This post will discuss my top 9 favorite places to scuba dive.

Kona,Hawaii

This was the first place I ever scuba dived and got my certification. I instantly fell in love. What’s nice about scuba diving in Kona and other parts of Hawaii is the ability to scuba dive from shore. In most cases, no boat is needed to see what the islands have to offer.

Kona is also home to the beautiful manta ray night dive. On this dive, boats shine lights all in the same area attracting plankton and other small aquatic life. The swarms of plankton attract dozens of manta rays (if your lucky) which is a fantastic sight. Check out a video of the dive below.

Are you thinking of taking a diving trip and want to discover the best destinations to dive this year?

Dives with large pelagic, coral reefs impossible colors, crystal clear waters and rock formations that look like a movie set. Below you will find ten places you should visit, at least once in a lifetime. Some you will know of leftovers, but with others you may be pleasantly surprised.

COCO ISLAND (Costa Rica)

What you might find: hammerhead sharks, whitetip sharks, whale sharks, rays, whales, moray eels, turtles, octopuses, dolphins, giant blankets, and tuna.

Popular Dive Points: Bajo Alcyone, Shark Fin Rock

Cocos Isla del Coco

Here you can enjoy an unforgettable experience in the company of huge banks of hammerhead sharks and white tip sharks, you will have the opportunity to see the impressive whale shark, several types of blanket and, if you are lucky, also different species of whales.

This volcanic island, located 530 km from the Costa Rican coast, has been declared a World Heritage Site by UNESCO thanks to its incredible biodiversity and unparalleled state of conservation. It is not surprising that Daniel Defoe was inspired here to describe the island where the famous shipwrecked Robinson Crusoe lived 28 years ago.

Isla del Coco Sharks In addition to the large pelagic, its tropical waters are home to hundreds of species of fish of all colors, shapes and sizes, surrounded by extensive coral formations, beautiful multicolored gorgonians and sponges of all kinds. You could not miss turtles, dolphins, giant moray eels, octopus, mobulas, eagle rays … You can also enjoy the unforgettable spectacle of seeing the great pelagic feeding on the huge schools of horse mackerel.

To visit Isla del Coco, you have to do it with a life cruise on board, as it is too far from the coast to go and return by boat in a day. A very good option if you have a tight budget are the Okeanos Agressor boats. If you have something more budget, one of the boats with the best fame is the luxurious Argo, a super ship of 40m, where you will have all the comforts and details that are appreciated as free nitrox, cabins with air conditioning, private bathroom and shower, etc. .

If you want to take a look at the best life options on board that travel the area, with prices and the dates of your exits, click here:

 See diving options in Isla del Coco The best time to visit this place is from January to March and the months of September and October, when the weather is drier and sunny.

Clown fish Isla del Coco

If you are going to visit Isla del Coco, I highly recommend that you save some extra days of travel to discover Costa Rica, one of the countries in the world with the greatest diversity in fauna and incredible landscapes that range from imposing volcanoes to semi-paradisiacal beaches -desierto, without forgetting its leafy jungles and waterfalls lost. If you enjoy nature, it will undoubtedly be one of the best trips of your life.

RAJA AMPAT (Indonesia)

Turtle Raja Ampat

When to go: October to the end of April

What you’ll find here: sharks, manta rays, whales, dolphins, nudibranchs, mime octopus, toad fish, phantom fish, moonfish, pygmy horses, orangutan crab, sea turtles and a big variety of sea creatures

Different Dive Points: Manta Ridge, Kri Island, Fabiacet, The Passage, Farondi

Imagine a place where, in a single dive you could see more than 200 different marine species, including stingrays, toadfish, moonfish, nudibranchs of all kinds, hammerhead sharks, seahorses, orangutan crabs, corals of all colors and shapes imaginable, among many others. Pures I have a good news: that place exists and it’s called Raja Ampat.

