Amedee Island is one of the most enchanting dive locations I have ever experienced and is one of the best sites for scuba diving in New Caledonia. The marine life is truly captivating, and the visibility underwater is nothing short of spectacular. It proves to be an ideal destination for diving enthusiasts when exploring New Caledonia.
Embarking on my first dive after my PADI Open Water certification, Amedee Island in New Caledonia became the chosen site. A mix of nerves and excitement filled me as I anticipated recalling all the basic skills I learned during my certification. While the expectation was to seamlessly remember each skill, the reality presented a different scenario. Given that scuba diving wasn’t a regular activity, some skills had slipped from my memory. The night before the dive was marked by restless anticipation, contemplating the skills I hoped to execute flawlessly underwater.
PIN for later reference – Scuba Diving in New Caledonia (Amedee Island)
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Scuba Diving in New Caledonia
Scuba diving in New Caledonia is an unparalleled adventure, offering a marine wonderland of breathtaking beauty. Amedee Island, a mere 24 kilometres from Noumea, is a premier diving destination. The azure waters surrounding the island boast incredible visibility, often reaching around 17 meters during dives. The mesmerizing marine life, including sea snakes, adds to the allure of the underwater world.
For those venturing to dive sites like Passe Bouparis, the experience is heightened by abundant marine diversity. The underwater ecosystem, teeming with vibrant coral formations and exotic sea creatures, creates an immersive environment for divers. The water temperature, averaging around 24 degrees Celsius, ensures a comfortable and enjoyable dive.
While the boat ride to dive sites can be rough, taking seasickness tablets is a wise precaution. Despite the potential for rough waters, the allure of scuba diving in New Caledonia is unparalleled, making it a must-visit destination for diving enthusiasts. The underwater treasures and the unique charm of Amedee Island contribute to an unforgettable diving experience in this idyllic South Pacific paradise.
Where is Amedee Island?
Situated approximately 24 kilometres from Noumea, the capital city of New Caledonia, Amedee Island is renowned for its crystal-clear blue waters and the presence of sea snakes. The island boasts the iconic Amedee Lighthouse, a notable iron structure that adds to its fame.
Even for those not inclined towards diving, Amedee Island offers an exquisite day by the beach. The inviting shores make it an ideal spot for relaxation and snorkelling, ensuring a memorable experience for all visitors.
Note: Exercise caution regarding sea snakes, as they are abundant around the island. Be aware of their presence, as they can be found in various areas surrounding the island.
Dive Site – Passe Bouparis
Located approximately 20 minutes from Amedee Island, the dive site Passe Bouparis gave me an extraordinary underwater experience. During my dive, the visibility at this site measured around 17 meters, allowing for a clear and immersive exploration of the marine environment. The water temperature at the dive site was a comfortable 24 degrees Celsius, enhancing the overall enjoyment of the dive and making it a memorable underwater adventure near Amedee Island.
Note: Taking seasickness tablets before embarking on the journey is advisable. The waters can be pretty rough, and the boat ride may not be a pleasant experience for those susceptible to seasickness. Being prepared with seasickness medication can significantly enhance the comfort and enjoyment of the boat ride to and from the dive sites.
Logistics of Dive Site
- Dive Type: Boat dive.
- Ocean Conditions: Rough.
- Wetsuit Required: Yes.
- Water Temperature: The weather felt chilly despite the temperature displaying around 24 degrees Celsius.
- Visibility: 15 to 20 metres.
Upon returning from Samoa, I promptly booked a scuba dive at Amedee. During my search for diving schools, I opted for Amedee Diving Club. However, navigating through most websites proved challenging as they were primarily in French. Even after translating them into English, comprehension remained difficult. Consequently, I randomly selected one, which happened to be Amedee Diving Club, to arrange my scuba diving experience.
- Dive centre: Amedee Diving Club
- Address: Quartier Latin Rue d’Austerlitz Face au ponton K2 Nouméa NC, 98800, Rue D Austerlitz, Nouméa, New Caledonia
- Telephone : +687 26.40.29
- Telephone mobile : +687 75.45.54
- email: firstname.lastname@example.org
The marine life at the dive sites was both divine and plentiful. The cold temperatures attract sizable fish species, including sharks and whales. Additionally, these sites host smaller fish like clownfish. The underwater landscape teemed with diverse marine life, creating a vibrant and colourful spectacle.
