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The Best Bahamas Liveaboards

INTRO

Ahh, the Bahamas – white sand, year-round tropical weather, and just about the best scuba diving in the world. We’re sure the Bahamas will be your next diving holiday destination after reading what we’ve put together for our Diving Squad folks!

Listen up, squad mates, the Bahamas claims these impressive accolades that are sure to tickle your diving fins:

  • Shipwrecks galore, including ones glorious enough for James Bond (you’ll see what we mean)
  • A thriving shark community for some of the best shark diving in the world.
  • Made of up over 700 islands, we highly recommend embarking on a Bahamas liveaboard for the best way to enjoy all the diving splendor this archipelago has to offer.

We’ve compiled this ultimate guide of Bahamas liveaboards to give you options. And we’ve kept you all in mind – budget travelers looking for the cheapest liveaboard, bigger-spenders craving a luxury liveaboard, beginner scuba divers needing diving courses, and lucky divers who want to enjoy an extended itinerary.

For an at-a-glance guide, the table below summarizes our top liveaboard picks, with the essential information all in one place. For information junkies, keep reading for the play-by-play for each Bahamas liveaboard review.

Then read on for important diving information, like weather, water conditions and the best time to dive in the Bahamas. Ok, let’s dive right in!

^ Quick Jump to Diving Squad's Favourite Bahamas Liveaboard!

Hammerhead Sharks!

Why the Hammerhead? How long do they live?! How big can they get?! Hover over this box to find out...
The shape of Hammerhead Sharks's heads improves their vision, making them excellent hunters! Hammerhead Sharks can live up to 30 years. Of the 9 Hammerhead Species, the largest, the Great Hammerhead can reach up to 20ft long!
Have you got what it takes to Join Diving Squad!?

QUICK LOOK - The Best Bahamas Liveaboards

Best ForLiveaboard Daily Cost (Euros)Max Guest Capacity MAIN Itinerary Length (Nights)No. Of Logged Dives RequiredMonths of OperationDestinations Check Best Price  
OverallAqua Cat€€308 Days, 7 Nights0All YearExuma Cays,
Nassau
GET BEST PRICE
BudgetBlackbeard’s Morning Star247 Days, 6 Nights0All YearExuma Cays,
Nassau
GET BEST PRICE
LuxuryBahamas Aggressor€€14A: 8 Days, 7 Nights

B; 11 Days, 10 Nights
0All YearExuma Cays,
Eleuthera,
Tiger Beach
GET BEST PRICE
BeginnersBlackbeard’s Sea Explorer187 Days, 6 Nights0All YearExuma Cays,
Nassau
GET BEST PRICE
Advanced Divers & Long TripsBahamas Master€€16A: 11 Days, 10 Nights

B: 15 Days, 14 Nights
A: 4

B: 50
A: March, April, June, Sept (2019)

B: May & Sept (2019)
A: Tiger Beach, Fish Tales, Lighthouse, Sugar Wreck, Bimini Islands

B: Tiger Beach, Fish Tales, Lighthouse, Sugar Wreck, Pig Beach, Cat Island
GET BEST PRICE
Small GroupsPhoenix€€87 Days, 6 Nights0All YearExuma Cays,
Eleuthera,
Pig Beach
GET BEST PRICE

Bahamas Liveaboard Reviews

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Diving Squad Presents:

Best Bahamas Liveaboard Overall

Aqua Cat

  • Incredible facilities, including large cabins, saloon for entertainment, Alfresco deck, and more!

  • Visits the unbeatable Exuma Cays, with a choice of over 200 dive sites

  • From €242/day

  • 8-day/7-night lavish catamaran cruise for up to 30 guests

  • Operates year round

Why does Aqua Cat get our top overall Bahamas liveaboard review?

Any way you look at this world-class 31-meter liveaboard catamaran, it meets every need and expectation of each of its lucky guests, from all levels of divers to non-divers. We’ll take a closer look at the Aqua Cat to show you what we mean.

Let’s start with the cabins. Each cabin has individually controlled AC, a private bathroom and shower, and as a kicker for extra comfort – oversized beds. Four of its eleven cabins can accommodate two additional travel members with fold-down bunks.  

Moving on to what it offers for above-water time; Aqua Cat boasts a large saloon area with an entertainment system and even a video editing area! For those who enjoy lounging on the deck, you’ll find two here – an Alfresco deck with a BBQ and hammocks for relaxing pre/post-Bahamas diving, and a sun deck for catching extra rays (sun rays, in this case).

Then there’s the diving deck. This one is top-notch as well and comes equipped with bathrooms, showers, camera storage, charging station, nitrox, and more.

Let’s not forget the food; nothing gets your appetite going like scuba diving in open water. Aqua Cat offers an onboard menu with a wide variety of meals, including vegetarian, vegan and gluten-free for those with dietary restrictions or preferences.

