Top 7 Greatest Scuba Diving Destinations in the World

Scuba Diving Destinations1From colorful coral to mysterious shipwrecks to fish and sea turtles, there’s a lot of scenery the underwater world has to offer. And with ocean covering over 70 percent of the earth’s surface, there’s a lot of underwater world to explore. So grab your air tank, strap on your mask and get ready to check out the best scuba diving destinations the world has to offer.

The Red Sea
The Red Sea is easily one of the most beautiful dives on the planet. What with miles and miles of coral, clear waters and abundance of sea life, it’s simply gorgeous. Plus, there’s plenty of availability to snag yourself an instructor, making it a great location to learn how to dive. Oh, and the water is nice and warm, with a temperature generally over 70 degrees.

For walls of coral in full technicolor glory and the fish that inhabit them, head to Cozumel’s southwest coast, where the 600-mile Maya reef connects Cozumel to Central America. And with a variety of types of dives, from wreck dives to night dives to underwater photography dives, there’s plenty to explore below sea level.

Mandarin fish, scorpion fish, octopi and more will accompany you on your dives in western Bali. In East Bali you can explore the artificial reef made from a sunken WWII ship that’s now the home of coral, barrel sponges and sea fans.

Florida Keys
Head to the Florida Keys to explore the only living coral barrier reef in the continental U.S. Stretching 5 miles offshore, the reef is home to radiant coral and a variety of neon-colored fish. Check out a number of shipwrecks, some authentic and others created to protect marine life.

Boasting the second largest barrier reef in the world, Belize is the ideal destination for the daring diver. Manatees, whale sharks, angelfish, clown fish and butterfly fish are just a few of the numerous species that dwell in the area, along with a variety of colorful coral. One of the coolest dives is the Blue Hole, an underwater sinkhole that’s over 400 feet deep.

Great Barrier Reef
This one sort of seems like a given. The Great Barrier Reef’s 1,400-plus miles features over 4,000 separate cays, reefs and islands and more than 1,500 species of fish and just as many shipwrecks. It’s much too large (you can see it from space, for crying out loud) for you to expect you can see it all, so plan your trip wisely if you go.

When you scuba dive Hawaii, you can expect to see giant sea turtles, sharks, whales, stingrays and more, thanks to the fertile, tropical volcanic ecosystem. Though the water isn’t as clear as at some of the other locales on this list, the gorgeousness of it all makes it more than worth it.

By Sarah Esterman