsprit, foremast with crow's nest, a cannon. Stern is in 30 feet with a huge propeller
British Virgin Islands Dive Operators:
Visits RMS Rhone - voted one of the best wreck dives in the world, Kodiak Queen, and numerous wreck dives near Norman, Salt, Peter, Cooper and Ginger Islands. The All Star Cuan Law has large cabins with en-suite baths
"The best place to dive in Argentina is in Valdez Península, in the Golfo Nuevo (New Gulf), there is a City there called Madryn and a small village call Puerto Pirámide. The water is a little cold, between 8 and 20 ºC. I recommend going between November and March, the whales are between June and November, but it isn´t posible to dive with them.
"Diving in Argentina is in cold waters (from 6 oC to 15). The best spots are are Peninsula Valdes and Patagonia/Ushuaia.
Peninsula Valdes is an Argentinian Marine Wildlife Reserve; home of dolphins and whales (even orcas), elephant seals, seal lions and penguins, which may be spotted and observed from a distance, although it is not uncommon to hear the whales' songs all the way through a dive! Among the dive sites two shipwrecks can be visited, sunk decades ago during storms. The best period for whales is from July to November. All Diving companies are in Puerto Madryn (outside the reserve, one hour drive from the reseve) and/or Puerto Pyramides, one and only pretty little town inside the reserve. For a honeymoon, I would advise to book in Puerto Pyramides : try Lonely Planet Argentina for more up-to-date details about lodging and diving. .
In Patagonia, a dry suit is compulsory : the water temperature is about 6/7 celsius degrees at maximum. Ushuaia in Tierra Del Fuego, the biggest southern city in the world (the most southern City is Puerto Williams, a few miles more South), is offering some Diving Centers. I have not try.
"There is some amazing diving in south east of Argentina, approx 800 km from BA. The name is Peurta Madryn. I was there out of season and did a few coldish dives with seals. theres also whale watching and from Oct to April and three types of penguins. Its a beautiful class="taptargets"place too which I would highly recommend.
For the Galapagos see our Americas section.
Easter Island - pristine diving in clear waters. Easter Island is a territory of Chile and is almost 4000 kilometers (2485 miles) from the mainland, in the southeast Pacific. You can dive all year round, but can get rough between June and September. The Pew Charitable Trusts say that a large marine park would help protect Easter Island's waters while strengthening the Rapa Nui peoples' culture. It would ensure that traditional fishing practices continue for the long term, while conserving and protecting the marine life that sustains those practices. Easter Island is home to at least 142 indigenous species. Its sea is also the location of spawning grounds for many pelagic species like sharks, tuna, sharks and swordfish.
Easter Island’s waters have a greater percentage of indigenous species of fish, molluscs and sponges than the waters around the Galapagos Islands
The average water temperature in summer is 22 oC.
Orca Diving Center
Tel.: (56 – 32) 2550 375 - 2550 877
Further reading: Easter Island Tourism
You can dive all year round in Belize. The rainy season is from June to November, but showers are generally short and the visibility at offshore sites isn't usually affected. March, October and November can be windy. The best time for diving is probably between April and June.
"Ring coral reef surrounding a large hole. Dive 14 m to the edge of the hole and then drop straight down into the hole. Hole reaches 148 m but there is on overhead ledge at 25 m. Habitated by mako sharks and assorted large tropical fish. 75 oF at surface, 68 oF at 33 m.
The Blue Hole is an amazing hole in the reef approx 2 hours away from Caye Caulker in Belize. It's 90 m in diameter and extremely deep. Once you have dived down approx 25 m, the hole opens up inside and there are amazing stalactites. The main life forms inside the hole are bull and lemon sharks. "
Amazing dive...dropping down to 40 metres and swimming under the ridge between the rock formations while seeing sharks. Great dive! "
Incredible caverns with stalactites and stalagmites at 130 feet. Black tip reef sharks and hammerheads, plus many large groupers. "
"Quick descent to 40 m then swim through staligmites. Look for schools of carribean reef sharks between 80-20ft on the ascent. "
"Incredible, slightly nerve wrecking!
