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Four of a kind: diving hotspots

Image: Getty

From the Red Sea to Australia’s Great Barrier Reef, Farida Zeynalova scouts the world for the most enthralling diving spots

 

1. Silfra, Iceland

Under an hour by car from Reykjavik, Silfra, in Thingvellir National Park, is the only place on Earth where divers can swim between two continents — the fissure is located right at the juncture of the North American and Eurasian continental plates. With crystal-clear waters, visitors are guaranteed subaquatic bliss. Of particular note is the vivid green ‘troll hair’ algae, which can be admired all year round due to consistently cold conditions.  visiticeland.com

Image: Alamy

Image: Alamy

2. Dahab, Egypt

Intrepid visitors to Dahab, on Egypt’s Red Sea coast, can descend into the Blue Hole — widely considered to be the best snorkelling spot in the area, with 30-meter visibility year-round. Scuba divers are rewarded with a multicolored landscape of coral plateaus, caves and gardens — home to a kaleidoscope of mesmerizing marine life, including the Napolean wrasse, the Red Sea walkman and the blue-spotted stingray. egypt.travel

Image: Getty

Image: Getty

3. Ambergris Caye, Belize

The second largest reef in the world runs 185 miles along the coast, offering a string of exceptional underwater experiences. Daredevils can plunge into the Great Blue Hole, the largest sinkhole in the world, for close encounters with Caribbean reef sharks. Hol Chan Marine Reserve has spectacular coral formations and sea-grass beds, which attract black groupers and moray eels. travelbelize.org

Image: Getty

Image: Getty

4. SS Yongala wreck, Australia

Consistently appearing at the top of lists of the best shipwreck dives in the world, the wreck of the SS Yongala lies on the magnificent Great Barrier Reef and attracts around 10,000 visitors a year. The deck of the passenger ship — which sank during a cyclone in 1911 but was not found until 1958 — is blanketed in coral, and is home to profusions of small fish, guitar sharks, spotted eagle rays and hawksbill sea turtles — with the occasional minke whale a key sight in winter. australia.com

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