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France is a scuba diving haven as even the father of modern scuba diving, Jacques Cousteau, hailed from Bordeaux. There are quite a few amazing spots for this adventure sport here, and scuba diving in France should be on the top of your itinerary if you’re planning a visit to this beautiful country.
Best Places For Scuba Diving In France
Here is a list of the top 10 best scuba diving spots in France that you absolutely can’t miss during your visit to L’hexagone.
1. Le Tombant Des Americains
The city of Nice is known for its many amazing diving spots, and one of the best spots for scuba diving in Nice, France is Le Tombant Des Americains, a diving site known for the rich marine life, with species such as eels, morays, and crayfish very easy to spot on your dive. The purple and pink corals standing out in the blue sea, creating a beautiful mix of colors. The tomb of Americans, as it translates to English, is a dive that begins at 50 meters, and you need to get professional assistance to visit this dive site.
Location: Nice, France.
2. Lot et Garonne
Experienced divers might know that it’s on every divers’ list to get an opportunity to wear the gear at Lot et Garonne. Located in the Nouvelle-Aquitaine region, this is definitely one of the best scuba diving locations in France, because of the many cave systems and the cave wall paintings one can find. The water here is also crystal clear and provides for superb visibility during your dive. Every divers’ paradise, this is one place that definitely shouldn’t be missed on your visit to France.
Location: Nouvelle-Aquitaine, France
3. The rock of Rascas
Located in a marine park, this is definitely on our list of the top diving spots in France. A visually beautiful combination of the colorful flora amidst the clear blue water, the rich marine life such as jellyfish, eels, morays and many more, and the schools of fish that surround you as you swim are some of the things that make this a top diving spot memorable. And since the rock of Rascas is located in a marine park, there are also a couple of other diving spots in the vicinity that you can explore.
Location: Port-Cros National Marine Park
4. The Riou Archipelago
If you’re contemplating scuba diving in Marseilles, France, you will find a group of unexplored islands that are perfect for sightseeing and diving due to their picturesque beauty and scenic landscapes. Apart from the exceptional lush green woods and forests, there are also some brilliant diving spots, such as “the Pharillons”, a 45-meter drop into the ocean. The view above the water isn’t any less impressive than that underwater view is no less, with some beautiful variety of fish and flora as well.
Location: Marseilles, France.
5. Le Donator and Le Grec
On the lesser explored and car-free island of Porquerolles, located not far off the coast of Hyeres, are two of the best spots for scuba diving in southern France. Le Grec and Le Donator, which were both once cargo ships before they sank, are great places to explore and are home to some of the most beautiful corals in France. At a depth of around 50 meters, these shipwrecks are an unforgettable adventure on their own. What’s more, they have a history too, if you’re the buff whose looking for it.
Location: Porquerolles, Hyeres, France.
6. The Lavezzi Islands
If you’re looking for the top places for scuba diving in France, these islands, located not far from the Corsican mainland, are known for their turquoise sea and the granite reefs. You will need some assistance from a dive shop to get access to this dive, and the best time to explore the underwater world of these islands is during the mornings when the water is still calm and clear, and the currents aren’t as strong. You will also get to see schools of Serranidae fish, otherwise known as Groupers, on your dive.
Location: Strait of Bonifacio, France.
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7. The Pyramids
Located in Frejus, this diving site welcomes divers of all levels of experience and has various depths of diving. So if you’re a novice diver, this is perhaps one of the best diving spots to start diving at. An abundance of beautiful flora and corals is accompanied by some rich marine life, including species like eels, jellyfish, scorpion fish, and snappers, among many others. Not only the marine life, the port town, too, has many places that you can visit.
Location: Frejus, France.
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8. The Glénan islands
For all those who love to dive among shipwrecks, you will ‘the one’ at the Glenan Islands in France. In spite of the strong currents, people still love to dive among the wrecks and rock crevices and one can find an array of flora like the kelp, and a large number of beautiful fishes and Crustaceans, which can be found in abundance. The cherry on the cake is Pietro Orseolo, a 140-meter long wrecked ship, which is an all-time favorite to exploration spot among divers.
Location: Department of Finistère, France.
9. Phare du Planier
Located right off the coast of Côte Bleu in Marseilles is a lighthouse with some wrecked ships that can be explored by divers. However, what makes this place unique is that apart from the ships, there is also a sunken airplane here, known as the ‘La Chouen‘. Legend says that a drunk pilot had crashed the ship in the 1970’s and since then this has been a divers haven, as not many places have sunken airplanes open for divers to explore.
Location: Marseille, France.
Last, but not the least on our list of the top spots for scuba diving in France is Belle-Île-en-Mer island. Spread over an area of 85 square kilometers, it has an array of places to explore, like caves, faults, canyons, and tunnels, to name a few. An abundance of flora and marine fauna inhabits the underwater world of this island. Not only the sea, but the land also is as beautiful to explore on foot and has some of the most scenic sights in the country.
Location: Morbihan, France.
With these many spots for scuba diving in France, you are more than spoilt for choice. While scuba diving is definitely a bucket list experience, reaching these places is another matter altogether. Getting a good deal on a French vacation is just as important for a wholesome experience.
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Frequently Asked Questions About Scuba Diving In France
Which is the best season to go scuba diving in France?
The best time of the year to do scuba diving in France is between June and October because the weather is just perfect for all kinds of water sports.
Is scuba diving in France safe for first-timers?
Yes. It’s absolutely safe to try scuba diving in France even if you have never stepped foot in the waters as scuba diving in France is done under strict supervision by professional divers and experts.
Can a nonswimmer go scuba diving?
Yes. A nonswimmer can also go scuba diving but will have to undergo certain training sessions for the same.
How much does it cost for scuba diving in France?
Scuba diving in France can cost anything between Rs. 4000 to Rs. 40000 depending upon the duration, equipment, distance to be covered and whether you require guided assistance or not.
Which is the best places for scuba diving in France?
Lot et Garonne, Le Tombant Des Americains, and The rock of Rascasare a few of the best places to go scuba diving in France.
What is the minimum age for scuba diving?
For scuba diving in most parts of the world, the basic minimum age should be at least 10 years to qualify for the PDAI (Professional Association of Dive Instructors) certification.
Does it require certification to go diving in France?
Yes. If you are planning to scuba dive in France, you will require to have a PDAI certification to qualify for scuba diving in France.
Is a medical certificate required to scuba dive in France?
Yes. You will have to produce a medical certificate proving that you are absolutely fit for scuba diving. If you are suffering from cold or sinus, you will have to wait until your condition gets normal.
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