Top 10 Places to Dive Around The World

Explore the World's Best Dive Destinations with our list of Top 10 Places to Dive

#1 Galapagos Islands, Ecuador

The Galapagos are a top destination for any nature lover but especially for scuba divers. Dive liveaboards are the preferred means of exploration for visiting Galapagos National Park in order to experience all this spectacular place has to offer. Where else can you dive with manta rays, sea lions, marine iguanas and 28 species of sharks including schooling hammerheads and whale sharks.

#2 Raja Ampat & Misool - West Papua, Indonesia

Diving Raja Ampat in the blue water mangroves near Misool Eco Resort

Raja Ampat is located in the heart of the coral triangle and considered to be one of the most diverse marine ecosystems in the world. Cape Kri dive site holds the Guiness World Record for most species identified on a single dive. Divers rave over the vibrant coral gardens, giant schools of fish, incredble macro-life and manta rays. Tourists can choose between staying at a landbased resort or traveling by dive liveaboard. 

#3 The Red Sea

The Red Sea is one of the top dive destinations in the world but should almost be broken up into 4 or 5 different areas. Egypt alone can offer nearly a dozen different itineraries including Sharm El-Sheikh, Hurghada, Elphinstone Reef, Brothers Islands and Daedalus Reef. The Red Sea is a popular dive destination for Europeans because of its close proximity and affordable resorts and liveaboards.  Other destinations include South Sudan, Jordan, Djibouti and Israel. Each offers something special to see.

#4 The Bahamas

Nassau Blue Hole Diving in Bahamas

The Bahamas are an archipelago of over 700 islands located 50 miles east of Florida. The close proximity to the U.S. makes it a top destination for tourists looking for a beach get-away or scuba diving vacation. The Bahamas are a well known shark diving destination. Divers can spot a variety of species including giant hammerheads, Caribbean reef sharks, tiger sharks, lemon sharks, oceanic whitetips and more. While the Bahamas may be best known for sharks, they are also one of the top cave diving destinations in the Caribbean/Atlantic.

#4 Maldives

Beach at the maldives

The Maldives are a series of 26 coral atolls located 400 miles south of India. Tourists flock to the Maldives for their white sand beaches, crystal clear water. There is no shortage of choices when looking at dive resorts or liveaboards. Liveaboards in the Maldives are able to reach multiple regions ensuring the best chance to spot manta rays, whale sharks, dolphins and other pelagics. Maldives has something for everyone including budget to luxury travelers, resorts & liveaboards, honeymooners to family vacations. 

#5 Mexico

Mexico can be divided up by mainland destinations and off-shore itineraries only accessible by liveaboard. Much like the Bahamas, Mexico is an easy to reach destination for those traveling from the U.S. and Canada. Divers can choose between family friendly or adult only dive resorts or a liveaboard to dive with the Great White Sharks at Guadalupe Island. There is no shortage of spectacular diving from landbased resorts. Resort diving can include the Cenotes of Riviera Maya, snorkeling with whale sharks at Isla Mujeres or the beautiful reefs and relaxing drift dives of Cozumel. 

Socorro Island is an island in the Revillagigedo Islands known for its large animal sightings (manta rays, dolphins, whale sharks and on occasion humback whales). 

#6 Fiji

Scuba diving in Fiji with vibrant coral gardens and healthy fish populations

Fiji is often considered the top destination in the world for vibrant soft coral gardens. Many resorts offer shark diving experiences where divers can see nurse, reef and bull sharks. 

#7 Belize - Blue Hole & Turneffe

Belize is best known for the Great Blue Hole, one of the most famous dive sites in the world. Ambergris Cay and Turneffe Atoll are both lauded for their healthy reefs and large schools of fish. Belize can be enjoyed by both landbased resort and liveaboard. 

#8 Komodo National Park

manta ray in Komodo diving on Manta Alley dive site

Komodo is best known for the endemic Komodo Dragons, but the diving should bring just as much anticipation by travelers. Reefs in the Komodo are some of the healthiest in the world with vibrant coral gardens, schooling fish, eel and excellent macro. The diving here is a bit more advanced due to high currents, but these currents deliver numerous manta ray sightings. Liveaboards are the preferred means of travel here. 

#9 Dumaguete, Philippines

coconut octopus dumaguete muck diving philippines

Dumaguete is probably best known for its muck diving. Few destinations have the concentration of macro-critters like the Philippines. Those that prefer more big creature diving won’t be disappointed. Apo Island is a nearby marine preseve for those looking to get out the wide angle. Dive sites off Dumaguete are just a short boat ride from any number of dive resorts. For those wanting to explore more of this region, consider a liveaboard. On a given week divers can dive Dumaguete, Apo Island, Oslob and Bohol.

#10 Jardines de la Reina, Cuba

Snorkeling with Crocodile at Cuba's Gardens of the Queen

It’s hard to envision a place so undisturbed by all the environmental changes going on in the world. Somehow, Cuba’s Jardines de la Reina still looks like what divers describe of other Caribbean destinations from the 60’s or 70’s. Healthy coral reefs, huge schools of fish, Goliath grouper and numerous species of sharks make this a top destination in the Caribbean. For the adventurous travel, get up close and personal with the Cuban Crocodiles. Gardens of the Queen is only accessible by liveaboard.

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