In Heritage and Culture
India is a large country and with 8000 kilometres/5000 miles of coastline you’d expect scuba diving opportunities to abound. But, India also encompasses a variety of islands, both in the Andaman and Arabian Seas, that offer incredible underwater diversity and liveaboard possibilities. Goa, the smallest and richest state on India’s west coast, has easy access to the Arabian Sea. Diving off Goa includes gliding over lush coral gardens, pinnacles, and a variety of shipwrecks. Lakshadweep is a remote archipelago off India's southwestern coast just above the Maldives and offers colorful reefs, overhangs, swim-throughs and big fish action. The remote Andaman and Nicobar Islands, between India and Thailand, boast vibrant coral reefs, huge schools of fish and pristine conditions. Pondicherry, on India’s eastern coast, has untouched and largely unexplored reefs and wrecks. In this populous country, you’ll find underwater exploration as intriguing as exploring India’s rich heritage and culture.
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Visibility – The outlying islands of Lakshadweep and Andaman archipelago typically have the best visibility ranging from 10-45 metres/30-150 feet. Off Goa, expect visibility ranging from 5-11 metres/15-35 feet. Pondicherry dive sites offer visibility from 5-20 metres/15-70 feet.
Water Temperature – Water temperatures average 27-28°C/80-82°F off the Andaman Islands, Goa and Lakshadweep. Pondicherry water temperatures range from 26-30°C/78-84°F.
Weather – All of southern India is within the tropics, so generally it's hot year-round. The peak season in the Andamans runs from November through April. Monsoons frequently shut down diving in June and July. Diving Goa is perhaps best October through May. May through November is ideal for diving Lakshadweep. Pondicherry’s peak dive season is January through June and then September through November, although diving is available all year.
Featured Creatures – You'll find the typical Indian Ocean reef fish, as well as mantas, groupers, turtles and dugongs in the shallows. In Lakshadweep, you can also find manta ray cleaning stations, along with white-tip reef, grey reef and guitar sharks.
Recommended Training – Take the PADI Deep Diver and Drift Diver courses to be prepared for the fabulous wall diving. The PADI Wreck Diver course will get you ready for exploring the diverse wrecks. The AWARE – Coral Reef Conservation course will help you appreciate the marine protected areas and healthy reefs.
Language – Hindi is the major language and there are 18 other official dialects. English is, however, widely spoken.
Currency – Indian Rupee. Credit cards are widely accepted in resort areas and cities.
Major Airports – India's major ports of entry include Chhatrapati Shivaji International Airport in Mumbai, Indira Gandhi International Airport in New Delhi, Bengaluru International Airport in Bengaluru, Rajiv Gandhi International Airport in Hyderabad and Chennai International Airport in Chennai.
Electricity – 230 volts, 50Hz. Internet is widely available
Topside Attractions – India is a large country with so many historic and cultural sites (Taj Mahal for one) that it would take years to fully explore. Along the coast, you’ll find all kinds of watersports including waterskiing and surfing. Head inland and you can trek through jungles or hike up mountains.