What does a scuba diver look for in a great dive spot? High visibility, gorgeous formation of coral reefs, and a wide variety in species of fish and other water creatures. Add warm water to the equation and you’ve got the ideal dive spot. The Maldives, a cluster of 1,190 coral islands formed around 26 atolls, is a scuba diver’s dream. The country is chock full of prime diving spots, but here are three exciting dive spots that cannot be missed. If you’re travelling from England you have the option of 3 hi-tech airports; London Heathrow, Stansted and Gatwick. These airports don’t have bags of car parking space for fun so you can find out about their facilities here for Gatwick Parking, Heathrow and Stansted.
1. Banana Reef
This dive site is located in the North Male Atoll, which is the most famous atoll in the Maldives. It’s easily reachable by boat and close enough to the airport for a dive right after hopping off the plane. Divers will find caves, overhangs, and coral heads during their excursion at Banana Reef. This spot is accessible to everyone, from novices to experts.
During a dive, an encounter with a massive congregation of bannerfish is likely. They can travel in schools of as many as 1,000 fish. Even more exotic fish call the caves at Banana Reef home. Some of the fish there are tame enough for divers to pet them due to frequent fish feeding. That’s an experience that divers probably won’t get anywhere else. Be sure to explore as many caves as possible, especially the large cave at the western end of the dive site, where divers will swim alongside squirrelfish, Maldivian grubfish, and soldierfish.
2. Broken Rock
The Broken Rock dive site is located at the South Ari Atoll, at the Dhigurah Channel. The sights there include caves, overhangs, coral heads, and a canyon. Abundant fish life and highly inclusive, this dive site is for the most advanced and adventurous divers.
The canyon is literally a broken rock, hence the name of the dive spot. Only one diver at a time is allowed to enter the canyon, which spans for two meters. Divers will marvel at the beautiful fan corals and the two sizable coral blocks with overhangs that rests on the north side. Divers are encouraged to bring along a dive torch and a surface balloon in this thrilling dive spot.
3. Cocoa Corner
Divers who are looking for exciting shark encounters should make their way to Cocoa Corner, which is located at the South Male Atoll, at the north side of Biyaadhoo Kandu.
When the weather and current conditions are just right, the experience of diving at Cocoa Corner is one that will be remembered by even the most accomplished divers. In the middle of the channel at Cocoa Corner, divers will enjoy the sight of a crowd of Gray Reef Sharks. They’ll witness mother sharks swim alongside their babies with eagle rays and jack fish swirling around them.
Divers are encouraged to bring a safety balloon with them at Cocoa Corner. An underwater camera is also strongly recommended to record all the astonishing sights of the spine-tingling dive spot!
The Maldives is full of beautiful dive spots that are all easily reachable from each other by boat. Divers can easily spend several full days visiting a high number of dive spots.