If you want to turn your passion into a profession, the Divemaster certification represents the first rung on the diving professional ladder. The course, which lasts from three weeks to six months, qualifies you to work as a dive guide and assist instructors. With unlimited access to local dive sites, it's also one of the best ways to rack up your dive count in a short timeframe. So, if you're scouting out the best destinations to get your Divemaster certification, read on to discover our top five destinations to 'go pro'…

Bali, Indonesia

The sprawling Indonesian archipelago is well-known among divers for its rich biodiversity. Located in the centre of the Coral Triangle, this country boasts unlimited world-class diving across the archipelago. While there are several great destinations to get your Divemaster certification, Bali's eclectic mix of dive conditions has given this island a cult-like following among budding divemasters.

Bali's northern shore is bathed in warm tropical currents, while its southern dive sites receive cooler water from the southern oceans. This means that throughout your training, you'll get to experience and master diving in strong currents and cool thermoclines. You'll also get to trade in the office for healthy soft coral reefs and the world-famous WWII USAT Liberty wreck - all while mingling with manta rays and mola mola.

Playa Del Carmen, Mexico

Playa del Carmen, Mexico

Playa del Carmen, sitting between Cancun and Tulum in Mexico's Riviera Maya, rests on the shores of some of Mexico's best diving. When it comes to Divemaster training, learning to lead groups while drift diving in Cozumel will teach you group control, while fun diving in the cenotes (inland sinkholes) will teach you the importance of a fun-yet-firm briefing. Local dives alongside nurse sharks and bull sharks provide opportunities for mapping projects and honing your fish identification skills. Budding divemasters who complete their course during the summer months can also tick off whale sharks from the bucket list.

Above the waves, Playa del Carmen is a two-hour drive from the Maya ruins at Chichén-Itzá, an hour's drive from Tulum and a half-hour ferry ride from Cozumel, making it the perfect base to discover the Yucatan Peninsula topside charms.

The Red Sea, Egypt

For Europeans seeking destinations closer to home, Egypt's Red Sea ticks all the boxes. Famed for its endless visibility, diverse marine life and dramatic drop-offs, the Red Sea offers excellent warm-water diving and is just a four-hour flight from the UK.

Hurghada, sitting just below the entrance to the Suez Canal, is one of Egypt's best destinations to get your Divemaster certification. It has access to plenty of world-class wrecks, including the SS Thistlegorm, the MV Salem Express and the Rosalie Moller, along with a variety of local reef dives to explore. You'll have the opportunity to help divers tick off their bucket list while diving at the aptly named Dolphin House, while the shallow house reefs and shore dives are perfect for mapping and learning how to guide night dives.

No stint in Egypt would be complete without uncovering this country's rich history and culture. Dry days can be spent in Luxor, dubbed the 'world's greatest open-air museum', where you can explore ancient temples and the Valley of the Kings. Just remember to bring your training manual with you to read en route...

Lizard Island, Australia

Lizard Island, Australia

With koalas and kangaroos to keep you company on land and plenty of reef sharks, turtles and rays ready to greet you below the waves, Australia's balance of excellent diving and topside charms makes it one of the top destinations to get your Divemaster certification - or, as the local put it, your 'divemaster ticket.'

Lizard Island, located in tropical Queensland, lies farther north than bustling Cairns and Port Douglas. Aside from offering a refuge from throngs of tourists, its fortuitous location atop the Great Barrier Reef means you can maximize your underwater time with minimal travel. Completing your Divemaster course at this private island paradise will also grant you unlimited access to the sites in Lizard Island National Park, as well as the world-class sites scattered around Cod Hole and the Ribbon Reefs.

Malapascua, The Philippines

Another contender from the Coral Triangle, the Philippines boasts a slew of world-class diving destinations to get your Divemaster certification. However, Malapascua holds a winning trump card: thresher sharks. For those who don't mind a pre-dawn wake up, this island is one of the few places in the world where divers are virtually guaranteed to see thresher sharks at Monad Shoal.

While thresher sharks usually prefer the deep open ocean, these long-tailed beauties regularly visit Monad Shoal for an early morning spa session at the cleaning stations. Aside from thresher sharks, divers can also see giant manta rays.,

Closer to shore, the local sites are ideal for honing your skills in spotting more cryptic critters. Pygmy seahorses, flamboyant cuttlefish and frogfish will likely be o your guests' wish lists, and you'lll learn how to maximise your chances of returning to shore with a boat full of beaming smiles.