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Scuba Diving in Jeju Island

Posted by on October 2, 2019

While on the island of Jeju, I already knew my other goal that I had to accomplish: scuba dive and explore the underwater sea! Of course, this attitude made a lot of people turn their heads with me as if I won the billion-dollar lottery. Most people that go to Jeju are there primarily for sightseeing and/or relaxing. That’s why they look at me weirdly as I clearly state my intention to scuba dive where there are no tourists! A huge change compared to be on the surface of Jeju Island which is crowded with people, all year-long. Time to jump in the water!

And what do I see? Well, coral like anywhere else but this coral appears to have more of a bushy, forest-like appearance.

Blue White Forestlike coral Jeju South Korea Hangook diving scuba padi

The coral looks far different from what I’ve been used to looking at. It’s kind of a nice change.

Needlefish Korea diver trained experience saltwater strait of Japan Koreanhawaii

That’s something different – looking at a small school of Needlefish swimming through. I hated catching these fish in Mexico as I would be targeting other fish species but they appear to be more cooperative.

starfish eating a dead fish scuba diving underwater photography picture taking

Now there is something that you don’t see everyday! A starfish eating a dead fish!

jeju triggerfish

This fish looked a Triggerfish but I wasn’t sure what kind of species. Asian species I suppose.

Pterois miles the devil firefish or common lionfish Korean western Pacific waters ocean

Ah yes… the Lionfish. Invasive in the Atlantic particularly in the Caribbean but they are at home in the western Pacific.

Fish everywhere around mounds

There is fish everywhere! Most novice scuba divers fail to look around so it’s important to look up, down, left, right, and back…. you never what you mean miss.

Big fish swimming around in Jeju jack

There was big fish lurking around above me that most people would have missed. They looked like Jacks or Groupers, but I couldn’t tell.

On the second day of diving, we get on a fishing boat which then drops us off in between 2 islands in this shallow part where the tides and currents collide! It seems like a weird place to go diving but it was actually quite nice. There were even ropes/lines in the water to make it easy to go up and down as well as line that went through the trench because there was some strong current going through that would have made it very difficult to make it back without holding on. They really thought this through!

Jeju water island passage for scuba diving

We’re going in there? Yes, we are. Going to drop our gear off and set it all up!

Low area for starting diving Jeju scuba divers adventure Korean strait tourism fun

And that’s what the low area looks like. Even at high tide, it doesn’t completely overwhelm this place unless there is a tsunami or typhoon incoming. It was quite fun sitting in the water during our break in-between our 2 dives. You can see me in the back looking at my friend who decided that he would rather crawl to the deep end than risk getting knocked over by the incoming waves.

Diving along the trench taking pictures island Korean strait boat cruising rocks unusual tourism water sports wetsuit requirement diver

There I am… diving along the trench looking for cool stuff to find and take pictures of.

pure waters diving Jeju Korea diving scuba diver PADI tourism fun uncommon beyond the crowd

The water was kind of murky but it was still quite clear to see while underwater. The water was not cold nor warm so 5-6 mm wetsuit was perfect for the job.

Note: It’s best to be scuba diver qualified prior to coming to Jeju because getting certified there is quite pricey and it could take a lot of time from other things that you might want to do, instead of studying to get that certification. The water in Jeju is also colder than it looks. Despite being the “Korean Hawaii,” the water is not quite THAT warm but it’s also NOT that cold either. The water to me was like being in Egypt… but even then, it’s best prior to coming to Jeju is to have scuba diving experience in colder waters as well. That way, you are not completely freaked out at the water temperature and you can simply enjoy the time spent underwater.

three yellowfish underwater in Jeju

Always be on the lookout – I saw these three Yellowtail cruising at full speed while going back to our original starting point.

Tip: It’s best to have some knowledge of Korean or at least have a friend who knows Korean because the divemaster did not speak any English at all. But then again, this apparent all across the board throughout Jeju whether you go to the market area, restaurants, fishing boats, hunting place, etc.

Tip: Rent a car – everywhere is too damn far! Even from the hotel to the dive shop was still a drive.


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