17 Best Diving Spots in the World

14 Jun 2022

Who has never dreamed of swimming in the most beautiful seabed on the planet? What is the diving capital of the world?

Let yourself be tempted and discover the best spots in the world for your next trip! If you ask “What country is scuba diving most popular?” or “Which island has the best diving?”?

From the Indian Ocean to the Pacific Ocean, here is an overview of the most beautiful dives in the world!

1: The Great Barrier Reef 

Despite severe bleaching due to global warming in recent years, the coral reef in Australia remains one of the most beautiful dives on the planet!

17 Best Diving Spots in the World

It is the largest coral reef in the world which attracts no less than two million visitors a year!

Its 350,000 km² of islands and islets include 3,000 reefs, 400 different species of coral and 1,500 species of tropical fish.

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Something to dream about! The spots of Cairns and Port Douglas are among the most popular, they offer a wide choice of dive sites suitable for all levels.


2: The Cenotes of Yucatan

The Cenotes of Yucatan are one of the most incredible places in Mexico! If you ask, “Where you can do scuba diving?” The answer is Yucatan

17 Best Diving Spots in the World
Photo by Jared Rice on Unsplash

This geological formation is an underground network of natural wells caused by the collapse of limestone rock and ideal for scuba diving.

There are a multitude of unmissable diving spots such as Chak-Mool, Ponderosa, Taj Mahal, Chikin Ha, Dos Ojos or Dreamsgate.

Let yourself be seduced by its clear waters and natural caves, the Cenotes are undoubtedly one of the most atypical diving spots on the globe.


3: Male Atoll 

Small focus on the atoll of Male in the Maldives which brings together dive sites as exceptional as each other.

The mythical Lion's Head spot, considered one of the oldest dive sites in the Maldives, is located to the west of the island on the other side of the Banana Reef or Nassimo Thila sites.

17 Best Diving Spots in the World
Photo by Jcob Nasyr on Unsplash

So many spots are adapted to your level of diving, from beginner to advanced diver.

Dive into the crystal freshwater diving of Male to meet the gray reef shark and the multicolored soft corals of the Maldives!


4: Rangiroa atoll in Polynesia

Rangiroa is the largest atoll in French Polynesia and has one of the most incredible fauna in the Pacific.

Commander Cousteau has also classified the site as one of the most beautiful and richest in the world. 

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You can see many species of sharks, manta rays or even swordfish and dolphins passing by. 

Many diving clubs offer excursions to discover the seabed through the mythical passes of Tiputa and Avatoru.


5: The Belize Barrier Reef

The Belize Barrier Reef has been a UNESCO World Heritage Site since 1996! 

Over more than 1000 km, divers can observe the immense biodiversity of the site with its 100 species of coral and 500 species of fish.

17 Best Diving Spots in the World

The coral reef of Belize blue hole diving is also home to one of the most beautiful diving spots in the world: the Great Blue Hole, 300 meters wide and 124 meters deep.


6: Raja Ampat 

At the heart of the Coral Triangle, the famous Raja Ampat of Indonesia diving  is home to over 600 species of coral and 75% of the world's coral species

Raja Ampat is still relatively unexplored and underdeveloped and the coral reefs there are in very good health.

17 Best Diving Spots in the World
Photo by david henrichs on Unsplash

The NGO Conservation International has also come to the conclusion that the reefs of Raja Ampat are more resistant to temperature changes than those of the Great Barrier Reef, having “pre-adapted to climate change”.


7: Blue Corner 

The Blue Corner dive site off Nusa Lembongan is THE place to drift dive in Bali! 

The current can be very strong and for this div will give you an adrenaline rush!

However, this site is reserved for advanced divers with drift diving experience. 

It's a steep slope with a plateau around 20m deep but most of the dive is around 30m.

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17 Best Diving Spots in the World

You can see sharks, huge rays and also the famous Mola Mola! Depending on the tide and current, visibility can sometimes be poor and the water quite cold.


8: Sharm El-Sheikh in the Red Sea

Sharm-El-Sheikh is the reference diving spot in the Red Sea. Its seabed and coral reefs are ranked among the most beautiful in the world!

The site is renowned for being a gigantic aquarium and playground for beginners and experienced divers.

Those who want to try their hand at exploring wrecks can compete with those of the “Carina”, the “Kingston”, the “Dunraven” and the “SS Thistlegorm”, considered to be the best wreck dives in the world.


9: Sipadan Island

Off the island of Borneo in Malaysia, is that of Sipadan. This small island has many surprises in store with its 3000 different species of underwater life.