Guests can experience the best of Bahamas scuba diving all year round by journeying to the Exuma Cays, full of unique sites that can only be reached on a dive liveaboard. The Exumas, known for their glorious coral reefs and colorful walls, will not disappoint -beginner to advanced divers alike.

The great variety of dives offered on their Best of the Bahamas itinerary include shallow 12-meter walls, blue holes, shark feeding dives, and thrilling, high-speed drift drives. You can expect to see teeming marine life, such as reef sharks, stingrays, jawfish, groupers, angelfish, Moray eels and eagle rays.

Scuba divers onboard can enjoy up to 26 dives per week at potential dive sites that include the Lost Blue Hole, Periwinkle Reef, Amberjack Reef, Austin Smith Wreck, Cathedral, Jeep Reef, Pillar Wall, The Washing Machine, Whale Tail Wall.

Plus, this catamaran liveaboard offers plenty of fun-in-the-sun shore excursions daily for non-divers or divers wanting to give their fins a rest. Its list of thrilling eco-adventures includes hiking at Warderick Wells Park, stand up paddleboarding, feeding native iguanas, kayaking and snorkeling.

While not the least expensive option for your Bahamas liveaboard diving holiday, the Aqua Cat’s attention to detail and outstanding amenities and service make it worth every penny!

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Diving Squad Presents:

Best Bahamas Liveaboard for Budget

Blackbeard's Morning Star

  • Budget-friendly facilities that include dormitory-style bunks and picnic-style dining

  • Visits Nassau dive sites and the Exuma Cays, with popular sites like Periwinkle Reef, Austin Smith Wreck, Pillar Wall and Lost Blue Hole

  • €109/day

  • 7-day/6-night cruise for up to 24 guests

  • Operates year round

We know there are money-conscious Diving Squad members out there who enjoy the simpler things in life and prefer backpacker, hostel-style accommodations. If that describes you, then Blackbeard’s Morning Star is the way to go!

With three dorm-style cabins and three shared bathrooms (sorry, but only one indoor shower), Morning Star lives up its motto of “Low Frills – High Fun.” Buffet meals and picnic-style dining define mealtime, and (if you haven’t fully gotten the picture of their promise of high fun) all drinks, including wine, beer, and their famous rum punch, are included.

If your Bahamas diving holiday’s primary focus is on diving and adventure, the Morning Star liveaboard dive boat will deliver. Their 7-day/6-night excursions include up to 19 dives, with a memorable mix of day, night and shark feeding dives.

The Morning Star heads south to the Exuma Cays with no set itinerary; the friendly captain and crew will take you to the sites that offer the best possible scuba diving experience based on conditions and weather. You are sure to see a mix of all the Exumas have to offer – like spectacular blue holes, stunning reefs, incredible walls, and exhilarating shark dives.

With such an extraordinary variety of diving site options, you can expect to see a plethora of colorful fish, eels, octopi, rays, lobster, crabs, turtles, and of course, sharks.

Shark experiences are a specialty of Bahama scuba diving that Blackbeard’s vessel makes it a point to provide its guests. The most common sharks you’re bound to encounter are the reef shark and the nurse shark.

It’s also possible to see hammerheads, lemon sharks, tiger sharks, whale sharks, and the black nose shark. Make a wish upon a (sea) star, and you might get lucky!

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Diving Squad Presents:

Best Bahamas Liveaboard for Luxury

Bahamas Aggressor

  • 14-passenger luxury yacht with en-suite cabin facilities, like individual climate control, private bathroom/shower, TV/DVD plus a hot tub on deck!

  • Cruises through the Exuma Cays Land and Sea Park, plus new charters to Tiger Beach

  • From €223/day

  • 8-day/7-night and some 11-day/10-night itinerary options

  • Operates year round

Climb aboard the Bahamas Aggressor and see what it means to enjoy Bahamas liveaboard diving in serious luxury. Let’s go on a tour of this luxurious yacht to show you what she has to offer.

All staterooms are air-conditioned and fitted with private toilets, showers, and even hair dryers! There are five spacious cabins with a double bed and single bunk, and a Quad Stateroom with two sets of twin-style beds. If you’re not quite in the mood for socializing in the entertainment-equipped saloon, no worries; there’s a TV/DVD player in each cabin for some private downtime.

Moving on to the outside, guests have plenty of space on the sun deck and leisure deck for relaxing and enjoying a cocktail. Or, pamper those diving legs in the Aggressor’s jacuzzi. Paid internet is also available if you want to post some selfies to show off to your social media circle.

And the luxury doesn’t stop there. Breakfast is cooked to order, and tableside service is provided at every chef-prepared dinner, that includes a delicious variety of Western and local dishes. As a bonus, all soft drinks, local beer, and wine are complimentary.

Now for the diving. This liveaboard yacht offers three itineraries: Exuma Cays (7 and 10 nights), West End Northern Adventure (10 nights) and, recently added, Tiger Beach (7 and 10 nights).

