Whether you consider yourself a solo or a single diver, there are many good reasons that make us embrace scuba diving on our own. While the buddy system is the general way to practice our favourite underwater sport safely, I can assure you that it won’t be a problem to explore the most exciting parts of the ocean even on your own. Here is a complete guide to scuba diving as an independent solo traveller, from where to find dive buddies to the best budget destinations.
How to travel as a solo scuba diver?
My diving blog is all about my experiences as a solo traveller exploring the world’s best diving spots. In this regard, I gathered information and feedback about the best way to make the most of this experience and meet like-minded friends at the same time:
- 7 tested ways to find a dive buddy
- Top 15 tips to be a good dive buddy
- The 5 truths about my solo scuba diving travels
- 5 Benefits of travelling alone for your diving holiday
- 4 disadvantages of travelling alone on your diving holidays
- Is it safe to travel alone?
- All my best safety tips for solo travellers
Where to go scuba diving?
There are so many scuba diving destinations to choose from! Depending on your experience, you might consider aspects of budget, safety or distance from home to make the best choice for you. But first, it’s good to have a general understanding of where the best diving in the world is:
- World Dive Map
- The best diving in Europe
- The best diving in America and the Caribbean
- The best diving in Asia-Pacific
- The best diving in the South Pacific
- The best diving in Africa and the Middle East
If you haven’t been travelling solo yet and are concerned about feeling homesick, you may consider travelling close to home and/or going for local diving.
In Europe, the best local destinations are:
- Spain, especially diving in Tenerife, Gran Canaria and the Costa Brava
- Malta, especially Gozo Island
- France, especially Marseille and the French Riviera
- Scotland, especially diving in Scapa Flow
In America, the best local destinations are:
- Hawaii, especially Maui and Kona islands
- Florida, especially the Florida Keys and the Northern Springs
If you have already tried solo travel before but still need to take experience, why not try these exotic long-haul destinations amongst the safest in the world?
- Japan, especially diving in Okinawa and the Izu Peninsula
- French Polynesia, especially Tahiti and the atoll of Fakarava
- The Galapagos Islands (note, however, safety can be an issue in the rest of Ecuador)
If you feel more adventurous and are looking to travel on a budget to dive as much as possible while being in a country where it is relatively easy to travel to, South-East Asia is almost unbeatable as one of the cheapest diving destinations:
- Indonesia, especially diving in Bali
- Thailand, especially diving in Koh Tao
- The Philippines, especially diving in Malapascua
Preparing a scuba diving trip to Bali
The island of Bali in Indonesia remains my favourite place to go on a scuba diving holiday thanks to the beauty of its nature, its fascinating culture and incredible diving, without mentioning it’s one of the most affordable scuba diving destinations.
Before booking a trip to Bali, here are the basics you need to check:
- Things to know before going to Bali
- Planning a trip to Bali
- How to go to Bali
- How to get around Bali
- Bali climate
- Bali water temperature
- Where to stay in Bali?
Regarding diving in Bali, I wrote in-depth articles with plenty of pictures to let you understand what to expect:
- Diving in Bali: a first-timer guide
- My top 15 dive sites in Bali
- When is the best time to dive in Bali?
- Diving in Nusa Lembongan: mission mola-mola
- Diving in Tulamben: the legend of the Liberty shipwreck
- Diving in Amed: the charm of a jukung dive
- Diving in Menjangan Island: Bali coral wonderland
- The full list of dive shops in Bali
Finally, if you wonder what to do after diving in Bali, you’ll find detailed guides to find inspiration about the best things to do as a scuba diver in Bali:
- 2 weeks in Bali: my ultimate road trip itinerary for scuba divers
- Fun things to do in Bali: my 15 favourite activities
- Bali itinerary 3 days / 5 days / 7 days / 10 days
- The 5 reasons I fell in love with Bali
Preparing a scuba diving trip to Hawaii
Hawaii, and especially the island of Maui, was one of my most memorable dive trips, even if it wasn’t my cheapest one. I scuba dived inside the submerged crater of a volcano, inside lava tubes and even at night with a ballet of manta rays.
Regarding diving in Hawaii, I wrote in-depth articles with plenty of pictures to let you understand what to expect:
- Diving in Maui: a first-timer guide
- Should you snorkel or scuba dive in Molokini Crater?
- Shore diving in Maui: Hawaii’s best-kept secret
- The Carthaginian II: wreck diving in Maui
- Manta ray night dive in Kona
- Diving in lava tubes in Hawaii: will you dare to do it?
- Shore diving in Honaunau, Big Island
Finally, if you wonder what to do after diving in Hawaii, you’ll find detailed guides to find inspiration about the best things to do as a scuba diver in Hawaii:
- Scuba diving in Hawaii: my ultimate 2-week itinerary
- Fun things to do in Hawaii: my 11 favourite activities
Come back for more, I will soon add dive travel planning guides for the Galapagos, Polynesia and Japan!