Top Snorkeling and Scuba Diving in Nova Scotia

Ready to check out the best sites in Nova Scotia for scuba diving, snorkeling, shore diving, free diving or other ocean activities? Zentacle has 22 dive sites, snorkel spots, beaches, and more. Discover hand-curated maps, along with reviews and photos from nature lovers like you. No matter what you're looking for, you can find a diverse range of the best ocean activities in Nova Scotia to suit your needs.
Nova Scotia dive site map
Prospect - Indian Pt Rd Cove

#1 - Prospect - Indian Pt Rd Cove

Canada, Nova Scotia

beginner
(1)
The coastal trail going past the cove is a popular hiking trail and dog walking trail, so late spring, summer and into early fall parking can be tight if you aren't there early. The dive site is very shallow, so close to high tide is recommended to give an additionl few feet of depth. The flanks and sides of the outer shore and islands over really nice, rich kelp and seaweeds. The bottom is varied from cobble in close changing to gravel with some sand. Granite bedrock ont he cove flanks and surrounding ridges, shoals and little islands makes for rich marine life diving and good photo opportunities. Drive out to the community of Prospect along the Prospect Road from Halifax, turning left at the large sign directing one to the community. As you come down the last hill into the buildings of the community and can see the water, look for a small paved road on your right named "Indian Point Road". Turn in the road and park on the left side where signs direct. The dive site is a few hundred meters hike over the hill, onto a good coastal trail, down to the small cove.
Paddys Head

#2 - Paddys Head

Canada, Nova Scotia

beginner
(2)
The site is contained by granite boulders and ridges to the right (norht) and by a long granite point jutting off the island to the left (south). This makes a very protected spot from east winds, and southly winds as well. The flanks of the granite ridges are cloaked in kelp and under story plants as well. The flats straight out have rich eel grass beds. This is a favourite check out spot for courses. Take the Paddys Head road off the Peggys Cove Road (Route 333), and drive to the little white bridge. Parking is on a crushed rock flat area to the left of the community mailboxes. The small sandy beach is just 10m from the vehicles. There is amble parking for 5 or 6 vehicles. Paddys Head is also known as St. Margerets Bay, Back Cove.
Neils Harbour

#3 - Neils Harbour

Canada, Nova Scotia

beginner
(0)
Neils Harbour is a 0-star rated scuba dive and snorkel destination in Canada, Nova Scotia which is accessible from shore based on 0 ratings.
Célèbre

#4 - Célèbre

Canada, Nova Scotia

beginner
(0)
Next to Louisbourg
Evelyn

#5 - Evelyn

Canada, Nova Scotia

intermediate
(0)
In front of Louisbourg
Anemones Alley

#6 - Anemones Alley

Canada, Nova Scotia

intermediate
(0)
Anemones Alley is a 0-star rated scuba dive and snorkel destination in Canada, Nova Scotia which is accessible from shore based on 0 ratings.
Englishtown

#7 - Englishtown

Canada, Nova Scotia

beginner
(0)
Englishtown is a 0-star rated scuba dive and snorkel destination in Canada, Nova Scotia which is accessible from shore based on 0 ratings.
Birchy Head

#8 - Birchy Head

Canada, Nova Scotia

intermediate
(0)
Sealife is visable until about 60ft, turns into a sandy bottom Peggys Cove below Halifax Nova Scotia
Fox Point Beach

#9 - Fox Point Beach

Canada, Nova Scotia

beginner
(0)
Fox Point Beach is a 0-star rated scuba dive and snorkel destination in Canada, Nova Scotia which is accessible from shore based on 0 ratings.
Long Cove

#10 - Long Cove

Canada, Nova Scotia

beginner
(0)
There is good parking at the sides of the road near a gate that blocks off the developing housing community. Several small beaches are handy with just a 1m step down onto their sandy entrances to the ocean. The site is open to the southwest, but is very protected from the east and north winds. The sand gives way to soft mud and silts quickly off the beach. The nicest diving is in a section of boulders down the middle of the cove. These boulders have kelps, rockweeds, lots of interesting invertebrates and fish in summer. Soft bottom critters are common such as Tube Anemones, crabs, snails and flatfishes. The head of the cove has freshwater inflow, so after rains the top meter or so will be brownish and mostly fresh. This is a very easy, fun dive. This site is in the community of West Pennant past Sambro on the way to Crystal Crescent Provincial Beach. Drive towards the beach, but pass it's entrance and go to the end of the road on the east side of Long cove in West Pennant, NS.
Arctic Trader shipwreck