The most popular, and most offered, is the Exuma Cays itinerary. Its abundance of dive sites provide no end of coral reefs, walls, and marine life – from graceful angelfish to the no-nonsense barracuda. Night diving opens up a whole new world of underwater creature encounters. Potential sites include Lost Blue Hole, Amberjack Reef, Barracuda Shoals, Black Tip Wall, Cave Rock, Cave Reef, and so many more. With up to five dives a day, you’ll be wanting a soak in that hot tub!

For the Tiger Beach option, the Bahamas Aggressor will cruise you out to remote areas around the West End of the Bahamas, where you’ll find sharks, dolphins, groupers and plenty of other reef fish. One incredible site is Tiger Beach, where the water is chummed to attract those mysterious sharks – and not just Tiger sharks; reef sharks and lemon sharks are no strangers to this area as well.

For liveaboard divers able to enjoy the luxury of accommodations AND time, the West End Northern Adventure offers ten nights of Bahamas diving bliss. Its highlights include Sapona Wreck, Moray Alley, Turtle Rocks, and Bull Run.

The Bahamas Aggressor hits the mark in every category of liveaboard comfort and features. Factor that in with the incredible diving experience, and we’re confident that you’ve got a surefire way to live the Bahamas diving life to the fullest!

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Diving Squad Presents:

Best Bahamas Liveaboard for Beginners

Blackbeard's Sea Explorer

  • Beginner diving courses available from top-rated, friendly staff

  • Visits the Exuma Cays, with popular sites like Periwinkle Reef, Austin Smith Wreck, Pillar Wall and Lost Blue Hole

  • €125/day

  • 7-day/6-night cruise for up to 22 guests

  • Operates year round
Mandatory Outfit for all crew members aboard the Blackbeard's Sea Explorer

The Sea Explorer liveaboard is the identical twin sister of the Morning Star (described above in best liveaboard for budget travelers). As with all twins, you’ll find that they’re almost exactly alike. In terms of features, expect the same accommodations – three dormitory-style cabin areas with 18 bunks and 3 bathrooms.

You can also count on not breaking the bank with the Sea Explorer, as with the Morning Star; both will give you the liveaboard experience worthy of any adventure-loving diver’s 5-star review for about 876€/week!

Diving courses are available – from beginner to advanced – and there are no minimum dives required to join the fun.

For beginner divers brand new to our Diving Squad, a friendly, knowledgeable team will put any first-time diving jitters at ease. What sets Blackbeard’s apart and has kept it in business for over 35 years is its outstanding and outgoing liveaboard crew. They run a tight ship with a smile, and you can rest assured you’re in good hands.

And the best part – beginner divers can start their scuba diving journey in the Bahamas! How cool is that? The Sea Explorer has no set itinerary, to allow divers to explore destinations under the best possible conditions.

But you can count on seeing some of the best of the Exuma Cays, like Periwinkle Reef, Lost Blue Hole, Amberjack Reef and the Washing Machine. Nothing like starting your logbook with sightings of stingrays, jawfish, angelfish, groupers, blennies, Moray eels and reef sharks!

Blackbeard’s Bahamas liveaboards are the right choice for beginner divers who not only want to learn to dive, but also appreciate minimalist accommodations and great value for money.

If you’re all this PLUS a solo traveler, look no further. What the Sea Explorer lacks in cushiness, it makes up for in fellow liveaboard diver comradery and inclusion. You’ll be adding more Instagram friends before you can finish your first cup of (free) rum punch.

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Diving Squad Presents:

Best Bahamas Liveaboard for Advanced Divers & Long Trips

Bahamas Master

  • Choice of three different cabin types (Deluxe, Premier and Standard), with large indoor and outdoor lounging areas

  • Popular destination, Tiger Beach, included in all itineraries, with other possible destinations like Sugar Wreck, Fish Tales, Lighthouse and Bimini Islands

  • From €256/day

  • 15-day/14-night Ultimate Bahamas Experience and 11-day/10-night Hammerhead and Tiger Sharks Experience available (shorter 8-day/7-night Tiger Beach package is also offered)

  • Operates year-round (specific itineraries only offered in certain months – please check calendar)

For Scuba Divers who want to get the most out of their Bahamas liveaboard diving trip by making it last as long as possible, the new 2018 arrival – the Bahamas Master – is your answer. This liveaboard delights its guests with plenty of activities, both above and below the warm Atlantic waters.

This 35-meter vessel offers a range of itineraries, starting from seven nights with a Tiger Shark package, with the option of extending your adventure to 10 nights, all the way up to 14 nights with the Ultimate Bahamas Experience.

All itineraries include a stop at Tiger Beach for shark-filled diving encounters with – as the name implies – tiger sharks, and also lemon sharks, hammerheads, nurse and, possibly, bull sharks. Sugar Wreck is also a destination-favorite for its shallow water and numerous sightings of loggerhead turtles, octopus, and the native green moray eel.

