Diving in India, South-east Asia

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India is a country in South Asia and has the biggest democratic population in the world. The waters that surround it are; on its south is the Indian Ocean, on its south-west is the Arabian Sea, and on its south-east the Bay of Bengal. India also shares maritime borders with Thailand and Indonesia.

Indian diving is mainly centred on three areas: Andaman and Nicobar, Lakshadweep group of islands, and Goa on the mainland.

Andaman and Nicobar boast of large pelagic fishes such as sharks and a plenitude of corals as well. It also features shallow waters in Rutland Island which is perfect for open water diving practice. If you want to experience up to 24m of crystal clear water visibility, visit the Cinque Island for its marvellous black corals.

The Lakshadweep group of islands on the other hand is usually likened to Maldive Islands diving because of its 36 coral islands and atolls teeming with a plenitude of marine life particularly manta rays that are seen from October through December. To experience rich underwater life, simply visit the Kadmat Island diving site. There is also a wreck diving in Bangaram Island where the Princess Royal sits at 32m, sank by a historic gun battle a couple of hundred years ago which is now an artificial reef and home to prolific marine life.

There are more shipwrecks to be found in Goa, just in the mainland. India played vital role in WW2 so there's a plenitude of WW2 sunken ships in the area which are now artificial reefs and are attracting various species of fish. It is also interesting to travel by boat further into the open waters such as the Angria Bank for excellent water visibility and to find more wrecks of very old ships from the Spanish and Portuguese galleons.

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The government of India is an active participant in marine conservation efforts. The government also encourages civic participations in the preservation of reefs, marine life, and the promotion of awareness to the visitors of the islands to take part in marine conservation efforts in any they could.

India has a tropical climate.

The water temperature hovers around 26°C.

The diving season in India is from December through April only.

Natural hazards include earthquakes and tsunamis.

Take extra precaution when travelling to India by simply going through your embassy's travel recommendations.

The main entry points to India are its four major airports in Mumbai, Delhi, Kolkata and Chennai which are touted as the Gateway Airports. All of these airports are quite excellent after their recent developments.

There are plenty of flights going in and out of India but a word of caution for the first time India travellers; be aware of India's culture and also check for your embassy's travel recommendations as just recently, terrorist attacks have been rampant in India.

There are also boat travels to India as well as ferries going to the islands.

In the mainland, the common transportation is by buses, trains, and taxis. Although, for convenience, you might want to travel by plane considering the land area of India.

There is also the question of special foreigner's fees which are sometimes up to five times higher than the typical Indian's expense.

Nonetheless, the general nature of India's transportation system is good.

Use the following links for more information about;

- Decompression Chambers in India

- Foreign Travel Advice for India (UK Government)

- More about India (Wikipedia)

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