Top 10 best dive sites in the World

Want to check out the top 10 dive sites worldwide rated by

These best spots are ranked according to the beauty, fish life, visibility and overall dive experience.

If you have any feedback on this list, please leave a comment below!

The SS Yongala Wreck might just be THE Best Wreck dive in the World! This 110m long steamer called the Yongala was sunk in 1911 near Townsville during a cyclone. It was only re-discovered in 1958 and is now the most famous dive site in Australia. It is home to an amazing array of marine life which includes barracudas, Giant Trevallies Turtles and Sea Snakes. You might even spot the rare Bull Shark and the mighty Tiger Shark!!

» Australia

Barracuda Point is the best dive site of the World Famous Sipadan Islands. Here you could watch a huge shoal of thousands of Barracudas pass by underwater, making it a dream spot for underwater photography. Various reef Sharks and many pelagic fishes are also patrolling the area! Hammerhead sharks are a possible encounter too…

» Sipadan

North Horn is located on the Osprey Reef only reachable by Liveaboards. It is a natural underwater amphitheatre where you can spot plenty of Grey Reef Sharks, Silvertip Sharks and even some Hammerhead sharks! A feeding frenzy of sharks is an impressive thing to watch which will certainly get your adrenaline pumping!


The World famous Richelieu Rock is located near the Surin Islands in Thailand. Regarded as one of the best spots to have a chance of spotting the gentle giant Whale Shark underwater, this spot has been described as a “Whale Shark magnet”! It is also an excellent place to spot big pelagic fishes and for macro photography with a very intriguing critter life to discover.

» Surin Islands

This fascinating huge wreck dive site is a 130m long armed cargo ship which was hit by a Japanese torpedo during World War 2 and then pushed back into the water in 1963 by a volcano eruption! It is a very easy dive but with a whole lot of things to see such as Garden Eels, a nice swim-through inside the wreck and big schools of fishes. This spot offers spectacular opportunities for underwater photography so don’t forget your camera!

» Tulamben

Cod Hole is a very famous dive site of the Great Barrier Reef, much like North Horn. It is an easy reef dive where you can observe and also feed huge friendly Potato Groupers. There are also harmless Whitetip Reef Sharks and Napoleon fishes swimming about. The visibility is fantastic and the diving conditions are usually ideal making it the perfect place for underwater photography!

» Great Barrier Reef

This is a rather unusual dive site beneath an Australian Navy Pier in Exmouth in Western Australia. The conditions are not great here with poor visibility but the fish life is just astonishing with an incredible biodiversity in such a tiny place. Here you can see Nurse Sharks, the bizarre looking Wobbegong Shark and many strange small creatures such as Flat Worms, Nudibranchs, and Frog fishes. This makes it one of the best shore dives in the world and a real dream for any underwater macro photographer!

» Ningaloo Reef

The spot itself at Crystal Bay is great but not amazing but what makes it so special is that this is THE place to spot the giant, strange looking, rare and mysterious Mola Mola Oceanic Sunfish… You also have good chances to spot these around Nusa Penida and Nusa Lembongan from August to October too, so good luck!

» Nusa Penida / Nusa Lembongan

Batu Bolong has a huge underwater rock featuring amazing coral and a teeming reef life. In fact, there are so many fishes that you have to take care to not lose your dive buddy! All around, there are Giant Trevallies, Dogtooth Tuna and Barracudas patrolling the area, as well as huge Napoleon Wrasses and Whitetip Reef Sharks sleeping in the cracks. A truly beautiful dive site!

» Komodo Island

It is hard to decide which dive site is the best in the Similan Islands as they are all so amazing. However Elephant head Rock has something special with a very particular underwater topography with arches and swim-through worth to explore! In addition the fish life is really great with Leopard Sharks and Blacktip Reef Sharks swimming around. This is a must dive in any liveaboard trip to the Similan Islands!

» Similan Islands

93 comments on “Top 10 best dive sites in the World”

  1. we are a family of 4 from India, we did our PADI open water course an year back in Bali and this year in October we want to again go diving, but we are not able to decide as most of the places seem to be wet season in october. we were thinking of going to the andamans and nicobar islands for diving as they are the closest to us and most accessible, but the website doesnt feature them, so we are confused!

    • Hello,

      I have been Diving in the Andaman Islands a few years ago, it was really good! However I think it will be the rainy season in October in the Andamans. I have to add this destination to the website. You can try to go on the East coast of Malaysia. It will be the dry season there. For example in the Perhentians Islands: . Please ask if you need any details!

      • Hi Julien,

        I went to Andaman last year and I really like it, especially the wild aspect. Would you recommand another destination for February with good diving spots and pretty wild?