Raja ampat shark

This incredible archipelago of 40,000 km2, located in the middle of the Coral Triangle, in New Guinea, has more than 1,500 islets that make up one of the national marine parks with the greatest biodiversity in the world.

Thanks to good environmental practices, large areas are protected from fishing, so their reefs enjoy very good health. Therefore, it is one of the most privileged diving areas on the planet.

Nudibranquio Raja Here are 600 different species of coral (75% of all species known worldwide), more than 700 species of mollusks and more than 1,000 species of fish of all kinds. There are also no large marine mammals like whales and dolphins. Raja Ampat is a paradise for divers who love biodiversity and offers incredible dives for all tastes.

Although you can find very good diving centers and hotels, the best way to discover Raja Ampat is with a life on board, which will take you to the best diving spots (many of which are not accessible from the coast). Different boats of the Agressor company navigate the area, being a very good option in relation quality / price. But there are so many possibilities of boats that cross this archipelago, that I encourage you to take a look at yourself:

The best time to visit this area is from October to the end of April. Although you can find some boats that do routes all year round, from July to the end of September the sea conditions can be quite bad due to the strong winds and tropical rains.

In addition to an underwater paradise, Raja Ampat also has a lot of virgin islets of film that will make this trip a completely unforgettable adventure. With globalization, it is difficult to find places where you do not dive among hundreds of fins. This is one of the few places in the world where you will still have the privilege of feeling like Robinson Crusoe, making the trip even more unforgettable.

In the words of marine biologist Lee Goldman, “Every day you experience something different here.”

Maldives

When: you can dive all year round, although January to April are usually the months with more abundance of life in some points.

What you’ll find here: whale sharks, hammerhead sharks, stingrays, schools of barracudas, puffer fish, lionfish, dolphins, gray sharks, whales, moray eels, …

Different Dive Points: Kuderah Thila, Hammerhead Point, Manta Point, Hanifaru Bay, … (there are so many incredible places in Maldives that it is hard to recommend a few!)

Another of the great classic diving destinations, considered by many the best place to enjoy diving. And with good reason: The Maldives, formed by a chain of 26 atolls located in the southwest of India, not only enjoy paradisiacal beaches and crystal clear waters, but it is also one of the richest marine ecosystems in the world.

Shark Maldives A few meters below the surface are whale sharks, stingrays, puffer fish, hammerhead sharks, giant groupers, dolphins, lionfish, whales and a long list of animals of all sizes and shapes.

And the Maldives offers dives for all tastes: from calm and shallow dives between colorful coral reefs filled with tropical fish and invertebrates to demanding dives with strong currents, ideal for spotting large pelagic sharks, large groups of blankets and Whales.

Maldives 2In addition to marine life and the more than 3,000 coral reefs that populate the area, the warmth of its waters and the incredible visibility, which can reach 50m.

You can dive from the coast and also with life boats on board. The latter are the most popular option, which will allow you to reach the best dive sites, crossing the main atolls and thilas (giant underwater columns that rise from the seabed to a few meters from the surface). You have an infinity of boats with options of all kinds for all tastes, pockets and levels. If you want to take a look to get an idea of ​​the prices and dates of your outings, click here:

See diving options in Maldives As for the best time to go to Maldives, the truth is that you can visit all year round. On the other hand, although the weather can be somewhat unpredictable, it is true that the months of most rains are usually May, June and July.

Then, I leave some of the dive sites that you should not miss:

Ari Atoll

More Maldives Here the main attraction is the large pelagic and the incredible visibility of the waters: whale sharks, hammerhead, white tip, gray and huge groups of stingrays will make you not easily forget these dives. Some highlights: Kudarah Thila, Fish Head and Hammerhead Point. If you like wrecks, do not miss the Halaveli, a 33 meter freighter sunk in the 90s.

North Male Atoll

The most famous diving point in the Maldives, where you can dive among some of the best reefs in the country. Do not miss the manta rays cleaning station (Manta Point), Girifushi Thila and Banana Reef.

