Boasting over 500 different species of fish and over 40 types of coral, the vast ocean floor around the Caribbean in the deep turquoise clear waters of the Virgin Islands is a sight to behold. Adventurers eagerly dive a shipwreck, a reef or pier and immerse themselves in these waters that have a rich and colorful history of pirates and treasure. Come across a variety of fish like queen triggerfish, vibrant blue tang, spotted eagle rays, silvery horse-eyed jacks, creole wrasses, hawksbill, leatherback turtle, octopus, seahorses and so many more.
Are you ready? Check out these favorite diving spot!
#1. The Kodiak Queen, Virgin Gorda
The Kodiak Queen is one of five ships that survived the Pearl Harbor attack. The former U.S Navy fuel barge was sunk just off the coast of Long Bay in British Virgin Island and transformed into an artificial reef. There are bubble caves and gulleys near the southern edge of the beach you can explore. The abundant sea life combined with this hunk of ship makes this the best underworld site in the Caribbean.
#2. The Chimney, Great Dog
The Chimney with its beautiful coral-cup-encrusted archways are a sight to behold. Located west of the shore on Great Dog, the Chimney is said to have been Jacques Cousteau’s favorite dive site. It’s easy to see why. There is a spectacular show of color as a wide variety of fish like parrotfish, yellowtail snappers, angel fish, sergeant major and lots more congregate. Diving the Chimney has been likened to diving into a fish bowl with tropical fish of various sizes and colors. Catch some spotted rock lobsters on the other side of the narrow corridor. Explore the small boulders and canyons to find interesting marine life hiding in the crevices.
#3. The Wreck of the RMS Rhone, BVI
The RMS Rhône is probably the best dives in the BVI. This 310-foot Royal Mail Steamer was sunk in 1867 in a fierce hurricane. Most of the steamer is intact. The site is the only Marine National Park in the BVI which means it is protected enough to allow the marine life to thrive without too much influence. Barracuda, lobsters, octopus, turtles, morays and schools of various tropical fish have made a home for themselves in this hauntingly beautiful ship. Lots to see and learn.
#4. Butler Bay Wrecks, St. Croix
Located west of the Island of St Croix in the USVI, Butler Bay consist of two distinct wrecks: the 177-foot Rosa Maria and a 144-foot former oil tug-boat called Suffolk Maid. These wrecks provide a man made reef substrate with colorful coral and barrel sponges. The site is teeming with various species of fish. Regular fishes you are most likely to encounter include Mahogany snappers, Blackbar soldierfish and Creole wrasses.
There are over 75 premium dive spots in both the BVI and the USVI, no two dives are the same. The number and variety of diving spots means that there is something suitable for anyone whether they are a novice or seasoned diver.