Scuba Diving in Canada

Canada has the longest coastline in the world which borders the Pacific ocean in the west, the Atlantic ocean in the east, the Arctic ocean in the north, and Greenland in the northeast. Canada is situated in North America and is the second largest country in the world.
It is filled with many curious underwater attractions. One of them is wrecks, the remains of ships that have wrecked, which confirms the treacherous nature of local waters. Dive sites in British Columbia are known for their extremely rich flora and fauna. Here you will find channels with strong currents, corals, the colourful macro-world, sea anemones, a huge number of fish, earless seals, and sea lions.
Diving opportunities in Canada depend only on an individual's attitude towards water. Although the water here is cold and dark, and the currents are strong and changeable, you will gain a collosal experience and feel incomparable emotions.

Reasons to Visit

Where to go
in Canada?
Canada is among those countries that provide opportunities for winter diving. It offers unique extreme ice diving. Divers return to the surface with the help of safety ropes. One of the most thrilling experiences is ice diving under a frozen surface. The wind can blow debris blocking the diver's return to the exit. A diving instructor escort and an accurate weather forecast are a must in both cases.
Nova Scotia waters are inhabited not only by fish but also by several crab species. Coming across bottom-dwelling arthropods common to coral covered wrecks might be an interesting experience. Unlike their counterparts in southern regions, crabs in Canada can grow to an impressive size, which does not affect their ability to move quickly along the bottom. Crabs and earless seals, which also prefer water to land, coexist peacefully.
The waters around Vancouver Island are inhabited by 24 cetacean species, giant molluscs such as octopuses and squids along with earless seals and fur seals. White sharks are also found here. You can enjoy diving with sea lions all year round. These 700-800 kilogram animals are very social and playful underwater. You can encounter the diversity of ocean dwellers not only in the daytime but also at night. Amazing photo and video footage can be created underwater here.
Try fresh water diving in the lakes of Canada, which are known for its crystal-clear water. You will inspect sunken old Stern-wheeler Gertrude on the bottom of the Waterton Lake, Alberta. A few more wrecks you will find in Tobermory Lake, Ontario. This lake is regarded as the best dive site in the Great Lakes region.
Despite the chilly weather, Canada's marine life is quite diverse. The Giant Pacific Octopus, wolffish, pods of dolphins, fur seals, spotted ratfish, and large rockfish are found here. Deep-dwelling bluntnose sixgill sharks move into shallow waters during August. Encountering a shark will definitely be an adrenaline rush.

Diving Destinations in Canada

Vancouver Island with its numerous straits and fjords is considered the best diving location in Canada. Its marine life contains over 400 species of fish and 5,000 species of invertebrates. Hundreds of dive sites across the province offer fantastic and breathtaking diving experience. You can come across crabs, whales, fur seals, and ling cod that tend to hide or swim gravely in the colourful algae. Wreck diving lovers can explore sunken warships and military aircrafts.

Memo Notes
Currency CAD - Canadian Dollar
Languages English, French
Timezone UTC -8 - UTC -3:30
Phone code 1
Emergency Help 911

Type A - 120 V, 60 Hz

Type B - 120 V, 60 Hz

Dive Shops in Canada

Dive shops in Canada are concentrated in major dive sites on Vancouver Island. Their staff members are experienced diving instructors who teach diving while being active dive explorers themselves. Dive shops offer diving courses, diving under an instructor's supervision, and diving quest games.

Сlimate & Seasonality

The Canadian winter lasts till March. The weather is rainy, with strong winds, while the water and air temperatures remain the same. April and May bring dry weather. In the daytime, the air temperature reaches 17 °C, the water temperature is about 12-14 °C.


Summer with its comfortable air and water temperatures is a high travel season in Canada. However, the water temperature does not exceed 18 °C even during July and August; therefore, you should wear a wetsuit to stay warm while diving.


September offers a nice weather in major dive locations. In the daytime, the air temperature stands at 18 °C while the water temperature remains at 15 °C. The weather is dry and fair, with short rains. The air and water temperatures during November stand at 9 °C.


There is no diving in Canada in winter. The average daytime air temperature ranges from 6 °C during December to 8 °C during February. The water temperature does not exceed 6-7 °C. Winter is characterized by a high level of precipitation.

high season
middle season
low season

The Best Dive Sites

The Saskatchewan is not only a 111-metre U. S. destroyer but also an artificial reef intentionally sunken on the British Columbia coastline, which is now inhabited by rockfish and octopuses.
The Cape Breton, a World War II ship, is another artificial reef which lies at a depth of 32 metres. When diving to the Cape Breton wreck, you can explore the deckhouse which remains intact.

Health & Safety

Canada has one of the best healthcare systems in the world. You can get high-quality medical assistance even in small towns. Travel insurance for Canada is not mandatory but highly recommended due to expensive health services. No vaccinations are required. Canada's crime rate has significantly declined in recent years, however, you should be vigilant. Never leave your personal belongings unattended.

Dangerous Marine Life

There are no dangerous sea creatures that divers should fear in Canada. Even bluntnose sixgill sharks, despite their gruesome appearance, would prefer chasing fish (like stingrays, molluscs, etc.) to pursuing a human. Bluntnose sixgill sharks hunt alone. They are found in the coastal zone of Canada only in the summertime.

Eat & Drinks

Canadian cuisine is a mix of culinary traditions of the immigrant population. Local dishes include chowder, a seafood soup with bacon, flavoured with spices and lemon juice; sweet carrot pie flavoured with cinnamon and nutmeg; baked French fries with cheese curds, and Canada's pride: maple syrup, which is made from sap of sugar maple. Maple syrup is used in many dishes. The most interesting alcoholic beverage is Ice wine which is made from partially frozen grapes. Tap water is safe to drink.