Go Dive Marlborough has 35 years experience introducing people to diving and the aquatic environment, using the SSI, SDI, TDI and PADI training systems. We offer both recreational and technical diver training from entry level to Instructor. Many of our courses include online learning (eLearning) which allows for more time developing practical skills, having fun and becoming a better diver.

Go Dive pride ourselves on the quality of our training, this is why we offer a variety of courses through different training organizations that suit our training environment – all which meet international RSTC  standards(Recreational Scuba Training Council).

Go Dive are also registered with WorkSafe New Zealand as a certified Adventure Activity Operator and audited to international standards by Telarc one of the worlds biggest auditing companies.

Our training is performance based not time based, allowing you to achieve your goals without missed steps or feeling pressured to complete. All courses are limited to one instructor to 4 students, half the ratio allowed by international standards for entry level diving.

Sohie, SDI instructor trainee with Ellie middle and Flora on the right

 PLUS a Go Dive trademark identifying courses that include extra dives, accommodation and meals at our Dive Lodge in Port Gore.

New Imagesdi_solo_diving_200x200Padi 2




For more information on TDI Technical diver training, please click here or on Rec Tec on the top tool bar


When you scuba dive, you discover freedom and adventure. You discover the new feeling of weightlessness and the exhilaration of breathing underwater. Nothing compares to the freedom and peace of scuba diving-it’s a new sensation.

When you participate in Go Dive’s Scuba Discovery, you will learn about scuba diving in three simple steps. Our SDI/PADI instructor conducts a brief orientation and you view a short video presentation at our Dive Centre or Dive Lodge, followed by your first underwater experience in the shallow water of one of Marlborough’s sheltered bays. Then, under the careful supervision of your Instructor, you will go out on an underwater tour in shallow, calm conditions. The whole experience takes only 4 to 5 hours, has an age pre-requisite of 10 years or older, the only other pre-requisite is that you are in reasonable health, read and sign our medical declaration.

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What will you see?

Scuba Diving in Picton New Zealand During your Discover Scuba Dive you will be introduced to many new creatures including the our very friendly Blue Cod and maybe even interact with a friendly octopus. Whatever you see, we guarantee your first dive with us will be a truly memorable experience that will leave you itching to get back down under.



The Scuba Discovery experience can be completed either in Picton or at our Dive Lodge in Port Gore. Those with diving partners can also enjoy a Scuba Discovery Dive while their diving partner enjoys a guided dive from the same boat or while diving the Mikhail Lermontov in Port Gore.

If you’re planning a Queen Charlotte track walk, you can schedule a rest day from the track, where Go Dive will pick you up from Punga Cove or Portage and take you to our Lodge in Port Gore for a days diving and exploration. A great way to break up the track excursion and to visit Port Gore a seldom visited part of New Zealand

Only the start

The  Scuba Discovery programme is an experience that gives you a taste of the underwater world of New Zealand. The skills you learn during this experience can be credited towards your Scuba Diver or Openwater Diver rating.

OPEN WATER PLUS (includes accommodation & meals)

PADI eLearning

sdi_onlinetraining_transparentLearn to dive with Go Dives unique SSI, SDI and PADI Open-water Plus courses. This package includes accommodation and meals at our dive lodge in Port Gore and diving at some of Marlborough’s best dive sites. Picton, Kaikoura or Nelson based courses are also available, see below for details.  

Download Medical Form

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Includes optional dives on the Mikhail Lermontov one of the worlds best and biggest ship wrecks.

Your underwater adventure starts here, with the most popular diving programme in the world, where you‘ll learn real skills for real diving. On completion of this course you will hold an internationally recognized qualification which will allow you to dive to a depth of up to 18metres. As well as have completed two extra Adventure dives which can be credited to your Advanced Open-water course – all while under the guidance of our very experienced SSI/SDI/PADI Instructors and Divemasters.


Learning to Dive

Learning to Dive

Learning to dive should be fun and that is exactly what you will have when learning to dive with Go Dive. We’ll have you under water on your first pool dive and maybe even your first open water dive from day one. Our instructors are trained professionals who embrace internet based or digital learning technology, this allows us more time to help you master the skills required to become a confident, safe diver capable of diving in most environments. To help you achieve this goal, we promote the use of SSI/SDI/PADI elearning, or digital formats, this will reduce the amount of classroom time and improves your understanding of diving knowledge.

For those who don’t have online access or time to study online, we can provide independent learning materials as an alternative. To find out more about SDI/PADI elearning click on the elearning button above.

Who Can Dive ?

Virtually anyone in good health and an appetite for adventure and excitement can dive. Participants as young as ten may take the course, but other than that there are few restrictions. A medical statement declaring you fit to dive is required prior to in water activities, a copy of this can be downloaded above.

What else is involved?

