Scuba diving is one of the most popular activities for any beach vacation. The Caribbean is especially known for reefs that provide spectacular scuba diving. There are also caves, wrecks and even underwater fumaroles. The variety of sea life is also amazing in the Caribbean islands. There are numerous varieties of fish as well as sharks, sea turtles and porpoise .All of these factors make scuba diving one of the premier attractions in the Caribbean. Out of all of the islands, however, there are a few that stand out as excellent scuba spots and have earned a reputation as some of the best diving spots in the world.
Bonaire is an 11 square mile island that is part of what’s known as the Lesser Antilles. One of the things that makes Bonaire such a great scuba spot is the enormous reef that is just a few hundred feet offshore. This reef means vacationers can walk out to the reef instead of chartering a boat. Most of the reef is also part of a protected marine park, ensuring that the reef and all the sea life is undisturbed by modern man. Night diving is also a specialty of this island. Diving near the Old Town Pier in the capital of Kralendijik lets vacations see thousands of orange coral polyps that are nocturnal, feeding on the pier pilings.
The island of St. Lucia, also part of the Lesser Antilles, is home to two volcanic spires. The bases of these are made of caves and ledges that are home to various kinds of fish and sponges. The resort of Anse Chastanet has some of the best diving on the island. Divers can walk from the black sand beach to the drop off where they will find plate and star coral and many brightly colored fish feeding. The ledges and crevices are also known to house seahorses, butterfly fish and eels.
Grand Cayman, the largest of the Cayman Islands is known for some unusual marine life, making it a premiere diving spot. The most famous of these are the stingrays which can mostly be found at a site called Stingray City. This is a shallow area, where there are as many as 50 stingrays that have become very affectionate towards humans. They brush against divers, even nuzzling them at times. They are so friendly, and the water is so shallow, even novice snorkelers can participate and enjoy them. Grand Caymen has also become known for its wall reefs. These reefs, which are almost vertical, let experienced divers go on deep dives and see marine life they wouldn’t get to see in shallower waters off other islands.
Virgin Gorda, part of the British Virgin Islands attracts divers due to the HMS Rhone. The HMS Rhone was a royal mail steamer that sank in 1867. The wreck now lies off the shore of Salt Island and has become an attraction for many divers. The variety of sea life that now live within the decks makes this site one of the best dives in the world. The HMS Rhone is known to have barracuda, lobsters and even octopuses.
Saba, a tiny island between St. Maarten and St. Kitts is not known for beautiful white sand beaches like other islands. It is, however, a popular dive spot. This is because most of this small island is made up of the Mount Scenery volcano. The active volcano means the waters around the island have unique attractions including underwater lava flows, black coral and underwater mountain tops. The island itself is not overly developed, so the reefs remain pristine. The waters and reef were designated as a National Marine Park in 1987, ensuring the marine life will be protected.
Scuba diving is one of the premiere attractions in the Caribbean thanks to its rich and colorful marine life. Almost all of the islands offer equipment rental, ‘resort course’ certification (this is a scuba certification that lets vacationers dive while on vacation only), and boat charters. A good guide book can help visitors choose the right dive destination. Whether a serious diver, or a first timer, there is something for everyone.
Scuba diving is a great activity for couples who enjoy adventure. Whether you are exploring the reefs of St. Lucia, exploring the HMS Rhone ruins in the British Virgin Islands, or swimming with the stingrays in the Cayman islands, you can always find a relaxing, romantic place to stay by exploring the resorts at RomanticCaribbeanResorts.com.