Cold? Come on down, the water is great! Between the reefs, wrecks, caverns, and springs, Florida’s diverse diving offers something for everyone, making it a great option for a quick getaway this winter. Here’s a few of our favorite spots.
Ginnie Springs – High Springs, FL
Photo by Thaddius Bedford
“The world’s favorite freshwater dive.” 72 degree water year round, near unlimited visibility, and some of the most beautiful caverns in the country, what’s not to love? On site tank fills, gear rental, and campsites make Ginnie Springs a great weekend escape from the cold this winter. Don’t forget to sign up for your TDI Cavern Diver Course and really take advantage of what the system has to offer.
Blue Heron Bridge – West Palm Beach, FL
Connecting Singer Island and Riviera Beach is one of Florida’s best kept secret dive spots. While many people drive over the
Photo by Juergen Hitzler
Blue Heron Bridge, few are actually diving underneath it. Blue Heron is a shallow shore dive with a lot of critters, making it a photographers dream. On any given dive to the maximum depth of 22FSW, you may find frog fish, flying gurnards, octopus, seahorses, the occasional manatee, and more. Make sure to take advantage of the free parking next to the Phil Foster Park, bring a dive flag, time the dive with slack high tide, and don’t forget to bring a camera. Blue Heron is a great place to get together with a SDI instructor to hone in your photography skills in the Underwater Photography course.
Molasses Reef - Key Largo, FL
Molasses Reef, Key Largo, FL – Photo by Pete Nawrocky
If you’re looking for a day of fun with your dive buddies or snorkeling friends, you cannot miss Molasses Reef. Located six miles Southeast of Key Largo within the John Pennekamp Coral Reef State Park, is one of Florida’s “fishiest dives” with fantastic visibility. This spur and groove system starts very shallow and slopes its way down to a maximum depth of 55FSW. Make sure to peak around and under ledges to find a wall of grunts, a sleeping nurse shark, or a few lobsters. Often times a turtle will pass by along with some angel fish, and more. If you’re looking to continue your dive education, there is no better place to take the SDI Marine Ecosystems Awareness course than here in a Sanctuary Preservation Area.
USS Spiegel Grove
Photo by Thaddius Bedford
Located on Dixie Shoal, just six miles off Key Largo, this 510 foot Landing Ship Dock was decommissioned in 1989 and eventually sunk for artificial reef in 2002. She has since grown to be one of Florida’s favorite dive sites. Originally, The Spiegel Grove landed on the bottom on her starboard side; however, in July of 2005, Hurricane Dennis actually turned her right-side-up. She now rests at a maximum depth of 134 feet, with her shallowest point at roughly 60 feet. Want to take a peek inside the wreck? No problem, just sign up for your SDI Wreck Diver Specialty and learn how to execute limited penetration dives safely.
Dry Tortugas – Key West, FL
Dry Tortugas – Photo by: J. Luo, University of Miami
Hook up with SDI/TDI dive center M/V Spree (www.spreeexpeditions.com
) and Sail 70 miles west of Key West.. Here you will find a cluster of seven coral reefs. These reefs are part of the third largest barrier reef in the world, and Florida’s most remote dive destination, accessible only by liveaboard or private boat. It is not uncommon to run across Goliath Grouper, Red Grouper, Black Grouper, big Hogfish, sharks, turtles and Eagle Rays, along with about 250 other species of fish. The majority of the moored dive sites are in the 50-80 foot depth range, so don’t forget to look into getting your SDI Computer Nitrox Diver Certification to really maximize your time underwater.
With diverse world class diving and warm sunny skies, what are you waiting for? Whether it’s a quick get away from the cold or to advance your dive training, come play with us in America’s underwater paradise!
Contact SDI TDI and ERDI
If you would like more information, please contact our World Headquarters or your Regional Office.
Tel: 888.778.9073 | 207.729.4201