Scuba Diving in Belize: The Experience of a Lifetime
Even for those who have never been scuba diving before, this activity is a must when visiting Belize. The country has some of the most spectacular diving sites in the world. There are multiple types of coral reefs to explore. During peak season, water temperatures are extremely comfortable and visibility is excellent. You will find one fringing reef close to the shore at Ambergris Caye, where you can actually see the coral above the water. This area is ideal for snorkeling. Another type of coral reef you’ll discover is the patch reef.
Belize has multiple patch reefs, some large, some small. The area known as Mexico Rocks near Ambergris Caye is a popular patch reef. Faroe and barrier reefs are other types you can explore, with amazing coral, seagrass and undersea life. Then there are the coral atolls, of which Belize has three. They are extremely popular because of the incredible diversity they offer. One popular atoll is Lighthouse Reef. It is the smallest of the atolls at 25 miles in length, but is a wonderful area to dive because of the incredible reef rim and the sea creatures who live there. Turneffe Islands atoll is the largest and offers fantastic diving from the southern point. It is only slightly larger than Lighthouse Reef at 30 miles long.
The most famous atoll has the nickname of the Blue Hole, the most famous coral atoll in Belize. If you dive anywhere in Belize, this area should be the place. The Blue Hole is near Ambergris Caye like many of the other reef developments. From an aerial view, it is actually a very distinct blue colored circle. It makes up a portion of the Belize Barrier Reef Reserve System which is a World Heritage Site, an honor of great distinction. The water in this area is clear and moderate, and the undersea life is amazing. Here you will find quite a few shark species, including the nurse shark, hammerhead, Blacktip shark and Caribbean Reef shark. Groupers and other exotic fish also make their home in the Blue Hole area. You can choose to dive from either the north side or the south side of the Blue Hole.
If scuba diving in Belize is up your alley but you don’t have any experience, there are lessons offered and guided excursions with professionals that are by your side the entire time. With a little instruction you can be scuba diving in a short amount of time. You’ll be glad you did, because the underwater view in this area of the world is nothing short of spectacular. It is something not everyone gets to do, so if you get the opportunity to go scuba diving when visiting this beautiful country by all means do so. In addition to scuba diving and snorkeling, other water activities in Belize include manatee watching tours by boat, bird watching tours by boat, fishing and surfing to name just a few.