Most folks who go to Morocco will come back with a camera full of parched desert scenery. If you’re looking for damper vistas than camels trekking across picturesque sand, you may be surprised to learn that Morocco is an absolute scuba diving gem.
Morocco’s off-the-radar status as a scuba diving location makes it a fantastic option for dive travel. People travel to Morocco to go on a camelback safari in the desert or explore the exotic bazaars, not to see its offshore depths — so the country offers a golden opportunity to beat the crowds and enjoy the rich marine environments off of the northwest coast of Africa.
A common myth about scuba diving in Morocco, especially among Europeans, is that recreational scuba diving is banned. Don’t worry! While it’s true that the country’s diving industry is underdeveloped, the sport is far from banned. You may have to do a bit more legwork to find a dive center, but ScubaSpy.com will help you sort out a top-notch scuba diving itinerary in Morocco without too much undue effort.
Considering that Morocco is about on the same latitude as Florida, the sea there is surprisingly chilly. The water temperature around central Morocco is in the mid-60s F in winter and the low 70s in summer. It’s gentle, though: sea currents off the coast of Morocco are rarely strong, and the ocean is generally placid.
One of the virtues of diving in Morocco is in its animal encounters, as it is one of the few places where swimming with dolphins in the open ocean is legal. Some boat dive trips combine diving with dolphin watching, including the chance to get in the water with the dolphins. Sea turtles are sometimes seen, and the reefs offer a home to slithering blue conger eels, crabs, grouper, tuna and sea bream.
Because Morocco is such an off-the-beaten-track diving area, divers have the singular advantage of avoiding the crowds. This will go over brilliantly with divers used to visiting popular diving areas, where the challenge is to be the first dive group to reach a particular area before any other divers disturb the fish. This is hardly a worry for the infrequently-dived shores of Morocco, where you have a shot at being the first to discover a new scuba diving site!
Unlike in the neighboring Canary Islands, dive centers and clubs are few and far between. Those in search of scuba diving in Morocco must go straight to where the dive centers in Morocco are more concentrated, in places like Tangier. There are a couple of dive shops in Agadir, Morocco, too. Anyone who simply shows up at a beach and hopes to find a dive shop will probably be disappointed. Do your research first — you’ll be glad you did.