I'm looking for the best dives sites in the world. Any idea?
I'm a snorkeler, but I am often on the same boat as those who must cut their trip short to afford all the equipment. I've been 60 miles off the coast of Placencia , Belize in blue water to try to catch a glimpse of a whale shark (no luck, it was 100' deeper than the divers 150' below me). But the night dive for Manta rays off the end of the Kona International Airport (KOA)runway had all the divers on the boat impressed as their most exiting trip ever, and it sounded like between them all, they had pretty much covered the planet. These animals have 15-25' wingspan and do vertical rolls through the water to feed on the krill attracted by the light we tourists provide on a nightly basis, making it a popular spot for the species to return every evening. Divers sit on the bottom, snorkelers float above, making a column of light. As I floated looking down, it was impossible to count them as they rolled through the visible zone, often rubbing right up against me as they fed. You could look right down into their 3 foot wide open mouths as they roll up toward you. Great videos! Incredible experience! We went with Jack's Diving Locker in Kona. Would do it again.
I've been diving in many places (From Egypt to Key West, from Colombia to Oman to Eastern Europe etc.) but here is my top 5 that I can instantly sum up and which I enjoyed a lot:
Try the island of Roatan (Honduras), or visit Mabul Island (Sipandan, Malaysia, you need a special permit, they are limited). Or go to see the whalesharks and giant manta rays somewhere around Cancun(Mexico), some parts of the Gili Islands (Indonesia) and I also went to Kurumba (Maldives). All these places will guarantee you abundant sea life full of sharks, turtles, lionfish, octopus and many other strange creatures.
Even snorkeling there will guarantee you get to see loads of beautiful sea creatures, sometimes even more than when you would have gone diving! A thing sometimes though-acting, die-hard divers find hard to admit ;-)
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Around 2001, Cozumel Mexico was a real hotspot for diving. 200ft+ vis (many divers will say I'm lying. I'm not), dozens of dive spots with a different experience in each. Amazing coral, wildlife and a protected underwater marine park made it a Mecca for scuba divers worldwide.
There was also a old Navy ship sunk with cutouts so divers could easily pass through the decks of the ship with enough light and space. Oh and did I mention an underwater plane (used for filming a James Bond movie many years ago)?
Then a hurricane covered everything with meters of sand, tore up the plane and killed plenty of the coral. Sadly I haven't been back since.
Can anyone tell me what the diving is like there now? Has the coral come back? Did the sand wash away?
Lady Elliot Island - it is incredible. I've spent 2 weeks diving Thailand and a week living on the GBR up in Cairns and just one night here I saw more than both of them combined!
For an experience, there are a bunch of great dives around Hideaway Island near Vanuatu. The visibility is perfect and the area (at least way back in 2001) was totally unspoiled by tourism.The local people and quality of the water and wildlife really make for a memorable experience. Make sure you dive the Clown Colony, still a fond memory to this day.
We just went to Oman and it's great!
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