Surrounding Reef Dive Sites

The island is surrounded by spectacular coral reefs which boasts an abundance of marine life. These dive sites range in depth from 10 - 30 metres and generally present great visibility.

MALABAR LANDSLIDE

Located at the base of Malabar Cliff at the north end of the Island. A depth of 10 – 13 metres with the top of the reef in just 5 metres. The two caves at the beginning coupled with long swim throughs make this a really interesting dive. A great site to get up close and personal with the Coral Crayfish and large Spanish Dancers and if you’re lucky you may see the very photogenic Silver Sweetlips. Malabar Landslide is part of a reef system that consists of three other dive sites that range down to a depth of 19 metres and are protected in Southerly winds and swell.

DEACONS DELIGHT

A reef in 22 metres of water and discovered in 2008 by Jeff Deacon on his way back from a fishing trip. Tas and Jeff subsequently dived the reef the following week with regular divers Dianne and Axel Tennie and were excited to find a new reef with varied fish life to rival the best dives around Lord Howe Island and Ball’s Pyramid. Upon returning to the boatshed Axle’s only comment was “It doesn’t get much better than that”. Species to be found are Galapagos Whaler Shark, schools of Blue Streak Fusiliers, Trevally, Kingfish, variety of types of Butterfly fish and the rare Harlequin Tuskfish and Clown Trigger fish. Add this to swim throughs and carpets of mauve soft corals to make a truly fun dive.

OCTOPUS GARDENS

The depth ranges from 12 - 18 metres. A large reef system where you can cover a lot of area or just potter around under the boat. Head north over the sand to a large canyon in 16 metres that takes you in towards the island. Lots of plate coral that support plentiful fish life such as Moorish Idols, Spotted Sweetlips, and schools of Moon Wrasse. Interesting/Rare Species; Nudibranchs-Sinuate Ceratosoma, and Racoon Butterflyfish.

THE ARCH

The depth ranges from 6 - 16 metres. The boat will anchor in 6 metres where you can drop over the reef ledge and follow a sand channel down and through a coral Arch way. At the Arch expect to see schools of Dotted Morwong, Blue-fin Trevally, and the more common Silver Trevally. A diligent search under the Arch itself will reveal Banded-Boxer Shrimp, Gobies, and Nudibranchs. Once past the Arch you may turn south and explore a couple of small gullies occupied by Coral Crayfish, Lord Howe Moray Eels and countless Cardinal fish or proceed to the north and swim along The Crevice, a large gutter that slices the reef back in towards the island.

LE MEURTHE REEF

Located just outside the North passage of the lagoon this dive site ranges in depth from 5 - 16 metres. Follow the reef towards the passage past large Acropora corals that shelter juvenile Painted Crayfish, Slate Bream and Southern White Spot Octopus. There are also plenty of juvenile wrasse species on the reef top such as Bird Wrasse, Five-Banded Wrasse and New Guinea Wrasse.

NORTH HEAD GUTTERS

Depth ranges from 6 - 20 metres

Named after the numerous swim throughs that run out from the reef into deeper water, this is a challenging dive to navigate. Watch out for the territorial and aggressive Banded-Scalyfin (or Bookfish as it is known locally).This overgrown Damselfish has scared the life out of many unsuspecting divers as it charges up and makes a loud crack with its tail while threatening to bite the intruder. Also keep an eye trained for Ornate Butterflyfish and Splendid Hawkefish perched on the lips of hard corals.