Known as ‘The Four Kings’, Raja Ampat is an archipelago of majestic islands at the epicentre of the Coral Triangle. Relatively unexplored until recently, it is the most biodiverse marine region on earth and is now at the top of many divers’ wish lists.
A World Heritage Site since 1991, Komodo National Park is home to the legendary Komodo dragon and some of the best diving in the world. The waters offer an incredible variety of marine life including critters, sharks, manta rays, dolphin, whales and turtles.
Their radiant fish and bizarre animals make the Galapagos a world-class diving and wildlife destination. Fed by nutrient rich waters from the tropical Pacific Ocean, the magical marine life enchants and fascinates in equal measure.
Destination: Galapagos & Ecuador
Just one of four islands in the Revillagigedo Archipelago, Socorro is a remote volcanic island rising abruptly from the sea. The area attracts large concentrations of pelagic species and is renowned for close up encounters with giant Pacific manta rays.
One of the world’s largest enclosed lagoons, Truk is home to an entire Japanese fleet, sunk in 1944 and frozen in time. Nowhere else in the world are there so many wrecks in close proximity, and in clear shallow water. Truk Lagoon is a must for wreck lovers.
Destination: Micronesia & Palau
One of the world’s finest dive destinations, almost every imaginable species of coral and innumerable species of fish inhabit Palau’s rich reefs. Drift over spectacular reefs or dive on a WWII wreck, visit the jellyfish lake or kayak around the stunning Rock Islands.
Destination: Micronesia & Palau
The central region comprises Malé and Ari atolls, Felidhoo, Faafu and the smaller Rasdhoo Atoll. It is the most popular area for both dive resorts and liveaboards, with excellent shore diving from house reefs and large pelagics on drift dives.
This region has few resorts, and consequently is best explored by liveaboard. Diving itineraries focus on the pristine and unexplored atolls of Meemu, Thaa, Laamu and in season, Huvadhoo Atoll, which is one of the Maldives' premier shark diving locations.
The remote Cocos Island Marine Park lies 540 kilometres off the coast of Costa Rica and is a designated UNESCO World Heritage Site. The volcanic pinnacles surrounding the island are beacons for large pelagics, and it is one of the best places to go shark diving.
Destination: Costa Rica
The sinister and forbidding island of Malpelo is located 500 kilometres off the coast of Colombia. Home to a large variety and quantity of marine life, it is especially famous for encounters with huge schools of hammerhead and silky sharks.
Destination: Colombia, Panama
Untouched and undiscovered, the Hallaniyat Islands are home to pristine corals, humpback whales and wrecks. The area is relatively new to divers, you can expect anything! The islands are reached only by liveaboard and in season from November to May.
Considered to be the most pristine area in the Bahamas, the Exumas are home to some of the most prolific and varied underwater life of any coral reef in the world. A photographer’s dream, divers can expect regular shark encounters and plenty of critters.
A chain of dormant volcanoes form the scenic boundaries of Kimbe Bay, on the north side of the island of New Britain. 70 percent of all coral species in the Indo-Pacific region are found in and around New Britain, and no other dive area in the world can boast such diversity.
Destination: Papua New Guinea
Magnificent Bligh Water has traditionally been the premier liveaboard area in Fiji, although is now accessible from land. Divers can see mantas, numerous shark species, large schools of fish and superb coral gardens, and enjoy drrift dives over steep walls and pinnacles.
Located in southeast Sulawesi, the Wakatobi islands are in Tukang Besi Archipelago and can be dived from resort and liveaboard. Uniquely, there are fringing and barrier reefs as well as atolls, ensuring incredible variety and fantastic diving, with large numbers of cetaceans.
A UNESCO World Heritage Site, Tubbataha Reef is home to some of the best big fish diving in the Philippines. The sheer walls are covered in huge seafans and sponges, while barracuda, tuna and reef sharks, mantas, eagle rays and hammerheads patrol its waters.
Located in the Mindoro Strait, in the west of the Philippines, is the World Heritage Site of Apo Reef, a 34 kilometre long reef featuring magnificent drop-offs and overhangs with resident turtles, barracuda, snapper, white-tip and grey reef sharks.
Isla Guadalupe is one of the world’s premier great white shark diving destinations. Reached only by liveaboard, divers can expect exceptional visibility, often multiple sharks per dive and pristine conditions; it is nothing short of great white shark heaven!
As well as having the second longest barrier reef in the world, Belize is blessed with three of the northern hemisphere’s four atolls - Lighthouse, Turneffe and Glover. Amongst its many exceptional dive sites is the world-famous Blue Hole.
Grand Cayman is the largest of the three islands and home to the capital, George Town. Ideal for divers and snorkellers, the island is known for its coral reefs and underwater walls, as well as a number of shipwrecks, plus stingrays and turtles galore.
Destination: Cayman Islands
Affectionately known as ‘Provo’ this is the most visited island in the Turks and Caicos, and offers powder white sand beaches, traditional Caribbean villages and historical sites. Divers will enjoy a 20 kilometre long barrier reef with sharks, jacks, turtles, rays and dolphins.
Destination: Turks & Caicos Islands
This remote region receives fewer visitors than the rest of the Maldives and stretches from Baa Atoll up to Haa Alifu and Dhallu and includes Lhaviyani and Noonu atolls, as well as Hanifaru Bay, where exceptional numbers of mantas and whale sharks congregate annually.
A group of nine islands, the Similans are one of the world's top famous destinations and Thailand’s most beautiful islands. The Surin Marine National Park is famed for manta ray and whale shark encounters, and lays claim to Thailand’s finest dive site, Richeleu Rock.
Stretching almost 3,000 kilometres along the coast of Queensland, the Great Barrier Reef is a complex ecosystem blessed with the breathtaking beauty of the world’s largest coral reef. There are over 2,900 individual reef systems, cays and tropical islands.