Beginner's Scuba Dive on the Gold Coast, Australia

On a Gold Coast scuba dive, you'll enter a fascinating world that can only be fully appreciated once you've been there!

This amazing adventure offers a glimpse into a magical, mystical world that is just waiting to be explored beneath the waves of the Pacific Ocean ...

And this activity comes with the warning that first-timers may become hooked for the rest of their lives!

An introductory Gold Coast scuba dive lesson or a one-day resort dive is ideal if you've never been diving before.

It allows a taste of scuba diving before you invest several days and numerous dollars in a certification course.

And it will also suit you if you have only a few days of holiday time and want to try out a number of different activities whilst on the Gold Coast. Scuba Diving, North Stradbroke Island, Queensland TQ

On a beginners' Gold Coast scuba dive, you'll discover a whole new wondrous world of marine nature:

amazing colours flash and flare beneath the water's surface;

multi-coloured tropical fish dart and dash through brilliant, turquoise waters;

and vibrant anemones tirelessly beckon with their hypnotic waving and rhythmic dance.

Typically, an introductory scuba dive course will take around half a day. The instructor will cover basic principles, and will closely supervise you during the dive.

There is no maximum age limit (the oldest person to go through one of the local diving schools was 84!) - however, divers must be at least 14 years.

In order to take an introductory scuba diving lesson on the Gold Coast, a beginner diver must feel comfortable in the water.

If you can hold your nose and put your head under water without panicking, you'll do fine.

A reasonable level of physical fitness and swimming proficiency is also required. You must be able to swim approximately 200 metres using any stroke, and be able to tread water for approximately 10 minutes.

If you'd like to try scuba diving, but are concerned with the open ocean aspect, why not check out the Discover Scuba program at the Marriott Hotel in Surfers Paradise?

The Marriott Hotel has a beautiful, deep lagoon (5 metres) which is stocked with more than 20 species of tropical fish. Scuba Diving Sign, Gold Coast

The benefit of diving in the lagoon is that visibility is always very good and there are no rips or currents to worry about. This makes it an ideal holiday activity for children as young as 8 years.

Certification Open Water Courses

If you enjoy the introductory scuba dive, you may wish to continue to full certification - either here on the Gold Coast, or at home once you return from holiday.

Several dive operators on the Gold Coast offer a variety of certification courses which cover classroom lessons, skills practice in a local swimming pool, and several open water scuba dives along the coast.

Courses range from 3-5 full days, or may be part-time and spread over several weeks.

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- Introductory dive costs range from $100-$200, depending on if a half or full day.
- PADI Open Water Dive certification course cost is $450-$500.
Vary across operators and locations; check with operator.
Wet Weather
Does not operate in heavy rain, or following heavy rain, as visibility is often poor.
Operating Hours
All year round, weather permitting.
- Introductory dive may be a half or full day.
- PADI Open Water Dive course varies according to operator, & may be 3 consecutive days, or 2 consecutive weekends, or some other configuration. Check with dive operators.
Handy Hints
- Check with tour operator re what clothing to wear and items to bring with you, as this may vary.
- Divers must be at least 14 years old and in good health.
- If you suffer from asthma, diabetes, epilepsy, ear problems, or are taking medication with side-effects that may affect diving, or if you have any concerns about your health with respect to diving, check with a doctor with good knowledge of hyperbaric (diving) medicine - refer main article.
- To avoid decompression sickness, you should wait at least 24 hours after diving before flying in pressurised aircraft.
How To Get There
- Some dive operators will arrange pick-ups from and drop-offs to your Gold Coast accommodation.
- Departure locations may change from time to time; check with individual operators.
Further Info
Refer Scuba Dive Operators table.

Hyperbaric Doctors (GP's)

The South Pacific Underwater Medicine Society (SPUMS) keeps an up-to-date register with GP's who are familiar with hyperbaric (diving) medicine.

Several registered GP's practice on the Gold Coast - to find your nearest location, check out their website at

Select the 'Diving Doctor' list, and search by postcode. Gold Coast area postcodes range from 4205 - 4230.

Aquanaut Adventure

An alternative to the open ocean scuba dive is the Aquanaut diving vessel, which gives participants a short underwater experience (actual underwater time is ~ 20 minutes) without having to wear an air tank on your back.

Beginners are provided with a full head helmet, similar in looks to that which an astronaut would wear, which is connected to an airline.

The Aquanaut vessel is lowered to a maximum depth of 3 metres, and participants are able to breathe easily underwater whilst feeding the fish and enjoying the marine life below the water's surface.

Tours depart Mariners Cove, Main Beach. Contact Aquanaut Adventures: Tel 07-5526 3556.

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