17 Best Diving Spots in the World

In addition to its white sand beaches, turquoise water and vast coral reef, Sipadan diving is renowned for its great biodiversity, most dangerous places to scuba dive and its many scuba diving spots including Barracuda Point, Mid Reef, White Tip Avenue, South Point, Turtle Patch , Coral Garden, Hanging Gardens.

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The most experienced divers can even attempt the descent to the famous cave of Turtle Tomb where Commander Cousteau filmed his documentary entitled.


10: The Similan Islands 

The Similan Islands are home to some of the best diving spots on the planet in Thailand scuba diving. This archipelago of nine islands has been classified as a “National Park” since 1982.

17 Best Diving Spots in the World
Photo by Fin Prakittiphoom on Unsplash

 Only six out of nine islands are open to the public (due to turtles laying eggs on the remaining three islands).

There are a total of 19 different dive sites within the Similan Islands Marine National Park.

The world-famous Richelieu Rock spot is the perfect place to observe manta rays and whale sharks!

The underwater life is highly developed around the corals.


11. The Galapagos Islands

A thousand kilometers from the Equator, this UNESCO World Heritage Site is home to more than 400 underwater species.

Dive into the cold waters of the Galapagos and meet large schools of Manta rays, hammerhead sharks, whale sharks, seals, and other sea lions.

This incredible and fascinating spot is however, reserved for insiders. Beginners refrain !


12. Medes Islands

Composed of seven islets, the islands of Medes are a reference destination for divers from all over the world.

Its Mediterranean seabed is covered with fields of Posidonia, red coral, giant and multicolored gorgonians, inhabited by a multitude of fish species.

17 Best Diving Spots in the World

You will come across groupers and sars, but also many other species: eagle rays, stingrays, schools of barracuda, capons, wolves, moray eels, conger eels, tuna, moon fish, scorpion fish, sea bream, or even wrasse, cuttlefish and octopus.

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The quantity and variety of underwater fauna and flora make it one of the best diving spots on the planet. Don't miss the Vaca, Cavall Bernat or Pota de Llop spots.


13. Zanzibar 

Here is one of the best diving destinations in the entire Indian Ocean!

The islands of Zanzibar feature well-preserved coral reefs and beautiful marine life. Unguja and Pemba Island are Zanzibar's two main diving spots.

17 Best Diving Spots in the World
Photo by Chema Photo on Unsplash

You will come across whales, and in particular the famous humpback whales, as well as many sharks, including the surprising whale shark. Marine mammals, turtles and game fish are also well represented.


14. Sardine Run 

For an unusual experience, put on your masks and snorkel and head for Sardine Run in South Africa.

Every year between June and July, sardines migrate along the African coast. The show is amazing!

Are you a fan of underwater discoveries? Share your favorite diving spots in the comments!

17 Best Diving Spots in the World
Photo by Agustin Diaz Gargiulo on Unsplash


15. Porto Belo

The incredible biodiversity and unique rock formations are the two great interests of a dive in Porto Belo.

Biodiversity is guaranteed thanks to the presence of the Arvoredo biological reserve. You will evolve among transparent, emerald green and also calm waters, therefore open to beginners.

There is no "best season" because the Porto Belo region offers warm weather suitable for diving all year round.

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However, avoid July, August and September when ocean temperatures are lowest (18 degrees). The dives are mainly done from Praia Bombinhas.


17 Best Diving Spots in the World

16. Maputaland Marine Reserve

South Africa may surprise you in this selection. But its coast along the Indian Ocean offers a myriad of spectacular dive sites in the world of admirably protected nature reserves.

The most famous sites: Sodwana Bay, Aliwal Shoal, Protea Banks and Rocky Bay.

The main interest is the extreme variety of fauna: dolphins, whales, sharks, rays and as many exotic and multicolored fish will make your dive fabulous. Dives for all levels.

The best season is from December to May.


17 Best Diving Spots in the World

17. Island of Chios

This small island, located between Greece and Turkey is the ideal dive site to impress yourself with the view of the Mediterranean.

Its variety of fish, its crystal clear waters and its caves will make you live an unforgettable experience in an explosion of colors between red and yellow corals and many marine species.

High place for diving in Greece, the island is still little visited. 

Whether you are a beginner or experienced, this authentic dive site offers you the opportunity to observe moray eels and sea turtles before relaxing on one of the magnificent beaches in the area.

This spot is best known for its two spectacular sites where formidable predators and schools of small fish coexist.


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