Where to dive in April? 4 must-see destinations
by Kathryn Curzon
April is a particularly good month to take advantage of dry season conditions before the seasons change. There’s time to enjoy the Maldives endless blue skies, search for whale sharks at Belize, or explore the adventurous Southern Red Sea. Of you can just kick back, relax and sail the stunning Seychelles.
It’s the last month of the Maldives dry season, so now is the time to visit and make the most of flat seas, blue skies and crystal-clear waters.
The Central Atolls have calm sea conditions and low rainfall at this time of year. They offer a great mixture of Maldives dive highlights, including thrilling channel and pinnacle dives, vibrant reefs and numerous pelagics. These atolls are a good Maldives choice for experienced divers who want a challenge. Even better, you can leave your plane at Male and join a liveaboard safari without any long transfers.
If you’re looking for a quiet Central Atoll, dive North Male Atoll. It is less developed than other atolls and the reefs are in great condition. It’s one of the best atolls for manta rays and has eye-catching landscapes for underwater photographers to capture. Whilst you’re there, check out Victory Wreck. This 100-meter-long Singaporean cargo ship is a vibrant artificial reef within recreational dive limits.
Rasdhoo Atoll may be tiny but it is well-known thanks to the hammerhead sharks found there. The drop-off at Hammerhead Point attracts hammerheads to the shallows in the early morning, making this a perfect start to your day. Madivaru is a great place to dive for reef sharks, eagle rays and mobula rays, whilst a dive at Manta Block will see you in the company of graceful mantas and nurse sharks.
Egypt’s Red Sea
April is an ideal time of year to enjoy Egypt diving without the overwhelming heat of summer. It’s also the very beginning of the manta season.
St. John’s reef is an iconic Southern Red Sea dive area, with huge reefs and diverse landscapes. Dive there and you can explore plateaus, caverns and drop-offs whilst you search for pelagics. You can also head inshore for easier diving with less currents. There are plenty of reef sharks and pelagics, as well as thriving reefs busy with critters and surrounded by colourful reef fish.
The Tillis liveaboard offers a special Deep South Safari in April, exploring the best of St. John’s and surrounds.
A Daedalus liveaboard safari will see you diving a pristine offshore reef with strong currents and nutrient-rich waters. The reef is full of fish and there are plenty of pelagics cruising in the blue. Steep drop-offs attract sharks to the reef and you might even see a whale shark there. Mantas pass by and there are numerous trevally, tuna and turtles. Technical divers are well catered for, thanks to the Zealot wreck at 80 – 100 meters depth and an archway hiding in the deep.
Belize scuba diving is synonymous with the Blue Hole, but there is far more to this destination than meets the eye. With plunging walls, drop-offs and healthy reefs, there is something for every diver. Go Belize scuba diving in April and you can enjoy calm conditions, great visibility and whale sharks.
Whale sharks are usually spotted in deeper water in Belize, a few days before and after the full moon. Be sure to keep your eyes open for these gentle giants whenever you’re diving in the blue. Placencia is a great area for those hoping to see rays and whale sharks. Less visited than other parts of the reef, dive sites are still being discovered.
Liveaboard safaris typically include a visit to the Blue Hole, which sits within the UNESCO-listed Belize Barrier Reef. This huge sinkhole stretches across 0.25 miles, reaching around 145 meters down. It’s not just about experiencing the deep hole though. There is a coral-covered shelf around the Blue Hole, plus deep overhangs and stalactites patrolled by sharks.
Turneffe Atoll Reef is another Belize highlight, made up of mangrove islands that act as spawning habitat for fish. This marine reserve is known for wall and drift dives, with some of the best biodiversity in Belize. There are plenty of pelagics and you might get to see manatees and American saltwater crocodiles.
If you’re looking for a laid-back dive holiday this spring, the Seychelles could be for you. With numerous forest-covered islands and white sand beaches, it’s a paradise destination for dive and sail adventures. April is one of the best months for calm waters, meaning you can reach the most special remote dive sites.
The Sister Islands have pristine dive sites without any crowds and are only accessible by liveaboard diving. The coral reefs at Grande Souer are full of life and scenic, fringed by pink granite boulders. Petite Souer can only be accessed during calm weather and offers equally beautiful reef dives plus the chance to hike an uninhabited island. Nearby Coco Island is also worth visiting to see diverse fish life at what can only be described as a natural aquarium.
Fans of wreck diving will enjoy the main island of Mahé and its variety of wrecks. The Twin Barges is a great shallow night dive, whilst the coral-encrusted Dredger is surrounded by large schools of fish.
This article was written by divers and writers at LiveAboard.com