The 11-day Hammerhead and Tiger Sharks Experience adds stops at the Bimini Islands, where you can take advantage of walls, reefs, wrecks, and caverns. The islands are famous for run-ins with hammerheads and bull sharks, dolphins, and turtles. In the springtime, you may have a few whale sightings – humpbacks, sperm whales and whale sharks.

The biggie – the 15-day Ultimate Bahamas Experience – lives up to its name by giving its guests, well, the ultimate Bahamas experience! With around 42 dives in total, this itinerary extends its highlights to include Pig Beach (oh, those cute swimming pigs!) and Cat Island.

Here, divers can observe whitetip sharks and have the chance to explore many sites of the island, like a 100-year old Spanish shipwreck and unbeatable wall diving with drop-offs, blue holes, and caves.

Featuring eight cabins, all boasting panoramic views, the Bahamas Master has a maximum capacity of just 16 guests, for a more intimate liveaboard experience. Guests have a choice of three cabin types – two Deluxe Cabins with a double bed and private bathroom, two Premier Cabins with twin beds and en-suite bathrooms, and four Standard Cabins which share two bathrooms. 

Need some relaxation time after all that awesome diving? No problem. On its main deck, The Bahamas Master offers an indoor lounge with comfortable sofas and an entertainment area. For you outdoor loungers, the upper deck provides a spacious outdoor dining area, covered bar, and sun deck.

If you’re a Diving Squad die-hard lucky enough to be unconstrained by time and want that 15-day Bahamas liveaboard diving experience, remember, it’s only offered a few times a year, so start planning and book ahead!

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Diving Squad Presents:

Best Bahamas Liveaboard for Small Groups

Phoenix

  • Comfortable accommodations with air conditioning for a maximum of eight guests in four cabins with outdoor lounging on its top deck and dining area.

  • Visits the beautiful Exuma Cays and Eleuthera Reef

  • €189/day

  • 7-day, 6-night cozy catamaran cruise

  • Operates year round

For divers who like the intimacy and comfort of hanging out in smaller groups, the Phoenix is the best Bahamas liveaboard for you.

For private time, you can enjoy one of four cabins, with double beds, private washrooms, and showers. For (small-scale) socializing and lounging, there’s a spacious top deck and an outdoor lounge/dining area.

The air-conditioned indoor saloon is also a welcome choice after a long day of diving. For dining, you can expect a delicious array of local and international meals, with plenty of that yummy tropical fruit and juice.

Its lucky visitors have plenty of onboard features too, like a camera room with table and charging port, paid internet, audio and video entertainment. And then there’s always the treat of a dedicated local and international crew to maximize the pleasure of the Phoenix liveaboard experience.

Traveling with a maximum of just eight passengers, this 5-star catamaran will comfortably take you to explore the world-famous Exuma Cays and Eleuthera. With 19 dives per trip, you’re in for a marine life rich treat!

There is no shortage of possible dive sites that will wow you. Some of the sites commonly included on this Bahama liveaboard’s itinerary are: Periwinkle Reef, Lost Blue Hole, Amberjack Reef, Austin Smith Wreck, Cathedral swim-through (part of Dog Rocks Reef), Jeep Reef, Pillar Wall, The Washing Machine, Hole in the Wall, Jake’s Hole and Monolith.

With such a fantastic variety of dive sites, you’ll have plenty of cool marine life to add to your logbook: angelfish, stingrays, lobster, banded jawfish, yellow-head jawfish, tobacco fish, nurse sharks, lionfish, reef shark, large grouper, eels, horse-eye jack, eagle rays, and parrotfish…just to name a few.

Introduction to diving and other courses are available to make non-divers feel welcome too. And our favorite non-diving highlight of the Phoenix liveaboard – Pig Beach! Who doesn’t want to swim with cute wild pigs?

With such comfortable private amenities, unique Bahamas liveaboard opportunities, and classic Bahamas scuba diving possibilities, at 189€/night, we think the Phoenix is a real winner!

Bahamas Liveaboards - What You Need to Know

Diving Insurance in the Bahamas – It’s absolutely essential that you’re covered by proper diving insurance before you start your liveaboard adventure.  Find out more. 

Scuba Gear – You’ll need to either bring along your own scuba gear or rent it from the liveaboard for an additional fee. 

Find out more. 

Bahamas Liveaboard Packing List – To ensure an enjoyable and comfortable trip, there are several must bring items. Find out more. 

Bahamas Diving Season –The Bahamas is one of those fortunate destinations bestowed with a sunny, subtropical climate, meaning scuba diving availability all year long. You’ll find different species depending on the season and should keep periods like hurricane season in mind. But you can bet that the Bahamas has exceptional diving offerings at any time of the year.

 Find out more.  

Weather in the Bahamas –The Bahamas boast consistently warm weather year-round, with over 300 days of sunshine each year. Temperatures range from 27-32° C in the summer to 21-27° C in the winter.