Baa Atoll

The whale shark is the great protagonist of this atoll formed by 50 paradisiacal islands. It is a protected area for this animal, so there lies one of the largest populations of which there is evidence, with 110 copies. I recommend Hanifaru Bay, breeding area for these sharks due to the large amounts of plankton that arrive during the monsoon season.

Palau (Micronesia)

WHEN TO GO: December to May (blanket mating season), although it can be visited all year round

WHAT YOU WILL FIND HERE: unicorn fish, napoléon, turtles, sharks of various species including whale shark, stingrays, eagle rays, schools of barracudas, tunas, nautilus, luminous oysters …

DIFFERENT DIVING POINTS: Jellyfish Lake, Blue Corner, Chandelier Cave, Blue Hole, Jake Seaplane.

Lakes full of jellyfish that do not bite, sharks of all kinds, remnants of aerial battles, caves with incredible light games … sounds good, right? Welcome to the Republic of Palau.

This diving paradise in Micronesia is a small group of volcanic islands located 500 km from the Philippines. Thanks to the streams full of nutrients and low tourist pressure, its seabed is considered the best on the planet for coral reef diving.

In its tropical waters, both Indian and Pacific species live: different types of sharks, turtles, giant blankets, nudibranchs of all kinds and tropical fish. Its great biodiversity makes this archipelago the perfect place for both those who enjoy large pelagic and macro enthusiasts.

Jellyfish lake And if you want a different experience, you can not miss the visit to the famous Jellyfish Lake, a lake full of no less than ten million harmless jellyfish. Swimming surrounded by Cnidarias and leaving without a scratch of water is something very rare and I assure you that it is worth it!

In addition to marine life, in Palau you can enjoy spectacular dives in caves full of stalactites and stalagmites, such as the mythical Chandelier Cave, incredible blue holes, vertical walls that are lost in the ocean depths and wrecks of World War II, such as Jake Seaplane.

Nautilus PalauKoror is the largest island, where there is the international airport and the base for dives in the area. The ideal way to discover all the underwater wonders of the area is through a life cruise on board. Among the available options, I confess that I feel a weakness for the Palau Siren, a beautiful sailboat of 40m in length with a spectacular interior and all the amenities you can look for in a diving trip. They also offer free nitrox, internet on board and even a massage service! I encourage you to take a look at the photos and tell me if you agree with me …

Or, if you prefer, I leave the link where you will find the different boats that travel the area, with prices and the dates of their departures:

Palau will undoubtedly mark a before and after in your underwater experiences.

Sipadan Borneo

WHEN TO GO: you can dive all year round, although the best season is from April to December

WHAT YOU’LL FIND HERE: turtles, hammerhead sharks, whale sharks, reef sharks, rays, giant blankets, dolphins, bat fish, buffalo fish, …

DIFFERENT DIVING POINTS: Hanging Gardens, Turtle Cave, Barracuda Point

On a small island on the east coast of Malaysian Borneo we found this spectacular reef clinging to the crater of a submerged volcano and bathed by the Sea of ​​Celebes. Among the many lovers of Sipadan is Jacques Cousteau, who had a predilection for this place because of its great biodiversity. It is the most spectacular place in the world for diving with schools.

Turtle Sipadan

At Barracuda Point, you can experience the incredible experience of being surrounded by a tornado of thousands of barracudas to the point that they will even prevent you from seeing the sunlight.

Jackfish Sipadan Here is also the famous cave of the turtles, full of skeletons of these animals, who come here to die. Although a tad sad, the immersion is spectacular.

In addition, in the dives there will be plenty of aquatic companions of all kinds: hammerhead, whale and reef sharks, rays, giant blankets, countless turtles, dolphins and a great variety of different fish.

