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Scuba Diving In Montego Bay?
Here Are The Best Spots

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Scuba diving at sandalsScuba Diving In Montego Bay | Image Source: Sandals

By Venesha Johnson | Associate Writer

What is Montego Bay Jamaica known for? You probably know Montego Bay for being the vibrant second city, great beaches, Reggae Sumfest and fun nightlife, but I bet you had no idea that here in Montego Bay, we also have some of the best scuba diving spots in Jamaica.

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Where are the best scuba diving spots in Montego Bay? This by any means is not an extended list, but here are some of the best spots you should try.

1. The Arena/Spanish Anchor

The Arena/Spanish Anchor is a renowned dive site which is accessible by boat. It features depths ranging from 91 to 100 feet (28-30 meters). Situated on the west side of the Marine Park, this location offers you a unique diving experience with tunnels and caverns that require proficient buoyancy control. Divers can explore this site either as a straightforward deep dive or as a multilevel dive, each option providing a different perspective of the underwater landscape.

The highlight of this site is the large Spanish anchor located at a depth of 40 feet (12 meters). Recently moved to the park, this historical artefact is gradually becoming encrusted with marine life, including small sponges and brain coral. Nearby you will find an ancient arena-like sand patch at 70 feet (21 meters) that hosts diverse sea creatures such as furry sea cucumbers, upside-down jellyfish, and tobacco fish. The site also features tunnels leading to caverns adorned with black coral, sponges, and sightings of eagle rays, mutton snappers, and sometimes a nurse shark.

2. Widowmaker's Cave

Widowmaker's Cave is inspired by the James Jones novel “Go to the Widowmaker,” and is one of Montego Bay’s most famous dive sites. The cave, which is accessible at 80 feet below sea level, is shaped like a narrow tunnel filled with crevices and cavities. As you ascend through the 10-foot-wide chimney to 35 feet, you will be treated to views of wire coral with red polyps and walls covered in multicoloured sponges.

This site is a haven for underwater photographers and is teeming with marine life such as silvery blue bogas, glassy sweepers, schoolmaster snappers, balloonfish, trumpetfish, hamlets, wrasses, and parrotfish.

3. Basket Reef

Basket Reef is another spectacular site in Montego Bay, named for the large basket sponges that adorn its walls. This reef wall is teeming with diverse marine life, including black surgeons, parrotfish, Creole wrasses, and turtles. Occasionally, you may even spot dolphins. The reef's numerous crevices and caverns offer a rich variety of corals, sea fans, sea cucumbers, and cauliflower corals, making it a vibrant underwater ecosystem to explore.

4. Cayman Trench Wall

This one is more suitable for experienced divers. The Cayman Trench Wall is a must-visit, with depths exceeding 1500 feet (457 meters), it offers a dramatic underwater landscape of soft and hard corals in vibrant colours and varying sizes. The sheer drop and the wall’s biodiversity make for an exhilarating dive experience.

5. Chubb Reef

At a more moderate depth of 40 feet (12 meters), Chubb Reef provides a lively underwater environment. Here, divers can swim among schools of Bermuda chubs, grunts, snappers, and parrotfish. The reef's relatively shallow depth makes it accessible while still offering plenty of marine life to observe.

6. Airport Reef

Ideal for beginners, Airport Reef is a shallow finger reef. This site includes an aeroplane sunk at a depth of 50 feet (15 meters), creating an intriguing artificial reef that attracts a variety of marine species. The site’s manageable depth and interesting features make it a perfect spot for novice divers to hone their skills.

7. Doctor's Cave Reef

Doctor's Cave Reef, part of the Montego Bay Marine Park, is another excellent spot for beginners. This shallow dive site was established to protect the vibrant marine life thriving on the coral reef. Its accessibility and abundant underwater life make it a favourite for those new to diving.

8. The Point Reef

The Point Reef, starting at a depth of 60 feet (18 meters), is suited for intermediate and expert divers. This deep site is known for its wall diving opportunities and the presence of large fish. The dramatic underwater scenery and rich marine biodiversity make it a memorable diving destination.

These scuba diving spots in Montego Bay offer you a captivating mix of historical artefacts, vibrant marine life, and diverse underwater landscapes. Whether you're a seasoned diver or just starting, the underwater wonders of Montego Bay are sure to provide an unforgettable diving experience.

With that being said, are you ready to plan your trip to Jamaica? Is your budget a concern when it comes to planning a trip to Jamaica? If so, our ebook, Jamaica On A Budget, will definitely come in handy. Plus, to add to that you can book with us through Stay22 for some incredible savings and major discounts! Leaving you with more money in your pocket and more opportunities to have an incredible time when you get here.

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References & Sources For Scuba Diving In Montego Bay

  1. The Arena/Spanish Anchor - Jamaica | DiveBuddy.com. (n.d.). DiveBuddy.com. https://www.divebuddy.com/divesite/5572/arena-spanish-anchor-jamaica/
  2. Widowmakers Cave Diving | Explore the Amazing Underwater World - Divebooker. (n.d.). Divebooker.com. https://divebooker.com/widowmakers-cave-baz14859
  3. Widowmaker’s Cave: Montego Bay Attractions, Jamaica. (n.d.). https://www.jamaicascene.com/attractions/montego_bay/widowmakers_cave.php
  4. Montego Bay diving - Goodive.com. (n.d.). https://www.gooddive.com/jamaica-diving/montego-bay-diving.htm#:~:text=The%20Point%20Reef%20is%20a,side%20of%20the%20Marine%20Park
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