It’s winter time in North America, but that doesn’t mean we all have to freeze our butts off! For SCUBA divers, diving is a year-round activity. And, for those of us who live in warmer weather locales or just want to take a vacation and do some awesome diving, check out these great dive spots from all around the world!
Blue Heron Bridge – Riviera Beach, Florida
This dive spot is unique for a number of reasons. It’s quite shallow, even at high tide, which is the best time to take the plunge under the bridge. The number of diverse species that call Blue Heron Bridge home is countless, so you’re sure to see something you’ve never seen before. Even so close to civilization and the surface, diving Blue Heron Bridge is almost like visiting another planet. It reminds us of the famous science fiction writer Arthur C. Clarke’s quote: “How inappropriate to call this planet Earth, when it is quite clearly ocean…”
Kailua Kona – Hawaii (“The Big Island”)
Kailua Kona is not just a historic town in America’s tropical island paradise. It’s also an amazing dive spot. Many diverse and colorful species live off the coast of Kailua Kona and the warm, clear blue Hawaiian water is enticing for free divers and SCUBA enthusiasts alike. Night dives are popular in Kailua Kona because there are actually some manmade lights permanently affixed to the ocean floor, which bring light-seeking plankton out. And those light-seeking plankton bring out Manta Rays that have been recorded as large as twenty feet and 3000 pounds. For those reasons, the Kona coast is probably one of the best spots in the world for Manta Ray sightings.
Great Blue Hole – Belize
Unlike Blue Heron Bridge, diving the Great Blue Hole will take you deep below the surface. Try over 400 feet below the surface. This spot was formed all the way back in the ice ages. It features underwater caves, rock formations like stalactites and stalagmites, and a great array of underwater sea creatures. Because of the depth and the underwater navigational abilities required, this Central American dive spot is for seriously experienced divers only and requires specialized equipment as well.
Great Barrier Reef – Australia
No list of top dive spots would be complete without the Great Barrier Reef. The reef is massive and made up of many different spots for diving. You can check out “Cod Hole” and see cod the size of a person or “Acropolis,” so named for its amazing coral structures. Diving the Great Barrier Reef can be its own vacation and, even then, you probably won’t have a chance to see it all. So if you miss out on “Snake Pit” your first time out, don’t worry! A great variety of marine life (including sea snakes – lots of them!) will still be there when you come back for another diving trip.