Scuba Diving in Eleuthera, Bahamas: Your Ultimate Guide to the Best Dive Sites, Diving Centers, and Liveaboards

Welcome to our ultimate scuba diving guide to Eleuthera, Bahamas - a hidden gem for scuba divers seeking to explore a unique underwater world. Eleuthera boasts crystal-clear waters, vibrant marine life, and an abundance of dive sites suitable for all levels of divers. In this guide, we'll cover everything you need to know to plan your perfect dive trip, including the best dive centers, liveaboards, and dive sites. Plus, we'll share the best time to visit this stunning destination and how to get there. Get ready to dive into the breathtaking underwater world of Eleuthera, Bahamas.

Recommendations - Diving Eleuthera

If you are looking for an unforgettable diving experience, Eleuthera in the Bahamas is the place to be. The best time to visit is from November to May, with the peak season being from December to April when the water is crystal clear and calm.

Liveaboard to Eleuthera

Liveaboard diving is the best way to explore the many dive sites that Eleuthera has to offer. We highly recommend the Bahamas Aggressor as it provides a luxurious liveaboard experience with all the necessary diving amenities. In addition, they also offer liveaboard trips to the Exuma Cays and Southwest Eleuthera.

A view from above of the Bahamas Aggressor liveaboard by a drone
The Bahamas Aggressor liveaboard

Local diving center

If you are staying on Eleuthera island, there are local diving centers available for your convenience. Ocean Fox Dive Center is a great option for those looking for a small and friendly dive shop located in Cape Eleuthera. They offer a variety of dive trips including shark dives and trips to the Great Wall.

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Best Liveaboards to Eleuthera

If you're planning a diving trip to Eleuthera, Bahamas, a liveaboard experience can provide you with the ultimate diving adventure. The luxury of being able to explore the best dive sites and untouched underwater landscapes in Eleuthera is unbeatable. In this section, we'll explore the best liveaboards to Eleuthera and the features that make them stand out, so you can choose the one that best suits your diving style and preferences.

It's important to keep in mind that when choosing a liveaboard to Eleuthera, Bahamas, most of them will offer dive trips to the Exuma Cays dive sites. Although some liveaboards will also include dives at the Eleuthera dive sites, this is subject to weather conditions and may not always be possible.

Liveaboard 1: The Aqua Cat

The Aqua Cat Liveaboard is the ultimate vessel for divers looking to explore the stunning Eleuthera dive sites in the Bahamas. With room for up to 30 guests, this luxurious catamaran offers spacious and comfortable accommodation with 11 cabins, each boasting individually controlled air conditioning, private bathrooms, and oversized beds. Families or groups of friends can take advantage of the twin cabins, which feature fold-down bunks that can sleep up to four guests.

The Aqua Cat's diving facilities are top-notch, with a spacious and well-equipped dive deck that provides ample space for divers to gear up and prepare for their underwater adventures. Nitrox is available for certified divers, allowing for longer bottom times and shorter surface intervals, while the dedicated camera station provides plenty of room for equipment. After a dive, divers can rinse off and clean their gear using the outside showers and separate u/w camera rinse.

Dining aboard the Aqua Cat is a gourmet experience, with a spacious restaurant serving a variety of meals and a choice of main entrees. The vessel can also cater to special dietary needs such as vegetarian, vegan, and gluten-free upon request. Social areas on the Aqua Cat include a large salon with an entertainment system and video editing area, an alfresco deck with hammocks and a BBQ, and a sun deck perfect for soaking up the tropical sunshine between dives.

The Aqua Cat is built for stability and comfort, providing a smooth ride even in choppy seas, making it a great choice for those prone to seasickness. With experienced dive masters and top-of-the-line equipment, divers can explore the pristine and diverse dive sites of the Exuma Cays and Eleuthera safely and with ease. Whether you're a beginner or an experienced diver, the Aqua Cat offers an unforgettable and luxurious diving experience in one of the world's premier diving destinations.

Price and availability: A trip with the Aqua Cat starts from USD 323 per day. The latest prices and availability of the Aqua Cat liveaboard can be checked here.

