picture of reef sharks with words "scuba diving in Bimini, Bahamas."

The Ultimate Guide To Scuba Diving In Bimini, Bahamas

As the famous movie line goes “you’re gonna need a bigger boat.” However, not because of a menacing great white shark, but for all your scuba gear. Now with that being said, many divers do flock to Bimini for shark dives, in fact it’s kinda what its known for.

An aerial view of boats docked in Bimini.
Welcome to Bimini, known for its diving and sport fishing. (Photo courtesy of bahamas.com/islands/bimini)

So grab your passport and shark repellant and let’s look into scuba diving Bimini.

Getting There And Accommodations


Bimini is the most Western island of the Bahamas and is only about 50 miles off of the coast of Florida. Getting to Bimini can be a little like Planes, Trains and Automobiles – well at least like planes, automobiles and ferries – hopefully without being crazily sidetracked.

A map of the Bahamas.
You might have to squint to see it, but right off of Florida you’ll see Bimini.

Travelers can fly into Miami or Fort Lauderdale and then catch a plane or a ferry (from Ft. Lauderdale) over to Bimini. Plane is the faster – taking about 30 minutes – more expensive option. The ferry from Ft. Lauderdale is the more cost effective way over, but takes about 2 hours. (Unfortunately for our travels it took longer than that. Friday afternoon the ferry was delayed for about an hour and a half and coming back we sat in customs for about 2 hours…on top of the 2 hour ferry ride. paying for the premium seating will make getting off the ferry quicker, but at a cost)

The Bimini ferry sailing through the ocean.
The fast ferry is a more cost effective way to travel from Ft. Lauderdale to Bimini, but will take longer. (Photo courtesy of visitlauderdale.com)

Places to Stay

The island of Bimini is small, but there are some options on where to stay. Over on North Bimini the main choice for divers – and where we stayed – is Bimini Big Game Club Resort & Marina (“BBGC”). Located at BBGC is Neal Watson’s Bimini scuba center, so one stop shopping for diving and accommodations.

A hotel room with a comfy bed, couch, and balcony.
BBGC is great for both staying and diving needs. (Photo courtesy of BBGC)

Also on North Bimini is Hilton at Resorts World Bimini and Oasis Paradise Villas. Over on South Bimini is Bimini Cove Resort & Marina and Smalls Cozy Rest.

Scuba Diving In Bimini

While the Bahamas are thought to be part of the Caribbean, they’re actually in the Atlantic Ocean. However, there is Caribbean like diving to be found at the Bahamas and Bimini is truly one of the most spectacular aquatic destinations that the Bahamas has to offer.

Diving off of this small tropical paradise divers can expect to find amazing coral reefs with a variety of marine life ranging from eagle rays to dolphins. There are plenty of reef fish and sharks – like great hammerhead and bull sharks – and some wrecks as well. Oh, and possibly the remains of Atlantis!

A Hammerhead shark swimming underwater.
The hammerhead shark is a main attraction of Bimini scuba diving.

Diving Operations

This section will be rather short as the go-to dive operator in Bimini is Neal Watson’s Bimini Scuba Center located at Bimini Big Game Club Resort & Marina. The Scuba Center offers various packages for diving and snorkelers alike. They can get you to the wrecks worth seeing and – in season – various shark dives.

A welcome sign for the Bimini Big Game Club with the sunset in the backround.
Neal Watson’s is THE diving operator on Bimini and is right next to the Big Game Club.

Diving Sites of Bimini

From wreck diving to potentially diving on the lost continent of Atlantis, Bimini really has a little something for every diver.

Scuba Jay with dive buddy Fritz about to get our dive on!

Shark Dives

The most sought after dives in Bimini are the shark dives, which is what we went for. Depending on the time of the year, Neal Watson’s offers a couple of options to get to see these predators up-close.

The main attraction is the Great Hammerhead Shark Safari. This option is only available from November through April, so best to book early. You’ll be taken out to “Hammer Headquarters” and will be able to get plenty of bottom time at the 20ft depth of this site. This is a very exciting day outing among the great hammerhead sharks and we spent nearly 2 hours down below watching them feed.

There is also the Reef Shark Safari, which runs all year round. This dive is usually paired with a dive on the famous Sapona (see below). For this dive, we headed over to Shark Alley, which is about 30ft deep. The outing did not disappoint as we saw a swarm of various reef sharks that swam all around us!

Atlantis Found?

Well maybe the road leading to it anyway. “The Bimini Road” is located on the Western edge of the North Bimini bluff and is made up of square blocks that are aligned in a row some 1,500ft long.

The Bimini road underwater.
The road to Atlantis? maybe. (Photo courtesy of IFLScience)

At about 18ft deep all level of divers and snorkelers can enjoy this site. So grab your mask and fins and go see for yourself if in fact Atlantis – or just an interesting geological formation – has been found.

The Bimini Barge

One of the most famous wrecks to dive in Bimini is the Bimini Barge. The barge sits upright on a sandy bottom in about 100ft of water. It is also closely located to the edge of the extreme drop-off of the Continental Shelf. This is a dive not to be missed!

The barge has become a nice artificial reef and is now home to an abundance of marine life, including reef fish, stingrays, nurse sharks, barracuda and various corals and sponges.

A women scuba diving and putting her hand on a stingray.
Diver with stingray on the Bimini Barge. (Photo courtesy of Indigo Safaris)

Given the depth of this dive site and sometimes strong current, it is a dive best suited for advanced divers.

Turtle Rocks

This site is somewhat of a misnomer as there are not many turtles to be found at Turtle Rocks. The name actually comes from the brain and star coral that at low tide looks like the backs of turtles.

