For numerous travellers and tourists, the lure of relaxing on a golden sand beach provides enough incentive to visit Tenerife. However, more adventurous types will look to the sea for a greater thrill.

And what better way to enjoy what the Atlantic Ocean has to offer by going snorkelling or scuba diving. But apart from the fascinating shipwrecks and underwater creatures you can see off the coast of Tenerife, where else in the world should you consider going for your next dive? If you can get to these destinations on package holidays, so much the better!

1. Ko Tao, Thailand

Although you can dive all-year round here, between March and April the shores of Koa Tao become one of the few places in the world where you can see whale sharks. However, at any other time the marine life is still plentiful, with reef sharks, rays and barracuda never far away.

What’s more, shallow sites like Japanese Gardens mean even first-timers can experience the scuba diving delights that Ko Tao has to offer.

2. Red Sea, Egypt

Just a few steps from the beach you’ll be greeted by crystal-clear waters containing hundreds of miles of coral and an abundance of sea life. Seeing as there is warm water all year round, you can visit whenever you like too. One of the best locations for diving is Sharm El Sheikh.

3. Caye Caulker, Belize

You might be surprised to hear that only Australia’s Great Barrier Reef is bigger than the Belize Barrier Reef Reserve System, situated less than a mile from Caye Caulker. Belize’s iconic Great Blue Hole, an underwater sinkhole descending more than 400ft into the deep, is only a day trip away too.

Despite the fact diving in Belize costs more than other Central America alternatives, it is by far the best location.

4. Galapagos Islands, Ecuador

If you feel like a challenge, head to the strong currents and chilly water found off the Galapagos Islands in Ecuador. There isn’t a great deal of coral to be found here, but this won’t be a concern when you get up close and personal with hammerhead sharks, sea lions, and marine iguanas.

January to May is your best weather bet, but you can still go scuba diving all-year round at this awe-inspiring archipelago.

5. Great Barrier Reef, Australia

Stretching a mammoth 1,430 miles along Australia’s northeastern coast, this is arguably the most famous diving spot on earth. But in addition to sheer size, the Great Barrier Reef’s underwater inhabitants are also extensive. Here you’ll find 1,500 species of fish and 4,000 separate reefs, which is equivalent to the Amazon Rainforest in biodiversity.

So, if Tenerife’s incredible dive spots don’t tempt you into visiting the island on holiday, there are plenty of equally alluring alternatives all over the world for you to choose from.

Images by mattk1979 and paularps, used under Creative Commons licence