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Diving in India

India, incredibly unique, has countless opportunities for exploration. Scuba dive in blue lagoons, trek through steamy jungles or hustle through a bustling city - all in the span of a single day.

Diving in India

Quick facts

Incredible diving awaits you off of India’s 8000 kilometres/5000 miles of coastline.  Whatever sort of diving you crave (short of ice diving), India is sure to deliver. Wildlife abounds, and bizarre underwater formations are the norm. Goa, the smallest and richest state on India’s west coast, has easy access to the Arabian Sea. Diving off Goa includes gliding over lush coral gardens, pinnacles, and a variety of shipwrecks. Pondicherry, on India’s eastern coast, has untouched and largely unexplored reefs and wrecks. India also offers a variety of diving experiences from its islands, both in the Andaman and Arabian Seas. These islands, like the mainland, offer incredible underwater diversity as well as liveaboard possibilities. Lakshadweep is a remote archipelago off India's southeastern coast just above the Maldives and offers colorful reefs, overhangs, swim-throughs and big fish action. The remote Andaman and Nicobar Islands, between India and Thailand, boast vibrant coral reefs, huge schools of fish and pristine conditions. In this populous country, you’ll find underwater exploration as intriguing as exploring India’s rich heritage and culture. Road trips are also becoming a popular way to see India while diving off the coastline and islands. Some divers start in Gujarat and work their way around the southern coastline, taking overnight buses through Goa, Karnataka, Kerala, Pondicherry, Tamil Nadu, to end up in Vizag stopping on the way to enjoy dives in the morning and exploring India’s many beautiful cities in the afternoon.

Recommended training

Take the PADI Deep Diver and Drift Diver courses to be prepared for the fabulous wall diving. The PADI Wreck Diver course will get you ready for exploring the diverse wrecks. The AWARE – Coral Reef Conservation course will help you appreciate the marine protected areas and healthy reefs

When to go

All of southern India is within the tropics, so generally it's hot year-round. The peak season in the Andamans runs from November through April. Monsoons frequently shut down diving in June and July. The outlying islands of Lakshadweep and the Andaman archipelago typically have the best visibility ranging from 10-45 metres/30-150 feet. Diving Goa is best October through May. Off Goa, expect visibility ranging from 5-11 metres/15-35 feet. May through November is ideal for diving Lakshadweep. Pondicherry’s peak dive season is January through June and then September through November, although diving is available all year. The dive sites here offer visibility from 5-20 metres/15-70 feet. Water temperatures average 27-28°C/80-82°F off the Andaman Islands, Goa and Lakshadweep. Pondicherry water temperatures range from 26-30°C/78-84°F.

Rain and temperature

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Water temperature

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Where to dive

  • The Andaman Islands

    Travel to the faraway Andaman Islands to see an untouched side of India with its turquoise blue waters, stunning coral reefs, dancing manta rays and swimming elephants.

  • Lakshadweep

    The clear waters and beautiful coral atolls of Lakshadweep are a refreshing and surprising change from the hustle and bustle of India.

