Diving the somosomo strait
When the tides change in the Somosomo Strait, the reef blooms. Nutrient rich water wells up from the deep and funnels through the narrow channel taking reefs from rather pretty to breathtaking in minutes.
Flamboyant soft corals dance in the current, gorgonians extend spindly fingers into the deep blue and the reef hums with colourful, swirling fish.
This shallow, narrow channel – separating Taveuni from Vanua Levu in northern Fiji – is easily one of Fiji’s top dive regions and home to many outstanding dive sites.
Rainbow Reef’s Dive Sites
Located just off the Vanua Levu coastline, the Rainbow Reef is home to many of the Strait’s best dives. And it certainly lives up to its hype – especially when tides, currents and nutrients are just right.
Vivid ‘‘Dendronepthya’ coral coat the walls, bommies and tunnels in a spectacular carpet of pinks, oranges and purples. But it’s really the Great White Wall, a consistent contender for the ‘World’s Top 10 Dive Locations’, that draw dive devotees to the area.
Diving the Great White Wall
Somosomo’s most famous dive site is far more interesting than it sounds. The sheer drop-off boasts a dazzling display of hard and soft corals, colourful sponges and crinoids. At 15-65m (49-213ft) deep, the wall’s name becomes clear, with it blanket of blooming white ‘Dendronepthya’ soft corals. You’ll want to step back from the wall to really appreciate it’s grandeur.
With more than 1,400 species of reef fish, abundant invertebrates and the chance to spot manta rays, Spinner dolphins and humpback whales, the Somosomo Strait is truly a diver’s dream destination.
Fiji Link has daily flights to Taveuni and Savusavu. Departs Nadi and Nausori Airports.
Northern Air has flights to Taveuni and Savusavu a few times a week. Departs Nausori Airport.
Island Hoppers and Pacific Island Air run charter flights from Nadi Airport.
If you stay in Savusavu, you may need to transfer by road to dive sites on the Rainbow Reef. Check with your resort for details.
The Great White Wall is best seen and accessed on a slack low tide. Your dive resorts website will have their list of optimum diving dates. Depth and current make this site more suitable for experienced divers.
Remember to factor surface interval time into your travel plans. Most dive networks recommend an 18-24hrs after multiple dives.