Andaman Islands Scuba Diving

Scuba Diving in Andaman Islands

Welcome to the captivating realm beneath the waves, where an enchanting underwater world awaits your discovery. Nestled in the azure waters of the Bay of Bengal, the Andaman Islands beckon adventure seekers and nature enthusiasts alike. Renowned as a haven for scuba diving enthusiasts, these pristine islands offer a glimpse into a vibrant and untouched marine ecosystem. From breathtaking coral reefs teeming with colorful fish to encounters with majestic sea turtles, every dive in the Andaman Islands promises an unforgettable experience. Join us as we delve into the depths of scuba diving in this tropical paradise, unraveling the secrets of its mesmerizing underwater wonders.

The chance to see stunning sea turtles is one of the pleasures of scuba diving in the Andaman Islands. These prehistoric creatures smoothly move across the water, their presence evoking peace and knowledge, which is a humbling experience to keep in the memories forever. Scuba diving in the Andaman Islands offers a sense of tranquilly and an escape from the rush of daily life in addition to the fascinating aquatic life. When you're underwater, time seems to stand still as you merge with the ocean and forget about the problems of the surface world.

You might discover unique geological features, such as tunnels, swim-throughs, and vivid walls covered in vibrant marine life, as you explore the underwater terrain. Your diving excursion gains thrill and discovery by exploring these natural formations. Every dive shows fresh wonders, from small seahorses and elusive nudibranchs to majestic manta rays and joyful dolphins. The islands are also the habitat of a wide variety of exotic animals, such as the strange-looking frogfish and the elusive dugong, a rare marine mammal commonly known as the "sea cow."

Whether you are a seasoned diver or a novice eager to embark on your first underwater adventure, the Andaman Islands provide an ideal playground for exploration. With their warm waters, remarkable visibility, and diverse marine ecosystem, these islands beckon you to dive in and unlock the secrets of their enchanting underwater world. Prepare to be captivated, inspired, and forever changed by the extraordinary experience of scuba diving in the Andaman Islands.

Best Places to Scuba Dive in Andamans

The Andaman Islands, located in the Bay of Bengal, are a haven for scuba diving enthusiasts, offering a plethora of stunning islands with exceptional diving sites. Here are some notable scuba diving islands in the Andamans:

  • Havelock Island is a jewel in the Andaman archipelago and a paradise for scuba diving enthusiasts. With its crystal-clear waters and world-renowned dive sites, it attracts divers from around the globe. Barracuda City, The Wall, and Aquarium are among the must-visit spots, where divers can explore vibrant coral gardens teeming with marine life. Encounter sea turtles gracefully gliding through the water and be mesmerized by the diverse array of fish species. Havelock Island also offers other attractions, such as the stunning Radhanagar Beach, making it an ideal destination for beach lovers and adventure seekers alike.

    Top Sites to Dive in Havelock Island

    • Barracuda City: Dive into vibrant coral gardens at Barracuda City and witness schools of barracuda in their natural habitat, surrounded by beautiful soft and hard corals.
    • The Wall: Experience an awe-inspiring vertical dive at The Wall, adorned with abundant corals and marine life. Explore nooks, crevices, and observe the thriving marine ecosystem.
    • Aquarium: Dive into crystal-clear waters at Aquarium, enjoying remarkable visibility to witness a colorful array of hard and soft corals and an abundance of reef fish.
    • Seduction Point: Encounter larger marine species like sea turtles, reef sharks, and eagle rays at Seduction Point, experiencing the thrill of exploring their habitat.
    • Lighthouse: Explore a picturesque dive site at Lighthouse, featuring vibrant coral gardens and rocky terrain. Encounter reef fish, fascinating macro life, and occasional sea turtles and stingrays.
  • Neil Island, known for its serene and laid-back ambiance, offers a more tranquil scuba diving experience. The island's dive sites, like Margherita's Mischief, present an opportunity to discover thriving coral reefs and encounter a myriad of colorful reef fish. Dive into the clear waters and immerse yourself in the beauty of the underwater landscape. After a day of diving, unwind at the picturesque Bharatpur Beach, known for its white sands and turquoise waters, or explore the island's lush greenery and charming villages.