The two wettest months are October and June, but rain passes through rather quickly. This also means warm water temperatures, with 24-27° C from November to May, and approximately 31°C in the summer.

Water Visibility in the Bahamas – As far as water visibility goes, you can’t do much better than the Bahamas. Those turquoise waters provide around 45 meters of visibility, sometimes over 60 meters! Because rainfall is absorbed by porous limestone, the minimal sedimentation allows for its waters to remain almost crystal clear.

Diving Insurance in the Bahamas

SPLASH! It’s important to remember that scuba diving is an extreme sport. Accidents can happen. Sorry to burst anyone’s bubble.

What’s more, because diving can take you all around the world, it’s absolutely essential you make sure you are properly covered by the best scuba diving insurance before leaving your home country.

We recommend going with Dive Assure. Why?

  • Unbeatable prices.

     

  • They offer both short term and long term insurance.

     

  • Cover loss of diving equipment, emergency medical and evacuation expenses and flight/accommodation costs following injury.

Squad Inventory - Scuba Gear

Ok Squad! Here’s the deal. Scuba Diving requires a ton of gear. This should come as no real surprise, considering that the very nature of this sport is to breathe underwater – the exact opposite of what us humans are evolved to do! 

When you go on your liveaboard adventure, you have two options on the gear front:

  1. You can either rent the gear, at an additional cost, per piece. This generally costs around $25 for a full equipment rental per day (exact prices provided in the liveaboard links).

  2. Or you can buy and bring along some or all of your own scuba gear. This comes with two distinct advantages:
  • You get scuba gear that perfectly fits you and suits your tastes, budget and style. And hasn’t been peed in.

     

  • You will never again have to pay to rent scuba equipment! Think about all the diving you have ahead of you. Ultimately this can save a lot of money.

     

Below is a full listing and description of the entire inventory required to scuba dive. Let’s jump right in:

Diving Mask – Full Face Snorkel Masks are taking the world by storm but they can’t withstand pressure beyond several meters depth.  For diving you need an old school dive mask.

BCD – A BCD is the jacket divers wear to maintain optimum buoyancy, which they can adjust by operating the inflate and deflate buttons. This makes sure they neither sink to the bottom nor rise to the top of the water! As well as this, the BCD holds the divers regulator(s), dive gauge and air tank.

Regulator / Octopus – The regulator reduces pressurised breathing oxygen to ambient pressure and delivers it to the diver through a mouth piece. Remember, you need two – one for you and a spare for a buddy in case of emergencies!

Diving Torch – Absolutely essential for Deep Dives and Night Dives. So you can…you know – see. Bioluminescent plankton anyone? 

Scuba Tank – This contains the pressurised breathing gas – i.e. oxygen, that you will be breathing underwater (after it’s been reduced to ambient pressure by the regulator). Pretty essential right? 

Scuba Weight Belt – A diving weight belt assists with maintaining optimum buoyancy, by stopping divers from floating to the top of the water. How much weight you take will depend on your build, weight and diving ability.

Dive Computer – The Dive Computer is used to measure the time and depth of a dive. In doing so, it calculates a safe ascent profile, vital for avoiding decompression sickness. 

Dive Gauge – Essential for keeping track of your air consumption and the depth at which you are diving. The best ones also feature compasses and can read the water temperature (useful for bragging rights when you go on extremely cold dives!).

Scuba Fins – Fins greatly reduce water resistance when swimming and thus help to conserve energy and swim faster / against currents. They also allow you to unleash your inner mermaid/man. 

Dive Boots Designed to be worn under your fins, dive boots prevent rubbing and skin irritation from said fins – whilst also keeping your feet toasty and warm. 

Wetsuit – Crucial for keeping you warm. Even in hot countries, when you dive deep, it gets cold. Which one you pick will depend on the climate of where you’re diving. 

Ultimate Combo Package Whew! That’s a lot of gear we’ve covered. If you don’t yet have any scuba gear and want to bulk buy at great quality and value, this is the number one scuba starter pack out there.  

Bahamas Liveaboard Packing List

Whether you decide to rent scuba gear or buy  your own, there are some essential items that won’t be provided for you. You would not want to go on your liveaboard adventure without: 

Reef Safe Sunscreen It’s a little known fact that some sunscreens contain products that are highly toxic to coral reefs. Dive responsibly, avoid burning to a crisp and use eco friendly sunscreen. 

Reef Safe Body Wash and Shampoo – Many brands of body wash and shampoo also contain chemicals that are toxic to coral reef and fish. Dive responsibility whilst still not smelling like a Dead Whale.

Diving Camera –  Any normal camera will break if taken diving – even if it’s waterproof it won’t be able to withstand high depth pressure and the focus will not be designed for underwater photography. To share your diving adventures with the world, make sure you have a proper scuba diving camera.   

