With an abundance of exotic marine life and breathtaking seascapes, the South Pacific is home to some of the best scuba diving destinations in the world. Whether you’re a nervous first-time diver or a pro, incredible underwater adventures here are sure to make your diving dreams come true. Get ready to spot Manta Rays, exquisitely coloured coral and thousands of fish, including Nemo.
Here’s a look at the best scuba diving destinations in the South Pacific.
Fiji enjoys a reputation as a traveller’s paradise. The island is famous for its pristine white sand beaches and natural beauty. However, it’s also home to some of the most exciting reef ecosystems in the world, making it a dream destination for diving enthusiasts. The outer reefs swarm with about 1,200 fish species and over 390 colourful coral species.
Diving in Fiji is suitable for all levels of skill and experience. Some of the best dive sites include Beqa Lagoon, Rakiraki and Shark Reef. Fiji also offers accommodation for every budget. For those seeking luxury, many fantastic world-class resorts offer top–notch dining and facilities. But you’ll also find plenty of affordable hostels to choose from, to save your budget for extra diving excursions.
Many divers travel to Tonga just in the hope of seeing a humpback whale. It’s one of the only places in the world where you can spot this incredible creature in the water. They pass through the islands between July and October, so time your trip accordingly.
Apart from the humpback whale, you’ll discover plenty of gorgeous marine life deep beneath the water, from Manta Rays and Eagle Rays to amazing shark species. Regarding accommodation on land, Tonga hosts a range of hotels for all types of travellers, whether you’re on a business trip, solo adventure or a romantic getaway.
The Cook Islands
The Cook Islands are highly regarded among divers for stunning coral reefs, lagoons and a dazzling array of marine life. Unsurprisingly, Rarotonga is the most popular scuba diving destination in the Cook Islands. This stunning island is buzzing with dive centres and sites, such as the Maritime Reefer wreck and Jade Reef to spot whitetip sharks. You’ll also find fantastic restaurants and top-notch accommodation in beachside villas and resorts.
Made up of 83 islands, Vanuatu is a favourite for world-class diving. Everything from rays, octopi and eels are spotted near the coral heads, while huge barracuda and bigeye tuna are often seen a little further out. When you’re not diving, there are plenty of exciting activities to experience on land as well, from horse riding on the beach to relaxing at a day spa. When it comes to accommodation, travellers are spoilt for choice. There’s something for everyone, from budget lodges and motels to family–friendly resorts and bungalows.
No matter where you travel to in the South Pacific, you’re bound to have unique and memorable experiences, both above and below the turquoise seas.
I’m Maia, a freelance creative writer with a deep love for rainbows, sand and the sea! I spent many childhood summers with my grandparents, and because they lived right by the beach, I recall long walks along the beach laughing with my Nana as we filled my little pail to the brim with seashells from the shore, and I remember my Pop helping me overcome my fear of swimming – that was the beginning of my lifelong love for the ocean. Find out more about me through my writing on my blog.