The Aqua Cat Liveaboard at the Exuma Cays and Eleuthera dive sites in the Bahamas
The Aqua Cat Liveaboard

Liveaboard 2: The Bahamas Aggressor

Indulge in the ultimate diving adventure with the luxurious Bahamas Aggressor liveaboard. With a length of 100-feet (30 mtr), this yacht offers year-round diving in the crystal-clear waters of the Bahamas, including the stunning Exuma Cays and Eleuthera. The Bahamas Aggressor provides comfort, safety, and stability throughout your journey with its wide beam and diesel-powered engines cruising at 12 knots. The boat accommodates up to 14 guests in privacy and comfort, featuring five deluxe staterooms and one quad stateroom with standard US outlets, USB ports, and climate controls for charging and temperature control.

The Bahamas Aggressor boasts top-notch facilities to ensure an unforgettable diving experience. Its large dive deck has individual dive lockers, a camera station with low-pressure air hoses, and two hot, fresh water showers. The vessel also features a roomy, air-conditioned salon and dining area with an entertainment system, a partially covered sundeck with loungers and a hot tub, and a shaded outdoor cocktail deck and lounge. Guests can enhance their underwater photos using the photo editing computer available onboard.

The Bahamas Aggressor also offers nightly entertainment options such as fish identification presentations, movies, and games, with guests encouraged to bring their favorite digital media to share. Additionally, a small library of books is available for exchange and fish identification books for reference. All meals, snacks, and beverages are provided to make your stay on The Bahamas Aggressor as comfortable and enjoyable as possible.

Price and availability: A trip with the Bahamas Aggressor to the Exuma Cays and Eleuthera, Bahamas, starts at USD 281 per day. The latest prices and availability of the Bahamas Aggressor can be found here.

A view of the Bahamas Aggressor Liveaboard in the Bahamas
The Bahamas Aggressor

Liveaboard 3: The Cat Ppalu

Discover the beauty of the Bahamas both above and below the water with the Cat Ppalu liveaboard. This stunning catamaran is perfect for groups, families, and friends who are seeking an adventure in paradise. With six private cabins that can accommodate up to 12 guests, the Cat Ppalu provides a comfortable and spacious environment for your Bahamas vacation.

Each cabin is fully air-conditioned and equipped with a sink and mirror for your convenience. Two bathrooms with freshwater showers are shared among the guests. The large dining area is perfect for enjoying delicious meals and sharing stories with your fellow travelers. The crew will serve three meals per day along with snacks, and they can cater to any special dietary requirements with advance notice.

One of the best features of the Cat Ppalu is its low draft, which allows for easy anchorage at uninhabited islands where you can enjoy a variety of watersports. Departing from Nassau every Saturday, the Cat Ppalu offers a six-night all-inclusive adventure to the Exuma Cays and Eleuthera. This trip includes up to 19 dives, with the opportunity to explore walls, blue holes, and up-close shark encounters. If diving isn't your thing, there are plenty of non-diving activities such as snorkeling, kayaking, stand-up paddleboarding, and hiking.

When you're not exploring the underwater world, you can relax on the large trampoline at the front of the boat and soak up the Bahamian sun while admiring the breathtaking views. The Cat Ppalu is the perfect way to experience the beauty of the Bahamas in comfort and style.

Price and availability: A trip with the Cat Ppalu to the Exuma Cays and Eleuthera, Bahamas, starts at USD 255 per day. The latest prices and availability of the Cat Ppalu can be found here. Besides offering ''charter only'' trips, check out the ''Dive the Bahamas'' trip.

The Cat Ppalu liveaboard at the Exuma Cays and Eleuthera dive sites in the Bahamas
The Cat Ppalu liveaboard

The Best Dive Sites of Eleuthera

Eleuthera, a stunning island in the Bahamas that offers divers a variety of sites to explore. From the exhilarating drift dive at The Current Cut to the vibrant marine life at Devil's Backbone and the artificial reefs of Cobia Cage and Train Wreck, there is an abundance of underwater experiences waiting to be discovered in this area.

When you opt for a liveaboard adventure, you can also explore many of these dive sites in conjunction with the Exuma cays. For more information about the Exuma Cays and the best dive sites to visit there, be sure to check out our Exuma Cays dive guide.

Dive site 1: The Current Cut

The Current Cut is one of the most exhilarating dive sites in Eleuthera, Bahamas, and an experience that should not be missed by any adventurous diver. This drift dive, located at the north side of the island, offers a thrilling ride through a narrow passage with an abundance of marine life, making it a must-visit spot for any avid diver.

The Current Cut is a natural cut through the island, where the water flows through at high speed, making it an ideal spot for drift diving. With a maximum depth of around 90ft (27m), the dive site has a current that can range from moderate to strong, depending on the tide. The dive site can be accessed from the northern or southern ends of the cut, and divers can expect water temperatures to be around 75°F (24°C) during the winter months and 85°F (29°C) during the summer months.