        • Hello Guys!

          February Diving in South Africa is pretty awesome! It’s warm, great viz and general conditions. Aliwal Shoal off the coast of Umkomaas, in Kwazulu Natal offers a little bit of everything: groupers, sharks, dolphins, whale sharks, hundreds of fish, eels. It really is superb diving.

  2. You mentioned the wobbegong at Navy Pier. I am very interested in seeing and photographing those, would you recommend Navy Pier as the best site for them or are there better? Also, is Andamans any good for large pelagics? I heard it is not as great as Thailand or Malaysia. Finally, have you dived the sardine run in South Africa? It is fantastic. Dolphins, brydes whales, humpbacks, several species of shark, and unique the gannets diving underwater. Great for ragged-tooth shark and then the tiger shark dives further north on the coast of Natal.

    • If you don’t want to travel all the way to WA you can see around 100 wobbegongs on a single dive at Byron Bay on the east coast of Australia. Easy to get to from Brisbane. @hours drive south

  3. Most of the places that you are telling us, i dont know them. But i do know some extraordinary places to diving in Colombia. You should try diving in Capurgana, or try diving in San Andres and Providence Island among others.

    • San Andres is not nice at all there are many other places better, hotel are popular type and services not that good. i have been diving in different places in latin america and there is no place like the south pacific with the exemption of bahamas, roatan islands in honduras and a few places in panama.

  4. Hey Wobbegong?

    Navy Pier has Wobbegongs but its certainly not the easiest place to see them. Very remote and hard to get too unless your already in Western Australia. Your better off going to South West Rocks above Sydney or Julian Rocks just below Brisbane. Both of these sites are riddled with Wobbies and much easier to get too.

    Navy Pier is awesome though…

    Good Luck

    • I saw many wobbegong in Raja Ampat in Papua. At least 1 to 3 every dives! If you want to get good shots, this can be your place ;-).

    • I agree – South West Rocks is endemic with Wobbegong sharks. There is wobbegong literally all around as it is a pinnacle rock 1km of the mainland. South West Rocks is also a grey nurseshark nursery with +- 10 sharks there at any given time. Additionally it also has a 60m long cave system going through the rock pinnacle from one side to the other!! Highly recommended and well worth the trip. Great dive!

  5. First of all congratulations for your website.
    it’s amazing and my dream is diving in many places!

    I´m not sure if you can help me, but my boyfriend and my… we would love work in a dive center for longer or a season.
    We are from Chile, but we are living en New Zealand now, we have experience in many types of job an good reference from Chile and NZ.
    I´m Open Water and I dived in some places like Chile (molles, Algarrobo, Quintay, Easter island and Thailand as well). My Boyfriend don´t have any courses yet, but both want to dedicate to dive and get more certifications.
    If you have some contact anywhere in the word for us is amazing!. We know is dificult for us because we dont have much experience, but we are proactive people and really interested in work and learn.
    We love the nature and conservation and also the photography.

    Thanks for your time!
    Joceline and Gonzalo
    kind regards

    • Hi Joceline,

      You might want to take a look at They have various programmes which include marine conversation and you can gain your Divemaster at the same time. Haven’t used them so can’t say what they are like, but I am considering sending my son on one!!!!! By the way, your boyfriend would have to gain his Open Water first.

  6. Hi Julien,

    In October, I am visiting Australia with a good friend. We want to go diving on the Yongala wreck for one day and want to do a liveaboard, based from Cairns for 2 days, one night. I have been looking for a good operator, but from here, it is hard to see which operator is best.. Some don’t really say which spots will be visited. Some divers here (Belgium), have warned me about operators which say are going to the Outer Reef, but stay somewhere where there is only dead coral, not a lot of fish,… and you generally are not really visiting the reef in the best way.

    We both have open water advanced, with specialties in Nitrox, Night dive and Digital underwater photography (just me).

    Should you have any good suggestions, I’d love to hear from you!

    Best regards,


  7. Hi Julien,

    Planning to dive in Thailand in November.
    Keen on the best dive spot Richelieu Rock, wonder it would be closer to the place that I will be staying, Patong. Also concern about the strong currents…
    Do you know any good dive centre there?


  8. Hi Joceline,

    You might want to take a look at They have various programmes which include marine conversation and you can gain your Divemaster at the same time. Haven’t used them so can’t say what they are like, but I am considering sending my son on one!!!!!

  9. Proud to say I have done Baracuda Point in Sipadan, now 9 more to go!

    Planning to do a dive in Cape Town in November – I believe it will be summer then. Any tips for dive zones around the area?

  10. Julien,

    How do you feel about Utila? I’m going there in February and everything I’ve read seems to say it is incredible.