Full Face Snorkel Mask – In between dives, you’ll get countless snorkelling opportunities on your liveaboard trip. For snorkelling, it’s much better to utilise a full face snorkel mask for maximum comfort and 180 viewing! The best ones have an attachment mount for GoPros. 

Reusable Water Bottle Having a durable, reusable and recyclable water bottle that’ll keep liquids cold is essential for both eco awareness and hydration = scuba success! We love the TankH2O – It is all of those things and looks like a scuba tank!

Microfibre Towel Essential for getting all those bits of ocean off you. Microfibre towels are compact, dry quickly and lightweight. To look like a ninja of the sea, wrap around face. 

The

diving squad title 300

Backpack of Choice

After trying and testing an ocean of backpacks, we’ve come to the coralusion that the Dometool Waterproof Dry Backpack is the number one backpack for divers! Why? Well:

  • It’s completely waterproof and also floats.

  • Front zip pocket for easy access, waterproof storage of your phone, wallet, etc. 

  • Equipment ring at one side, water bottle bag at the other. 

  • PVC tarpaulin materials = resistent to tearing, corrosion and aging.

Diving Season in the Bahamas

June – October: This is considered low season in the Bahamas, as it’s also hurricane season. The norm is rain every day, but for a short time about once a day. Chances are, you won’t get hit by a hurricane, but you’ll want to keep your eye on weather forecasts, as the weather can be unpredictable.

Late summer is when the orange sponges spoor and October brings in more manta rays. This period also means quieter conditions and fewer tourists. The ocean is big enough for all of us, but sometimes it’s nice to avoid the crowds.


November – May: High season (and the dry season) in the Bahamas. Sharks are at their height during this time, with the most tiger shark activity at Tiger Beach from October to January, and Oceanic Whitetips from April to June. At the Bimini Islands, hammerhead encounters are likely from December to March.

The weather is still warm, and more comfortable than the hot summer months of June through August, making this the most popular time for a Bahamian holiday.

Bahamas Liveaboard Destinations

Bimini Islands

Hammerhead Sharks are a common sight around the Bimini Islands!!

The crystal-clear waters of the Bimini Islands offer marvelous diving for the most advanced diver, the newbie diver and every diver in between. The Bahamas Master’s 10-night liveboard adventure offers this glorious dive site on their itinerary.

There’s marine life aplenty with sharks, angelfish, eels, parrotfish, squirrelfish, butterfly fish – the list goes on. Between January and April, you’ll also be graced with the presence of hammerheads that gather here during this time.

Nurse Sharks are also frequently seen around Bimini.

One of the Bimini’s most famous dive sites is the Sapona, a concrete cargo ship built during WWI that was grounded by a hurricane in 1926. She’s quite a sight to behold, sitting half exposed in five meters of water.

Beneath the water’s surface, divers get the pleasure of seeing the world her remains created, like nurse shark, sting rays, eels and colorful fish of all kinds. The Sapona carries a rich history from its use as a rum-runner for smugglers during the Prohibition era, to a bombers’ target practice bullseye during WWII – get lost in her rich story as you explore the wonders below.

Stingrays on the Sea Floor bottom at Bimini

Dive into the Squads' Favourite Read

ATTENTION! Diving Squad Member – Do you love a great book? Yarp!? We already know you love diving

Dive Atlas of the World, offers a beautifully photographed and professionally detailed tour of the worlds best dive sites, including both classics and new discoveries.

This stunningly presented book covers everything from Wrecks to Reefs, Muck Dives to Macro Photography, Blue Holes to Epic Walls and adrenaline soaked Drift Dives

Get inspired, learn something brand new and prepare for your next diving adventure.

This is hands down the most informative, stunningly presented and all encompassing scuba diving book known to Diving Squad. 

Eleuthera

Ship Wrecks are abound in Eleuthera

Best known for its plunging walls and as an underwater graveyard of ships, Eleuthera offers a plethora of wrecks for any diver to explore.

The large number of vessels that have claimed this area as their final destination can be accredited to The Devil’s Backbone, a shallow and very jagged reef that runs along the edge of Eleuthera. Divers are also attracted to this area for its walls, which are some of the most abrupt & beautiful anywhere, literally going straight down.

Scuba Divers with large Tarpon Fish around Eleuthera!

One such site is Hole in the Wall, a beloved wall dive in Southwest Eleuthera, where you’ll find  a hole just inside the edge of the wall that drops five meters with a swim-thru that heads west before popping out of the wall.

Be amazed at the sight of the blue ocean and drop off! As with most sites in the Bahamas, you won’t be left wanting with regards to shark sightings and coral reef fish galore.

How to Give up Plastic - A Crucial Guide

“It is one world. And it’s in our care. For the first time in the history of humanity, for the first time in 500 million years, one species has the future in the palm of its hands. I just hope he realises that that is the case.”
Sir David Attenborough
Broadcaster, Natural Historian and Knight.

Some 12.7 million tonnes of plastic enters the ocean every year, devastating the marine ecosystem by killing countless fish, seabirds, turtles, marine mammals and other creatures. 

