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Soft Coral at Golden Dream, Breath Taker, Fiji dive site - Courtesy of Rik Davies

Lionfish at Golden Dream, Breath Taker, Fiji dive site - Courtesy of Rik Davies

Soft Coral at Golden Dream, Breath Taker, Fiji dive site - Courtesy of Rik Davies

Barracuda at Shark Junction, Breath Taker, Fiji dive site - Courtesy of Rik Davies

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Scuba Diving in Fiji

Reader Reviews:

Dive Site: Breath Taker

Location: Thakau Vatu Latha (Sail Rock Reef), 10 minutes northwest of Nananu-i-Ra

Description: Reef

Depth: 18 - 35 metres (60 - 115 feet)

Visibility: 15 - 25 metres (50 - 80 feet)

Rating: *****

This dive site consists of two distinct sections, which are often referred to separately as Golden Dreams and Shark Junction.

Several bommies stand apart from the main reef with bottoms at 18m. These make up the shallower Golden Dreams, named because of the abundant yellow dendronepthya soft coral and orange anthias which blanket them.

This is a soft coral lovers paradise and is quite simply breath taking. There are not enough adjectives and superlatives to describe this dive, which is suitable for all levels of divers despite the ever present, nutrient-rich, current which runs through it. Initial peaks from the surface always yield whoops and shrieks of what is hinted at and even amateur snappers with disposal underwater cameras come away with shots that will impress their diving friends.

Thousands of fusiliers, thousands of orange and purple anthias, hundreds of unicornfish, schooling sergeant majors and several varieties of parrotfish all conspire to shield the reef from the diver's view. It is quite literally fish soup. But even if the fish weren't there it would still be a heavenly soft coral dive. What a reef they hide! There is very little bare limestone here and new growth plate corals really have a hard time competing with their softer counterparts.

Where the furthest bommie of Golden Dreams slopes off to 60m+ a curving spur of coral juts out into the blue. In part due to the sheer volume of 'stuff' on Golden Dreams, most divers visit this section as a separate dive altogether. With its top at 18m it acts as a breaker in the strong current for a multitude of fish. The lee side is where the huge coral trout hang out and where the white tips sleep. The more buffeted side of the spur is where the action is though.

A 30m dive along this spur will take the more experienced diver through schools of red bass, big eye trevally, chevron barracuda and the ever-present fusiliers. Somewhere along the spur you will almost certainly encounter the resident Shark Trust-registered grey reef sharks and if you're lucky you may also spot eagle and manta rays.

One mooring. Two dives. Both breath-taking.

Rick Davies, DiveCon Specialist Instructor

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