Arctic Circle diving embodies all the beauty that freezing water temperatures provide, with stunning things to be seen here, above and below the water. There is something truly unique about diving between icebergs and spotting species such as Humpback Whales and Beluga Whales.
Diving in the Arctic
One of the main things which makes scuba diving in or just visiting the Arctic Circle is that it's a unique experience that not many people have done and divers will definitely never encounter crowds here. Instead, they will encounter stunning natural phenomena including ice landscapes, glaciers and the incredible northern lights. If the challenge of freezing waters does not deter divers, then this is a place which is not to be missed. These areas are mostly visited via liveaboards because there is not an abundance of dive centres and dive resorts. Because of the challenging conditions, experience with cold water diving is necessary as a lot of the diving here is polar diving or ice diving.
There is an assortment of marine wildlife here including Seals, which are always entertaining to be underwater with, different species of Whales, which is an unforgettable experience, and many species of fish. Part of the experience diving in this region is also what can be seen above water, which here are Polar Bears; a true bucket list item for many, and Walruses. Some of the underwater experiences in this region include diving between two tectonic plates, shipwrecks, old mine tunnels, ice caves and ice diving through a hole divers need to create themselves. This is a top destination for the thrill seekers who are dedicated to a full experience from the first moment they set foot down on the snow.
Best places to dive
Norway has a large variety of dive sites, there are extreme drift dives, Fjord dives, Shipwrecks, drop offs, walls, but also dives where divers can admire some flourishing underwater life including colourful Anemones and Nudibranchs. One of the highlights here is the chance of diving with Orcas at Skarberget, Tysfjord.
Greenland is known for its ice diving, divers here can dive under and around these icebergs while also doing some impressive coral dives and diving through ice caves. It’s definitely for the freezing thrill seekers.
Iceland has multiple diving opportunities but the main spectacle here is the unique opportunity for divers to dive in between two tectonic plates in water which has visibility of over 100 metres at Silfra Fissure.
Svalbard, an archipelago located at the northernmost tip of Norway, is a popular destination for liveaboards. Whilst diving under the icebergs, there is a big chance to see different species of whales, including Blue Whales and Belugas.
Canada, in this case, Arctic Canada, is also a mecca for large species including Humpback Whales, Narwhals Beluga and Seals all while experiencing dives completely surrounded by ice.
Finland has a variety of types of diving, especially as many of the dive sites turn into ice diving locations. There are numerous wrecks around, there are old mine tunnels for technical divers and caves to explore.
Russia, imagine having to cut the hole in the ice to actually access the water to dive in. This is definitely a unique and thrilling experience. Underneath the ice there is an abundance of marine life to find, including sea stars and anemones.
Some other regions which fall into this area are Alaska in the USA and Sweden.