If you want to take a look at the best life options on board that travel the area, with prices and the dates of your exits, click here:

See diving options in Sipadan Sipadan enjoys very good weather throughout the year. With little rain and temperatures that hover around 30 ° C (in and out of the water).

GALÁPAGOS (Ecuador)

WHEN TO GO: July to November (whale shark season), although you can dive all year round

WHAT YOU’LL FIND HERE: whale sharks, hammerhead sharks, tiger sharks, tortoise sharks, sea lions, dolphins, penguins, seals, marine iguanas, turtles, eagle rays, eels, tuna, humpback whales, killer whales, etc.

DIFFERENT DIVING POINTS: Darwin Arch, Isla Lobos, Punta Bartolomé, Islote Caamaño, Cerro Tijeretas.

Do you like big animals? Are you an experienced diver? Then the Galapagos Islands will undoubtedly be one of the best places - if not the best - where you will dive.

Galapagos Penguin In a single dive in Darwin Arch you can enjoy the company of majestic whale sharks, immense schools of hammerhead sharks, playful sea lions, dolphins, penguins, seals, the strange marine iguanas, turtles and a long list of species. It seems impossible, right? Welcome to Galapagos.

Thanks to being a protected natural area and regulated tourism, the marine bottoms of this group of Pacific islands are in an unparalleled state of conservation, giving rise to a biodiversity that will delight any diver. With the addition that 2 out of 10 animals that you will find here are endemic to these islands, so you will not see them anywhere else on the planet.

And, in addition to the “superior” marine life, you can not miss the magical spectacle of a night dive surrounded by brilliant plankton: for a while, the sky and the earth seem to melt and you will have the sensation of being immersed in a sea full of small stars bright

Most divers do the dives through a trip on board life, since it is the only way to get to some of the best sites on the different islands of the archipelago, such as Isla Lobos. You will see that you have several options of boats that travel the islands and the prices are quite homogeneous.

If you’re going for a budget, I recommend the boat Nortada, with which you can save about 100 bucks a day. Do not expect big luxuries, but it has everything you need and a very good value for money and, in addition, it is a tiny boat for up to 8 people, so the atmosphere is quite intimate and relaxed.

If you want to take a look at the best life options on board that travel the area, with prices and the dates of your exits, click here:

 See diving options in Galápagos Galapagos is a diving destination that can be visited all year round. However, the peak months for blue lovers coincides with the whale shark season, between July and November. In addition, the coldest months (April to November) are those of more plankton, so there is worse visibility, but also more abundance of marine life 😊

Whale shark Galapagos

Of course, keep in mind that in the Galapagos sea conditions are quite changing, there may be unpredictable currents, days with very little visibility and also the water temperature is not exactly tropical. So if you do not have much experience diving, I recommend you save this destination until you have a few more dives in your divelog. But when the time comes, do not think twice: this trip will be undeniably unique and unforgettable.

Honduras

Dolphins Roatan

WHEN TO GO: February to June is the driest time

WHAT YOU WILL FIND HERE: dolphins, gray sharks, hammer, manta rays, barracudas, groupers, hemulid donkeys, rays, carangids, angel fish, butterfly and a good variety of other tropical fish and tiny life, as well as gigantic sponges and infinity of colorful coral

DIFFERENT DIVING POINTS: Mary’s Reef, The Aquarium, Michael’s Rock Reef, The Jado Trader

The islands of the Bay, located in Caribbean waters, on the north coast of Honduras are attracting increasing interest and fame in the world of diving, but are still a little frequented destination, so it is the ideal time to enjoy its crystal clear waters, great biodiversity and white sand beaches.

Roatan sharks

Roatán is the largest island of this archipelago that is integrated into the Mesoamerican reef, the second largest in the world after the Great Australian Barrier Reef. Along with Utila and Guanaja, the majority of its territory is protected, so the underwater funds enjoy an enviable health.