    Top Sites to Dive in Neil Island

    • Margherita's Mischief: Dive into Neil Island's clear waters to explore stunning coral reefs and encounter a vibrant underwater world of colorful reef fish.
    • Junction: Discover a diverse marine ecosystem, spotting unique critters and a variety of reef fish, amidst rocky outcrops and sandy patches.
    • Bus Stop: Experience an adventurous dive through underwater caves and tunnels, witnessing the play of light and shadows, and encountering groupers, snappers, and lionfish.
    • Bharatpur Beach: Snorkel in calm and shallow waters, enjoying the colorful corals and abundant marine life, including clownfish, wrasses, and damselfish.
  • North Bay Island, located near the capital city of Port Blair, is a popular choice for diving enthusiasts. The island is renowned for its diverse coral formations, including magnificent brain corals and delicate table corals. Its shallow reefs provide excellent conditions for beginners and snorkelers to explore the underwater world. Snorkel alongside colorful fish and observe the intricate details of the coral reefs. The clear waters surrounding North Bay Island make it an ideal spot for underwater photography and capturing memorable moments.

    Top Sites to Dive in North Bay Island

    • The Nursery: Dive into The Nursery and explore vibrant coral gardens teeming with juvenile fish, offering a delightful experience for divers of all levels.
    • Coral Paradise: Discover Coral Paradise, a haven for coral enthusiasts, showcasing diverse and beautiful coral formations with hidden treasures like nudibranchs and sea anemones.
    • Turtle Bay: Immerse yourself in Turtle Bay's crystal-clear waters, encountering graceful sea turtles amidst healthy coral reefs and colorful reef fish.
    • Dolly's Delight: Explore the impressive rock formations of Dolly's Delight, discovering hidden caves and crevices teeming with diverse marine life, including schools of fish.
    • Light House: Dive at Light House near North Bay Island, where vibrant coral reefs and a variety of reef fish, including butterflyfish and angelfish, offer a captivating underwater experience.
  • Additionally, Port Blair, the capital of the Andaman Islands, provides a respectable diving location. Carbyn’s Cove Beach, which is 12 kilometres from the airport, is a fantastic area for fun and adventure underwater. The water is clean enough to provide a good glimpse of the underwater world, and the live corals close to the snake island (there are no snakes here) are well-preserved and plentiful. When compared to other locations on the list, the marine life is a little less abundant, but once you visit, you won't notice the difference. While not the cheapest, the expenses for a full diving experience are reasonable and there are no additional transportation or boat costs.

    Top Sites to Dive in Port Blair

    • Snake Island: Snake Island, also known as Saddle Peak Island, is another diving spot near Port Blair. Dive into its pristine waters and discover a range of marine life, including colorful corals and tropical fish.
    • Red Skin Island: Located near Jolly Buoy Island, Red Skin Island offers excellent diving opportunities. Dive into the azure waters, swim among vibrant corals, and witness the beauty of the underwater world.
    • Rutland Island: Rutland Island, a short boat ride from Port Blair, is known for its pristine and untouched diving sites. Dive into its clear waters, explore the coral gardens, and encounter a wide variety of marine life, including colorful reef fish and turtles.
  • Barren Island, despite its name, holds its own allure for scuba divers. Situated in the Andaman Sea, it is home to an active volcano. While landing on the island is restricted due to safety concerns, diving around the island is permitted. Explore the unique underwater volcanic landscapes, where you can witness the remnants of volcanic activity. Encounter magnificent marine creatures, including manta rays, sharks, and a plethora of fish species. Diving around Barren Island offers a thrilling and unforgettable experience in the presence of raw natural power.

    Top Sites to Dive in Barren Island

    • The Caldera: Dive into the volcanic Caldera to witness unique underwater formations and encounter manta rays and reef sharks.
    • Purple Haze: Immerse yourself in the mesmerizing Purple Haze dive site, surrounded by colorful soft corals and a variety of reef fish.
    • The Lava Flow: Explore the submerged lava formations of the Lava Flow dive site and observe marine life thriving in this unique environment.
    • Shark Point: Experience an adrenaline-pumping dive alongside reef sharks at Shark Point, witnessing their powerful presence in the water.

