Bahamas Diving: Where to Go and What Makes it Awesome

The Bahamas is famous for its crystal-clear shallow waters and pristine white sand beaches and is a haven for divers and non-divers alike. This idyllic archipelago is made up of more than 700 tropical islands and has some truly epic diving environments. This region is as rich in history as it is in marine biodiversity. We are going to look at the Bahamas’ most famous dive sites, as well as the dive conditions and how to get there, allowing you to plan the perfect Bahamas diving trip!

Bahamas diving: When to go

The Bahamas’ air and water temperatures vary considerably across the seasons. Added to that, the abundance of different species varies throughout the year. The temperatures below are a general guide to help you plan your trip. 

Remember though, the temperatures will also vary depending on the specific part of the Bahamas you visit. So contact your preferred dive center in the Bahamas to find out more about the conditions where you plan to stay.


The winter months of December to February are the coldest months for both air and water temperatures. On land, the temperature is around 72-75°F (22-25°C) and the water can be 68-73°F (20-24°C) so a 5mm suit or a 3mm suit with an additional hooded vest is recommended. Visibility can be excellent in these months due to less plankton in the water.

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The spring months of March to May have increasing air and water temperatures. Daily highs on land vary between 79-84°F (26-29°C) and the water can reach 75-81°F (25-27°C). A 3mm suit will be adequate, or even a light thermal top over your swimwear if you do not feel the cold.


The summer months of June to August have the warmest air temperatures and mark the start of hurricane season. Air temperatures of 84-90°F (29-32°C) and water temperatures of 81/86°F (27/30°C) mean that rash guards are usually enough to keep the sun off and allow you to enjoy complete freedom of movement during your dives.


The Autumn months of September to November are one of the best times to dive in the Bahamas as the air temperatures are cool but the water remains warm. Daily air temperatures of 75-84°F (25-29°C) with water temperatures around 79-84°F (26/29°C) mean that rash guards or 3mm suits will be fine for diving.

Hurricane season

Official hurricane season is from June to November. Thankfully with modern technology, we have a good awareness of the paths of hurricanes, and you can plan your trips accordingly. The NOAA website has very accurate information during hurricane season.

Where to go diving in the Bahamas

The Bahamas has a huge variety of dive sites and conditions, meaning that divers from Open Water Diver certification through to Advanced Open Water Diver, and Deep Diving and Wreck Diving specialties can find dive sites to their liking.

Here are some of the best Bahamas diving spots.

1.Grand Bahama and Bimini

These two sets of islands are closest to the USA and are accessible via boat trips from Florida (if weather permits) or by short flights from Miami or Fort Lauderdale. This area is well-known for its incredible shark diving:

  • Bimini is famous for the arrival of great hammerheads in the winter months and is one of the top Bahamas diving spots. You can dive with these incredible sharks in shallow sandy areas around 10 meters (33 feet) deep. Atlantic spotted dolphins are also seen on the sand flats during summer.
  • Grand Bahama has shallow dives with Caribbean reef sharks close to shore and the famous Tiger Beach. You can dive with tiger sharks year-round at Tiger Beach, as well as lemon sharksbull sharks and huge nurse sharks.

The sand flats surrounding these two islands have produced some incredibly important shipwreck finds with massive amounts of treasure including gold, silver and precious gems looted from central and South America.

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2.Andros Island

The largest island in the whole of the country, Andros or "big yard" has the third longest barrier reef in the world and is pock-marked by hundreds of blue holes when viewed from the air. 

  • Tongue of the Ocean: Deep divers will love to dive along the drop-offs where the tongue of the ocean trench rolls in from the Atlantic with waters exceeding 2000 meters (6000 feet). Lucky divers may even hear the sonar ping from the submarines making their way down to the US Navy AUTEC base in the middle of the island.
  • King Kong Blue Hole, north of Fresh Creek, is a spectacular Bahamas diving site with schools of cubera and dog snapper lurking at the entrances to the caves. Recreational scuba divers can explore overhangs or ledges here, but if you wish to enter any cave system you must be a certified cave diver.
  • Morgan’s Bluff, the northernmost point of Andros, bears witness to the pirate history of the nation and many locals have fascinating tales of the antics of these marine outlaws.

3.New Providence Island

New Providence is the most visited of the Bahama Islands and Nassau, the capital city of the Bahamas (and once the pirate capital of the entire Caribbean), is situated here.  Although it is full of hotels, casinos and private residences, there are some great Bahamas diving locations here.

  • James Bond Wrecks: This famous dive site consists of a mock-up of an airplane used as the Vulcan bomber in Thunderball and a tugboat, Tears of Allah, used in Never Say Never Again. These wrecks are situated in shallow water accessible for all certification levels.

4.Exuma Cays

A land and sea marine park since 1958, the Exuma Cays are a very special place with some of the best Bahamas diving opportunities and a fascinating history. 

  • Amberjack Reef is a former shark feeding site and it is still a great place to see reef sharks, big snappers, groupers and eagle rays in no more than 17 meters (50 feet) of water.
  • Dog Rocks: At the northern end of the Exumas, there is a site called Dog Rocks near Shipping Channel Cay. This site is very close to a deep water drop-off, and as such, can often throw up a few surprise visitors.

At Dog Rocks, a beautiful cathedral-esque swim through at about 12 meters (40 feet) starts the dive and is often filled with silversides (tiny bait fish) that attract many predators like bar jacks, lionfish and tarpon. As you exit the swim-through you are treated to a drop-off into deep cerulean blue water with huge delicate black corals and enormous sponges adorning the steep reef walls. Hammerheads and other shark species can often be seen here.

  • Major Cay is famous for its swimming pigs that greet visitors.
  • Normans Cay was once owned by Pablo Escobar (there is a crashed DC 10 plane that can be snorkeled just off the island).
  • Staniel Cay: If you visit Staniel Cay, then is it worth paying a visit to Thunderball Grotto where Sean Connery and co filmed the Bond movie many years ago.

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5.Long Island

Right toward the southern end of the Bahamas, Long Island is home to one of the most incredible natural features on the planet:

  • Dean’s Blue Hole is the deepest blue hole on the planet, over 200 meters (650 feet) deep! It is protected by a little limestone bay with alluring white sand beaches around the depths in the middle of the hole.

Dean’s Blue Hole is the location for an internationally acclaimed freediving competition each year where divers descend into the depths to test their limits. Never attempt to scuba dive into a cave-like environment without the proper training or equipment.

How to get to the Bahamas

The Bahamas are very easily accessed with many international flights from locations all over the world flying into Lynden Pindling International Airport. Miami and Fort Lauderdale are excellent hubs to travel from if you need to add a stopover in the US or are flying from the US directly. With flights being as short as 40 minutes, you are assured of starting your trip without jet lag or fatigue.

Bahamas Air and smaller private companies offer internal flights to different locations within the Bahamas. These short flights offer excellent opportunities to see the incredible beauty of the country from an aerial perspective before enjoying the waters below as a diver.

Speak to your accommodation provider or dive center within the Bahamas about the best routes or flight providers for your preferred Bahamas diving destination.

We think the Bahamas is the perfect location for your next scuba vacation!