Highlights the large number of dolphins that roam the calm waters of these islands, being able to enjoy their company both in diving and snorkeling. But also, here you can find giant groupers, rays, hammerhead sharks, gray, hemulid donkeys, carangids, large schools of barracudas, turtles and even, occasionally, whale sharks. And all this, accompanied by impressive seamounts, coral walls and huge barriers of sponges.

You will also have the possibility of diving in a pair of very worthy wrecks, one of which counts, in addition to a cargo ship, with a DC-10 aircraft.

Diving Roatan

The best time to visit these islands is between February and June, coinciding with the driest season and, therefore, when you can enjoy more crystalline waters (visibility of 30-45m). The climate is tropical, with few temperature variations. In the water, the temperature is ideal all year round: 26-30 ° C.

In this case, both a life on board and diving from shore are fully recommended. With the first option, you will have the opportunity to reach some more special and / or remote points, where it is easier to see large pelagic. But, if you go more budget or time, from coast you can enjoy great dives too, since many points are quite close to the coast.

Of the best options that you will find to make a life on board for the area of ​​Roatan with a very muuy affordable price is the Roatan Agressor. If you want to take a look at the prices and dates of your next outings click here:

See diving options in Roatan If you have some time left and you like history, do not miss the spectacular Mayan settlements that you can find in Honduras, much more rugged and less crowded with tourists than there are, for example, in Riviera Maya (Mexico).

RED SEA (Egypt)

WHEN TO GO: all year round

WHAT YOU’LL FIND HERE: hammerhead sharks, longimanus sharks, dolphins, whale sharks, dugongs, turtles, wrecks

DIFFERENT DIVING POINTS: SS Thistlegorm, Abu Dabbab, Elphinstone, Daedalus Reef.

Red Sea

This emblematic destination among the divers could not miss the podium of honor of the best places to dive for several reasons: its easy access -in a few hours from Spain-, the prices are very affordable both to get here and to dive and a sea ​​bottom with a life so amazingly varied, colorful and abundant that it delights any diver, whatever your level.

The rich currents that this area receives make large pelagics are regular visitors, as well as housing immense coral gardens with all kinds of marine life. Here you can see sharks of various species, dolphins, turtles, a multitude of tropical fish and spectacular walls full of gorgonians.

Salem ExpressY if you are a lover of wrecks and history, in the Red Sea you will enjoy like a dwarf: in the area of ​​Sharm el-Sheikh you have the Salem Express, the Giannis D and the Carnatic. And a few kilometers away, in the Ras Muhammad National Park, you can dive among the remains of the SS Thistlegorm, an impressive British freighter sunk during the Second World War. In addition, many experts agree that this park has some of the most beautiful funds in the area.

Red Sea CoralsOther of the points that I like the most about the Red Sea is that it offers a great variety of life cruises on board for all levels of diving and budgets, so that each diver can find the one that best suits their level and pocket.

If you want to take a look at the best life options on board that travel the area, with prices and the dates of your exits, click here:

 See diving options in Red Sea And best of all: it is one of the few destinations where you can practice diving all year round, with temperatures ranging from 28C in summer to 21-22C in winter.

The boats usually leave from Hurghada or the port of Marsa Ghalib (Marsa Alam) and they will take you to discover all the wonders of the seabed of the area of ​​Sharm el-Sheikh and Ras Muhammad, in the Sinai Peninsula, or to the south of the Egyptian “continental” coast.

Dugongo Red Sea

In Sharm el-Sheikh you will have the sensation of being in a fish tank, and I assure you it is not for less: you will dive among corals and hundreds of different tropical fish and, if you are lucky, you will enjoy the company of whale and hammerhead sharks during your dives, in addition to immerse yourself in history in famous wrecks of the Second World War.

And on the coast of Marsa Alam you will enjoy unforgettable encounters with the rare dugongs at Abu Dabbab, encounters with imposing longimanus sharks at Deadalus Reef, whole schools of hammerhead sharks and groups of dozens of dolphins among reefs with impossible colors.