Prices of Scuba Diving in Andaman Islands

There are several scuba diving operators in the Andaman Islands that offer diving courses and guided diving experiences. Here are a few well-known operators:

  • Dive India: Dive India is a popular dive center located in Havelock Island. They offer a range of PADI diving courses, from beginner to professional levels, including Open Water Diver, Advanced Open Water Diver, and Rescue Diver. They also provide guided fun dives for certified divers.
    • Website: www.diveindia.com
    • Courses and Prices:
      • Open Water Diver: Starting at ₹30,000 INR
      • Advanced Open Water Diver: Starting at ₹26,000 INR
      • Rescue Diver: Starting at ₹34,000 INR
  • Barefoot Scuba: Barefoot Scuba is another reputable diving center situated in Havelock Island. They offer a variety of PADI courses, including Discover Scuba Diving, Open Water Diver, and Advanced Open Water Diver. They have experienced instructors and provide quality diving equipment.
    • Website: www.barefootscuba.com
    • Courses and Prices:
      • Discover Scuba Diving: Starting at ₹7,000 INR
      • Open Water Diver: Starting at ₹24,500 INR
      • Advanced Open Water Diver: Starting at ₹21,000 INR
  • Andaman Bubbles: Andaman Bubbles is a well-established diving center in Havelock Island. They offer PADI courses for beginners as well as advanced divers, such as Open Water Diver, Advanced Open Water Diver, and Rescue Diver. They also organize guided dives to popular dive sites.
    • Website: www.andamanbubbles.com
    • Courses and Prices:
      • Open Water Diver: Starting at ₹28,000 INR
      • Advanced Open Water Diver: Starting at ₹26,000 INR
      • Rescue Diver: Starting at ₹33,000 INR
  • Scuba Lov.in: Scuba Lov.in is a dive center located in Port Blair, offering PADI courses such as Discover Scuba Diving, Open Water Diver, and Advanced Open Water Diver. They also conduct fun dives for certified divers, allowing them to explore the diving sites around Port Blair.
    • Website: www.scubalov.in
    • Courses and Prices:
      • Discover Scuba Diving: Starting at ₹5,000 INR
      • Open Water Diver: Starting at ₹26,000 INR
      • Advanced Open Water Diver: Starting at ₹22,000 INR

Eligibility Criteria for Scuba Diving

  • Minimum Age – The minimum age requirement for scuba diving courses is typically 10 to 12 years for programs like the Discover Scuba Diving or Junior Open Water Diver. The age requirement may be higher for advanced courses.
  • Medical Fitness – It is generally required to be in good physical health to participate in scuba diving. Some dive operators may ask you to fill out a medical questionnaire or provide a medical certificate stating that you are fit to dive. If you have any pre-existing medical conditions, it's advisable to consult with a doctor beforehand.
  • Swimming Skills – Basic swimming skills are usually required for scuba diving courses. You should be comfortable in the water and able to swim a certain distance, typically around 200-300 meters.
  • Language Skills – Having a basic understanding of English or the language in which the course is conducted is important to understand the instructions, safety guidelines, and communication underwater.
Best Time to Visit

The best time to visit the Andaman Islands, including Port Blair, for diving is generally during the dry season, which spans from November to April. During these months, the weather is usually pleasant with calm seas, making it ideal for diving and other water activities.

The water visibility is typically at its best during the months of February to April, offering excellent conditions for underwater exploration and photography. The sea temperature remains relatively warm and ranges from 27°C to 30°C throughout the year, making diving comfortable.

How to Reach
  • By Air: The fastest and most convenient way to reach the Andaman Islands is by air. Veer Savarkar International Airport in Port Blair is well-connected to major cities in India, such as Delhi, Mumbai, Kolkata, Chennai, and Bangalore. The flight duration varies depending on the origin city, with direct flights typically taking around 2 to 5 hours.
  • By Sea: Another option to reach the Andaman Islands is by sea. Regular passenger ship services are available from Chennai, Kolkata, and Vishakhapatnam to Port Blair. These ships are operated by the Shipping Corporation of India and offer a more leisurely and cost-effective mode of transportation. However, the journey by sea takes longer, ranging from 50 to 70 hours, depending on the origin port and the weather conditions.

Frequently Asked Questions(FAQ)

What marine life can I expect to see while diving in the Andaman Islands?

The Andaman Islands boast a rich marine biodiversity. Divers can encounter a variety of marine life, including colorful coral reefs, tropical fish, sea turtles, rays, reef sharks, and occasionally, larger marine species like barracudas and dolphins.

Are there any restrictions or permits required for scuba diving in the Andaman Islands?

Yes, visitors are required to obtain a permit to enter certain areas of the Andaman Islands, including some diving sites. These permits can be obtained upon arrival or through authorized travel agencies. It's important to check the current regulations and obtain the necessary permits before diving.

How safe is scuba diving in the Andaman Islands?

Scuba diving in the Andaman Islands is generally considered safe, especially when you dive with reputable and certified dive operators. These operators adhere to safety standards, provide experienced instructors, and maintain well-maintained equipment.

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