USD 556Per trip
USD 980Per trip
USD 1,448Per trip
* The Wall, Havelock Island, Andaman – This wall drops from 10 metres/35 feet down deep to the sand channel between Havelock and Peel Island. The tidal currents bring in a large number of Napoleon wrasse, snapper and trevally. Drift by purple soft coral that cling to the wall and look for scorpionfish, stonefish and nudibranchs. * Dixon's Pinnacle, Andaman – Giant rock pinnacles emerge from the shadowy bottom, covered in colorful coral and large barrel sponges. Barracuda hover in mid-water, sometimes joined by batfish and trevally. Stingrays and Napoleon wrasse cruise along the bottom amidst schools of snapper. The top pinnacles are cleaning stations, buzzing with constant activity. Turtles, moray eels, manta rays and white-tip reef sharks visit the site to avail of the cleaning service. * Aravind's Wall, Pondicherry – Aravind's Wall is a popular drift diving site, covering a large area and where visibility can reach up to 40 meters, with a year round average of about 15 meters. The dive sites along the wall are also popular due to the marine life that can be spotted, especially groupers, barracuda and a few friendly sea kraits. Lots of diverse macro life such as nudibranch can be found be here, along with a great range of corals including stunning gorgonian fan corals. * Temple Reef, Pondicherry – Just off the coast of Pondicherry, lies Temple Reef which has a maximum depth of around 18 meters/60 feet. Due to the adverse effects of trawler fishing, an artificial reef was established to create a safe habitat for marine life. A temple-shaped structure was formed from recycled materials including concrete, rocks and iron. It is now inhabited by over 45 different marine species including groupers, batfish, barracudas, boxfish, moray eels and mantis shrimps. * Jetty, Grand Island, Goa – Situated near the old jetty of the island, this accessible dive site ranges from around 2 meters/6 feet to 6 meters/20 feet in depth. It is a great spot to see nudibranch due to the sounding environment as well as various coral and fish species. * Sail Rock, Grand Island, Goa – Located to the south west of the island, Sail Rock is a haven for many fish species including snapper, barracuda and groupers. The site is made up of a rocky pinnacle with depth ranging from around 16 meters/52 feet to 24 meters/78 feet. * Princess Royal, Bangaram, Lakshadweep – This ship sank in a battle between the French and British more than two hundred years ago. Look for broken pottery scattered around the wreck, several large cannons and the ship’s anchor. The hull, protected by copper is relatively intact and home to a variety of marine life. * Manta Point, Bangaram, Lakshadweep – This colorful reef is often visited by manta rays, especially in September through December. Other pelagics also visit, including an occasional whale shark, along with other rays and turtles. Starting shallow and sloping down to 20 metres/70 feet, this site is beautiful even when no big fish show up * Twin Towers, Chennai – 2 huge granite boulders which rises up from 18m to 12m, separated by 50m, lots of swim throughs, spotted parrotfish, naploeon wrasse, macro life, lots of eels and batfish.

What to see

Around the country, you'll find the typical Indian Ocean reef fish, as well as groupers and turtles. In Lakshadweep, you can also find manta ray cleaning stations, along with white-tip reef, grey reef and guitar sharks. Manta rays peruse the depths in throngs and make a fantastic show as they head to cleaning stations. Flitting reef fish, colorful and diverse, make their way in and out of coral crevices. Be on the lookout for dugongs, manatee-like creatures that stay in the shallows near mangroves.

Calendar

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Country

Gorgeous and diverse, India is one of the most culturally and historically rich places on our planet. It is the seventh largest country and the second most populous in the world. With 5000 miles (8000 kilometers) of coastline and many fascinating islands offshore, India has an unspoken tie to the sea. However, what goes on in the incredible expanse of mainland is just as important. Visiting the Ganges River, considered holy by many Indians, is a hugely significant part of daily life for many locals. People have inhabited this region for eons, adapting and changing as time passed. The United Kingdom took over the country for centuries, but Mahatma Gandhi’s path of non-violence paved the way toward independence in 1947. Since then, India has been a global leader, especially in the technological field.

Other attractions

India is a large country with so many historic and cultural sites that it would take years to fully explore. Along the coast, you’ll find all kinds of water sports such as water skiing and surfing. Of course, the River Ganges and the Taj Mahal should be at the very top of your to do list while visiting India. Plus, there are an unbelievable variety of regional dishes to try, including new flavors and sensations you may never have known existed. Visit the sprawling marketplaces and spend time in the larger cities, like Bombay, then head out into the wild, where mysteries await you. You can take a safari, trek into the thick jungles or kayak down untouched rivers, enjoying the unique sights and sounds of this fantastic land.

Getting there

India is a large country with plenty of airports to choose from. The major ports of entry include Chhatrapati Shivaji International Airport in Mumbai, Indira Gandhi International Airport in New Delhi, Bengaluru International Airport in Bengaluru, Rajiv Gandhi International Airport in Hyderabad and Chennai International Airport in Chennai. Flights within the country are reasonable, so it may be in your best interest to fly from region to region. Taxis are recommended for intercity travel.

UTC+05:30

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INR

Currency

+91

Calling code

230 V

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BOM

Main airport
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