Diving in Kadavu

The Great Astrolabe Reef

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...Good for: Large animals, reef life and health, visibility...
...Not so good for: Reef life and health, wrecks...

Kadavu is one of the less visited islands of Fiji which is precisely the reason why you should go there. No big resorts and fast food outlets here. Instead you can get a taste for the real Fiji, where the quickest transport is by boat, where the dive resorts are in tune with nature and where the true local culture and warmth of this South Pacific nation shines through.

Pristine hard corals in massed stands of colour abound, around which play a tremendous variety of marine life. The Great Astrolabe Reef, which curls away into the deep blue distance from the shoreline, is what scuba diving in Kadavu is all about. The reef is about 100 km long, making it the 4th largest barrier reef in the world. It stretches from the south side of Kadavu near Vunisea, and runs along the south coast before looping around Ono Island and ending off the east coast of the main island. Show more

Dive Site Descriptions

Broken Stone - is one of a cluster of dive spots found in an area of Kadavu known as 'Alacrity Rocks' at the eastern end of the Great Astrolabe Reef. These sites are characterised by their networks of passages, swim-throughs and caverns; Broken Stone is no exception. If you like cavern formations you will love this site as there seems to be a never ending series of tunnels, arches and canyons to explore. Show more

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How to Dive Kadavu

For information on your diving options, and all the other travel information you might need to visit Kadavu and Fiji, view our:

There is a clear north-south divide on the island when it comes to the Kadavu resorts. The southern shores are dominated by the untamed Great Astrolabe Reef, one of the largest barrier reefs in the world. Colourful banks of hard corals prosper here with some high energy passages that attract reef sharks, rays, schooling fish and large groupers. Manta Reef is also located in the south, in the central region, where mantas are very common. If you like hard corals, diving in remote locations and simple, easy-living, then the south of Kadavu is for you.

The north of the island is markedly different, with lots of soft coral bommies and pinnacles where the sites are easier. The resort has modern facilities and can arrange scuba diving all along the northern coast, the deeper western sites, and Manta Reef, though not the Great Astrolabe Reef. If you need your mod cons and enjoy soft corals, then the north is for you. Not sure which is for you? Why not try a short stay in the north and in the south and get the best of both worlds!

Since tropical cyclone Winston struck in February 2016, there have been some liveaboard itinerary changes. Kadavu’s dive sites are now included in some alternative routes operated by Fiji liveaboards.


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Diving Season

The season for diving Kadavu is year round. August to October generally enjoys the best visibility when the cooler sea conditions arrive (24°C). The summer time between November and April has the seas at their warmest (30°C) although there is a greater chance of rain at this time.

When the rain comes in the summer time this usually coincides with calmer sea conditions. Then in winter the surface can kick up a little although this period, with reduced rain, also means better visibility.

Mantas can be seen throughout the year at Kadavu. Pilot whales can be spotted in April and May, while July to August is the best time for oceanic hammerheads.

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Where is Kadavu Island and How Do I Get There?

Review our map below of the Fiji Islands, showing the location of Kadavu. Here, you will find information on how to get to Kadavu.

Map of Fiji (click to enlarge in a new window)

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Reef Summary

Depth: 5 - 35m
Visibility: 10 - 40m
Currents: Gentle to strong
Surface conditions: Mostly calm but can be choppy further from shore
Water temperature: 25 - 29°C
Experience level: Beginner - advanced
Number of dive sites: >60
Recommended length of stay: 7 - 10 days

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Useful References


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