  11. Hi We are Panama Blueturtle Spearfishing Safari out of David City,Panama,We are going to added snorkeling to Coiba Isla, Panama its a national Maritime Park Refuge for all kinds of birds,howler monkeys,crocodiles,liizards and two species of turtles.Birdwatching,hiking,snorkeling and excellent experience.We go there fishing ,and snorkeling,and go out from there spearfishing.

  12. Hello everyone,

    Can someone recommend a diving location in Thailand, Malaysia or there around that would be good now in the beginning of January?

    We prefer more shallow dive sites where you can see plenty of sea life, as well as good visibility so we can take pictures.

    We have now been diving in Vietnamese Phu Quoc but the visibility is really bad so we want to fly somewhere better..

    We will be very thankful for any advice :)

    Merry Christmas!

  13. Hi my wife & I are the owners of Panama Blueturtle Spearfishing Safari out of David City,Panama,I think that Panama should be in the top 10 sites.Secas Isla,Ladrones Isla,Hannibal Bank, all in the world class fishing sites.

    • the reality of today is the oceans are way over fished. Most scuba divers dont want to kill the fish. we want to enjoy to see them in their natural environment.

  14. Just dived Dos Ojos cavern in Mexico, obviously it doesnt compare with fish life to any of your dives mentioned but its an incredible experience and should be in your top 10. Thistlegorm and a good day at Aliwal Shoal (South Africa) will always be in the top 10

  15. Of all the diving sites mentioned, I think Palau perhaps should be included on the list of the top 10 best ultimate diving sites.

  16. By the way, I forgot to mention that if you want water clarity to 100’s of feet down, seeing hundreds of fish, many varieties of different colorful corals, clams, sea life, etc., or you just want to snorkel and still be able to see so much fish in a single dive, again Palau is highly recommended. I say this because I dove and fished there for years. It is just purely an amazing place for people who loves diving.


  17. hei I’m from North Sulawesi Indonesia. how about Bunaken Island and Lembeh Strait? I think we have good spot for diving. and lembeh is the best spot for muck diving, right?

      • Hi JD!

        This world is so vast, we understand that people have different opinions. That being said, we don’t believe it’s a good reason to insult people. This list has been created a while ago, according to data that was available on the Divezone community (which was way smaller back then!) and to Julien’s experience. I’m sure you will agree that this might be all different from your point of view / experience. That doesn’t make anyone qualify as per the words that were deleted.

        We want to hear about everybody, but please express yourself politely and respectfully.

        Thanks for reading Divezone!

        Best bubbles to all!

  18. Oooooo such a controversial topic. Black Magic Mountain in Fiji’s Bligh Water could be a contender. Resident school of Travally, Schooling Chevron Barracudas, Resident Grey and White tip Reef sharks, rainbow of soft corals and lots of schooling reef fish… MAGIC.

    • Barry:I use Chrome too, and the border was a bit light/subtle. I can see how it could be iniisvble on some displays depending on contrast ratio. Went ahead and darkened it up. Better safe than sorry! Thanks for the tip.peace | dewde

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  20. Hello Everyone,

    I am planning to visit Thailand in late Oct-early Nov. Can somebody tell me which is the best place to dive there. We will be diving for the first time but are anxious for a thrilling experience.


    • Bhavik: Richeilu (sp?) is amazing in Thailand. You have to do a liveaboard to do it, but it is sooooooooo worth the effort!

      • Thanks Sara for replying. As I will be diving for the first time, can u guide me a little more…which is the best agency to hire for this? Any special care to be taken? etc.

  21. Pingback: Getting To Know The Best Diving Spots In The World - Feel Cool Breeze

  22. Ten better plunged to the world are
    1) Alliwal sholl durban South Africa (Sardines run)
    2) Pass of rangiroa French Polynesia
    3) Pass of Guradu south Malé the Maldives Islands
    4) Pass of fotéo felido atoll the Maldives Islands
    5) Greg Wall archipelago of radama Madagascar
    6) Ouvea Nouvelle Caledonie
    7) Malapasca Costa Rica
    8) Galapagaos
    9) Coconutislands Australia
    10) Coron Philippines(Wreck of 9 Japanese cargo
    from philippe 9000 dives in the world

    • Hi Philippe,

      Wow. I admire how you’ve followed this passion. Quick query: If you have done some diving in the Bahamas….
      What would you recommend and is there a company you were happy with? Thanks in advance.

      Take Care

  23. Hi Everyone, I will be traveling to Tanzania in April next year and I am keen to know if Zanzibar is a great diving destination. I have been diving in Thailand, Andamans and Lakshadeep. I am not too sure if its worth while to spend 4-5 extra days and substantial money traveling to Zanzibar for a ordinary diving experience.
    Cheers Ashish.