As for the marine life, divers can expect to see an array of colorful fish, including schools of barracudas, jacks, snappers, and groupers. Additionally, the cut is home to an abundance of soft and hard corals, sea fans, sponges, and other marine creatures such as lobsters, moray eels, and even sharks. Always look out for the big stuff in the blue such as sharks as they often make use of the currents.

Due to the strong currents, this dive site is recommended for experienced divers only. Divers should always check the tide and current charts before diving and ensure that they have the proper training and equipment for drift diving. Despite its challenging conditions, the Current Cut remains one of the most popular and rewarding dive sites in Eleuthera, providing a unique and unforgettable experience for any thrill-seeking diver.

Dive site 2: Cave Rock

Cave Rock is an exciting dive site in Eleuthera that offers a unique underwater experience. The site is known for its massive underwater boulders, which create an intricate maze of swim-throughs and caverns to explore. Divers can expect to dive to an average depth of around 60 feet (18 meters) with water temperatures ranging from 72°F (22°C) in winter to 84°F (29°C) in summer.

The diving conditions at Cave Rock can vary depending on the currents, which can range from mild to strong. The best time to dive here is during slack tide when the currents are calm, allowing divers to explore the swim-throughs with ease. The visibility is usually excellent, ranging from 60 to 100 feet (18 to 30 meters), providing excellent opportunities for underwater photography.

Marine life at Cave Rock includes a wide range of tropical fish, including angelfish, groupers, parrotfish, and snappers. Divers can also spot lobsters, crabs, and various species of moray eels hiding in the crevices. The site is also home to larger species such as reef sharks, barracudas, and eagle rays, which can often be seen cruising along the edge of the reef.

Overall, Cave Rock is a great dive site for intermediate to advanced divers looking for an exciting underwater adventure. The underwater topography, diverse marine life, and excellent visibility make it an unforgettable dive experience in Eleuthera.

Dive site 3: Monolith

Monolith is a popular dive site located in the crystal-clear waters of Eleuthera. This underwater wonder is a must-visit for all diving enthusiasts. The diving depth at Monolith ranges from 50-70 feet (15-21m) and the water temperature is usually around 75-80°F (24-27°C), making it an ideal dive spot for both beginner and experienced divers.

Monolith is characterized by its massive rock formation that drops steeply into the depths of the ocean. Divers can explore the large boulders and crevices that make up the monolith and discover a variety of marine life that inhabits the area. The site is home to an abundance of colorful tropical fish, including angelfish, parrotfish, and wrasses. Divers can also encounter larger creatures such as barracudas, groupers, and even reef sharks that occasionally swim by.

The site's unique rock formation also offers a thrilling dive experience, with swim-throughs and small caves to explore. The clear waters and visibility make it easy to navigate around the site and appreciate the incredible rock formations. The site is accessible by boat and is usually included in the itinerary of most diving centers and liveaboard tours that operate in Eleuthera.

Dive site 4: Devil's Backbone

Devil's Backbone is a shallow reef located in Eleuthera Island, Bahamas. This dive site is a must-visit for divers of all levels, especially those looking for an easy dive that offers plenty of opportunities to see a diverse array of marine life. The average diving depth here is around 20-40 feet (6-12 meters), which means that even beginner divers can safely explore the site.

The diving conditions at Devil's Backbone are generally calm and easy, with mild currents and good visibility that ranges between 60-100 feet (18-30 meters). The water temperature varies from 75-85°F (24-29°C) throughout the year, making it a perfect place for diving year-round.

As for the marine life, Devil's Backbone is home to a colorful and diverse array of fish, including barracudas, snappers, groupers, angelfish, and sergeant majors. Divers will also get a chance to see a variety of rays, such as stingrays and eagle rays, as well as eels and lobsters. Additionally, the shallow reef is covered in beautiful coral formations that add to the vibrant and stunning underwater scenery.

Dive site 5: Cobia Cage

Cobia Cage is a popular dive site located in the crystal-clear waters of Eleuthera Island, Bahamas. The dive site is an artificial reef made up of large concrete blocks and a steel cage that attract a variety of marine life, including the coveted cobia fish. Divers can explore the structure and observe the fish that have made it their home.