Bridget Ball, February 2011
"Is there another sight like it? 100 ft visibility coming over the bathwater warm reef of vibrant colors, descending into a cool, deep blue hole where the water begins to waver and shimmer as you enter the transition from salt to fresh water at about 50 ft. Watching the enormous tuna and other pelagics dive into the hole to clean themselves as you briefly remove your octopus to taste the fresh water. Then descending another 70 feet to explore the stalagtites and stalagmites of ancient caverns and you come across a man sitting there drawing on a canvas. "
Rebecca Ramaley, 2007"It's a 130 ft dive has stalagmites 12 ft. Sharks reef around with turtles. "
Carlos Cordovaordova, 2011
Shark Cave"Bottom half of an hour glass, full of sharks. Vis = 80 m, water temperature = 30 oC. "
Lighthouse Reef, Belize"Unbelievable Coral, Mammoth pitchers, Whale Sharks even late in the season.
Bret E, 28 September 2012
Half Moon Wall"Excellent visibility, coral of vibrant colours and many fish - located just off Half Moon Caye. "
Long Caye Wall, Glover's Reef
Reviews:"Dived the top of the wall during open water certification dives. Fantastic site, approached across sandy flats complete with garden eels and more. Huge coral formations rise above the top of the wall, plenty of Creole Wrasse, Nassau and Tiger Grouper, Barracuda, Stoplight parrotfish, Queen Angelfish and much more. Managed to miss an overflight of sea turtles on the first dive, as we were too busy taking in the sea life in the reef. Wide variety of corals: Staghorn, Elkhorn, Brain coral and numerous sponges and sea fans."
The Elbow, Turneffe Island
Reviews:"60-80 ft dive has a wall reef on it."
Carlos Cordovaordova, 2011
Belize"You should take a look at Belize. I lived there for 10 years and found the diving to be world class. "
Dive Operators"This is a little private island in Belize, located 35 miles off the coast. They offer 7, 4 and 3 nights all-inclusive diving packages. The lodge is only 5-10 minutes away from the best dive sites, with a maximum of 22 divers per week. Their 7-night dive package includes 17 dives, a day trip to Lighthouse Reef Atoll and the Blue Hole, and one night dive."
See their promotional video.
Ocean's Edge, firstname.lastname@example.org
Off The Wall Dive Center and Resort, Long Caye, Glover's Reef Atoll, Belize, Central America. email@example.com"One and a half hours off the coast of Belize, from Dangriga. Would definitely dive with them again."
Gordon Tingley, 2006
Further reading: Honduras and Belize: White Star Guides Diving
When to go: Bermuda is in the North Atlantic, much further north than the Caribbean islands. In winter the air temperature averages 20 oC and in summer 27 oC. Sea surface temperatures vary from around 17 oC in February or March to 27-30 oC in July, August and September. The visibility is better in winter than summer.
Other things to do: When not diving visit the Bermuda Underwater Exploration Institute (BUEI), in Pembroke parish. This is part museum with exhibits on geology, wildlife and shipwrecks.
A wooden American schooner that served as a cargo ship in the World War II. (A schooner is a sailing ship with two or more masts. According to the Encyclopedia Britannia, the first genuine schooner was developed in the British North American colonies in 1713, by a shipbuilder named Andrew Robinson.) The Constellation sank off the West End of Bermuda in 1943.
A French warship that went down in 1838. The dive features many cannons.
A Spanish Liner that sank in 1936." Coral Reef 8 miles Nort East of Bermuda. "
The shore dives in Bonaire are helpfully each marked by a stone painted yellow on which the name of the dive is written. Most of the dives are on the more-sheltered west coast." "DIY shore dives encircles the island. Unlimited 24/7 scuba diving. No boat needed. One of the best is off the pier at Black Durgon Inn; it's called Small Wall. Easy access from pier and sites on Small Wall change with each dive. Warm water. Perfect. Good for drift diving. "`
Darlene, June 2017
" Clear water and a big variety of organisms full of color and life "
" Wonderful coral. Easy dive profile. 30 meter + vis. Great places to dine and comfortable places to stay. Also, the island is safe and friendly. What's not to love?
We really liked the Hilma Hooker dive site. Big, big wreck with nice sponges on it and fish in the vicinity. Plus it lies on the sandy bottom of a beautifully reefed slope. Pristine coral. Terrific soft fans and loads of fish. A dive with something for everyone. "
"I had heard and read about Bonaire for at least 20 years and was prepared for excellent macro-life. A recent Rodale survey even gave Bonaire top marks (or maybe #2) for small life.