  24. Hey there! I will be in Bali for a conference on the 2nd weekend of June and intend to extend my stay for another 3 days to do some diving.

    I have been to Padang Bai two years ago but missed sighting the mola-mola. I understand that June is not the season.

    Where else is a good recommended stay for two nights to dive, see some manta and maybe a wreck dive. Thank you

  25. Hi there’

    Inwilligt be traveling to THE maladives between 22 and 30 dec. I am advance diver whit 45 logd dives and want to maximize my stay and do ASA many dives ass posible! And want tondo THE best dive sites!!! Can u recommend Amy dive schools öre liveaboards?? Thans u for u time and replay

    Jeroen zuidhof

  26. Sorry, but no “best dive sites” list that ignores Belize’s Lighthouse Reef Atoll (Blue Hole, Half Moon Caye Wall, Long Caye Aquarium, etc.) is a complete list… some of the best diving in the Western Hemi!

    • I agree. I go to Amergris Caye in Belize almost every year since I started diving. Love Chuck & Robbys Dive Shop! But the attitude and happiness of many there coupled with the laid back golf cart island make it an amazing place!

  27. Hello all! I want to take a get dive certified with a friend. We can take vacation from Dec 1 to Dec 15. We live in India, and want to find a beautiful place in Asia itself. I checked out Tubataha reef but it appears it is closed in December due to rains. We are looking for something in Philippines, but open to other countries as well! Please advise.

  28. Second.remove the plug and inspect for connectors or pins that should
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  30. this is a horrible list, and many of the dives are well out of place. first, how can you have a top ten dive site list without palau, truck or yap? or lembeh or bunaken? or raja ampat? or somosomo straights in northeast fiji? or the bligh waters, beqa lagoon, kedavu or the yasawas in fiji? you guys have really lost your way… what about wolf and darwin islands?

  31. Pingback: Neil Zucconi's Links to Top Scuba Spots - Neil Zucconi

  32. Pingback: Neil Zucconi's Links to Top Scuba Spots - Neil Zucconi

  33. I have been to 4 of the divesites in this top 10 list. Barracuda point and Batu bolong I can agree with to take place in this list. But Richielieu rock and Elephant head rock do not fit in top 10! Thailand west coast is actually not especially good for diving.

    I world like to Add the worlds absolutely best divesite, Blue Corner in Palau to the list! Also miss divesites in Peleliu and Lembeh Strait. Just comments from my side.

    Thanks for an awsome website!

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  36. hello there,

    I always check this website whenever I am planning my next dive destination. I let me tell you, it has helped a lot! I am looking into the Andaman Islands for this December (Havelock, Neil and Port Blair) and there aren’t any reviews here. I’ve checked other websites and there are mixed reviews. Can any one help please? I will not be doing a live aboard but rather staying on Havelock Island and diving with a local dive centre. Is the place good enough for diving?

  37. Nice list! Richelieu Rock, Cod hole and yongala wreck are definitly some of the best, been there and they are not to be missed.

  38. If you could choose one scuba diving trip as the only trip you would ever do, which would you choose?

    One that’s not live-aboard and where there’s good quality accommodation and food for a non-diving partner.

    Look forward to your suggestions!

    • Hi Liz,
      Then you should go to Sipadan. Stay on Mabul and take speed boat to Sipadan every day. Non divers could enjoy Mabul.


    • In Belize, island of Ambergirs Caye, San Pedro Town. Lots of fun things to do. Easy day trips to ruins, top notch diving, great food!

  39. Pingback: Scuba Diving in Sipadan, Borneo | Travels Wild

  40. Hi there looking to go Indonesia or phillipines in December this year looking for best place to stay 5 star hotel but also best diving aswell any reccomendations ?

    • Look for “Your Bali Holiday”. There is DC who organize all inclusive: diving, accommodation, land tours etc… name of dive center is Zero Gravity Diving, Bali.

  41. Hi,
    Lovely site!
    Need help!
    Me and my wife are advanced open water divers.
    Date: 20/05/2016 to 02/06/2016 (may 2016)
    Choices : EGYPT or INDONESIA

    Interests : big fish (sharks, whales, Ray’s, etc) and wrecks.
    Really confused between Egypt and Komodo, sipadan, etc so please help us choose!!

    Help would be really appreciated.

    • Hi Shray,
      Sharks, Manta Rays and Wrecks you can see in Bali. Day Trips.
      Sharks and Manta in Komodo. Live-aboard trip.
      Sipadan is for big schools of fishes but number of divers are limited per day and even you book in advance no one can guaranty that you will dive there every day.
      You can contact Zero Gravity Diving in Bali for more information.

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