Dive With Us

Scuba Dive With Us at Coral Divers

We love scuba diving in Sodwana Bay and look forward to showing you the paradise that is Sodwana Bay underwater…

The diving here is undoubtedly some of the best that South Africa has to offer… There is something for everyone.  Whether you are a novice or pro, photographer, fun diver or even if you’d just like to give it a ‘try’ – you’ll fall in love with this underwater paradise!

Some Frequently Asked Questions

Most dives  in Sodwana Bay are done as Drift Dives, since a predominant north to south current flows most of the time. Some days it flows in reverse though, or not at all.

All our boats are semi-rigid ‘RIB’s (Rubber Inflatable Boats), with a Divemaster overseeing the dives and an experienced local skipper to take you out. Choosing the best dive site on the day, to ensure a great dive, is very important to us. As is giving you a great overall experience. The dive sites and dive times are planned the evening before, but we may need to change this on the day, if we see that the sea conditions are not ideal for the dive site originally planned.

If you’re booking your first dive of the holiday, please bring your certification card or logbook with you to the 6.30pm Dive Planning meeting held at Coral Divers. You may pre-book the number of dives you would like to do (when you make your accommodation booking), but the actual dive site and time of the dive, is only booked the evening before the dive takes place. Please attend the Dive Planning meeting if at all possible. If you are unable to attend, please call in to confirm your dive preference for the next day on: +27 35-571 0290 or +27 76718 8260 **NB Proof of certification is required please.

Once you have made a booking with us (to stay and dive, or just to dive), you’ll need to provisionally book space on the boat for the dive site that best suits your interests and experience level.

Please attend the Dive Planning meeting the evening before you wish to dive (6.30pm to 7.00pm). It is here that dive times and dive sites will be confirmed for the following day’s diving. You must also please be sure to confirm your times by calling +27 76 718 8260 if you cannot make it in person.

Once you have been to your first DP meeting, subsequent provisional dive site bookings can be made from 6am to 1pm daily by speaking to our Dive planner (or call on +27 76 718 8260) on the beach. All provisional bookings are subject to change so please make an effort to attend the Dive Planning, or take a look at the board or call us to confirm your times if you do miss the meeting.

We use 7.2m (21 foot) semi-rigid inflatables (RIBs), with twin outboard motors. They carry a maximum of 11 divers including the Divemaster, with sufficient space for cameras and video equipment. Divers ‘kit up’ and get into their wetsuits before their boat launches. Your dive gear will then be secured on the boat by our beach crew. The boat is then pushed off the sand into the water by a tractor. Once the skipper gives the call, you are asked to jump aboard. From here, the skipper navigates his way through the surf to your dive site. When the divers surface, the boat picks them up and once all are on board, you return to shore.

The reef  in Sodwana Bay is believed to be about 80,000 years old and the sandstone rock base dating back to the late Pleistocene era. These would have been ancient fossilized sand dunes from when the sea level here was about 20m lower than today. Due to this broad sandstone base, the reef profile tends to be flat with low pinnacles, shallow drop offs, swim-throughs and gullies that range in depth from 8m to 100m and are suitable to novice and experienced divers alike. There is something for everyone!

You will be amazed at the sheer number of marine species when diving with us. Our reef is home to 1200 species of fish, which compared to 1800 on the Great Barrier Reef is incredible, since it is less than 1/10th the area!

As well as many tropical and subtropical fish, you will find invertebrates, turtles, rays and sharks on any of the numerous dive sites. Speak to our Dive Masters about what interests you the most, so they can advise the best sites to visit. What is more, is our seasonal sightings of Whalesharks and Manta Rays (Dec-Apr), Humpback Whales (Jun-Oct), Ragged-Tooth Sharks (Dec-Feb), and nesting Loggerhead and Leatherback Turtles (Dec-Feb), are all incredible experiences that see divers returning here year after year.

You’ll most commonly find boats going to 2 Mile Reef – the largest and closest reef complex. However, we have a few reefs further away from the launch site other than 2 Mile Reef. These are called 5 Mile, Snappers (6 Mile), 7 Mile, Ramsey’s (8 Mile) and 9 Mile Reef. Some require you to be an Advanced Diver and need a minimum of 4 divers on the boat. There is a dive excess for these sites. Diving to these reefs will be confirmed at Dive Planning the evening before the day you wish to dive.

Dive Excesses are surcharges that cover the extra distance for going to further reefs (i.e. 5, 7, 8 and 9 Mile Reefs). This is over and above the dive price and charged per person per dive.
5 Mile Reef dive sites are R55.00 above the 2 Mile Reef price.
7 Mile Reef dive sites are R75.00 above the 2 Mile Reef price.
8 Mile Reef dive sites are R80.00 above the 2 Mile Reef price.
9 Mile Reef dive sites are R85.00 above the 2 Mile Reef price.

Your Beach Sheet, is a record of all dives, gear and courses that have been placed on your account. You will need to sign the Dive Liability portion and then sign for each dive as you do it. The Beach Sheets are issued at our Reception or Beach Shop when you pay, and they are then sent to our Beach Controller who will have your DM ask you to sign just before each launch. 

It is government legislation to hold a permit for diving in a Marine Protected Area. If you have been diving at Aliwal Shoal or elsewhere in a MPA, you can use the same permit if it isn’t expired. This 30 day temporary permit can be bought at our reception. 

When you attend the Dive Planning Meeting on your first evening here, you will be assigned a Divemaster to assist you with all your equipment needs. Our dive cylinders are available at the kitting up area on the day, but you will need to collect everything else from our Gear Hire Room, the evening before. If you arrive just before your dive, please report to the Beach Controller on the beach at our gazebo. She will then assist you in your gear needs, by showing you how to find the Beach Shop for your gear hire.

Our beach shuttle departs the camp 45 minutes before your dive time. Please be there and ready to go with all your gear. Once on the beach, you must ready and check your gear during the 30 minute period before your launch. A selection of cylinders with DIN and Yoke fittings will be on the beach at the Coral Divers gazebo, ready for use (nitrox cylinders are available for hire if you have a Nitrox Specialty certification). Your Divemaster is there to assist you and will do a briefing before you set out.

Freelance ‘Gear Assistants’ are on hand at our gazebo on the beach. They’ll carry and wash your equipment, for a small fee per dive. If you use them, please have cash on hand and the correct change to pay them. (R25 – R50 per dive is the recommended amount)

If you’re interested in learning to dive or further training once you are here, just come to reception and we’ll do our best to accommodate you as quickly as possible. However, course start dates do depend on instructor availability, so it is best to pre-book to avoid disappointment, as it allows us to plan ahead.

Medical oxygen is available on all our boats and also kept at our gazebo. Our staff are trained to administer Oxygen and First Aid, with all emergencies overseen by our Beach Manager. We encourage all divers to take out DAN (Divers Alert Network) Insurance, as the nearest Recompression Chamber is located in Durban. 

Thanks for Subscribing!