#11 - Arctic Trader shipwreck

Canada, Nova Scotia

intermediate
(0)
The top 2-3m is freshwater that has tannins in it, which makes it brown and dark. Below that is saltwater which increases with the tide cycle with a range of 2m. After diving the spot at low tide, I'd recommend just before high tide when more clearer saltwater covers the ship. Going straight out from the boat ramp or the floating dock, you swim right into the bottom of the hull. the ship is bow to the left, down river, and is lying on its port side faced away from the shore. A nice route is up on the flank of the ship away from the very slity bottom; go right on top of the hull to the bow; then hop inside to go along the upper portion of the deck near the starboard railings. This way you can drop down onto the superstructure as you see it below you. On the ship there is little current, but up in the freshwater or on the surface, it can run 0.5 to 1.5 knots. Only properly trained and equipped divers should penetrate - all others stay outside and shinelights in the hatchways and windows. There are some lines, collapsing structures, and some netting so care is required moving along the ship. Railing in the saltwater are cloaked in sea anemones. Main lights, marker lghts and backup lights are recommended. Good buddy team work is essential to a fun safe dive. We only dive this site outside of summer to reduce pleasure boat traffic - from October to April or May, divers will almost have the site to themselves. Northeast of Halifax along the Marine Drive Hwy #7 is the community of Sheet Harbour. The habour splits into the main channel and an eat branch called East River. The tramp freighter ARCTIC TRADER caught fire twice at dockside on the large wharf. On the second time, she was cut free and ended up anchored out in front of the floating docks of a small yacht club, just south of the main wharf. Torpedo Rays Dive Shop has a good online write up for it, which led us to explore the spot. Take the righthand paved road shortly before crossing the large, green, steel East River Bridge. There is parking out of the way near the wharf and above the yacht club. Don't block the boat ramp.
Walton Gypsum Quarry

#12 - Walton Gypsum Quarry

Canada, Nova Scotia

beginner
(0)
This is an interesting freshwater dive as the gypsum quarry changes the pH of the water and the quarry is spring fed, making visibility uncharacteristically good. It is usually 15 m and I've never seen less than 10m visibility. There is a flowering green plant much like grass over most of the rolling terrain in the quarry, except for the steep walls, which are white gypsum with grey veins running through it. This makes an interesting summer dive with some small fishes and frogs as well as many insects. It excels as a unique, clear water ice diving location - but only for trained ice diving personnel in appropriate teams with the right equipment. In the community of Walton, the Gypsum Quarry is visible up a short dirt road of only a hundred meters or so in length. It is a steep walled rock quarry on all sides but the entry road. Using Goggle Earth, the parking at the head of the quarry is exactly at 45°13'35.87"N 63°59'15.51"W.
Hayes Gardens

#13 - Hayes Gardens

Canada, Nova Scotia

beginner
(0)
The site is a rocky open coast and faces east so can't be divine in NE east or SE winds as the waves and swell can build up very high. NW winds or due west winds are the preferred direction. SW is okay. It is called Hayes Gardens because it is a rock garden of large boulders just under the surface, which fishermen avoid. This makes for interesting terrain to explore. It has a rich kelp forest and abundant fish life during the summer. Parking is in the gravel open area just off the sharp turn giving wonderful views of the sea and harbour approaches to Halifax. Thee is a path down from the parking area onto the shelving granite bedrock of the shoreline.
Iona