How to Give Up Plastic is the definitive guide to learning what you can do in your home, commune and workplace to start bringing about the end of our plastic dependent age.

It covers everything from easy wins such as using a reusable keep cup for your morning coffee, to lesser-known hacks like fixing a filter to your washing machine to catch some of the microfibres released from your clothes (microfibres are responsible for up to 30% of plastic in the ocean).

This is an essential overview of why we should all be working together no matter where we are in the world to reduce the amount of plastic being produce. Diving Squad is thoroughly committed to ending plastic pollution and marine conservation. 

Grand Bahama

Colony Feather Dusters on Hard Coral with Schooling Jack Fish at the Grand Bahama

This is a perfect destination choice for shark dives and dolphin enthusiasts; a dolphin encounter where you can dive and mingle with dolphins is offered here. Grand Bahama claims one of the world’s largest underwater cave systems, so it’s also a favorite for underwater landscape photographers.

Diver Mingling with friendly Dolphin!

Highlight – Tiger Beach:

It’s no wonder that you see famous site, Tiger Beach, on so many Bahamas liveaboards’ itineraries – it truly is one of a kind. A 43-km boat voyage north of Grand Bahama will get you there, and you’ll be happy you made the trip. Divers, photographers, and videographers can’t get enough of the white sand bottom and robust presence of tiger sharks at Tiger Beach.

And with all the other shark species that thrive here, it’s a sight that can’t be missed. At a depth of just nine meters, the tiger sharks are happy to welcome divers of all levels!

Divers with Lemon Shark and Caribbean Reef Sharks at Tiger Island.

Close by is another diver favorite, Fish Tales, with similar shark sightings but with the opportunity to plunge to a little deeper depths. Here you have the chance to encounter lemon sharks, Caribbean reef sharks and tiger sharks.

Exploring the Light House Reef

Just off of West End of Grand Bahama Island is the Lighthouse, a great shark spot. You may find great hammerheads, tiger, nurse and lemon sharks; sometimes bull sharks, if you’re lucky. Sugar Wreck is another favorite of the island. This shipwreck is a 110- meter steel vessel that sunk about 100 years ago, carrying cargo of molasses.

Since is sunk in shallow water, at just about seven meters, there’s plenty of time to explore and spot the resident green moray eel, enormous schools of snappers, loggerhead turtles, octopus, and nurse sharks.

Nassau

The many Wreck Dives around Nassau are frequented by numerous Reef Sharks

There’s so much more to Nassau than being the main point of departure for most liveaboard dive trips. It sits along the “Tongue of the Ocean,” a trench that drops off to 2,000 meters; talk about deep water wall diving opportunities! It’s also the movie star destination of the Bahamas – many wrecks in the area were sunk intentionally for movie set purposes.

The popular Nassau dive site, Tears of Allah Shipwreck, is worth the bragging rights alone; it’s not every day that you can claim to see a Hollywood star under the ocean.

Yet another massive wreck, the Willaurie Wreck

But aside from being featured in Bond’s movie, “Never Say Never Again,” this famous shipwreck also boasts majestic coral reef growth that can’t be beaten. While you’re at it, you might as well sneak a peek at its Hollywood co-star – the Vulcan Bomber airplane wreck from the James Bond flick, “Thunderball.” You don’t want to miss the chance to enter these in your logbook!

Then there’s the Lost Blue Hole whose rim lies in 12 meters of water, with a total depth of 91 meters, and is surrounded by coral heads, stingrays, angelfish, turtles and Nassau grouper. A lobster filled crevice lies at 24 meters. Divers mingle with the small swimmers like banded jawfish, Seminole gobies and tobacco fish in the sand surrounding the hole.

Divers can spot one or two nurse sharks here and during the late spring/early summer, and a large school of blacknose sharks inhabits the 91-meter depth bottom.

An immense variety of critters make their home within the Wrecks of Nassau!

Closest to Nassau is well-visited Periwinkle Reef. This lovely natural reef is home to hundreds of fish who come to the shallow waters to eat; with divers feeding fish here from boats, it’s some easy feasting.

The reef is covered with corals, sea fans and sponges, creating a perfect haven for angelfish, Nassau grouper, reef sharks, stingrays, amberjacks,  manta rays, moray eels, and turtles.

The Exumas Cays

One of the most popular destinations for liveaboards, the Exumas are perfect for every level of scuba diver. With over 360 islands and cays to choose from, it’s easy to see why this destination has such diving diversity to offer – easy reefs, blue holes, walls, and shark dives. It’s teeming with marine wildlife, with plenty of species of the Bahamas’ stars – sharks.

Some of the diving highlights you’ll find here are Thunderball Grotto, Angelfish Blue Hole, and the don’t-want-to-miss Washing Machine.

Find a truly unique diving experience with this exhilarating drift dive that begins in about 4.5 meters of water, where divers get dropped down into the current; the current then scoops them up and tosses them head over heels, much like socks in a washing machine!

