Learning to Dive in the Bahamas

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Lizzie Lau

Are you looking for someplace to get your SCUBA certification? I got certified in the Bahamas back in 1992, the week before Hurricane Andrew. The reefs are gorgeous and the conditions are excellent for learning to dive in the Bahamas. There are dive sites for every level, from beginner to advanced, the shallow reefs with little to no current and exceptional visibility make for a stress-free environment.

My daughter has been asking to get her SCUBA certification. She’s been swimming underwater with a mermaid tail since she was 4, and is a terrific snorkeler. She’s about to turn 10 which is the minimum age for getting a certification, so I’ve been looking at places to take her and I can’t stop thinking about my own experiences in the Bahamas. I did most of my open water course at a dive shop near my home and completed the open water dives in the Bahamas. I was able to do two dives a day all week long and really get comfortable with the skills. During my first week in the Bahamas, I was able to dive in a blue hole, on a wreck, participate in a shark feeding dive, and see more underwater life than I ever thought possible. When you book your trip to the Bahamas, make sure the resort offers one of the following options.

dive with turtles in the bahamas

Referral Courses

You don’t have to waste part of your vacation sitting in a classroom if you plan ahead and do all the classroom and pool sessions at home. That way, when you get to the Bahamas you can get in the water right away and get certified quickly so you can enjoy the diving. Students who learn at home over the course of a couple of weeks usually have a much better grasp of the complexities of dive theory than those who try to cram it all into a few days at a resort where they are also trying to enjoy themselves. You will still have to prove to your instructor in the Bahamas that you know the material since some people take the course at home and then wait months before they complete it. Contact your resort ahead of time or one of the island dive shops to be certain about what paperwork you need to bring.

dive on wrecks in the bahamas

Resort Course

If you’re hesitant to sign up for a course, but think you want to give it a try, there is a Discover Scuba Resort Course where you can spend time one on one with an instructor to get briefed on the basics, then try it with all the gear in a pool or shallow water you can stand up in. Once you and the instructor feel confident, you will do an open water dive. It’s the perfect way to find out if diving is for you with very little time and money commitment. Many resorts will credit this course toward the open water certification if the student decides to take the full course. Students usually need to be at least 10 years old to try it.

dive in the bahamas


Most island resorts offer Snuba excursions. A mashup of snorkel and SCUBA, Snuba is an underwater breathing system developed and patented by a company in Florida. Very similar to SCUBA diving in that the swimmer uses fins, a diving mask, weights and breathes through a regulator, but instead of wearing a BCD and compressed air tank, the air is delivered by a long hose from tanks or a compressor on the surface. No SCUBA certification is required because the swimmer is always accompanied by a professional guide. There is, however, a brief lesson on using the equipment safely.

Snuba is perfect for people who don’t want to learn to SCUBA dive but still want to enjoy close-up views of the beautiful reefs.

Have you considered learning to dive in the Bahamas?

Are you looking for someplace to get SCUBA certified? I recommend learning to dive in the Bahamas because of the gorgeous reefs and excellent conditions. #thebahamas #travel

Learning to Dive in the Bahamas

16 thoughts on “Learning to Dive in the Bahamas”

  1. First time hearing about SNUBA, this sounds more my pace than scuba diving. The Bahamas is a beautiful place to learn to dive. Congrats to your daughter for wanting to get certified. I’m going to look into SNUBA the next time I’m by the beach. Thanks.

  2. The bahamas would be one of the best places to learn how to dive! There’s just so much sea life there that you can experience and explore. This is definitely worth checking out!

  3. oh ok i def want to come with you next time ha this seems incredible and def something id love to check out my own bucket list someday!

  4. Scuba diving sounds like so much fun. I think it would be an amazing experience. One day I hope to be able to do this too.

  5. That sounds like a fun adventure. I would love to do this someday but I have some medical issues that may hold me back, we shall see if it is in the cards for me. Until then, I will live vicariously through your experience. Thanks for sharing!

  6. The Bahamas! I can’t wait to cross this sought-after destination from my bucket list. I bet learning how to scuba dive would be the icing on the cake for me.

  7. No greater place to learn diving than in Bahamas. There is so much to see and explore right over there. Would love to give it try.

  8. This looks like so much fun! I bet it’s great to learn how to dive in the Bahamas. So much sealife to see, too. Glad you shared the photos.

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