Fiji’s 4 Best Dive Sites
Fondly regarded as the “soft coral capital of the world” by famous oceanographer, Jean-Michel Cousteau, Fiji
is a great place to scuba dive. It's a favourite with divers who appreciate its crystal-clear waters, huge variety of fish species, pristine colourful coral, underwater caves and grottoes, and year-round temperate climate.
The waters around Fiji are home to more than 1,200 species of reef fish, including two that have been recently listed as endangered, plus more than 300 varieties of hard coral. Fiji’s coral reefs are among the most diverse and intact in the Pacific Ocean, thanks largely to the national government’s marine conservation program. If you are a keen diver and want to know where the best places are to drop the ballasts into the water, jump on the next Fiji Airways flight
to Nadi and visit these four premier dive spots.
Mamanuca and Yasawa Island Groups
If you’re new to diving or getting back into the sport after a long break, or just want to try out some nice calm dive spots then head to the Mamanuca
island groups in Fiji.
The Mamanuca sites are the closest diving spots to Nadi
and can usually be reached from Nadi’s main resorts within less than half an hour.
The area doesn’t have as much current as others, making the soft corals less populated, however there are still plenty of sights to admire with great visibility. Divers can witness ship wrecks, a variety of coral species, plus wildlife such as turtles, dolphins, reef sharks, manta rays and many fish species. Although diving is conducted year-round, the best time to visit this region is from April to November, particularly if you want the opportunity to swim with manta rays.
Kadavu, Ono and the Astrolabe Reef
Often regarded as the best diving location in southern Fiji, the Kadavu
and Great Astrolabe Reef regions are another perfect spot for reliable manta ray sightings as well as sea snakes, ribbon eels and barracudas. This area is also home to a diverse range of hard and soft coral to explore.
Be wary of the ocean currents in this region for they can be fairly strong as they flow through five passages in the reef. Before diving, ensure you are comfortable with your equipment and keep an eye out for fellow divers.
If you are looking to take the plunge, diving on the Astolabe Reef is available all year round but the most popular times are in the winter months between August and October when visibility is best, or from December to April when the seas are calmer.
Beqa Lagoon, Beqa Island
Though small in size, the stunning Beqa
Lagoon, off Beqa Island, packs a lot of great diving into one spot, including two different shipwrecks to explore. The region has gentle currents and is suitable for beginner divers who want to strap on a tank. Divers can also spot lion fish, clown fish, ribbon eels, leaf scorpions, reef sharks and an abundance of anemones. The months from July to September provide the best visibility for diving in this region.
The Northern Group
A massive area that can never be covered adequately in one trip, the Northern Group consists of famous dive spots such as Somosomo Strait and Bligh Water. Generally considered a destination best visited by more experienced divers as it is prone to strong and challenging ocean currents, the Northern Group is teeming with both soft and hard coral and just about every variety of sea creature known to live in Fiji.
It is common to spot anything from pygmy seahorses and hammerhead sharks, to an array of tropical reef fish. Located near Taveuni
, Fiji’s third largest island, the Northern Group has two distinct seasons where diving is most popular – summer, between November and April, and winter, from May to October.