Liveaboard Diving in Australia is considered to be world class. With so much coastline, and natural wonders such as the Great Barrier Reef it’s easy to understand why divers are so eager to visit.
The Eastern Australia coastline is regarded as the most prolific area in terms of liveaboard scuba diving tours. You can choose anywhere from a single night to 7-night liveaboard trips.
Eastern Australia, particularly the northeastern coastline of Australia, offers tropical water diving conditions. The world famous Great Barrier Reef system lies of the eastern coast and Cairns is the hub from where liveaboards depart.
This long coastline offers tropical scuba diving in the north and temperate in the south. The northwestern region boasts excellent dive sites including Rowley Shoals and Scott and Seringapatam Reefs.
Christmas Island is situated over ____ from the Australian mainland and is actually closer to Indonesia than Australia. The island is a volcanic atoll with a huge bird population and covered by tropical rainforest. Diving at Christmas Island is for advanced divers as most dives are sheer wall dives.
Cocos Islands offer magnificent encounters with pelagic species and boasts a great number of excellent dive sites, although access to many depends on the weather.
Rowley Shoals lie approximately 175 miles (280km) off the northern coastline of Western Australia. Liveaboard trips generally depart from Broome in the Kimberley region.
The reefs are actually coral atolls, formed some 10 million years ago when the continental shelf subsided and coral growth began. Today the area is well known in the dive community and attracts thousands of scuba divers per year.
The sheer western walls of the atolls plummet to over 400m (1310ft) to the ocean floor. Scuba divers can often encounter brilliant marine life as they gaze out into the blue tropical waters.
Rowley Shoals was the subject of marine surveys in 1982 that resulted in the discovery of over 340 new fish species to the record books in the Western Australian Museum.
Scott and Seringapatam Reefs
Scott Reef and Seringapatam Reef sit 250 miles northeast of Rowley Shoals in the Indian Ocean and, of course, are also best accessed by liveaboard.
The marine life, as you’d expect is remarkably similar to that of Rowley Shoals. However sea-snakes are everywhere on the reefs. In fact this area is considered to have the largest sea snake population on the planet. These beautiful creatures can be seen on almost every dive as they decorate the underwater landscape meandering across the reef in groups of up to 20.
Water temperature on dives can be around 25°ree;C on occasion, although the average is around 29°ree;C
Ningaloo Reef is actually the longest fringing reef on the planet. This vast reef extends for over 160 miles (260km) along the west coast from Exmouth to Coral Bay area. In places the reef is surprisingly close the the shoreline, often just less than 200m. At it’s furthest it is almost 5 miles from shore.
Ningaloo reef is a popular tourist attraction. There are annual visits from both whalesharks and humpback whales
Whaleshark season is considered to be between March and June each year. Whalesharks are sighted regularly at Ningaloo Reef and are one of the main attractions for scuba divers. They come here to feed on the vast amounts of plankton, a result of annual coral spawn between March and June each year.
Humpback whale-watching tours are scheduled between August and October as these magnificent creatures migrate through these waters as they head south after giving birth to their calves in the warmer northern region.
In addition to annual visits from large pelagic species the numerous lagoons and shallow dive sites scattered along the reef also provide some excellent diving and an abundance of reef life. Over 500 fish species and almost 300 coral species can be found here. Turtles are also sighted frequently as they have many nesting grounds along the reef. Manta Rays are also frequently seen in the waters of surrounding Ningaloo.
Best Time To Dive
Liveaboard diving in Australia is mainly confined to the Great Barrier Reef and Coral Sea regions, although there is good diving to be had in other parts of the country.
There are a number of vaccinations that are required for travel to Australia.