Indian Ocean Diving: An Overview

Islands. There's something strangely comforting about holidaying in 'splendid isolation', and while that phrase originally applied to the British Isles, some rather more sunny examples exist in the Indian Ocean.

Neill and Louisa are here to help give you the inside track.

Why we think you’ll love it

  • The whitest of white sands and the bluest of blue seas.
  • Mantas, whale sharks and more in one of our favourite diving destinations, the Maldives.
  • Some of the swankiest hotels in the world in the Seychelles.
  • The perfect winter sun destination.
More information

Our Guide to Indian Ocean Diving Holidays

There are certainly plenty to choose from, ranging from atolls of thousands of tiny palm-fringed coral islands in the Maldives to the more substantial (and considerably more vertical) volcanic outcrops of Mauritius and neighbouring Réunion and the granitic gems of the Seychelles.

All of the above are perfect for honeymooners, with some of the world's finest hotels in situ, but the appeal is far broader than just for those in the first flush of post-wedded bliss. Families will adore the slick service for all ages at the resorts of Mauritius, while divers can enjoy some of the very best Indian Ocean diving in the Maldives.

If you were lucky enough to dive the Maldives a dozen years ago, you would have found them utterly spectacular. In 1998 they were devastated by El Niño, which is said to have destroyed 95 per cent of the region's coral. However, the coral is making a comeback and the quantity and diversity of marine life remains magnificent. Add to this a collection of the finest hotels in the world and you have the makings of an incredible holiday. Here there are difficult decisions to be made simply because the quality of accommodation on offer is so impressive. Several of our team have travelled throughout the islands and can recommend the best option for you, from family favourites to dive destinations or honeymoon hangouts.

Meanwhile the Seychelles islands are just downright spectacular. You can see why this region remains so popular.


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Original Highlight

Diving and snorkelling with more manta rays than I could count at Hani Faru Bay in Baa Atoll in the Northern Maldives. It is one of the best spots for mantas anywhere on Earth.

Louisa, Original Diver

More helpful tips

Top picks for Indian Ocean

Picture of a surfer on palm tree

Maldives

Indian Ocean

The Maldives is a world-class diving destination, particularly if you like diving with big fish. Above the waves you find pure white sand, blue seas and world-class hotels. What's not to like?

Where to go

Maldives
Picture of Resort in the central atolls Maldives

Central Atolls

Maldives

The islands, hotels and diving of the central atolls are all first-class.

Where to go

Central Atolls
Picture of beach and turquoise water Northern Atolls

Northern Atolls

Maldives

Choose the right season and this is the place for mantas and whale sharks.

Where to go

Northern Atolls
Picture of Mulaku Atoll Maldives

Southern Atolls

Maldives

Venture south to uncharted territories and you are in for a treat.

Where to go

Southern Atolls
Soneva Fushi

Soneva Fushi

Maldives

If Robinson Crusoe was in hotel development, he would have built Soneva Fushi. A luxury hideaway on the island of Kunfunadhoo in the Baa Atoll reached by a half-hour scenic seaplane flight from the sanctity of the private lounge in Malé, the only international airport.

Where to stay

Soneva Fushi
Dining at Four Seasons Landaa Giraavaru, luxury hotel in the Maldives

Four Seasons Landaa Giraavaru

Maldives

Landaa Giraavaru in Baa Atoll, with its verdant, beach-fringed coral islands, is a quintessential Maldivean paradise.

Where to stay

Four Seasons Landaa Giraavaru
Picture of Massage Treatment from Four Seasons Explorer

Four Seasons Explorer

Northern Atolls

Launched in 2002 the Four Seasons Explorer is a 128-ft catamaran – a floating Four Seasons basically. Cruising the central and northern atolls, this is one of the best liveaboards in the world.

Where to stay

Four Seasons Explorer
Park Hyatt Hadahaa, luxury hotel in the Maldives

Park Hyatt Hadahaa

Maldives

At least 10km away from any other inhabited island, sitting on an untouched atoll, surrounded by one of the most beautiful reefs you will find in the tropics sits the Park Hyatt Hadahaa. There are few better or more impressive havens to be found in the Maldives.

Where to stay

Park Hyatt Hadahaa
Baros Maldives, luxury hotel in the Maldives

Baros Maldives

Maldives

Baros Maldives is an immaculate resort on a private, palm-fringed island surrounded by a shallow lagoon.

Where to stay

Baros Maldives
Picture of a Water Villa at Kuda Huraa

Four Seasons Kuda Huraa

Central Atolls

Experience luxury and impeccable service with excellent diving at the Four Seasons Kuda Huraa that occupies a private coral island in the Central Maldives.

Where to stay

Four Seasons Kuda Huraa
Aerial view of Constance Halaveli Resort, luxury hotel in the Maldives

Constance Halaveli Resort

Maldives

The Constance Halaveli Resort in the Maldives has villas either on stilts over a beautiful lagoon or on the pristine beach.

Where to stay

Constance Halaveli Resort
Fregate Island

Fregate Island

Seychelles

Frégate Island Private, named after the graceful bird, is a near-perfect, 740-acre private island in the Seychelles, accommodating a maximum of 40 guests. This is the closest you will ever come to your own private island and proves you can have your eco cake and eat it, at a price!

Where to stay

Fregate Island
North Island

North Island

Seychelles

This small, private island - just a mile long by half a mile across - was abandoned in the 1970s following the collapse of the coconut industry. Now home to one of the planets most luxurious and unusual island lodges, North Island is home to just 11 vast and truly original suites.

Where to stay

North Island

The trip was amazing!! Massive success and far exceeded our high expectations. Absolute proof that Original Travel's specialised high touch approach is hugely value additive to the discerning traveller!

Jake

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