#14 - Iona

Canada, Nova Scotia

intermediate
(0)
The dive is just past the pilings of the old railway bridge. There is an uw line running from the left side of the beach to the pilings one can use in the tidal currents to go hand over hand to the pprotection of the pilings. Aim for slack tide at high or low, when the current is slower - it doesn't actually stop moving. The divesite is an old barge that was used to build the railway bridge. It broke free and hit the pilings, and sank in about 50' of water. It is so rich in marine life that it is like a Caribbean reef!! Great care must be taken in the current and with air management to ensure you can get back through the pilings and onto the line to go back to shore with an air reserve. This is the norhtern entry to the Bra D'Or Lakes, so there is frequent boat traffic next to and over the wreck - don't surface at the wreck...Always go back through the pilings to the beach. Also the current is too strong to swim against on the surface, so surfacing will sweep you through the "Grand Narrows" and you'll have to cut across it to land outside on the west side of the end of the channel and walk back. Recommended for experienced divers or guided teams. The dive site is down o the Iona side of Grand Narrows, the western side. You have to cross the bridge if you come from the east side. The road is dirt, narrow and very steep just on the Iona side of the bridge approach on the north side of the road. It leads down to parking above a gravel and pebble beach looking at the the car bridge on your right and the old railway bridge swing across the mouth of the beach.
Zealandia Wreck & Grand Narrows

#15 - Zealandia Wreck & Grand Narrows

Canada, Nova Scotia

beginner
(0)
Divers unfamiliar with the site should travel with a guide due to potential strong currents, depth, boat traffic, fish that like to nip at unwary divers, and the maze of underwater structures. The dive site is best known for the abundance of marine life and the wreck that lies only 200 ft from the beach. Research conducted by the Baddeck Barnacles Diving Society in 2014 concluded that the reek is the final resting place of the Zealandia. The ship was built as a 3 masted, full-rigged clipper with an iron hull (No. 60969) by C. Connell and Co. in Glasgow in 1869. From 1870-1902 she served as a passenger/cargo ship for the Shaw, Savill and Albion Line of London, carrying over 4000 immigrants to New Zealand. Sold several times between 1902 and 1911 she was renamed Kaleva in 1907. Wrecked on Pumpkin Island Nova Scotia in 1911 she was salvaged and converted to a barge by Charles Brister of Halifax. In July 1916 she broke tow during a gale and sank after crashing into the Barra Strait railway bridge with a load of dolomite bound for Sydney. The wreck is 220 ft long by 40 ft wide and at the stern, it rises 30 ft off the bottom. At the wreck the maximum depth is 68 ft. Note because the wreck had been converted to a barge; most of upper deck structure was removed providing access to the inside of the bath tub like hull. Divers are advised however to avoid swimming under the remaining deck framing as the pieces could be loose. To aid getting on the wreck a rope is usually in place, extending from the beach to train swing bridge pivot support. Although the wreck is the main attraction other structures merit exploration. A submerged wooden cribbed wharf extending approximately 300 ft to the south and parallel to the boat channel offers wall diving with depths ranging from 15 to 70 feet. Current most be considered here, but with careful planning this Site can make a terrific drift dive. The Grand Narrows dive site is accessed from Highway 223. Thee site is approximately 62 km from Sydney or 25 km from the Trans Canada via Little Narrows. An entrance through the guard rail is positioned 0.3 km east of the car drawbridge; parking is at the beach. Zealandia Wreck & Grand Narrows is also known as Kaleva Wreck.
Boutiliers Point

#16 - Boutiliers Point

Canada, Nova Scotia

beginner
(0)
Good site to see Atlantic Lobster and on the soft bottom Tube Sea Anemones of several colours are common. Great picnic spot with tables and very easy diver access. West of Halifax out from Exit #5 on the Hwy #103 onto the Hwy #3 then west towards Hubbards. In the community of Boutiliers Point is the Provincial Park with picnic tables, a boat launch ramp and a working wharf. Diving is best straight out and to the right or west of the wharf. There is usually enough depth to jump off the end, but the ramp just east of the wharf is recommended for exits. This spot is small boulders and gravels in the shallows grading down to mud and soft bottom organisms deeper out. Boutiliers Point is also known as Boutiliers Point Lookout Provincial Park.
Sandy Cove, Sambro Area

#17 - Sandy Cove, Sambro Area

Canada, Nova Scotia

beginner
(0)
There is good parking on a widened section of road just below the little hill going up to the gate for the National Research Council's Marine facility on the left hand point of the cove. Parking to the sides of the road, near their gateway is possible too. There is a short path down onto the beach, and a 50m walk to the water. The nicest diving is along the leftside (north side) of the cove and outside the cove along the left flank of the shoreline. The research complex's seawater pipelines offer a wonderful navigation aid out and around the point to the nicest diving. This is an area of rich kelp forest, wonderful understory species, several types of crabs, lobster and fishes as well. It is open to southeast winds and faces the open ocean, so westerly winds are preferred for this site. The Sandy cove Beach is located at the end of the "Sandy Cove Road", just before Bald Rock and a few hundred meters before Sambro Head.
Herring Cove - Hebridean Park

