There’s great diving to be had in some unexpected places. Here are TNT‘s top five diving destinations.

1. The UK

What: If you can get past the “oooh, it’s a bit chilly in here” then the UK offers surprisingly good diving. Dolphins, porpoises and basking sharks swim near the shores of St Ives in Cornwall and there’s great wreck diving off the Dorset and Sussex coastlines. Contact the British Sub-Aqua Club (BSAC) to learn how to dive in the UK.

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World's top five diving spots - Thailand

2. Thailand

What: Travellers often head to Thailand to do their PADI course without breaking the bank. The small and beautiful island of Koh Tao gives divers the chance to spot the mighty whale shark – the world’s largest living fish.

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World's top five diving spots - The Red Sea

3. The Red Sea

What: The Red Sea, renowned for its pectaclular marine life, offers some of the world’s best diving. The diverse coral ecosystem of the Ras Mohammed National Park in Egypt is popular with both beginners and more experienced divers.

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World's top five diving spots - Greek Islands

4. Greek Islands

What: Combine some great scuba diving with island hopping. The underwater caves of Corfu are good for novices and the island of Chios has several diving centres. After that, you can pop over to Crete or Santorini.

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World's top five diving spots

5. Canary Islands

What: Fancy wearing a thinner wetsuit but don’t want to venture out of Europe? Head to the sub-tropical waters of the Canary Islands. El Hierro in Tenerife has superb diving, and the waters of Lanzarote are home to wrecks and underwater volcanic caves.

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Words: Janine Kelso