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While it may not be usually promoted as one of the best diving sites, the Jamaican undersea world certainly has some breathtaking underwater wonders to "wow" divers of all levels. This Caribbean island has plenty of diving sites to keep divers thrilled.… More Info
Breezes Bella Costa
13 nights £9999pp
Breezes Bella Costa
13 nights £9999pp
Brimming with coral wildlife, Jamaica's underwater world is a fascinating place to get lost in during scuba diving holidays. Teeming with canyons, grottos an sheered vertival walls, in Jamaica marine life is a kaleidoscope of living colour, and the good news is that it's all withing easy reach; from coast to coast the main diving sites are only a few minutes away from the shore.
Those embarking on scuba diving adventures in Jamaica will enjoy balmy weather all-year-round with warm clear waters averaging 250 to 290 degrees. Visibility is usually excellent, averaging 100 feet. Close-at-hand dive sites and a host of professional operators contribute to the island's advantage as a preferred dive destination. And, with the establishment of marine parks, fish populations are growing. Divers seeking a great dive vacation couldn't choose a better destination, especially if traveling with non divers. The diversity of topography and natural attractions is second to none. Imagine a great dive in the morning and river rafting in the afternoon. Now about climbing the famous Dunn's River Falls, or playing a round of golf before dinner?
As distinct as the island's people and topography are, the underwater world is usually diverse. Along the winding North Coast, the precipitous underwater wall hugs the shoreline closely. Toward Negril the terrain flattens, but the diving peaks. Negril sets the standard for calm, protected warm waters. Along the solitude of Negril's seven miles of beach, the waters are protected from the wind. The sea is generally shallow near shore. Out on the reefs the visibility is often exceptional, from 60-80 feet to over 100 feet. Underwater terrain has excellent patches and spur-and-groove coral reefs which include caves and overhangs. Unique types of diving near Negril include huge "coral cottage" in depths of 60 feet or more.
Brightly colored tropical fish are inhabitants of the reef within Negril's Marine Park. Thick with stands of gorgonians and sponges, the reef is protected by an active mooring program. Large fish populations exist near deeper reefs. Nurse sharks can often be seen beneath coral over-hangs layered with bright red finger sponges.
Conservation efforts in Negril have paid off. Fish populations flourish. Divers (and snorklers) can see logger head turtles, rays and eels. Dolphins also frequent the waters. Doze of popular reefs to visit are more than any diver can see in one vacation. If you're just beginning scuba or want to become certified, Negril is a good place to start. It's one of the best areas in Jamaica to snorkel, either on the reef (less than 10 minutes by boat) or from shore along the cliffs.
At Montego Bay, the island's first Marine Park delights snorkelers and divers alike. The area is fringed by vibrant walls (many begin in only 35 feet) hosting bright sponges. The wall can be a mere 100 yards from shore. Dive sites in Jamaica include Widowmaker's Cave and Airport Reef, with huge caves penetrating the coral and exiting through a plunging wall. Expect to delight in seeing large schools of creole wrasse. The bay's principal attraction is its profusion of sponges in a rainbow of colors. Several dive sites are within the park.
Near Falmouth, walls start as shallow as 25 feet. Visibility averages 60 to over 100 feet. The top of the reef at sites like Chub Castle is covered with corals, gorgonians and sponges.
In Discovery Bay, the wall also comes close to shore. One of two recompression chambers is here. (The other is in Port Royal). In the same area is the University of the West Indies' Marine Laboratory. the most noted in the Caribbean. Students from throughout the world come to learn more of the underwater world.
At Runaway Bay, the reef is alive with brightly colored schools of tropical fish grouper, snapper and stingrays. Large green morays, barracuda, sharks and turtles also hang out. Coral is sometimes punctured with open-ended tunnels and chimneys lined with white, feathery soft corals and orange anemone colonies that fluoresce in the dark. Ricky's reef, Pocket's Reef, and the Reggae Queen are popular sites starting about 50-60 feet. Others include the Canyon, the Garden of Allah, the Nursery, Shipwreck Reef, Spanish Anchor and the Airplane Wreck. Not far from the airplane, divers will be flushed with excitement to discover the "Potty Dive." This toilet, sunk by Jamaque Dive Centre, is a favorite spot for photos.
Between Runaway Bay and Ocho Rios, the wall comes close to shore and drops from 60 feet to over 3,000 feet as the Cayman Trench nears the shoreline. Explore a shallow shelf of spur-and-groove corals with nurse sharks and caverns, then expect the quick drop-off. A popular dive includes the wreck of the Kathryn in 50 feet of water. This 140-foot-long World War II Canadian minesweeper is home to a profusion of fish that are fed by hand. Colorful yellowtail snapper, parrotfish, sergeant majors and goatfish can be seen at a shallow dive at Dickies' Reef, beginning in 22 feet of water.
Walls encrusted with hard and soft corals welcome divers exploring the relatively pristine waters of Port Antonio. At Alligator Head, in 80-90 feet, advanced divers encounter an array of sponges, corals, tropical and hawksbill turtles. Trident Wall is another popular site. The reef is not far from shore and ideal for snorkeling opportunities. Divers and snorkelers discover shallows around beautiful Kingston Cay, marveling at the natural world of uninhabited mangroves. Southeast of Port Royal is the Texas Wreck, an American naval ship that was sunk in 1944, now situated among an abundance of black coral. The wreck's gun placements are visible . Two steel-hulled wrecks, home to black tip sharks and huge jacks, have recently been discovered.
Pristine diving conditions and excellent dive facilities are found islandwide whiele all-inclusive and other resorts provide professional dive staffs and modern boats for diving tourists. Many resorts in Jamaica offer good dive packages, reasonable priced.
Scuba diving holidays in Montego Bay are popular because this is one of the best places for diving in Jamaica. Its crystal clear waters offer a diverse range of sites for all scuba divers. Some of the best are contained within Jamaica's first Marine Park.
The resort of Negril, located on the western tip of Jamaica, is famous for its beaches, but its azure waters are the main attraction for divers. If looking for walls, wrecks, cave or reef dives, scuba diving holiday in Negril will tick all checklist.
If planning on booking a diving holiday in Ocho Rios, on Jamaica's northern coast, you can guarantee excellent diving centres and beautiful scenery underwater. Dramatic walls, vibrant coral reefs and famous Dunn's River Falls are some of the highlights.
If you dream of exploring the waters of Jamaica's northeastern coast, a scuba diving holiday in Port Antonio is a must. This area is renowned for its diverse dive sites, where coral reefs, ocean walls, caves and a lots of marine life are waiting for you.
A scuba diving holiday in Port Royal, on Jamaica's southeastern coast, will reveal some of the most interesting dive sites in Jamaica because these waters boast a fascinating history. Shipwrecks, pirates and sunken cities are some of the highlights.
Jamaica's northern coast offers a diverse diving opportunities, so book a scuba diving holiday in Runaway Bay to explore the island's diving sites. The clear waters conceal many treasures, including coral reefs, caves, walls and a variety of marine life.
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