Three South Florida underwater sites have been named among the best diving spots in the world.
And no, we’re not talking about trying to drive in Brickell after a minor rain storm, although that is perilously close to being underwater.
We’re talking real diving here. SportsCover Direct, a sports, travel and leisure insurance website, named the top places for diverse to explore around the world in 2022, and three South Florida spots made the list.
The Florida Keys Shipwreck Trail, which runs from Key Largo to Key West for 120 miles, offers diverse nine ships to explore. The dives vary from easy dives in shallow water to descents of 100 feet or more, so be sure to read all relevant information before you set out, because you could encounter strong currents in the deeper dives.
You have to be scuba-certified to stay at Jules’ Undersea Lodge in Key Largo, because you have to dive to your room. The only underwater hotel in the US lies about 30 feet underwater and you enter via a “moon pool” entrance in the building’s floor. And yes: Even though it’s underwater, there’s WiFi. Think of it as good practice for when Miami is totally submerged, which at this rate could be next summer.
The man-made Neptune Memorial Reef lies a little more than three miles east of Key Biscayne. It’s not only an environmentally friendly reef but also a final resting place for those who loved to dive. It has been certified by the Green Burial Council as an ecologically sensitive alternative to burial, and when it’s complete it will cover 16 acres. Expect to see the boats of family members paying visits on good weather days.
SportsCover Direct also praised dive sites in the Bahamas and other parts of the Caribbean, like Belize’s Great Blue Hole, an underwater cave that is estimated to be 410 feet deep, or the Underwater Sculpture Park in Moliniere Point, Grenada.
The Caribbean Sea has the most underwater attractions, but the highest interest still lies with Australia. SportsCover Direct reports that the Great Barrier Reef is the most Googled underwater attraction, with more than three million searches annually.