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Best dive spots along NSW north coast?

Discussion in 'Australia' started by fluff_astrid, Oct 15, 2020.

  1. fluff_astrid

    fluff_astrid Angel Fish

    # of Dives: 100 - 199
    Location: Sydney, Australia
    36
    26
    18
    Hey all, taking the month of December off to drive from Sydney up to Byron, where I'll be for about 10 days and getting in some dives at Julian Rocks (among other side trips). I'd like to get in some other dives along the way and looking for location + dive shop recommendations.

    All I have on my list right now is South West Rocks, so would love other recommendations, maybe stack-ranked in terms of what's "worth it" and what's not. I get cold SO easily and don't have a drysuit, so I can only do so many dives in a row -- currently planning to do the dive day, break day, dive day approach to give my core temp time to warm up between diving :) Also helps on the wallet!

    Roughly my itinerary looks like:
    - 5 through 12 December: work my way up the coast - where to stop? Goo
    - 12 December - 22 December: Around Byron area / Julian Rocks diving (is there anything else nearby?)
    - 22 December - 30 December: Not sure yet -- was originally thinking to do SWR on the way back down the coast in the small hopes the water temp could be slightly higher than it might be in earlier December (:wink:) although, if the Queensland border opens up, I might pop over and do some stuff in QLD.

    What shops/locations you reckon are decent to stop at?

    Thanks!
     
  2. Mike1967

    Mike1967 Manta Ray

    # of Dives: 100 - 199
    Location: Victoria, Australia
    1,193
    564
    113
    I was in SWR at the end of Nov last year and water was 19C, I was chilly in a 7mm.

    You'll love it though, have a great trip!
     
  3. chris kippax

    chris kippax Divemaster

    # of Dives: 500 - 999
    Location: Australia
    770
    570
    93
    Julian Rocks- Blue bay divers
    Seal Rocks- (looks like only Dive Forster is still kicking)
    Solitary islands- Wooli dive
    Pipeline-Nelson Bay- Lets go adventures. Shore dive (shop is at the marina and can supply a DM if required)
    Looking Glass Nelson Bay-Lets go adventures
    Fish Rock SWR- SWR dive
    They are some of my favourite sites in NSW
     
  4. Pressurehead

    Pressurehead Angel Fish

    # of Dives: 2,500 - 4,999
    Location: Queensland Australia
    41
    13
    8
    Have not dived the 2 in Nelson Bay [looks good on their site].
    Dived all the others, all great dives.
    Fish Rock cave is a MUST do dive,it has been years and I would do it again in a heart beat.
    Solitary Islands, fantastic site [I almost bought the dive shop just north of Coffs, early 87 I think it was].
    Queensland looks like being open to southern divers by then.
    Have fun, all good dives.
     
  5. chris kippax

    chris kippax Divemaster

    # of Dives: 500 - 999
    Location: Australia
    770
    570
    93
    For Qld my favourites are

    Flinders reef Brisbane
    Mooloolaba reefs
    Wolf rock
    Heron Island
    Lady Elliott island
    GBR
     
  6. Pressurehead

    Pressurehead Angel Fish

    # of Dives: 2,500 - 4,999
    Location: Queensland Australia
    41
    13
    8
    Wolf Rock, dived it when there was only 2 of us in the water, 30m vis, 2 Qld Grouper the size of small cars, Grey nurse shark, and it goes on and on, one of the best dives I have ever done in 50+ year of diving anywhere in the world
    Dived a week later and little or no vis and big things with fins swimming in for a look. one guy was bumped by a shark, It was my charter boat and I was the coxswain , scared the heck out of the divers I took there. 4 instructors and 2 divemasters plus my divemaster who I dived with the week before.
    On it's day, best dive in SE Qld.
    Edit: Almost forgot, a Bronze Whaler was doing a slow circle around the divers at the safety stop, which they gave up on.
     
  7. fluff_astrid

    fluff_astrid Angel Fish

    # of Dives: 100 - 199
    Location: Sydney, Australia
    36
    26
    18
    Thanks all!
    For Wooli dive, anyone know if they’d do diving during weekdays before the school holidays kick in (like 1st/2nd week of December)? Owner says it’s all based on if they have 6 people or not, so doesn’t sound like there’s any “guaranteed” days I can plan to book for (and because it’s a busy time of year, I need to book accommodation pretty early compared to booking the diving).
     
  8. clownfishsydney

    clownfishsydney Loggerhead Turtle

    # of Dives: 2,500 - 4,999
    Location: Sydney Australia
    1,473
    929
    113
    Wooli Dive usually only runs for groups, unless there is someone there and they have space, unlikely to get a dive. Better off probably using Dive Quest at Mullaway for North Solitary Islands and Jetty Dive for South Solitary Islands. Both very good operators. Other places are South West Rocks, Forster (best diving is near there, not Seal Rocks) and Nelson Bay. No other spots really.
     
  9. chris kippax

    chris kippax Divemaster

    # of Dives: 500 - 999
    Location: Australia
    770
    570
    93
    Hi Michael
    What’s sites near Forster do you class as better than Seal Rocks?
    Thanks Chris
     
    Pressurehead likes this.
  10. Mike1967

    Mike1967 Manta Ray

    # of Dives: 100 - 199
    Location: Victoria, Australia
    1,193
    564
    113
    Was wondering the same thing, must be bloody good!
     
    Pressurehead likes this.

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