#18 - Herring Cove - Hebridean Park

Canada, Nova Scotia

beginner
(0)
This is a memorial park for sailors lost at sea on the Heberidean. Summertime it is a popular fishing location and the narrows for a quite acttive small harbour. Therefore, we usually restrict our diving here to the fall, winter and spring with rare summer visits. At high tide one can jump off the left corner of the wharf into 5 m of water on a slope which drops quickly to 8 m deep. Low tide, you can pick your way down the rocky shoreline to the left of th breakwater and enter a little covelette. The left side of the mouth of the cove is a boulder slope covered in a rich kelp bed dropping down to 10 m deep onto a sandy plain that makes up the rest of the cove. The nicest dive is along the sand edge going out on the left; then go up 3-4 m shallower and return back through the kelp forest; using the sand plain as a landmark going and coming. The far point at the mouth of the cove is about 300 m away and is Tribune Head, named for the French Frigate captured and recommissioned by the British, La Tribune that sank in front of it in 1797. Ballast, ribs, a few spikes and one cannon can be found off here in about 18 m of water. Access is through the community of Herring Cove. Cross the small bridge at the head of the cove, and turn immediately right and drive slowly to the end of the road at the breakwater, which is Hebridean Park. Herring Cove - Hebridean Park is also known as Herring Cove Hebridean Park.
Hubbards Shrimp Cannery Beach

#19 - Hubbards Shrimp Cannery Beach

Canada, Nova Scotia

beginner
(0)
This spot is rarely dived, but we give preference to local beach users as the beach is only 30m long and at high tide it shrinks to 10m long and maybe 2m wide. It is an easy fun site to just do a long leisurely, shallow dive at. Nothing exciting, but very easy access, good parking and a pleasant experience. Note - coming from Hubbards, the beach is on your left so you have to pass it; turn around in a driveway; and come back to park on the widened shoulder along the guardrail adjacent to the beach. The little community beach is at the mouth of Hubbards Cove on the west side on the Highway 329 leading out to Fox Point and Blandford. Hubbards is on the Hwy #3 nust off Exit #6 from the Hwy #103, Nova Scotia. The beach is adjacent to an old, closed shrimp cannery, thus my name for the beach. The local community keeps the few steps down to the beach, and the roadside widened parking for ~5 vehicles in good repair. Thus we dive this only outside of summer, as parking is limited and we leave the nice little beach to the locals. Fall, winter and spring we have it to ourselves. The beach is sandy slipping out to gravels and eventually mud. Off the the right, around the wharf and on the flanks of the little point with the old cannery is nice boulders with richer marine life and the best diving.
Murray Point

#20 - Murray Point

Canada, Nova Scotia

beginner
(0)
Murray Point is a 0-star rated scuba dive and snorkel destination in Canada, Nova Scotia which is accessible from shore based on 0 ratings.
Indian Point

#21 - Indian Point

Canada, Nova Scotia

beginner
(0)
Since the site is shalllow, a little extra wight is recommended. It is good for macrophotography with lots of fish, crabs, lobsters and other subjects to shoot. This is an easy, basic dive spot and good when others are too rough as it is very protected from east, west and north winds. Out the Hwy #333 that makes the Peggy's Cove loop, on the east side of St. Margaret's Bay is Indian Point. It is a long narrow point with the "Indian Point Road" running its length. Watch for the road sign on the right and the road makes a loop so you can't get lost! The dive site is on the inside or east tip of the point. Indian Point has two island off its tip - the first is connected by a berm sheltering the dive site. One can dive on the sheltered inside or hike across to the open bay side. The dive is quite shallow, so high tide is recommended for this spot. It is very easy with good parking along the edge of the road and a nice easy "driveway" like slope to walk down on.
Prudent

#22 - Prudent

Canada, Nova Scotia

beginner
(0)
Next to Louisbourg