To be candid, I was disappointed: The coral was fair in some places, but very good to excellent in others. There was some incredible night life - specifically a group of LARGE tarpon that were habituated to night divers and would zoom around you all dive long, using your dive light illumination as a hunting aide. These were easily 5 foot long fish and it was quite a thrill to have one come up from behind you and pass within a couple of feet.
But the macro life was disappointing compared to places in Western Australia and the Philippines, amongst other places.
That said, unless you WANT to spend days getting across the Pacific, Bonaire is a completely acceptable dive destination and I would go back without hesitation - just with slightly lowered expectations.
The island is set up wonderfully for shore diving with what has to be at least 3 dozen spots marked on the perimeter road. As the reef starts not more than 15m from shore it is a very easy place to dive.
Klein Bonaire, a km away, adds another dozen-or-two boat-only accessible sites.
And the reputation of the Town Pier is worth it for night diving, which is very easily done (though must be guided for a USD20 or so charge).
Re-breathers are available on the island for a reasonable charge, for those certified, or for those who want to learn.
All-in-all the diving wasn't as good as some Pacific locations or the Red Sea, but was better than some other locations.
Unfortunately I'm too jaded from years of going to lots of good dive places, many remotely located. If I had primarily experienced cold-water, or cloudy conditions, I would be thrilled with Bonaire. It is a fine place to go and my comments about being disappointed probably are MY problem, where most would have every expectation met or exceeded. How can you complain, in reality, when in a week you go to three dive sites that have seahorses?
Alan Gurevich" I really enjoyed Bonaire in November. The water was crystal blue and visibility unbelievable. The marine life set the tone and moray eels from spotted to green 6 footers. The weather was sunny warm and the people were very good hosts. I am a member of NABS (National association of Black Scuba Divers) and our summit was held at the Plaza Resort of Bonaire. A great trip and a lot of dive sites. They even have good off-shore diving day and night. "
Terron (Mr.TEE) Whitehead NABS
--"Karpata is great site from shallows to deep. Staghorn coral."
Les Dunning, 2006
--"Lac Cai: Murky water with 100+ tarpons and then.....heaven. Eagle rays, stingrays, sometimes sharks. Big stuff."
Edwin van Velzen, 2008
--"Hilma Hooker, Bonaire: Wreck dive-- very deep, but it was my first wreck dive and I was amazed!!! "
Shelly Gleaton, 2009
--"Country Garden, Bonaire: Absolutely Breathtaking! "
Shelly Gleaton, 2009
Reviews:"I spent a week staying and diving at Buddy Dive Resort on Bonaire and was very pleased with the operation. Actually, I don't think, in 28 years of diving, that I've been to a better organised, more diver friendly land operation anywhere.
They have the equipment room and tank storage set up so you can dive 24 hours a day, either off the dock or by taking tanks and gear and driving to tons of shore-dive spots.
The hotel part is made up of 1 - 3 BR condominium suites, with a couple of 1 BR hotel rooms available as well. There is a good on-site restaurant and the entire place is quite attractive with friendly staff.
One of the packages they offer includes a mini 4-passenger pickup, with a tank rack in the back, and they even have a drive through station to pick-up and drop-off tanks for shore dives, so you don't have to carry them to/from the dock. Nitrox is available at the dock and at the drive through."
" 80 ft + Vis, Turtles, Black tipped Reef Sharks, Slugs, schools of Jacks, some soft corals. Fathoms Mag describes this local to be one of the greatest dives, well I've seen better colour in Carmel, Calif. Pt Lobos. but the dive was still nice. The trip there from St. Martin cost $65 by cat, round trip. They supply beer, soda, bottled water. 1Hr.30 each way.
Found out from some regular divers the Island of St. Martin diving was all but destroyed by a storm. The only good sites left currently are a wreck dive and Saba Island. "
John NelsonSabaMan o War"Two amazing pinnacles that you dive down on. You hear singing humpback whales in the background while you watch the clouds of colorful fish swarm the two 60 foot pinnacles. Sea turtles swim around while parrot fish eat, morays poke their heads out of the holes in the coral. Coral ranges from dark reds to bright yellow. "
Jack Wallace, 6 April 2017SabaCustom House"You dive down 100 feet to see a giant plate of coral about 20 feet high with fish swimming everywhere. Rays lie in the sand next to garden eels while sea turtles swim above. Occasional sharks swim the length of the reef. "
Jack Wallace, 6 April 2017St MartinShark Dive"Shark dive in St. Martin was amazing. We did ours with Ocean Explorers Dive center. "
Jack Wallace, 6 April 2017
Book Saba liveaboard now & pay later.