The formations that make up Turtle Rocks can be found on the West side of Bimini and are broken into North, Middle and South locations. Diving here is shallow, ranging generally between 10ft to 35ft. However the marine life is impressive and at this location you will find plenty of grunts, parrotfish, angelfish and eagle rays. A nice dive for beginners and advanced divers.

A eagle ray underwater.
While there may not be many turtles at Turtle Rocks, you will see some eagle rays.

Continental Shelf

As mentioned above, the Continental Shelf and Great Bahama Bank lie just off the Western side of Bimini. You can explore the edge of the shelf and ride the gulf stream as a drift dive.

An image of the continental shelf underwater.
Experience a drift dive over a drop-off like pictured above, but on a Continental Shelf.

This is a challenging deep dive and only for advanced divers or higher.

The Sapona

The wreck of the Sapona is another must do dive of Bimini. This cargo steamer was launched in 1920 and ran aground in a hurricane in 1926. And remains there still to be seen to this day.

The sapona has a tremendous history. She served as a troop transport in World War I, stored illegal liquor during prohibition and was used for target practice by US planes during World War II. That is until Flight 19 occurred and five torpedo bombers went missing on December 5, 1945, adding to the mystery of the Bermuda Triangle…cue the spooky music.

Sitting in just 15ft of water, the remains of the wreck can be seen sticking out of the surface some 40ft. Easily accessible, all level of divers and snorkelers can explore this popular wreck of the Bahamas…just hope you don’t run into the crew of Flight 19!

A wreck in the waters of Bimini.
A trip to the Sapona brings much history and mystery to your dive. (Photo courtesy of Snorkeling Report)

The Strip

The Strip is another Bimini favorite dive that is good for all level of divers and snorkelers alike. It is also a good spot for night dives. This narrow stirp – hence the name – of reef lies among a sandy bottom at depths between 35ft to 40ft.

The strip underwater in Bimini.
You won’t find landing lights on this strip, but an abundance of marine life.

At just under 300ft long and about 15ft wide, the Strip is full of marine life. Various reef fish make this location their home, as well as, moray eels, spiny lobster, stingrays and perhaps even a reef octopus.

Rainbow Reef

Get ready for an explosion of color at Rainbow Reef. With depths between just 15ft to 25ft, this is another great site for all level of divers and snorkeling too.

What makes up the colors of the rainbow at this site are the fish. In fact it’s been called one of the most “fishiest reefs” in the Bahamas. Here you will see schools of sergeant majors, grunts and nurse sharks hiding among the coral. Bring that camera!!

Rainbow reef underwater surrounded by fish.
Ten-hut!! There will be large schools of sergeant majors found at Rainbow Reef.

Moray Alley

If you’re a fan or moray eels, than head on over to moray alley. But there is so much more to see here too, like barrel sponges, Nassau grouper, grunts and the weirdly cool looking trumpetfish.

A trumpetfish underwater in Bimini.
The strange looking trumpet fish can be found cruising around Moray Alley.

The waters among the relatively shallow reefs that make up this site are usually calm. However, with depths between 50ft to 75ft, this may be a site more for those advanced divers.

Tuna Alley

Being Bimini there of course there is more than one Alley. Tuna Alley is where you’ll want to go if looking for some interesting geological formations with caverns and swim-throughs.

The underwater terrain varies greatly at this site, with drop-offs down to the abyss. Most dives will be between about 60ft and 100ft and require good buoyancy. For those advanced divers that make there way here, look to see a variety of aquatic life among the sponge and coral filled overhangs.

Other Activities

There are some great activities in Bimini to keep you busy in-between your diving, or perhaps if you’re not a diver – gasp!! Below are some top choices.


Perhaps even more than scuba diving, Bimini is known for its sport fishing. In fact, Bimini has been called the sport fishing capital of the world.

The Gulf stream runs past the island and brings in many sport fish. While fishing is year-round, certain sport fish are more prevalent during certain times of the year. In the Bimini waters some sought after catches include marlin, wahoo, tuna and sailfish.

The fact that the author of The Old Man and the Sea, Ernest Hemingway, lived and fished on Bimini for some time in the 1930s says a lot about just how well the island is associated with its fishing.

A painting of Ernest Hemingway.
Ernest Hemingway, author of The Old Man and the Sea, lived on Bimini for a while in the 1930s.

Dolphin House Museum

When back on shore, check out the Dolphin House for a very cool and different kind of museum.

Brought to life through the vision of Bahamian author and artist Ashley Saunders, the Dolphin House has been under construction since 1993 through the use of recycled, donated and salvaged materials.

An image inside the Bimini Dolphi house.
The Dolphin House is a must see explosion of color and creativity. (Photo courtesy of Noble Air Charter)

Mr. Saunders’ vison for the Dolphin House was inspired by his swimming with a pod of dolphins in the Bimini waters. Go see why this structure is called a “poem in stone,” you won’t regret it.

Radio Beach

This is no day at the beach…oh wait, it is!

Located on the West side of the island in Alice Town, Radio Beach is perfect for a day of R & R. Beautiful white sands and clear waters await here. There are also some little restaurants that offer fresh fried conch and lobster tail and even a little beach bar for a cold beverage. Life truly is a beach while in Bimini!

Bimini Shadow's Coconut bar.
Make sure to stop by Shadow’s Coconut Bar to quench your thirst. (Photo courtesy of Broken Palate)

Wrapping Things Up

From the shark dives to the chill beaches, Bimini is the island paradise not far from Florida that offers both adventure and relaxation. Time to get on island time, unwind and explore part of the Bahamas!

Scuba Jay with fellow travelers Mariah and Jim getting ready for dinner after a great day of diving.

“How boring would the world be if everywhere and everyone were the same. Safe travels and good adventures.” Scuba Jay

Similar Posts