Scuba diving is one of the most exciting activities a human being can do. You get access to a whole other side of the world and bear witness to thriving and beautiful marine communities that are teeming with gorgeous and varied forms of life. If you’re not lucky enough to live close to a fantastic scuba spot, we’re here to recommend some of our favorites to you. Just make sure you get properly trained and are under supervision and you’ll have the time of your life!
- Galápagos Islands, Ecuador
The Galápagos Islands are made up of mostly volcanic structures, which means the scuba landscape there is truly unique. Most of the 18 main islands offer some form of scuba diving activity. Depending on the type of wildlife you want to see, you can check out snappers at San Cristóbal, hammerhead sharks at Darwin, or sea lions at Santa Cruz. As the islands are part of Ecuador, expect a warm South American welcome and make sure you check out the sea turtles on the beaches!
- Gili Islands, Indonesia
The Gili Islands, an archipelago near Bali in Indonesia, are one of the most stunning places you can scuba dive in the world. They are best known for their prevalence of sea turtles but are also home to stunning reefs, barracuda, and huge tuna. The water here is known for its clarity, so you’ll get great views of the marine life you’ve come to see – and it’s also warm, so you won’t get chilly!
- Bay Islands, Honduras
Honduras may not seem like the most obvious spot to go scuba diving, but this Central American country has a beautiful marine landscape in its Bay Islands. The area is home to some unusual wildlife, including manta rays, whale sharks, and sea sponges. If you’re looking for something slightly off the beaten track of the usual marine life, you could try to explore the wreck of El Aguila, which was sunk on purpose to act as a man-made reef.
- Great Barrier Reef, Australia
Probably the most famous spot for scuba diving in the world, the Great Barrier Reef is the world’s largest coral reef system. It is known for being visible from space as well as being the largest structure made of living things. (Coral is alive!) With its warm, clear waters, the Great Barrier Reef is the perfect spot for a novice scuba diver. You’ll see saltwater crocodiles, sea turtles, whales, dolphins, and countless fish species here – and when you’re done, you can explore the beautiful white sand beaches on the shore.
- Phuket, Thailand
You may associate Thailand with partying and cheap booze, but its largest island Phuket is home to some stunning spots for scuba diving. Anemone Reef, a pinnacle made up of limestone, is a stunning sight as it is completely covered in mesmerizing, multi-colored sea anemones. You’ll also spot different species of sharks alongside octopuses and rays. There are opportunities to dive in simple cave systems to see a different side of scuba diving, but this should only be attempted by experienced divers.
- Hawaii, USA
The best thing about Hawaii is the sheer diversity of dives on offer. While it is known as a traditional tropical destination, it is home to several gorgeous dives focusing either on wildlife or shipwrecks. If you’re into marine life, you can see manta rays, eels, and sea turtles off the main Hawaiian island, or hammerheads and monk seals in Molokai. If you fancy something slightly different, visit Oahu, which is home to several different shipwrecks, each with its own unique history and legends. The Sea Tiger is sunk there and is rumored to have been a smuggling ship before it sank.
- The Blue Hole, Belize
The Blue Hole in Belize is a sinkhole that looks intimidating on sight but is truly a bucket list item for any diver. While it should only be attempted by experienced divers, it is an unforgettable experience for anyone who completes it. When you dive into the hole, there will be stunning stalactites and you may even spot some sharks. If you find the Blue Hole a little too intimidating, you can visit the nearby Lighthouse Atoll, which is a more open dive that showcases diverse marine wildlife in sunny waters.
- Isla Mujeres, Mexico
You may not associate Mexico with scuba, cos you’re too busy thinking about the food, but Isla Mujeres is home to some of the best wreck dives in the world. When a ship sinks, it becomes an artificial reef and the ocean envelops it to make it part of the landscape. There are several battleships that are now home to local marine wildlife. You can also visit the mating spots of sea turtles on an open dive, but just be careful you don’t disturb them!
- Cayman Islands
Home to both natural coral reefs and artificially sunken wrecks, the Cayman Islands have something for everyone. The water is lovely and warm so you won’t freeze and there are a whole lot of things to see under the water. Turtles are characteristic of the Caymans, so you’ll see them everywhere, but the variety of brightly coloured tropical fish is also stunning. If you fancy seeing a wreck, check out the Captain Keith Tibbetts, which is home to a wide variety of sea sponges.
Wherever you decide to go on your underwater adventure, don’t forget to check in on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, and Snapchat. The world is your oyster, BUCKiTDREAM