Curaçao is an island of 180,000 people. It is 40 miles long and 3 to 5 miles wide, sitting 40 miles north of Venezuela and 48 miles east of Aruba. For an article on diving and other activities around Curaçao see Tab Hauser's article.
The wrecks of two planes which were deliberately sunk as artificial reefs.SE Aruba Fly n Dive
L. G. Smith Boulevard #1A
Tel: +297 5881150" Sloppy and disinterested. Disorganised dive shop, although experienced we signed up for a novice dive as the website was hard to navigate. Just as well as we were able to see first hand how little care was taken of an actual novice diver. The dive master was far too far away from her especially as she was not carrying enough weight and was bobbing up and down like a cork. As he had chosen to lead a drift dive she was also very frightened. Not an experience anyone would volunteer for. We too were not given enough weight and only at the end was I offered a small extra weight from the person at the end of the group. Honestly this was one of the worst and most badly organised dives that I have ever been on - and I have over 200 dives experience. Avoid this company. "
Further reading: The Dive Sites of Aruba, Bonaire and Curacao
Diving Puerto Rico
La Parguera"Magnificent wall dive with complete reef coverage, black coral forest, lots of sponges and rich marine environment. "
A. Lisowski, 2006
Puerto Rico Dive Operators
Neptune's Divers of Puerto Rico
Bookends, Battaux Bay, Speyside,Tobago
Reviews: (1)"Following negative entry and one of the fastest drift dives through mini canyons, with drops and ascents, you are dumped from the final washing machine swirl into relative calm at one end of this thrilling dive. "
Rob Jackson, 2021Blue Waters Dive'n"if you want the really best diving, stay at Blue Waters Inn, Speyside and dive with Blue Waters Dive’n (5 star PADI). Hotel and diving is spectacular. I speak from first-hand experience. "
Rob Jackson, 2015Environmental Research Institute Charlotteville (ERIC), Tobago
Environmental Research Institute
Trinidad and Tobago
firstname.lastname@example.org"My name is Neil and I write to you from the Environmental Research Institute Charlotteville, Tobago – www.eric-tobago.org. We are a non-profit organisation operating in northeast Tobago, with access to the best of the region's dive sites. We are in Charlotteville, Man o' War Bay, just ten minutes' drive from the well known Speyside. We work with the local communities on conservation research programmes and also operate a small dive centre alongside, offering a highly personalised dive service to small groups of environmentally conscientious divers. Our small dive team of four includes three marine biologists, four Reef Check Trainers, two PADI MSDT, one PADI OWSI and a PADI Divemaster Trainee. Every one of our dives has at least one marine biologist and PADI Professional in attendance.
As the centre for Reef Check Trinidad and Tobago, and the only operator of Reef Check EcoExpeditions in the Caribbean, we are especially focused on providing divers with the opportunity to learn more about the ocean environment and even get involved in our work programme. "
Neil Cook, Environmental Research Institute Charlotteville, 2015
For full details see Diving in the Bahamas.
The Bahamas Liveaboards - Compare prices online. Book now & pay later.
The Bahamas is an archipelago of 700 islands in the Atlantic Ocean. There are large populations of sharks here, as well as many wrecks. One of the main diving areas is the Exuma Cays Land and Sea Park. This National Park is managed by the Bahamas National Trust. Dive sites here include The Washing Machine, Cathedral, Jeep Reef and the Austin Smith Wreck.
You can dive the Bahamas from the islands or via a liveaboard. The liveaboards mostly depart from the capital, Nassau. Some, though, go from Grand Bahama.
Diving is possible all year round. The hurricane season, though, runs from June to November. From November to March hammerhead sharks arrive. April and May sees the arrival of the Mahi dolphinfish. The water is warm, rarely dropping below 25 oC even in winter.
The currency is the Bahamian Dollar but the US dollar is widely accepted.
