Cane Bay and Coki Beach, U.S. Virgin Islands
Water temperatures in this Caribbean corner of the U.S. average 82 in summer and 80 in winter, with typical visibility of 60 to 100 feet. Each of the three islands has shore-diving sites.
A national park covers two-thirds of St. John, meaning its beaches remain unspoiled and its marine life healthy. It also means special permits are required for diving from those beaches. But Low Key Watersports will take shore divers to Kiddel Bay by appointment. This secluded shore-diving spot near Coral Bay on the east end features grooves, depressions, caves, gullies, arches, and swim-throughs.
At Cane Bay, on St. Croix, a short swim over white sand sloping downward past coral heads and 19th-century anchors leads to the Cane Bay Wall, where the bottom drops from 40 feet to more than 3,000. Many consider this one of the best shore dives in the entire Caribbean.
Coki Beach, on the northeastern side of St. Thomas, is not only a great shore dive but one of the best overall dive sites in the USVI (except perhaps when cruise ships are in port). The water is clear and calm, making for easy beach entry and great visibility. Two reefs in 40 to 50 feet of water sport colorful coral and a variety of fish species and are popular for night dives as well.