Time flies, doesn't it? At the beginning of the year there's the resolution-fuelled vigour of dry January and flash-in-the-pan health kicks. Next up is nature's awakening in spring, followed by the rare but welcome heatwaves of summer (this year, anyway). And before you know it there's the oh-my-gosh-how-is-it-already-October panic and sudden realisation that there are just three short months left to use up your annual holiday allowance. That's where we come in; as your travel guardian angel(fish) we've come up with some of our favourite diving destinations to end your year with a splash.
Dive Between Continents: Iceland
You'll need your dry suit certification, which we can arrange, but you'll be rewarded with one of the most unique dive sites in the world: Silfra. Located in Thingvellir National Park just outside of Reykjavik, Silfra is the only place in the world you can dive between two continental plates in the clearest water we've laid eyes upon. Add to that weird cold water creatures (google: wolf fish) and sprinkle on top nature-at-its-finest land adventures and you've got the whole package. We didn't even mention the northern lights.
Shore-ly Not: Egypt
Only a hop, skip and a jump from the UK (or five-and-a-half hour flight), The Oberoi Sahl Hasheesh has one of the best house reefs we've come across, with crystal clear visibility, plentiful marine life and hard and soft corals right into the sunlit shallows.
Let’s Get Fishy: Oman
Oman's cup runneth over when it comes to the quantity of fish in its waters, and the Daymaniyat Islands are particularly fishy. Hit the seas from Muscat and watch dolphins fly through your wake before diving Daymaniyat's reefs, which are carpeted in hard and soft corals, topped with plumes of fish and turtles, rays and reef sharks.
An Octopus Love Affair: The Philippines
A brief love affair is happening in the Philippines. Or specifically, it's octopus mating season. Witness this fascinating spectacle in Dumaguete (as well as the beautiful, mesmerising mandarin mating dance). But with the season from October to November, there's no time like the present to book a last-minute sojourn.
Turtle-y Awesome: Mozambique
There's nothing more magical than witnessing a female turtle shuffle ashore to lay her legs, especially under a blanket of stars on a deserted beach. Head to Azura Quilalea Private Island in the Quirimbas Archipelago and you'll see just that as green, hawksbill and leatherbacks nest on the aptly named Turtle Beach.
Cousteau-ly Caribbean: St Vincent & the Grenadines
If a Cousteau shop drops, you know the diving will be good. Private island paradise Petit St Vincent houses the Jean-Michel Cousteau Caribbean Diving Centre and you can expect drift dives, walls, wrecks, drop-offs, reefs and even an underwater volcano.
Raja’s Competition: Indonesia
For those looking for a flavour of Raja Ampat but without the crowds, Kalimaya Dive Resort is a little slice of heaven. Located in the Coral Triangle in East Sumbawa, this intimate resort has been designed with divers in mind, and boy does it deliver (think muck & macro diving, current diving, and coral diving).