Wreck of the Bahama Mama, New Providence, Bahamas"Jean Pierce's book Unofficial Guide to the World's Best Diving Vacations describes this dive as a pretty ordinary wreck which attracts a wide variety of fish making it excellent for photographers - well she must have been unlucky (or possibly not looking, as the book does seem to leave out dive sites well known around the world to people from outside the US!) to miss around a dozen Caribbean Reef Sharks (Carcharhinus perezi)in their natural environment. We didn't want to go on one of those commercial kneel in a circle on the sea bed while a divemaster in chain mail feeds sharks from a basket of chum dives that occur in parts of the Bahamas, and had not necessarily expected to see sharks at all. Our DM told us in our briefing we may see some and indeed as the bubbles from the giant stride entry cleared one unmistakable shape was visible as we looked down towards the wreck. Some swam parallel to us as we passed the wreck and swam along the edge of the reef, shadowing us - remaining a respectful class="taptargets"distance away but close enough to let us know we were the visitors. Returning to the wreck later in the dive in shallower water with a sandy bottom we were definitely on their patch and they were all around us, circling the wreck, crossing above, below and parallel to us, closer now especially when we were stationary doing a stop on the anchor chain. Having seen sharks some distance below on a wall dive in the Red Sea, and larger numbers of inquisitive ones much closer on a night dive on the Great Barrier Reef which involved green eyes coming towards you then turning away as they realised what you were, to see these magnificent creatures up close in such clear water in daylight really was a great experience. On top of that is the fact that it's a nice little wreck on the edge of a reef with lots of other fish around which made this dive extremely memorable. "
Ben Sennett"Nice wreck, sharks, lion fish, swim throughs. Got it all. "
Sugar Wreck, Grand Bahama Island"Sugar wreck near Grand Bahama island. There is more variety of sealife at this 1800's wreck than any one place I have ever been. A true underwater photographers paradise! "
Steel Forest, Nassau"Great wreck diving! Three wrecks in a row. Great swim thrus."
Shark Dive, Nassau"Amazing close up shark experience. A must do. Caribeean reef sharks."
Famous for shark dives - tiger sharks, lemon sharks Caribbran reef sharks and other species are often seen at the Tiger Beach dive. There is no shark feeding."Unbeatable shark encounters!"
Johnny Gaskell, 5 December 2012
See our Dominican Republic page.
See our Dominica Section for more information."I'm a PADI Dive Instructor who has been living in the Commonwealth of Dominica for over two years now, and I'm still in love with the diving here.....pristine reefs, incredible sponges, loads of rare critters all on an island that looks looks like they should have filmed Jurassic Park here."
Toucari Caves"The healthiest reef in the Caribbean, teaming with fish, incredible sponge diversity, swim-through, coral arch and bubbles rising from the reef...just a stunning dive"
Further reading: Dominica - Lonely Planet Diving and Snorkeling Guide
You can dive all year in the Cayman Islands. The rainy season starts in May and peaks in October. Spring and Autumn plankton blooms reduce visibility.
Grand Cayman"Grand Cayman ....Very poor in marine life."
Jason Rabbow, 2006
Shark Alley, Grand Cayman"Dive down the grand cayman wall to about 30 metres, follow the wall along then come back up in a sand chute with large coral heads. A very good dive. "
Northern Wall, Grand Cayman"Swim through at approx 15 meters dives diagonally down through the wall and emerges at 30 meters on the face of the wall. Below is deep blue down to 2500 meters and the wall is covered in healthy coral. "
Grant Herman, 2012
Bloody Bay Wall, Little Cayman"Great visibility and drop off features. "
Visibility to 200 feet, sheer wall dive with healthy soft and hard corals, and multitudes of variations of fish.
Kevin Jungfleisch"The best wall diving in the Caribean Sea "
Juan Videgain"Swarms of sharks and rays, dramatic drop off into the black, layers and layers of beautiful ecosystems. Yum! "
Ray Kloss"Wall starts in the 60 foot range and drops off into 6000 feet of deep blue. Unbelievable sponges and reef life--occasional large ocean travellers."
Robert Osborne, 2006
Cayman Brac"Cayman Brac had a lot of good diving...it had tons of rays, a few turtles, reef and nurse sharks, sea turtles, barricudas, and plenty of other creatures.....the diving was great overall.....the sunken russian ship was very interesting and so was the recreation of the underwater "Atlantis"....the walls were cool and the dive instructors were awesome...the water is also very clear....it was a great place to dive..... "
Captain Keith Tibbetts AKA Russian Destroyer, Cayman Brac
Further reading: Lonely Planet: Diving and Snorkeling Cayman Islands
Dive Operators and Liveaboards
Southern Cross Club
Reviews:"My diving in the Caribbean Sea on Little Cayman Island this December 2004 was spectacular. The Southern Cross Club provides excellent, modern, clean and serene accomodations with three full gourmet meals a day. The dive boats (2) never had more than 6 or 7 people a day. The dive instructors are very experienced, professional and warm friendly people who are focused on your safety and enjoyment. I would definitely go back again. "
Please see the Turks and Caicos section.
