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Scuba diving in Noonu Atoll

Noonu Atoll’s scuba is suited to intermediate and advanced divers, but beginners can progress too. Drift dive the channels, meet grey reef sharks, and explore a Christmas tree shaped pinnacle.
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Diving in Noonu Atoll

Quick facts

The Noonu Atoll offers diving for all levels of experience but is better suited to intermediate divers. If you’re staying on the atoll, then beginners will have the opportunity to progress and experience the thrill of challenging drift dives.

Located on the outer reef of the atoll’s southern tip is the Raafushi dive – suitable for all levels. The top of the reef is 10-15 feet (3-5 meters) deep and drops off to 39-46 feet (12-14 meters). Expect nudibranchs, and redtoothed triggerfish with their distinctive red teeth that look like incisors. As you navigate the reef’s long crack, you might see a nocturnal nurse shark having a snooze.

Intermediate divers can head to the Christmas Rock. This dive’s moniker comes from its circular shaped thila (submerged island). Its highest point is found at a depth of 46 feet (14 meters). As you navigate the rock, you might see whitetip reef sharks - it's as though their dorsal fins have been sprinkled with snow. Look out for stingrays resting in the overhangs.

Orimas Thila offers a deeper dive for advanced divers. The thila is found at 46 feet (14 meters) and drops off to 98 feet (30 meters). The dive’s highlight are the grey reef sharks. These predators can be found in groups of up to twenty, and the thila also functions as a nursery. Expect to see larger females protecting their juveniles. Rays, leopard and guitar sharks may also be about.

When to go

Rain and temperature

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Water temperature

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What to see

The atoll's big attraction are the grey reef sharks but also expect leopard sharks and guitar sharks – the guitar’s neck is the shark, and the guitar’s body is the ray.

You will also see sting rays, spotted eagle rays, barracuda, jack fish, morays, schooling blue-stripped snapper and turtles.

The table corals can be substantial, and you’ll find oriental sweet lips and puffer fish around them. Iridescent mantis shrimps shyly emerge from holes, and nudibranchs splatter the reefs with vibrant colors.

Anyone reading your dive log will be impressed.

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