Notably, the sites are renowned for their significant marine residents, such as the grey nurse sharks and manta rays, which I encountered during my dive. The overall experience was a mesmerizing journey into the rich and lively underwater world that New Caledonia’s dive sites have to offer.
Best Time to Visit
Despite the computer displaying a temperature of 24 degrees Celsius, the water feels cold, necessitating a wetsuit for divers. However, the visibility is exceptional, ranging from 15 to 30 meters.
The optimal time for diving at this site is from October to April, when the water temperature is relatively warmer. Diving is also possible in the remaining months, from May to September, although a thicker wet suit is recommended for these cooler months. The remarkable visibility and diverse marine life make Amedee Island a captivating diving destination throughout the year, with suitable gear adjustments ensuring a comfortable and enjoyable underwater experience.
Cost for Diving
The diving costs at Amedee Island are relatively high compared to other global destinations. I was charged 138.27 Euros for two exploration dives, including equipment and oxygen tanks. It’s important to note that these prices apply to recreational dives, catering specifically to individuals with a PADI Open Water certification. While the expenses may be higher, the unique and enriching underwater experience, coupled with the vibrant marine life, makes the investment worthwhile for diving enthusiasts with the required certification.
My Experience of the Dive
On the Day of the Dive
The crowd exceeded my expectations that day, leading to an overcrowded situation on the island. Many individuals were undergoing level 2 certification, which corresponds to the advanced level in PADI terms. The boat journey to Amedee from Noumea took approximately 30 minutes, and unfortunately, the sea conditions were quite rough, adding a challenging element to the overall experience. Despite the unexpected crowd and rough seas, the allure of Amedee Island and its underwater wonders made the adventure worthwhile.
Taking a seasickness tablet before boarding the boat to Amedee Island is advisable.
Upon reaching the island, we were escorted to the local shop operated by the diving team. We were provided with our wetsuits, fins, masks, and Buoyancy Control Device (BCD) there.
My diving partner, Christina, was French, and regrettably, she did not know a single word in English, while I, on the other hand, did not speak French. I communicated my situation to her through sign language, expressing my lack of confidence in the skills I had learned during the Open Water certification, as I hadn’t practised them since then.
We ventured into the ocean 5-10 minutes from the island. Unfortunately, I started feeling seasick due to the rough conditions. After a brief explanation, we plunged into the ocean with our gear. It took me some time to acclimate, especially since the water was cold.
Highlights of My Dive
The diving experience was truly unforgettable and filled with awe-inspiring moments. Some of the highlights include:
- Encounter with a Grey Nurse Shark: Christina asked about the marine life I was most eager to see before the dive. I expressed my excitement about seeing a shark, and my dream came true as I spotted a magnificent grey nurse shark underwater.
- Observing a Clown Fish Family: Christina guided me to sit in front of a reef to witness a clown fish family reminiscent of Nemo. Watching Mommy and Papa Nemos alongside their adorable tiny children was heartwarming and incredibly cute.
- Encounter with a Massive Spotted Fish: I came across a colossal brown fish with distinctive spots, even larger than the shark. It remained stationary next to a rock, creating a mesmerizing sight.
- Highlight of the Dive – Manta Rays: The pinnacle of the dive occurred when Christina, ahead of me, suddenly stopped and descended to the ocean floor. Witnessing her display of respect, I eventually realized the reason. To my astonishment, two Manta Rays gracefully approached us, creating a truly spectacular moment. Overwhelmed, I was momentarily breathless, lost in the beauty of this dreamlike encounter. Christina’s gentle nudge brought me back to reality, and the experience of witnessing these majestic creatures was absolutely beautiful.
- We descended to a depth of 17 meters and spent 47 minutes exploring the underwater world.
Regrettably, I couldn’t participate in the second dive on that day, considering I had a flight scheduled for the next day. There’s a general safety guideline that recommends a minimum of 18 hours between the last dive and a flight.
Having dived more than 10 times, I can confidently say that this experience at Amedee Island stands out as my best dive ever. I wholeheartedly recommend Amedee Island to all fellow dive enthusiasts.
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