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Diving in The Out Islands

The phenomenally clear waters of The Bahamas Out Islands are a diver’s dream

Scuba divers travel the world primarily to find three things: dramatic walls, lush coral reefs and exciting animal encounters. The Out Islands offer all this in warm, extraordinary clear water that also provides the perfect environment for learning how to scuba dive. As a bonus, the Out Islands offer the fascinating lure of Blue Holes, the thrill of diving into the past on historical Shipwrecks, and ideal conditions for underwater photography and video. No other scuba diving destination in the Caribbean offers the range of experiences and locations for world class diving than the Out Islands.

Professional dive operators in the Out Islands offer instruction from the most basic beginner "resort" lessons for those who just want to try diving while on vacation, all the way through to advanced specialty courses. All of the training is done in comfortably warm and clear waters, and it’s all sanctioned by the world’s top certifying agencies. Once you’re certified, you can immediately begin accompanying the guides on what are considered peak Bahamian diving experiences.

Imagine flying over the edge of the Grand Canyon - not in a plane, but like Superman. That’s the feeling you get when diving a “wall” in The Bahamas Out Islands. One minute you're floating above a plush coral reef surrounded by schools of brightly colored fish and then, suddenly, the bottom drops into the deep blue. You’re suspended over the abyss with a tingly feeling in your belly. The guide from one of the Out Islands’ many excellent Bahamas scuba diving operations signals for you to follow, and you descend along a vertical wall of coral festooned with bizarrely shaped sponges. Keep your eyes open, because out on the edge, you never know what might swim by – graceful eagle rays are common, and the sighting of a shark always adds excitement to a dive. Bimini, Andros and Conception Island (off Long Island) offer some of the bubble-blowing worlds most sought-after wall dives.

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There’s nothing that matches a reef dive for combining relaxation, fascination and exhilaration all in one activity. The Out Islands are thick with coral reefs up and down the chain that are alive with every imaginable ocean critter from the living jewels – angelfish and butterfly fish – to the charismatic food-chain toppers like grouper and barracuda, and down to the tiniest invertebrates that exhibit wondrous behaviors like the miniature crabs that live within flower-like anemones or the dandy-dressed daredevil shrimp that attract large fish to their cleaning stations and then casually pick morsels from between the predator’s teeth. For the ultimate in reef-diving excitement, don’t miss a chance to try night diving in this safe environment, when you’ll see an entirely different group of critters and bevy of behaviors not visible during the day.

Like watching Shark Week? The Bahamas Out Islands are one of the world’s top destinations for those looking for an exciting and safe opportunity to see large animals like sharks and rays in the wild. Long Island’s Shark Reef is a prime spot to see the toothy predators up close. Also, dive with Oceanic WhiteTip sharks off of Cat Island or add the Great Hammerhead shark dive off of Bimini to your bucket list.

For the ultimate in unique underwater experiences, the blue holes of the Bahamas Out Islands offer more advanced divers the chance to visit geological features that form only under very special circumstances. The Out Islands, though, are full of blue holes! The king of blue hole diving destinations, is Andros, where you’ll find these entryways to underground rivers in the middle of forests, out amid rocky landscapes and even offshore where they appear as underwater caves. Your dive operator’s experienced guides will safely lead you to these legendary sites where you can peer into the lair of the lucsa (a mythical blue hole dwelling monster) or even see the holes “breath” as water flows in and out with the tides.

Seeing a sunken ship is every diver’s dream. In the Out Islands, scuba divers of all experience levels can swim through history at sites like the SS Sapona off Bimini, once used to store whiskey for bootleggers, now one of the world’s great shallow wreck sites for diving and snorkeling.

And scuba diving in the Bahamas Out Islands doesn’t stop there.  Current Cut at Eleuthera, the abyssal Tongue of the Ocean off Andros is the world’s third-largest barrier reef, and the pristine reefs of the Exuma Cays Land and Seas Park offer endless opportunities for underwater excitement.

In all, the Out Islands offer a huge range of Bahamas diving experiences for all experience levels and desires, with highly trained professional dive operators standing by on each of the family islands to lead you on an underwater adventure. Simply put, the Out Islands are the diving Mecca of the Caribbean!