Revealed: the World's Top 100 Dive Sites

4 November 2018
Compiled from divers' votes, here is the definitive list of the best dive sites on the planet. How many of them have you dived?

The list is overwhelmingly dominated by warm water dives, with the only cold water representatives coming from the Galapagos, Iceland and, perhaps surprisingly, the Isle of Man.

Compare liveaboards to top 100 dive sites

Vote for your favourite dive sites below. You may also be interested in the Best Wreck Dives list and the Top Dives in Europe.

Manta Ray
Christmas tree worm
whale shark
scorpion fish
soft coral
Inside The  Thistlegorm
Daedalus lighthouse
Stingray dive
Maldives shark dive
Lionsmane jellyfish
Diving the Umbria
Soft coral
plumose anemones
Flag fish
  1. Barracuda Point, Sipadan Island
  2. Blue Corner Wall, Palau, Micronesia
  3. Yongala, Australia
  4. Thistlegorm, Egyptian Red Sea
  5. Shark and Yolanda Reef, Egyptian Red Sea
  6. Manta Ray Night Dive, Kailua Kona, Hawaii
  7. Great Blue Hole, Belize
  8. Richelieu Rock, Thailand
  9. Liberty, Bali, Indonesia
  10. Navy Pier, Western Australia
  11. President Coolidge, Vanuatu
  12. Big Brother, Egyptian Red Sea
  13. Tiputa Pass, Rangiroa, Polynesia
  14. Elphinstone Reef, Egyptian Red Sea
  15. Tubbataha, Palawan, Philippines
  16. Ras Mohammed, Egyptian Red Sea
  17. Gordon's Rock, Galapagos
  18. Osprey Reef, Coral Sea, Australia
  19. Great white wall, Tavieuni Fiji
  20. Bloody bay wall, Little cayman
  21. Sodwana bay, South Africa
  22. Manta reef, Mozambique
  23. Sha'ab Rumi South, Sudan
  24. Ulong Channel, Palau
  25. Aliwal Shoal, South Africa
  26. Darwin Island, Galapagos
  27. Blue Hole, Dahab, Egyptian Red Sea
  28. Castle Rock - Komodo National Park, Indonesia
  29. Poor Knights, New Zealand
  30. Bikini atoll, Marshall Islands
  31. Palancanar Bricks, Cozumel, Mexico
  32. Verde Island or Drop Off, Philippines
  33. Darwin Arch, Galapagos
  34. Jackson Reef, Egypt
  35. Bunaken, Indonesia
  36. Magic Mountain, Raja Ampat
  37. Maaya Thila, South Ari Atoll, Maldives
  38. South Point, Sipadan
  39. Wolf Island, Galapogos
  40. Similans, Thailand
  41. Blue Magic, Raja Ampat, Papua, Indonesia
  42. Dos Ojos (Los Cenotes), Playa del Carmen, Mexico
  43. Straits of Tiran, Egyptian Red Sea
  44. Apo Reef, Philippines
  45. Fish Rock, Off South West Rocks in NSW, Australia
  46. The Boiler, Revillagigedo Islands, Mexico
  47. Scotts head pinnacle, Dominica
  48. Sipadan Drop Off
  49. Puerto Galera, Philippines
  50. Mnemba Island, Tanzania
  51. Punta Sur / Devils Throat, Cozumel, Mexico
  52. Canibal Rock, Komodo, Indonesia
  53. Garuae Pass, Fakarava Island, French Polynesia
  54. Cod Hole, Northern Great Barrier Reef
  55. The Zenobia, Cyprus
  56. Daedelus, Egyptian Red Sea
  57. Blockship Tabarka, Scapa Flow, Orkney
  58. Malpelo Island, Colombia
  59. Molokini Crater Wall, Hawaii
  60. Grand Central Station, Gizo, Solomon Islands
  61. Sangalaki Island, East Kalimantan, Borneo. Indonesia
  62. Alcyone, Cocos Island, Costa Rica
  63. East of Eden, Ko Similan, Thailand
  64. Dirty rock, Cocos Island, Costa Rica
  65. Neptune's Arm, Vamizi Island, Mozambique
  66. Cirkewwa, Malta
  67. St Johns, Egypt
  68. Perpendicular wall, Christmas Island, Australia
  69. Half Moon Wall, Belize
  70. Hin Muang, Thailand
  71. Batu Bolong, Komodo, Indonesia
  72. Peleliu Express, Palau
  73. Pixie pinnacle and pixie wall, GBR, Australia
  74. Ghiannis D, Egypt
  75. Stingray City, Grand Cayman
  76. Protea Banks, South Africa
  77. Silfra, Thingvellir, Iceland
  78. Fujikawa Maru, Truk Lagoon (Chuuk Lagoon)
  79. Split rock, Kadavu Isle. Fiji
  80. Barra Reef, Mozambique
  81. Shark Alley, Grand Cayman
  82. Jardines de la Reina, Cuba
  83. Pedras Secas, Noronha, Brazil
  84. Holmes Reef, Coral Sea, Australia
  85. Canyon, Thomas Reef, Egypt
  86. San Francisco Maru, Chuuk Lagoon
  87. Wakatobi, Southeast Sulawesi
  88. Los Roques, Venezuela
  89. Aldabra Atoll, Seychelles
  90. Cathédrale , Hienghène , New Caledonia
  91. Paradise point, Milne Bay PNG
  92. Seaventure House Reef, Mabul
  93. Manta Ray Night Dive, Fesdhoo Lagoon, North Ari Atoll, Maldives
  94. Hilma Hooker, Bonaire
  95. Albatross Passage, Kavieng, PNG
  96. Japanese Gardens, Koh Tao, Thailand
  97. El Quadim Bay, El Quseir, Red Sea
  98. Blue Hole, Gozo, Malta
  99. The Canyons, Utila, Honduras
  100. Umbria, Sudan

Books of the World's Best Dive Sites

Diving the World
Beth and Shaun Tierney, Footprint Travel Guides, 52 pages, Paperback
From the sardine run to swimming pigs - a diver's wish-list for finding the very best underwater wildlife experiences.
Find out more…
World's Best Wildlife Dive Sites
Nick Robertson-Brown and Caroline Robertson-Brown, 288 pages, Hardback
Find out more…

Vote for your Top Dives

Dive Site 1: 
Dive 1 Description:

Dive Site 2: 
Dive 2 Description: 

Other Comments or Runner-Up Dives:

How are the votes counted?
The first criteria is number of votes (weighted to favour the first choice dive site above the second). Where two dives tie for a position, priority is given to those with the most enticing descriptions and those whose area has several votes for different dives.

Leave a Comment

Comment using Facebook or vote above.

SCUBA News (ISSN 1476-8011)

Every month we send out a free newsletter featuring the best diving areas, underwater life, diving book reviews and interviews with authors. To receive this please fill in your e-mail address below. For an archive of previous issues see the SCUBA News page.

Confirm email