Divers flock to the Mesoamerican Reef off the coast of Mexico making it one of the most dived destination in the world, but Belize is often overlooked.

Dive_with_whalesharks_in_belize
Whale shark season is on between March and June

You will often see claims that the Mesoamerican Reef is the second largest reef system or the second biggest barrier reef in the world. That is not 100% accurate. Those claims belong to the Belize Barrier Reef.

The Belize Barrier Reef is a component of the Mesoamerican Reef, making up about 35% of the distance of that reef system but 80% of the overall reef.

The Mexican portion of the Mesoamerican Reef is over-dived and what initially brought divers to the Mexican coral reefs can still be found in Belize.

Here are 8 reasons why Belize should be your choice for an epic dive vacation

Divers might saw the dive sites of the Great Blue Hole or Long Caye Wall on top ten dive site lists, but few had ever dived there.

While Belize is not a “dive only” destination, most of the visitors who come here and stay for a week come for the diving. If you are looking for a dive vacation, that is focused on diving and not just a dive between parties then Belize deserves your close attention.

1. Dive The Great Blue Hole

There are hundreds of “Blue Holes” around the world, but when you say “Blue Hole” everyone knows you are talking about the Great Blue Hole of Belize.

Designated as the Blue Hole Natural Monument, it is a protected dive site that was made famous by Jacques Cousteau. In his television program back in 1971, he declared it the best dive site in the world. Blue hole is located on Lighthouse Reef Atoll.

2. Experience Whaleshark Season in Belize

Whale shark season in Belize is between March and June of each year at the same time as the spawning season of the Snapper. The best chance of seeing these graceful, gentle giants is around the full moon at Gladden Split. As the moon gets brighter, the whale shark’s food supply moves towards the surface. Two days before the full moon to about ten days after is the best time to see the whale sharks.

It is possible to get to this reef in around an hour by boat from many of the resorts. Glover’s Reef is the favorite atoll of many because of this wonder of nature. Be safe and enjoy, but don’t go beyond your skill levels.

3. Explore Two out of Three Coral Atolls in the Western Hemisphere

There are four atolls outside of the Indo-Pacific area, sometimes called the Western Hemisphere Atolls. Of these four atolls, three are found in Belize and are the Lighthouse Reef Atoll, Glover’s Reef Atoll, and the Turneffe Atoll.

What is an atoll?

Briefly, an atoll is formed when an island with a fringing reef starts to “sink” because of rising water levels. The corals keep growing and eventually they will grow above the (former) island.

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This article is published by The Scuba Page, the online magazine for Scuba Dive lovers around the world. The Scuba Page is part of RUSHKULT : the online booking platform for adventure sports. Visit the RUSHKULT platform to book your next Scuba Dive training, guided trip and accommodation.

What_is_an_atoll
It takes hundreds of years for a coral atoll to form