The crazy ride has a delightfully surprising calm ending, however – a gorgeous, colorful reef to take in and enjoy. It’s a thrill ride you’ll never forget!

You don't even need to dive to encounter the multitudes of Sharks the Exumas Cay are teaming with! This lucky young lady had to only wade up to her waist to pet these friendly Nurse Sharks at Compass Cay!

Another must-see Exumas highlight is Amberjack Reef. This 15-meter long reef with maximum depth of 18 meters, makes this dive site a favorite for divers of all experience levels. Locals of Amberjack Reef include sharks, extra-large grouper and giant eagle rays. And with water visibility that can reach almost 40 meters, what’s not to love?

The Exumas continue to delight with the its pudgy pals, the swimming pigs of Pig Beach. Those cute pigs are found on Big Major Cay of the Exumas, which is uninhabited except for the pigs, that are not native to the island. No one knows where exactly the came from! Regardless, there are about 20 pigs and piglets on Pig Beach, living it up under the Bahaman sun.

Did we mention that the Bahamas has lots of sharks!? How many other places can you get a snap with a Great Hammerhead, a Nurse Shark and a Reef Tip?!

Diving Squad Debriefing

And there you have it, squad! In case you haven’t noticed, the Bahamas has A LOT of stunning dive sites to choose from, all unique and unforgettable in their own way, with many liveaboards to choose from based on your wants and needs. Summarizing this diving wonderland is no easy feat, but in true Diving Squad spirit, we took on the challenge!

We’ve briefed you on the best liveaboards in the Bahamas for all categories – the best overall Bahamas liveaboard, the best luxury Bahamas liveaboard, the best Bahamas liveaboard for beginners and budget traveler – we just about covered it all.

Plus, we’ve equipped you with the information on top diving destinations in the Bahamas and highlighted world-renowned diving sites. With all that, plus a breakdown of diving conditions, weather and water visibility, you’re ready to get on that Bahamas liveaboard and hit the open water. Grab that mask and regulator and get to diving!

Bon voyage!

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Help Diving Squad with Marine Conservation

EPIC FAIL HUMANITY:

  • Over 18 billion pounds of plastic enters the World’s Oceans every year. That’s enough trash to cover every foot of coastline around the world with five full trash bags of plastic (Every. Year).

     

  • As well as containing it’s own toxic chemicals, like BPA, plastic absorbs even more potent toxins from other pollutants in the Ocean such as oil, untreated sewage and radioactive waste.

     

  • Plastic is indestructible and never degrades. Instead it simply breaks down into smaller pieces which accumulate together, en masse.

     

  • Today, each square mile of ocean has over 45,000 pieces of plastic floating in it.

     

  • Plastic is mistaken for food and eaten by marine animals. Because it can’t be digested, it fills their stomachs and causes them to starve to death.

     

  • For those “lucky” individuals that don’t eat plastic, the toxic chemicals present in every part of sea water from plastic, wreck havoc throughout the ecosystem causing changes in animals behaviour, immune systems and reproduction.

     

  • There are 200 known ‘dead zones’, or areas deprived of oxygen and devoid of life, (area between 1 and 70,000 km²),  in the world ocean, due to plastic: this number has doubled every decade since 1960.

     

  • Chemicals in heavily polluted waters can make their way back to us and cause serious health issues like reproductive problems, hormonal problems, kidney damage, and nervous system damage.

     

  • It’s estimated that by the year 2050, there will be more plastic in the ocean than fish (by weight). AND IT’S GETTING WORSE

The Time to Act is NOW

To Diving Squad, the grizzly stats above are appalling, tragic and completely UNACCEPTABLE. That’s why we are working hard towards combating plastic pollution in the ocean.


How do we do this? Through spreading awareness, providing informative guides on eco friendly diving and donating
10% of all profits that we make towards combating plastic pollution in the Ocean.


So, how does Diving Squad make money? Through You! Every time you click on one of our painstakingly, yet lovingly researched liveaboard, gear or insurance links and spend money – we earn a % commission thanks to affiliate partnerships.


We then donate 10% of this towards Marine Conservation Schemes that target plastic pollution.


What does this mean? It means that if you book a Liveaboard through a Diving Squad link – some of that money goes directly towards Marine Conservation. Buy a piece of Gear through a Diving Squad link?

 Nice! You’ve just contributed money towards Marine Conservation. Booked yourself Diving Insurance through Diving Squad? Go, go Marine Conservation!


So help us…help you…help the Ocean. Together, we can do this.


To which Marine Conservation charity do we donate, you might ask?
Our squad is already hard at work selecting the ideal candidate. The winner will be announced at the end of 2019. Have a suggestion? We’d love to hear… If we pick your suggestion, there just might be something in it for you…


Contact us at: Alex Hatton:
[email protected] (Grand Admiral at Diving Squad).