Scuba Diving and Snorkeling in Japan

Scuba Diving and Snorkeling in Japan

Scuba diving information in Japan

Japan is perhaps not the first choice for most divers but, with over 2 000 dive spots ranging from the tropical waters of Okinawa to ice diving in northern Hokkaido, it should definitely be in the list. Izu Peninsula is the most popular dive destination on the mainland. Some of the more popular spots are Futo, known for its eagle rays, Kumomi and the tiny island of Mikomoto with deep, clear water, big fish and strong currents. However, all the really great diving areas are from the smaller archipelagos Okinawa archipelago is a tropical paradise with extremely clear waters and over 400 types of corals. There are colorful reefs full of unique nudibranchs, sea fans, sea turtles, whale sharks, manta rays and a schooling of hammerhead sharks. Caves, air domes and underwater ruins can also be explored here. The Kerama Islands are the closest to the mainland and offer some of the best dive spots in the region, with crystal clear water and amazing coral formations. The USS Emmons WWII wreck and beautiful reefs can be dived here. The Yaeyama Islands are the westernmost part of Okinawa. There are pristine coral reefs that surround practically all the islands. Ishigaki Island is known for its manta rays, while Yonaguni Island’s star attractions are hammerhead sharks and the mysterious underwater ruins dated by some to be 8000 years old. Much of the southern coastline is dotted with caverns, caves and underwater rock formations. For the adventurous diver, it is possible to go ice-diving in the Sea of Okhotsk, off the coast of Hokkaido where there are many beautiful ice drifts. Other popular spots in Northern Japan include the island of Sado and the coast of the Tsugaru Peninsula. Most sites in Northern Japan are spectacular dives, completely different from Southern Japan. The waters of Japan are generally diveable all year, but the best time is from mid-July to early September. Also, beware of the typhoons during June to November. Since Japan has such an extensive geographical area, water temperatures can vary extremely from north to south.

Geography and climate

The archipelago of Japan is separated from the Asian mainland by 160 km of sea and split into four main islands: Honshu, Hokkaido, Kyushu and Shikoku. The weather in Japan is mostly temperate, with four seasons. Winters range from cool to freezing. Summer, between June and September, ranges from warm to very hot. Spring and autumn are generally mild throughout the country. Rain falls throughout the year but June and early July is the main rainy season. Typhoons are only likely to occur in September or October but rarely last more than a day. The best time to visit would be during the spring or autumn.

Entry requirements

To enter Japan, a passport valid for the duration of intended stay is required. Visas for Japan are not required by most visitors from Canada, USA, EU, Australia and Great Britain for stays of at least 90 days. For more informations, please contact you travel agent or Japan's Embassy in your home country.

Health and safety

Tuberculosis, Japanese encephalitis and hepatitis B occur. Vaccination for tetanus is sometimes advised. Typhus occurs in some river valleys. For more informations, please consult your doctor before traveling.

Time zone



Phone boxes are found virtually everywhere in Japan and accept coins and magnetic prepaid cards. Visitors can hire cellphone handsets since the Japanese network is incompatible with any others. Internet is available in many internet cafés in Tokyo and in the main cities in Japan. Most hotels have Wi-Fi internet access.

Power and Electricity

100V/50 or 60Hz American plug.

Other Informations

We advise against all travel within 30 kilometers of the Fukushima nuclear power plant and in areas designated as Planned Evacuation Zones by the Japanese authorities.

Scuba diving locations and photos from each location in Japan

Which locations in Japan have underwater photos? Below, you will find the list of locations from Japan and for each location a list of underwater photos.

Marine Species and photos of each species in Japan

Which marine species can I observe in Japan? Below, you will find the list of marine species and the photos for each species.

Underwater Photographers and photos from each photographer with photos taken in Japan

Which photographers have taken underwater photos in Japan? Below, you will find the list of underwater photographers and their photos in Japan.

Scuba Diving centers in Japan

Which scuba diving centers can I dive with in Japan? Below, you can see the list of scuba diving centers in Japan. Click on “more info” to find out more about each scuba diving center.

There are no diving centers available

Liveaboards in Japan

Which liveaboard can I dive with in Japan? Below, you can see the list of liveaboard in Japan. Click on “more info” to find out more about each liveaboard.

There are no liveaboard available

Accommodation in Japan

Which accommodation can I rest after my dive in Japan? Below, you can see the list of accommodation in Japan. Click on “more info” to find out more about each accommodation.

There are no accommodation available