Warm water around Sri Lanka houses thousands of underwater fauna and flora species in the world. The depth of the coral reefs around the island recorded from 5-10 meters and up to 40 meters. Underwater coral reefs, many species of coral fish, ancient ship wrecks, caves, reef formation makes Sri Lanka, one of the best diving sites in the world. Sri Lanka coral reefs provide many interesting sites for diving and snorkeling. The wide reefs are abundant with many exotic fish species which increases the underwater beauty. Coral reef, vibrant shoals of fish and shells are some attractions of the fascinating underwater world around the island.
Apart from the corals other underwater attractions great reefs and little basses reefs, which located in southern Sri Lanka provides site for an archeological expedition. There are remnants of many ships that perished thousands years ago. There are over twenty ship wrecks identified in southern Sri Lanka. Steam ship that sank in 1889, Indian ship that sank early 60s, a ship that was carrying a consignment of glass bottles, a ship with a consignment of brass that sank during the Dutch rule in Sri Lanka are some of the noteworthy on the list.
Diving in Sri Lanka can be combined with studying the various types of underwater ocean life and underwater photography.
There are plenty of possibly to witness large collection of reefs, plant life, corals, beautiful marine fish such as clown fish, rays, eels, Moorish idol, unicorn, porcupine, and Moorish angel. One can expect to see more than 20 different species of fish including bright yellow and black-stripped butterfly fish, blazing turquoise-green of the parrot fish and, deep aquamarine-blue surgeon fish on regular diving.
The Corals which are belongs to families of Pocelloporidae (Flower Corals), Poritidae (Donnie Corals), Mussidae (Brain Corals), faviidae (Ster Corals) and Aroporidae (Staghorn Corals) are commonly seen around the island.
Diving with Sea turtles is another great experience that can be expected in Hikkaduwa, South-West Sri Lanka. Oliver Ridley Turtles approach the water off-shore in the afternoon as well as at night tide mainly for feeding. Chances to observe them closely on the beaches of Sri Lanka are very high while they come to the surface for breathing every 30 minutes.
Sri Lanka water considered to be an ideal diving site for learners as well as for the experienced divers. There are many recognized diving centers around the island providing Service for the divers and they are equipped with all the modern scuba gears as well as Qualified instructors. Divers can explore the underwater world throughout the year in varying places, depending on the monsoon season. South-West is the best part of the island for diving from Nov-Apr with clear visibility up to 20 meters. From Apr to Nov considered being the best period for diving in East and North-East Sri Lanka.
Hikkaduwa, Ambalangoda, Dondra, Bentota, Beruwala, Negombo and Tangalle recognized as a diving hot spots as well as best beaches in the West and Southern part of the island. Nilaveli (Pigeon Island), Batticaloa, Passekudah, Kalmunai and Kattankudy considered being diving hot spots in East coast.