As long as you complete the independent study requirements prior to your first in-water session, the open-water course can be completed in 3 days, with an extra day to complete the optional adventure dives. However the course is performance based not time based, so you get as much time as you need to practice and master new skills prior to certification. Go Dive offers two Open-water training options- O/W Plus our highly recommended option, includes one day in Picton learning skills in a heated pool and three days, three nights at our exclusive Dive Lodge in Port Gore where you will complete 4 open water dives off our dive boat and have the added option of two extra adventure dives on the Mikhail Lermontov wreck or local reefs. Meals and accommodation are inclusive in the package. Non diving family and friends are very welcome at the Lodge. This option not only teaches you to dive, but gives you access to a part of New Zealand most travelers just don’t get the opportunity to visit due to its remote location and private access.


Click here for details on the Lermontov Dive Lodge

Learning to Dive

Standard Open-water Course – Picton, Kaikoura and Nelson

The second option, the standard Open-water course does not include the 2 optional Adventure dives and is completed entirely in Picton, Nelson or Kaikoura. The training, professional service and the end results are of the same high quality, your course fee is less with you supplying your own accommodation and meals.

When can I start?

Start today, just E-mail us at zn.oc.evidognull@ofni we can send you your access code to start your SSI/SDI or PADI online elearning, or if you prefer we can send you a student pack including a manual and DVD. During the summer months Go Dive runs regular weekly courses, on completion of your independent study, let us know and we’ll book you in for your practical training
or call us (0800 463 483) and we will send you your starter pack, including manual, DVD or CD Rom, for travelers these materials can be purchased at your local SDI/PADI Dive Centre/Resort or you can pick them up on your arrival in Picton.
The course offers tremendous flexibility, its up to you how and when you choose to complete it, just let us know when you plan to arrive in Picton, it’s that easy.
Courses commence every week. For those whom want personalized attention, for a little extra we will customize a schedule to fit in with your travel plans.


Scuba Diver

Scuba diver is a pre-entry level certification. You can earn this rating by completing Confined Water Dives 1-3, the first three Knowledge Development Sessions, and Open Water Training Dives 1 and 2 from the SDI/PADI Open Water programme. You will receive a certification card and will be eligible to dive with a dive professional or above to the recommended maximum depth of 12 metres.

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This option is ideal for those with limited time available to complete the full Open Water Diver programme, for those who have their Open Water Training interrupted for any reason or for those who never plan to dive outside the limitations that appear on the certification card. It also offers another opportunity to recognize those working towards Open Water Diver certification.

As a scuba diver you will have twelve months to continue training toward the SDI/PADI Open Water Diver rating without retraining. The programme is ideal for those who are traveling and can only allow 2-3 days diving in Picton or those who want to complete their training at another dive location in New Zealand or overseas. Or for those who commence their Open Water Diver training elsewhere and complete it in Picton over a two-day period with Go Dive Marlborough.

How to get started!

Getting started is identical to the SDI/PADI Open Water Diver course. Allow at least two days in Picton to complete the Scuba diver programme, this is presuming you have achieved some independent study prior to arrival from the Open Water manual. If you haven’t managed to achieve some independent study prior to arrival you will need to allow three days in Picton.

Adventure Dives & Advanced Open Water Diver

The diving adventure continues

What’s it like to dive to 30 metres? How hard is it to shoot a camera underwater? What’s it like diving on a sunken ship? You get the answer to questions like these on Go Dive Marlborough’s Adventures Dives, which introduce you to the basics of special underwater activities. It’s a great way to see what interests you, whether it’s deep diving, wreck diving, marine life, and so on.

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Whether you’re a newly certified diver or have hundreds of dives logged, Go Dive Marlborough’s Adventure Dives give you the confidence, skills and experience to take your diving to new levels of excitement.

New Dive Adventures, new skills, lots of fun!

Know what they call someone who’s made 5 Adventure Dives? A PADI Advanced Open Water Diver. PADI Advanced Open Water training offers something for everyone. This in-water, performance based programme includes two “core” dives – a deep dive and an underwater navigation dive –and three different elective Adventure Dives that appeal to you including:

Boat, Underwater Naturalist,
Search & Recovery, Wreck, Dive Fish ID, Peak Performance Buoyancy dives

How to get started on your next dive adventure?

Go Dive Marlborough run Adventure dives every day of the week. As our Adventure Dives and Advanced Open Water programme are in-water performance based, there is no formal academic or pool sessions required. The background info you need you cover by reading short chapters in the Adventures in Diving manual we supply on enrollment, and during some pre-dive briefings. You can earn the Advanced Open Water Diver certification over a period of time by going on Adventure Dives with Go Dive Marlborough or any other PADI Dive Resort or Dive Centre, most divers chose to sign up for it as a programme. It usually takes 2 days, but the schedule is incredibly flexible.

And even better: The Advanced Open Water dive programme Adventure Dive happens to be the first dive of many PADI specialty courses. So if you try, say, a photography Adventure Dive (by itself or as part of the Advanced programme) and decide that you just have to get an underwater camera, you have already got the first course dive under your weight belt.


