According to some divers in the know, Clearwater diving is one of Florida's best kept secrets. This has a lot to do with the area's active artificial reef program, which is responsible for many of the wrecks that can be found within the recreational diving limits. In addition to exploring artificial reefs, which are teeming with life, those who scuba dive in Clearwater can also admire natural ledges that were once coast lines in the ice ages. As for marine life, dolphins abound in the area waters, so you're bound to see some when you dive in Clearwater. Other marine creatures that you might spot include turtles, barracuda, grouper, mackerel, soft and hard corals, and even sharks. A variety of tropical fishes also cruise the area waters, so you can also keep an eye out for them when you're enjoying some Clearwater scuba diving.
If you want to dive in Clearwater Florida, you can book a trip with a variety of area dive operators, the bulk of which will supply you with equipment if you need it. In order to scuba dive in Clearwater with a dive operator, you will have to have an open water certification card, which means that you have fulfilled requirements to dive in open waters. If you are not open water certified and you want to enjoy Clearwater diving, then you can always take classes while you're down here. It doesn't take terribly long to get certified for open water dives, and you can even take care of some of the necessary requirements at home before you leave for your trip. Once you are certified and ready to go, your first diving destination of choice might be the Gulf of Mexico. You could also dive in the Tampa Bay or take to some of the inland waters, such as the area springs or the Crystal River. You won't be at a loss for interesting dive sites when it comes to the Clearwater area, nor will you be at a loss for fun things to do when you're not diving.
Most of the sites that you will visit when you scuba dive in Clearwater are around 40 to 60 feet deep. It's not uncommon to venture deeper down when wreck diving in the Gulf of Mexico. The Blackthorn and Sheridan wreck sites rest some 70 to 80 feet below the water's surface, so you can always add them to your list if you want to explore the deeper realms. Wreck diving is just one kind of Clearwater diving that you can enjoy, and there's always ledge diving if you're looking to switch things up. You can also dive in Clearwater at night, which is quite an experience. Guided tours of all kinds can be enjoyed if you have Clearwater diving on your list of things to do, and they can involve things like diving in the Blue Grotto, which is an underwater cavern that is sure to impress.
If you don't manage to get certified for open water dives before your Clearwater vacation, you can always visit the fantastic Clearwater Marine Aquarium to get a look at some marine creatures. You can also go snorkeling. Many of the area diving companies also offer snorkeling excursions, and they can be very enjoyable. You're encouraged to bring your own mask and snorkel with you on a snorkeling excursion in Clearwater, not only for sanitary purposes, but also to ensure that you get the right fit. Whether you choose to snorkel or scuba dive in Clearwater, you can usually bring food and drinks along on the boat if they aren't provided by your guide or guides. More often than not, most of the Clearwater diving companies will at least supply divers with bottled water and snacks.