great blue hole belize scuba diving

5 Gnarly Places To Go Scuba Diving

Maybe you’ve jumped out of airplanes all over the globe, bungee-jumped the tallest bridges known to man or participated in some of the most insane adventure races. You’ve tapped into your inner adrenaline junkie on both land and air…but what about sea?

Goggle up Scuba Steve. Here are 5 of the world’s gnarliest places to go scuba diving.

Barrier Reef (Great Blue Hole), Belize

great blue hole belize scuba diving

Located off the northeast coast of Central America, what sets this dive spot apart is the Great Blue Hole, believed to be the largest sink-hole in the world. Checking in at roughly 1,000 feet wide and 400 feet deep, the Great Blue Hole formed out of a limestone cave that collapsed during the last ice age. Today, it is a hot spot for many divers that come for the unique marine life, stalactites, dripstone sheets, columns and warm waters that make diving year round a possibility. Jacques-Yves Cousteau himself declared it one of the best diving spots in the world. Who am I to argue with Cousteau?

The Great Barrier Reef, Australia

It would be blasphemy to leave The Great Barrier Reef of Australia off this list. Plus, I don’t want to piss off the Aussie’s. They’re the raddest people I know. The Great Barrier Reef extends 1,430 miles along the northeastern coast of Australia. It is so large that you can actually see if from outer space. Many elements attract divers – 1,500 shipwrecks, 6 species of turtles and the chance to see dolphins, whales, and porpoises. But if you are really looking for a rush, The Great Barrier Reef is home to over 125 species of sharks. Experienced divers will recommend the Osprey Reef  which provides beautiful scenery. If you’ve got kiddo’s diving with you, make sure to let them know they might find Nemo. The Great Barrier Reef is where this little guy lives.

Strait of Gubal, Egypt

ss thistlegorm scuba dive

The Strait of Gubal is located in the Red Sea just off the coast of Egypt. It is home to what many consider the top wreck dive site in the world, the SS Thistlegorm, a World War II British transport ship that was sunk by the Germans. What is so unique about this dive is that the sea has maintained unbelievable conditions of the wreck. Tanks, locomotives, army trucks, rifles, bikes and army gear is all completely visible. However, this is not the only visible ship wreck that can be found in the strait. There are dozens of others waiting to be explored.

Farallon Islands, San Francisco

Raise your hand if you’ve seen Jaws. Now raise your hand if you want to go swimming with him. Scuba diving in Farallon Islands off the coast of San Francisco is sure to give you that experience. The large Elephant Seal population attracts the car-sized Great Whites. This is the only place in the United States that you can cage dive with JAWS. This can cost you up to $770 for a one-day dive but could quite possibly be one of the more intense experiences you have ever had. If you’re concerned about not seeing one of the Great White beasts there are plenty of other shark breed including Hammerheads, Tiger sharks, and the Bull shark.

(Multiple Destinations), Thailand

If you want a smorgasbord of dive spots to tickle your fancy, look no further than Thailand, home to some of the most beautiful dive spots in the world. If gnarly scenery is your thing, then this is it! Thailand offers up some amazing spots in Phuket, Similan Islands, Hin Daeng, Khao Lak, Phi Phi Islands, Krabi, and Burma.

If danger is your middle name, one spot you might want to check out is Samaesan Hole, known as a “black, silty hole of death.” At 90-meters deep, it is the deepest dive in the Gulf of Thailand – sun rarely permeates its depths. The Samaesan Hole is a former military ammunitions dump ground that actually contains unexploded bombs. In case you didn’t catch that… UNEXPLODED BOMBS. There are not a ton of photos of this place due to the lack of sunlight that it gets. That just adds to the scary in my opinion.

Bonus: Nemo 33

nemo 33

Because Nerve Rush loves ya, lets hit you off with one more. Enter Nemo 33, the world’s largest diving pool. This is THE scuba diving center located in Uccle, Belgium. The diving structure contains 2.5 million liters of non-chlorinated spring water that houses caves, platforms, and windows so that visitors can scope the scene and view divers on the inside. Nemo 33 was built as a training center and is often used for film production. Cool fact about this dive spot – if you have the balls to take off your mask while underwater, you could actually drink the water. Don’t worry about having to hold you bladder either… plenty of places to go. Hmm, better not to drink the water, then.

photo credits: Dix_pics1 | pterantula | Eric Burgers | alfonsator | DrJohnBullas

Alan Perlman
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  1. J. Delancy says:

    Seriously? You’ve left off The Bahamas, which is closer to the U.S than both Belize and Australia. The free diving world champion lives here and practices in ONE of our blue holes.
    The underwater scenes of the James Bond movies are filmed here because of water clarity, and you left us off this list?

    I don’t even SCUBA because of a medical condition and this is what I can see just while snorkeling:

  2. Justin says:

    The Bahamas is a beautiful place to dive. Can’t argue with your there. Nice pic to brotha!

  3. Gordy says:


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