If there is any moment where it is nice to have your head underwater, it’s during the holidays. From the Maldives to Micronesia passing through the Seychelles and French Polynesia, Costa Rica and Indonesia, we reveal some of the best scuba diving spots.
1. Indonesia and its “Four kings”
The “Four Kings” reign in Raja Ampat, an Indonesian archipelago located in the Pacific Ocean. Misool, Salawati, Batanta, Waigeo, the four main islands, out of more than 1500, which make up the archipelago of Raja Ampat are isolated and preserved, and are home to one of the most precious marine biodiversity systems. The waters of Raja Ampat pride themselves on hosting one of the most populated ecosystems in the world with 374 species living there… as recorded in only one dive! Making this and incredible spot for divers.
2. The Seychelles, a preserved beauty
A true wonder of the Indian Ocean, is the delicate and untouched Seychelles archipelago! Since February 2018, its 115 islands have also become the sentries of a marine reserve of over 200,000 km2 ! A reserve that notably includes the Aldabra Atoll, classed as a UNESCO World Heritage Site. A valued spot for divers although rarely visited due to the requirement of authorisation. Other particularly memorable underwater locations are the Alphonse lagoon reef or the Astove “Wall”, also a good place to spot green turtles.
3. Costa Rica, the treasures of Cocos
Cocos Island, 24 km2 and situated 550 km away from the south-west of Costa Rica’s Pacific shore, is a small patch of untouched land, classed as a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Uninhabited and only accessible by boat, the Isla del Coco is one of the more mythical spots for (more advanced) divers. It is an island full of treasures – one that inspired Robert L. Stevenson – where the extraordinary is ordinary, and where creatures of the open sea often “sail” in colonies, between hammerhead sharks and manta rays.
4. French Polynesia, the pearl of the Pacific
Now let’s head to the Pacific Ocean and the string of islands of French Polynesia. You’ve heard of Bora-Bora, Mo’orea or Maupiti: lagoons which perfectly lend themselves to introductory dives for beginners. For divers with deeper knowledge, there is the Tuamotu archipelago and the wild passes of Fakarava Atoll (classed as a Unesco Biosphere Reserve), as well as the Marquesas Islands with their plankton-rich waters. Two fantastic sites with many chances to see one of the richest pelagic fauna in the world.
5. The Maldives, an underwater paradise
One of the most beautiful real-life aquariums. Rich with 22 atolls, the Maldives brims with diversity on its seafloors. Between the splendour of its fauna and the purity of its reefs, this archipelago of the Indian Ocean conceals some of the most beautiful scuba diving spots. In the shoals and passes, narrow corridors taken by the sea between two atolls or between the lagoon and the open sea, along the coral reefs or the colourful drop-offs, everyone has their playground, everyone has their feast for the eyes. Among the local stars: the majestic manta rays, seen the most often from January to April. A great show!
Micronesia, a dive in history
In the heart of the Federal States of Micronesia, the Chuuk (or Truk) atoll carefully guards one of the most incredible treasures of war: a vast cemetery of Japanese shipwrecks sent to the seafloor by the Americans during the Second World War. More than 60 iron carcasses sleep under the eyes of Chuuk lagoon. A pilgrimage site for Japanese divers, it is a true museum for other underwater explorers. The lagoon is classed as a Historic Monument.
Whether you are an amateur or a professional, scuba dive in the depths or take the undersea snorkelling “hiking paths” in complete safety and discover a thousand and one undiscovered wonders of the underwater world.
Dive with PONANT
Manta rays, hammerhead sharks, coral reefs: explore the seafloors with PONANT.