When I travel, I like to see as much of a place as I can possibly squeeze into the time I’m visiting. And whenever I’m near the sea, I love taking a look at the underwater world too. It’s an incredible experience to explore the ocean and see the different marine life that abides.
While visiting Exmouth in Western Australia, I had a number of incredible dives to choose from. There really are some great looking spots in the Ningaloo Marine Park. But with time and budget always being a factor, I opted to dive in one location.
Though, of course, it wasn’t just any dive. I did a double dive at Exmouth Navy Pier, which is one of the top 10 dive sites in Australia.
Diving Exmouth Navy Pier
I was drawn to diving the pier for two main reasons. First, I love doing the “best” or “top” of anything, because I figure if that many people think something is great, then it probably is.
Second, the pier is known for having a plethora of macro sea life. Though I enjoy the colorful nudibranch and the incredible structures of coral, it’s really the big sea creatures that I most love.
Navy Pier absolutely delivered! I saw several sharks, huge groupers, moray eels, a few octopi, and hundreds of fish. The site feels like you’ve been dropped into a well crafted aquarium. The diversity and amount of sea life is truly spectacular.
And the structure of the pier itself is quite a sight to behold. It gives the dive site an ethereal quality. There’s so much to take in during the dive! Every moment is dazzling as you swim through the aquatic maze of marine life.
I highly recommend doing the double dive, so you can see as much of the dive site as possible. Even though you essentially take the same route for both dives, the area is so dynamic that they feel like separate dive sites.
Dive Site Information
The Navy Pier is an active military site that is owned by the Australian Navy. It can only be accessed with special licensing and fishing is not allowed, which has fostered a prime environment for sea life to live relatively undisturbed.
The site can only be dived during slack tide when the current is not too strong. As such, dives are very time sensitive. It is crucial to be punctual for each stage of your dive, from getting ready to leaving the pier. Otherwise, you might miss out on part or even all of the dive. And no one wants to be the jerk that ruined the dive for everyone else!
It’s a pretty shallow dive site, with maximum depths of 15 meters. Divers only need an open water dive certification. Visibility at the site usually ranges between 5 and 20 meters.
Dive Ningaloo is currently the only company allowed to dive the site. They offer single and double dives at the Navy Pier. As the dives are dependent on the tides, dive times vary from day to day. Check Dive Ningaloo’s website to see which days a single or double dive is offered.
The current cost for a single dive is A$140, while a double dive is A$200. There is also an additional A$50 that must be paid to the Department of Defense on the day of the dive. So don’t forget to bring along a pineapple (i.e. an Australian $50 note) so you can access the dive site. You also need to bring your passport for registration with the Navy.
Where’s the coolest place you have scuba dived?