Every year, there are about 8 million people in the United States alone that go snorkeling or diving every year. That number soars when you take the global population into consideration, and it’s easy to see why snorkeling is so popular. There are a lot of great destinations that allow you to see the most beautiful sea animals in the world. However, some spots tend to get overcrowded. If you want more water to yourself that’s less disturbed, check out these five spots off the beaten path to go scuba diving.
5. Darwin Island
Among the Galapagos Islands in the Pacific is Darwin Island, which is what remains of a volcano that went extinct many years ago. There’s a particular diving spot called The Theater that is simply amazing to see in person. It’s around 75 feet deep where you can see some of the most tropical sea creatures around while snorkeling. This includes getting a good glimpse of Galapagos sharks, turtles, whales and even penguins. Named after Charles Darwin, there’s a great blend of animal life off this island.
There is only one coastal city in all of Jordan, and it’s a fantastic spot for any snorkeling enthusiast. It’s fairly easy to get to as it’s a major city in the country, and it offers great diving spots. There are over 500 types of fish in Aqaba, and nearly 400 different types of coral. A lot of these types are extremely rare. So rare, in fact, that some can only be found while diving into this part of the Red Sea.
3. Baja California
While it’s a popular spot to visit as the Mexican state that borders Southern California, the diving spots aren’t quite as frequented the further south you go in Baja California, Mexico. Trek down just a bit to see some great Pacific Ocean spots. Baja California features a lot of different sea creatures to see while snorkeling and diving. This includes whale sharks and devil rays depending on how far out you’re going. If you’re lucky, you might also be able to see some dolphins and marlins, while sea lions tend to stay closer to the shore.
2. Banda Islands
Off the shores of Indonesia, you’ll find the Banda Sea where there are islands that are populated by less than 20,000 people. When on the Banda Islands, you’ll get a great view of the sea and a diving spot that’s not often used by tourists. When you’re snorkeling closer to the shore, you’ll see some manta rays and schools of tuna at Banda Island. If you start diving farther out, you’ll see some of the big fish. This includes hammerhead sharks, several different types of whales and even the fan favorite, the dolphin.
1. The Arctic
When people talk about snorkeling and diving locations, they usually think of warm waters. However, the Arctic region at the northernmost part of Earth features a lot of great opportunities. It’s not easy to get to, but it’s worth the trip. The Arctic offers some of the most unique animals in the world while diving, including leopard seals, the beluga whale and even narwhals. Other interesting creatures include icefish, ribbon seals and the basket star.