About 71% of the Earth’s surface is covered in water. So much of that water goes unexplored, which is why more people are learning how to scuba dive. There’s a lot of opportunities to travel the world and experience the most exotic locations through scuba diving.
If you’ve ever wanted to learn to scuba dive, but are on the fence about taking lessons, we’re giving you some inspiration. This list of 11 exotic locations will pique your interest and get your blood pumping for adventure.
Start packing and planning right now, your journey awaits!
1. Cairns, Australia
We begin our countdown in the most accessible part of the land down under. Cairns is where you want to be for taking lessons and getting your feet wet, so to speak.
This city is great for the casual adventurer, while still giving you access to some nice scuba diving areas before venturing to the Great Barrier Reef.
2. Malapascua, Philippines
Southeast Asia is a treasure trove of diving spots. In Malapascua, you will find over 500 species of coral carpeting the ocean floors. As you admire the vibrant plant life, keep an eye out for major species of manta rays and hammerhead sharks.
Shipwrecks are another major scuba attraction, but be mindful of schools of barracuda roaming the waters.
3. Bora Bora, French Polynesia
It doesn’t hurt that Bora Bora is among one of the most beautiful vacation destinations on the planet. The crystalline lagoon reveals gorgeous nooks teeming with life. Bora Bora is also famous for its collection of sharks, hosting up to 16 different species at any given time.
Scuba divers can view these magnificent creatures at a safe distance, thanks to the great visibility and expert teams of divers.
4. Darwin Island, Galapagos
Travel to the infamous Galapagos Islands where Charles Darwin researched and discovered species demonstrating his theory of evolution. It’s truly a world within a world, with over 20% of life on the islands only found on Darwin Island.
Scuba diving on Darwin Island allows you to see a wide variety of marine life from large sea lions, sharks, and whales to marine iguanas, turtles, and eels. You’ll find plenty of vibrant fish in the waters, too, as you are surrounded by the rocky volcanic backdrop.
5. The Riviera Maya, Mexico
This next exotic location is at the Yucatan Peninsula and it’s renowned by scuba travellers across the globe. After you fill up on some authentic Mexican tamales, dive down the Cenotes, a network of underwater caves. Formed by sinkholes, these caves are filled with life and mystery.
While most of these caves do require intermediate diving experience, they shouldn’t be missed out on. Put this location on one of your travel checklists.
6. Great Barrier Reef, Australia
Our list started out with the famous Cairns in Australia, but no trip is complete without visiting the Great Barrier Reef. The best way to experience this natural wonder of the world is in person. Scuba diving is the only safe way to get up close in person with the coral.
As you may have heard, the world’s largest ecosystem of coral reefs has been under critical threat. Miles of coral reefs have been lost, so there’s no better time to witness this precious natural resource than now.
7. Thistlegorm, Egyptian Red Sea
For something a little outside your typical diving experience, the Egyptian Red Sea is filled with lots of interesting contents. The most famous attraction is the British plane known as the Thistlegorm. This was a cargo plane during WW2 that was knocked out of the sky and fell into the sea.
Underwater, you can find its new purpose as an artificial reef, along with its interesting cargo. Some of the things you’ll find are motorcycles, weapons, trucks, and various containers.
8. Kailua Kona, Hawaii
Hawaii is known for its majestic beaches, roaring volcanos, and luscious landscapes, but the surrounding waters are also filled with sights. In Kailua Kona, you will find the world’s largest spanning manta rays. These giant ocean beasts are actually very kind and friendly.
They are big and heavy, though, so don’t get hit in the head as they swim by.
9. Cocos Island, Costa Rica
Take a trip to another tropical paradise, the now infamous Cocos Island. This is where the movie Jurassic Park was filmed. Just looking at it fills the mind with imagination. Underwater, scuba divers will be greeted with huge schools of fish, hammerhead sharks, and incredible sea turtles.
Visibility is great here, you can capture everything with simple GoPro cameras.
10. Bonaire, Netherlands Antilles
While most are more familiar with the surrounding islands of Aruba and Curacao, Bonaire has been bringing in scuba divers for decades. This place is one big diving park, with over 100 scuba diving locations.
On top of that, all the surrounding waters are protected, so marine life is plentiful and thriving.
If you want to hang out at the reef, you can find a nice collection of sea turtles, nurse sharks, medusafish, parrot fish, and Yellowline Goby.
11. Palau, Micronesia
We end our list with a favorite among experienced divers. Palau is a challenging location to scuba, but the payoff is worth the effort. You can find a lot of exotic fish and marine life, as well as dolphins.
Swimming with dolphins is a life-changing experience. If you’ve never been scuba diving with dolphins then you have to go to Palau.
Learn to Scuba Dive
Traveling and discovering new experiences is good for your personal growth, and scuba diving is makes it an even more fulfilling experience. We hope this list has reinvigorated your passion for travel. Make it a top priority to learn to scuba so that no matter where you travel, you’ll be ready to dive.
At Trending Travel Magazine, we give you all that you need to know about scuba certification and PADI scuba information.
If you’re interested in learning more about scuba life and preparing for diving lessons, you can find more here. We have experienced divers who can give you advice on diving, traveling, and preparing for a whole new world under the surface.