The depth at Cobia Cage ranges from 60 to 70 feet (18 to 21 meters) and water temperatures range from 78 to 84 degrees Fahrenheit (25 to 29 degrees Celsius). The diving conditions are typically calm, with good visibility and little to no current. In addition to cobia, divers can expect to see other species such as grouper, snapper, barracuda and angelfish. Cobia Cage is a great dive site for all levels of divers, from beginners to experienced divers looking for a unique experience.

Dive site 6: Tunnel Rock

Tunnel Rock is a popular dive site located off the coast of Eleuthera in the Bahamas, offering an exciting underwater adventure. Divers can expect to reach an average diving depth of 40-60 feet (12-18 meters), with clear and calm diving conditions.

The site features swim-through tunnels, coral gardens, and an abundance of marine life, including various species of tropical fish, moray eels, lobsters, and occasional sightings of sharks and rays. Divers can explore the vibrant coral formations and navigate through the tunnels while enjoying the colorful marine life that thrives in this area. Tunnel Rock is an ideal dive site for both novice and experienced divers seeking a unique underwater experience.

Best Diving Centers of Eleuthera

Eleuthera has a limited number of diving centers to choose from, but visitors can rest assured that the few that are available provide excellent service and a memorable diving experience. In this section, we will introduce some of the best dive centers on the island, each with its own unique offerings and specialties.

Diving Center 1: Ocean Fox Dive Center

Ocean Fox Dive Center is a PADI dive center located in the heart of the Cape Eleuthera Resort & Marina on the stunning island of Eleuthera in the Bahamas. With two boats available, including a custom-built 40-foot Loraquin dive boat that can accommodate up to 23 passengers or 10 divers with full equipment and 2 tanks, they are providing various trips including scuba diving.

All the top-quality dive gear is provided by Scubapro, ensuring you have everything you need to explore the underwater world. With a dock conveniently located right next to the shop, Ocean Fox can get you ready to go in just minutes.

Ocean Fox Dive Center on Eleuthera offers thrilling shark dives, including the popular chumsicle dive. During this dive, divers will witness up to 25 sharks feeding on a frozen bait ball, providing an unforgettable adrenaline rush. After the feeding frenzy is over, divers can search through the sand for shark teeth that have fallen out during the event. Ocean Fox Dive Center also provides other exciting trips, such as diving at the impressive "Great Wall" or snorkeling trips to explore the beautiful underwater world of Eleuthera. Whether you are a seasoned diver or new to the sport, Ocean Fox Dive Center offers a range of activities suitable for all levels of experience.

Best time to visit Eleuthera

The best time to visit and dive Eleuthera in the Bahamas is during the dry season which runs from November/December to mid-April. The weather during this time is typically warm and sunny with low humidity and little rainfall, making it ideal for diving. The water temperature ranges from around 75-80°F (24-27°C), which is comfortable for diving in a wetsuit. However, it is worth noting that this is also peak tourist season, so the island and dive sites may be busier.

During the wet season from mid-May to mid-November, the weather is more unpredictable with increased rainfall and higher humidity. This can make diving conditions less favorable due to reduced visibility and rougher seas. Additionally, this time of year is also hurricane season, which can bring strong winds and heavy rain. It's important to keep an eye on weather reports and be prepared for changes in conditions.

Overall, if you're looking for the best diving conditions, the dry season is the best time to visit and dive in Eleuthera.

How to get to Eleuthera

If you're planning a trip to Eleuthera, you might be wondering about the best ways to get there. Fortunately, there are several options available, ranging from commercial flights to private charters and ferries. In this section, we'll provide you with an overview of the different transportation options to help you plan your trip to Eleuthera with ease.

By Air

The easiest and most common way to get to Eleuthera is by air. There are several airports on the island, including North Eleuthera Airport (ELH), Governor's Harbour Airport (GHB), and Rock Sound International Airport (RSD). These airports are served by several airlines, including Bahamasair, Southern Air, and Pineapple Air, and are easily accessible from Nassau and other major cities in the Bahamas.

By Sea

Another option for getting to Eleuthera is by sea. Several ferry services operate between Nassau and Eleuthera, including Bahamas Ferries and Bahamas Fast Ferries. Private boat charters are also available for those who want to explore the island at their own pace.

by Cruise or Liveaboard

Eleuthera is a beautiful destination that can be reached via cruise ship or liveaboard adventure. Many major cruise lines, such as Royal Caribbean and Carnival, offer itineraries that include stops on the island, making it an easily accessible destination for travelers. However, it's important to check with the individual cruise lines or liveaboard operators for the latest information on their schedules and safety protocols.

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