Scuba Diving in the South Pacific Islands
Destination Review - Ranked by Preference
With almost perfect sea conditions for scuba diving including great visibility and year-round warm water, South Pacific scuba diving holidays are on every scuba enthusiasts bucket list. There are brilliant soft coral to marvel at, sharks and manta rays to swim with, caves and chasms to explore and the worlds most accessible WWII wrecks to visit. In all destinations you're find plenty of dive operators and coral reefs hosting both soft and hard coral colonies, plus plenty of marine life from pretty clown fish, to the fascinating nudibranch and elegant sea turtles. The following is a summary of the unique aspects of each island destination for a scuba diving holiday in the South Pacific. Find out more about each destination by clicking on the "detailed ... scuba diving holidays" link after each passage. This will take you to a dedicated page highlighting the destination and featuring our recommended dive resorts to stay at plus instant quotations for your scuba diving holidays so you can make a booking straight away.
# 1 - Fiji
Fiji is the soft coral capital of the world with famous Rainbow Reef off Taveuni and the Astrolabe Reef off Kadavu the most raved about amongst serious divers. Fiji is also a great destination for the casual holiday diver with great beach resorts to enjoy.
# 2 - French Polynesia
If you want to dive amongst sharks in a natural unforced environment then head to the rich passages of the Tuamotu Group. Bora Bora has great opportunities to dive amongst manta rays and there are some great corals and advanced drift dives around Raiatea.
# 3 - Vanuatu
Boasting the world's most accessible wreck dive, the SS President Coolidge lies in a shallow sheltered bay off Espiritu Santo and you can combine this with several nearby coral reefs with soft and hard corals plus gorgonian fans.
# 4 - New Caledonia
The main island of Grand Terre is surrounded by a single coral reef 1,600km in length and offers a great variety of dive sites and coral reefs to explores. There are numerous dive operators with the majority based in Noumea but several others at Hienghene and Poinimie on the west coast as well as on the Isle Pines which itself is surrounded by a beautiful lagoon and fringing reef.
# 5 - Tonga
Tonga is known for its exciting cave dives. If you visit from May to October you're very likely to hear the songs of the humpback whales resonating through the island channels and you may even experience a close-up encounter with them.
# 6 - Cook Islands
Rarotonga is a good destination for the casual holiday-diver or to learn to dive and being a high island surrounded by a single coral reef, good dive sites are easily accessible in all weather conditions
# 7 - Samoa
Scuba diving in Samoa is quite limited with just a couple of dive operators - its most famous dive is the Juno, a wreck dive off the Savaii coast now covered in coral.