Vancouver Island, British Colombia"Abundant wild life ranging from giant lingcod to river otters, octopus to killer whales. Hundreds of diverse dive sites located on the island, all offering something new, exciting and unexpected. "
Jessica, 2010"Check out diving in BC. Though the coral reefs aren't here the sea life is bountiful class="taptargets"and colourful. Some Harbour seals are tame enough to swim with the divers. The waters can be chilly but visibility is excellent. Porto Cove, just outside Vancouver, is a popular dive site and does not require boat access. "
Denise A. McCracken"There is a wonderful class="taptargets"dive boat that operates there off Vancouver Island, Nautilus Explorer. Mike Lever has a great vessel and offers awesome dive trips ranging from 4 days to a week or longer. Many opportunities to see wolf eels, giant pacific octopus, six-gill sharks, rock fish, nudibranchs, and the list goes on. It's definitely a place to visit, although I highly recommend dry suits. Most of the dives are current sensitive, but Mike has the timing down to a science and does a marvellous job of optimising all the dive sites. It's a trip worth taking. "
Kingston, Ontario"The diving in Kingston Ontario Canada is the best of the great lakes, but not many divers are aware of this. It offers historical shipwreck diving. Artefacts on wrecks are protected by Kingston's "Protect our Shipwrecks" for future divers to enjoy. The Wolf island ferry wreck, for example, has the bow sitting at 70 feet with a small perch hovering stern at 110 feet and propellers intact. Penetration diving is possible with a rope, the wearing of helmets and a good lighting system. This area is Canada's best kept secret for diving shipwrecks. "
Hornby Island, British Colombia"Swim with 6000 pound sea lions wanting to play with you while you dive. "
Browning Wall, Port Hardy
The Browning Wall, thick with life and colour. The currents that rip through here "force feed" it with nutrients. Note the large Orange Peel Nudibranch at lower left. Can you find the Sculpin staring me down? Give up? Top-third of photo at center. OMD EM1, 8 mm fisheye, Iso 640, f/8, 1/320 s. By Rick Rogers"The best Cold water dive I have ever done and one of the best drift dives I have ever done. The wall has some of the most amazing invertebrate marine life I have ever seen. So abundant you feel like you can stare at a square meter of the wall for your whole dive. "
Nova Scotia"I love tropical dives but last year I went back to Nova Scotia to see if I would still enjoy colder diving and it was fabulous! I would probably not be an enthusiastic winter diver like I used to be but Nova Scotia in the summer is a wonderful class="taptargets"place to dive! The colors are not as dramatic as you see in warmer waters but there is an amazing variety of plant and animal life and of course lots of wrecks to keep it interesting. And you can dive right off the shore almost anywhere. "
Janice Fleming, Canada, 2006
Birchy Head, Nova Scotia
Reviews:"If you want a challenge try BirchyHead located in Peggys Cove below Halifax Nova Scotia....If you like brush humping and cliff climbing to get to the site wow, this is the place. Overall visibility was great, cold water, and do to a recent passing of the storm front entry was complicated and exit was very challenging... Birchy Head is sand bottom, isolated rocks, there are walls to dive but nothing special and they are shallow and effected by the swells. Saw lots of lobster and scallops, some pelagic and the benthics in large number, like sea anenomies. "
Matilda Duffy, USA, 2007
Please see our Americas section.
Books of the World's Best SCUBA Diving
- Fifty Places to Dive Before You Die
- Chris Santella, 2008, 224 pages, Hardback
- Diving the World
- Beth and Shaun Tierney, Footprint Travel Guides, 2014, 352 pages, Paperback
- Ultimate Diving Adventures: 100 Extraordinary Experiences Under Water
- by Len Deeley and Karen Gargani, John Wiley & Sons, 2009, 218 pages, Paperback
Details some of the best dive sites around the world, with some lovely photographs. The authors have included many of the dives listed in our top 10 list.
We endeavour to keep this site as informative and current as possible. If you would like to recommend, or warn about, a particular diving location or operator we'd love to hear from you.