Fakarava North Pass

In the Tuamotu Archipelago of French Polynesia, there is a dive spot called Fakarava North Pass that is well-known worldwide. It is a component of the UNESCO Biosphere Reserve Fakarava Atoll, which is renowned for its extraordinary marine biodiversity. Grey reef sharks and other pelagic species can be seen in high numbers in Fakarava North Pass, which is also known for its spectacular coral formations.


History of Fakarava North Pass

The Fakarava Atoll, which is a part of the French Polynesian Tuamotu Archipelago, is home to Fakarava North Pass. Polynesian inhabitants are thought to have lived on the atoll from the ninth century, using the island for farming and fishing. The British explorer Frederick Beechey arrived in the atoll in 1820, marking the beginning of the first known European visit. The atoll served as a trading hub for coconut oil and pearls in the late 19th and early 20th centuries.

The United States used the Fakarava Atoll as a military facility while it was captured during World War II. After being taken back under French authority, the atoll received its official designation as a natural reserve in 1977. A UNESCO Biosphere Reserve was established at the Fakarava Atoll in 2006 as a result of its remarkable marine biodiversity and distinct ecosystem.

Due to its distinctive topography and an abundance of marine life, Fakarava North Pass has long been a well-liked dive location. Large schools of fish and pelagic species are drawn to the strong current that is produced by the small channel that separates two reefs. Several scuba diving publications have named the location as one of the best dive locations in the world, and divers continue to visit there from all over the world.

Two people at the hut in the oceanBest Times to Dive at Fakarava North Pass

The austral winter, which lasts from June to September, is the ideal season to dive in Fakarava North Pass. The water is cleaner and cooler during this period, and the currents are often calmer. Divers can see the undersea world with astonishing clarity up to 40 meters in the air.

French Polynesia’s austral summer, which lasts from December to March, is when it rains the most. The rains can reduce visibility and the water’s temperature, which can rise to 30°C. Moreover, the currents may be greater at this time, which could make diving in Fakarava North Pass more difficult.

Due to the strong currents, diving at Fakarava North Pass demands expertise and caution. Before attempting to dive at the location, it is advised that divers have at least an intermediate open water certification and familiarity with drift diving. Moreover, divers need to be in good physical shape and have strong buoyancy control.

Diving at Fakarava North Pass

Fakarava North Pass’s distinctive geology and plethora of marine life make diving there an exciting and fascinating experience. Large schools of fish and a variety of pelagic species are drawn to the peculiar environment that the strong current that flows through the small channel between two reefs generates.

Due to the high currents, the dive location may be difficult for novice divers. Divers must adhere to the rules established by regional dive shops and refrain from touching the coral and other aquatic life. Divers should be mindful of their air consumption as well as their dive time because the currents may shorten or lengthen their stay on the bottom.

Divers can choose from a range of diving packages at Fakarava, most of which include transportation to and from the dive site as well as equipment rental. Some operators also provide night dives, which can be an interesting and thrilling method to see marine life at the location.

shiver of sharkMarine Life at Fakarava North Pass

Grey reef sharks are abundant in Fakarava North Pass, where you can witness hundreds of them during prime diving season. Blacktip reef sharks, lemon sharks, and occasionally tiger sharks are among the other shark species that can be observed at the location. Barracuda, tuna, and trevally are just a few of the pelagic species that may be found at the location.

Large schools of fish, including snapper, grouper, and jacks, are drawn to the region because of its distinctive terrain. At the location, divers might also run into manta rays, eagle rays, or even dolphins. With a variety of hard and soft coral species, as well as anemones, the coral formations in Fakarava North Pass are also impressive.

Because Fakarava North Pass is situated in the center of the Tuamotu Archipelago, there is a wide variety and abundance of marine life there. Divers may have an exceptional underwater experience because of the marine ecosystem’s success and the atoll’s isolation and preservation as a nature reserve.

Planning Your Trip to Fakarava North Pass

It is advised to make travel arrangements through a reliable dive operator or travel agency if you want to visit Fakarava North Pass. Many diving operations provide dive packages that include transportation, equipment rental, and hotels. It is crucial to pick an operator who respects regional culture and uses environmentally sustainable practices.

On Fakarava, there are options for everyone, from cheap guesthouses to opulent resorts, on both the main island and smaller motus all around the lagoon. It is advised to make reservations for lodging in advance, especially during the busiest diving season.

The most popular method to go to Fakarava is by plane from Tahiti. Air Tahiti has many daily flights that last around an hour. Fakarava can also be reached by boat, albeit this method is less popular.

Divers should pack their own wetsuit, mask, and fins in addition to a dive computer and other personal dive equipment for the trip. Also, it is advised to pack comfortable clothing and shoes for visiting the island, insect repellent that won’t harm the coral reefs, and sunscreen.


The dive destination Fakarava North Pass is well-known worldwide and provides an exceptional and unforgettable underwater adventure. It is one of the most difficult and thrilling dive sites in the world due to its history, marine life, and breathtaking geography. Experience, caution, and careful consideration of environmental and cultural considerations are necessary while organizing a journey to Fakarava North Pass. Divers can enjoy the excitement and beauty of this magnificent site with careful planning and consideration for the surrounding ecology.

Our Top FAQ's

Fakarava North Pass is a dive site located in the Tuamotu Archipelago in French Polynesia. It is famous for its rich marine life, including large schools of fish and pelagic species like sharks and manta rays, as well as its stunning underwater topography.

Fakarava North Pass ranges from 15 to 40 meters in depth, with strong currents that require experienced diving skills. The visibility is typically excellent, ranging from 30 to 50 meters, and the water temperature is warm year-round, ranging from 26 to 30°C.

Divers at Fakarava North Pass can expect to see a variety of fish species, including snappers, groupers, and jacks, as well as pelagic species like barracudas, tuna, and trevally. Manta rays, eagle rays, and dolphins are also common sightings at the site.

To plan a trip to Fakarava North Pass, it is recommended to book through a reputable dive operator or travel agency. Accommodations range from budget guesthouses to luxury resorts, and it is recommended to book in advance. Travel to Fakarava is typically by plane from Tahiti, and divers should bring their own wetsuit, mask, and fins, as well as a dive computer and other personal dive gear.

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