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Diving in The Christmas Island

Uncrowded dive sites full of an astounding array of biodiversity bewitch divers who enjoy 40 meter visibility, walls that drop into infinity, a WWII wreck and incredibly colorful coral reefs.

Diving in The Christmas Island

Quick facts

Walls, caves and one fantastic wreck make up the superb diving surrounding Christmas Island.

The majority of the island’s dive sites are on the wall around the island. This wall starts as close as 65 feet (20 meters) from the shoreline and drops hundreds of meters to the sea floor. Untouched corals, interesting critters and hundreds of fish species call the wall home. Divers who look into the blue might spot dolphins, a variety of sharks or whale sharks.

History lovers will delight in the Eidsvold Wreck, half of which lies between 15 and 60 feet (5 and 18 meters). The Norwegian phosphate ship was sunk during WWII by a Japanese submarine. Today, the historical playground is host to a healthy coral colony and a bounty of tropical fish.

There are plenty of caves to explore surrounding the island. The dive site called Thundercliffe Cave gives divers the opportunity to enter the cave underwater, surface and continue exploring by foot. Outside the cave, there is a wonderful colorful garden full of curious batfish.

Your dive log is sure to be full and happy after a few days spent diving near Christmas Island.

When to go

Rain and temperature

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Water temperature

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What to see

From large to tiny, Christmas Island’s waters are teeming with marine life for you to discover.

Those with eyes on the blue will be happy to see eagle rays, sting rays, manta rays, tiger sharks, whale sharks, bronze sharks, silky sharks, reef sharks, grey whalers, hammerheads, dolphins, pilot whales, beaked whales, schools of barracuda, wahoo, tuna, jacks, snappers, trevally and turtles.

Tiny life is plentiful as well. A variety of reef fish, nudibranchs, crabs, harlequin shrimp, mantis shrimp, lobsters, leopard eels, zebra morays, starry morays and guinea fowl morays call the island home.

The variety of life will have you using more than one log page for every dive you complete.

Calendar

For better readability of the table, pass into the landscape mode.

Most likely sightingsPossible sightings

Country

Christmas Island, a territory of Australia since 1958, is located 2600 kilometres northwest of Perth and 500 kilometres south of Jakarta, Indonesia. It offers uncrowded dive sites with colorful reefs, plentiful pelagic species, a well-preserved WWII wreck, limestone caves and a wall surrounding the island that drops to infinity. With excellent above the water activities and over 40 dive sites, Christmas Island is a remote diving wonderland.

Diving near Christmas Island is available year-round due to the fact that the island’s visibility and currents are largely unaffected by its monsoons. As a general rule, the air temperature has a constant average high of 82°F (28°C) with slightly cooler temperatures in July and August. The water temperature is usually 82°F (28°C) from November to March and 79°F (26°C) from April until October. The months from April to October make up the island’s dry season which features calm surface conditions and fantastic visibility. November to March is the wet season. This means that sites on the northern side of the island may be inaccessible and visibility can drop to between 65 and 100 feet (20 and 30 meters). During this season, the plankton blooms attract manta rays and whale sharks.

Because of Christmas Island’s hard-to-reach nature, the island has been largely untouched by tourism. Those that manage to make it to this lush wonderland are rewarded by beautiful scenery both above and below the water. Most of the dive sites are accessible to those with an Advanced Open Water certification. While most sites don’t, some areas may feature fast and wild currents. Accommodation on the island ranges from hotels to luxury resorts although budget digs are virtually nonexistent.

Because of Christmas Island’s remote nature and mild wet season, there is no real high or low season and prices remain constant throughout the year. For calm conditions and excellent visibility, visit from April until October. If you are looking for whale sharks and manta rays, November to March is your best bet.

Other attractions

While Christmas Island may have some excellent underwater attractions, above the water offers plenty to fill your days as well. 63% of the island is National Park land so you can spend your days hiking to remote waterfalls, beaches and lookouts. Exploring the caves surround the island’s limestone walls is also possible with a local guide. Fishing excursions offer an afternoon activity that will keep you flush in fresh seafood for dinner. If you happen to visit the island at the end of the beginning of the wet season, between October and November, you will be just in time for the island’s premier event, the red crab migration. At this time, an estimated 43 million crabs move from jungle to beach in order to mate. With these plentiful above ground attractions and the amazing dive sites, you are sure to love your stay on Christmas Island.

Getting there

The only way to reach Christmas Island is by flight from Perth or Cocos Islands on Virgin Australia. On a rare occasion, chartered flights are available from Jakarta.

Renting a 4WD or hiring a driver and car is the best way to travel around the island.

UTC+07:00

Time zone

AUD

Currency

+61

Calling code

230 V

Electric volt

I

Plug type

XFH

Main airport
Note - Travel to any destination may be adversely affected by conditions including (but not limited) to security, entry and exit requirements, health conditions, local laws and culture, natural disasters and climate. Regardless of your destination, check your local travel advisory board or department for travel advice about that location when planning your trip and again shortly before you leave.