Dec 29 2009
The Maldives Diving Season is in full effect!
While people in countries like the UK, Germany and Italy are shaking in their boots, trying to stay warm during the winter holidays, the Maldivians are welcoming their summer, also referred to as the North East Monsoon Season. (As opposed to the South West Monsoon Season.)
Diving in the Maldives during the North East Monsoon Season
The North East Monsoon season greatly effects diving in Maldives. The North East Monsoon season begins in November, characterized by strong winds and heavy rainfall lasting for about a week. Then, it travels from north to south, eventually setting in January.
During the North East Monsoon season, the weather in the north and mid atolls is distinct from that of the southern atolls. The north and mid atolls experience clear skies, sunshine and calm seas for most of the period. Scuba diving is fantastic during the North East Monsoon, characterized by excellent visibility on the eastern side of the atolls and incredibly warm water, averaging around 28 degrees.
During this season, there are very few rainy days and the sun is almost always shining, making the Maldives a perfect winter escape. Imagine the envy of your colleagues as they are trudging to work in the snow while you sun yourself and scuba dive in the Maldives!
On the other hand, the southern atolls receive a large amount of rainfall and experience rough seas during the early stages of the North East Monsoon. However, the sea becomes more calm and hot, dry periods prevail until the arrival of Hulha’ngu, the South West Monsoon.
Currents during the North East Monsoon Season
During the North East Monsoon season, currents begin to flow from the northeast, making visibility superb on the eastern side of the atolls. Scuba divers can expect a lot of action in the channels and atolls, including whale sharks, grey reef sharks and other large pelagic species.
Currents tend to be stronger in January and ease up in February. During February, the waters become more calm and the surface of the sea is undisturbed by any major wind or wave action. The doldrums continue through March and April, characterized by easy diving and slack currents. During the end of May, the season begins to transition to the South West Monsoon.
Marine Life during the North East Monsoon Season
Throughout the North East Monsoon Season, pelagic species, such as shark and jacks, can be easily spotted on the current points on the eastern side of the atolls. Futhermore, there is usually an abundance of reef life.