Courses Calendar

When Dive or Course
15th Aug 19 to
3rd Sep 19
Solomon's Wreck Diving
18th Oct 19 to
24th Dec 19
Dive Master Internship
25th Oct 19 to
28th Oct 19
Mikhail Lermontov Labour Weekend. Only two Spots
28th Oct 19 to
1st Nov 19
TDI Advanced Nitrox and Decompression Procedures
2nd Nov 19 to
3rd Nov 19
Lermontov Wreck Weekend Early Bird Special
15th Nov 19 to
17th Nov 19
Wreck Week Christchurch Show Weekend. Early Bird Special
23rd Nov 19 to
24th Nov 19
Lermontov Wreck Weekend. Early Bird Special
7th Dec 19 to
8th Dec 19
Lermontov Weekend Early Bird Special
10th Feb 20 to
30th Apr 20
Dive Master Internship. Feb 2020

Rescue Diver

Go Dives SDI and PADI Rescue Diver course makes the serious subject of diving accident prevention and management enjoyable and rewarding. Until now, the emphasis of your training has been you and your buddy. During the Rescue Diver course you will learn to refine and further develop your diving accident prevention and handling skills, plus learn to manage any diving emergency if you’re ever faced with one. Good things to know.

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Serious Fun

You learn a pile of skills, most of which you hope you’ll never use. It’s a demanding and challenging dive course, aimed at those that are serious about diving. You’ll love it.
Virtually all those who take this dive course cite it as one of the most rewarding courses they’ve taken. Though challenging, you don’t have to be an athlete – you learn rescue techniques suited to your physical characteristics and fitness level – what works for you.

Are you ready!

If you’ve completed entry-level and advanced training (with any training agency), then you’re in.

Some time prior to certification you need to complete training in CPR, if you haven’t already in the last 2 years. We recommend the EFR course, which meets this important prerequisite. An EFR course can be scheduled in with your dive rescue course. As you learn diving accident management, you’ll apply your first aid and CPR skills to the unique needs of diving. By the time you have finished your SDI or PADI Rescue course, you’ll be a qualified first-responder – whether an accident occurs in or out of the water.

Let’s go

Go Dive Marlborough has scheduled dates for the Rescue Diver Course. Four days is required to successfully complete the programme and one day for the EFR course if required. If you can’t meet our schedule, all is not lost, we will run the course on demand with prior notice of at least two weeks.

TDI Sidemount Diver

Sidemount diving has an interesting history, dating back as far as the 1960’s where cave divers in the UK developed sidemount diving techniques. Over the years the equipment has evolved with the help of companies like Dive Rite in the States and it has now become the configuration of choice for many technical and recreational divers who are exploring further into wrecks, caves or wanting to extend their bottom time or dive solo.


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TDI’s sidemount Diver specialty is the perfect course for any recreational or technical diver wishing to use this increasingly popular equipment configuration. It teaches you how to safely utilize side-mounted primary cylinders as an alternative to the traditional back-mounted method. The course will take you through the specific techniques, planning procedures and skills that set sidemount cylinder diving apart from the traditional back-mounted method.  During the course, your Go Dive Instructor will take you on a minimum of three dives over two days and cover skills such as:

  • Equipment considerations

  • Gas management 

  • Attaching cylinders

  • Trim and buoyancy

  • Deployment of surface marker

  • Different water entries


  • Minimum age 18

  • Minimum Certification; SDI Open-water or the equivalent


TDI Advanced Wreck Plus

Wrecks hold a powerful allure to the diver, whether due to the increased bio diversity of marine life they attract or the mystery and tragedy behind their sinking. It is perhaps unfortunate though that most divers have no understanding of the hazards and dangers that lurk within the peaceful beauty of a sunken ship.

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Wrecks like caves and other overhead environments, continue to be the environment most likely to claim the life of the untrained diver in a preventable accident. Generally, wreck divers come in three varieties: the traditional wreck diver who swims the outside of a wreck observing the grace of the nautical structure and the diverse marine life, as time goes by, the divers confidence builds and the mystery of what’s inside becomes more than the diver can resist. At some point, many divers will take a limited penetration course like the SDI or PADI wreck specialty and exercise their wreck diving ability by swimming through open passages and perhaps the wide open holds of a cargo ship. Still more time goes by, the diver builds more confidence and now the mystery of the dark forbidden and restricted passages begin to have an irresistible pull.

The Advanced Wreck diving course prepares divers for this third level of wreck diving. It introduces you to and shows you how to deal with the potential hazards of deep penetration, like lost line, lost buddy, disorientation and lose of gas, we will focus on mastering perfect buoyancy control & trim, finning techniques and signals both visual and  tactile.

For any diver serious about surviving deep wreck penetration this is a must do course. Prepare to be challenged, the Advanced Wreck course will test you in many ways.

The course is run over 4 days at our Dive Lodge in Port Gore and includes 6 training dives on the Mikhail Lermontov and one or two orientation assessment dives for those who haven’t dived a technical configuration before..


  • Minimum age 18

  • Minimum certification; SDI or PADI  Basic Wreck Specialty or equivalent

  • *Experience in Side-mount or back-mounted double cylinder equipment configuration.

  • Show proof of 50 logged dives, 10 on wrecks

* Can be integrated into the Advanced Wreck course with 1 extra dive.

Specialty Diver

So you’ve discovered what type of diving turns you on and now you want to specialize in that field. SDI and PADI Specialty Adventure courses will do just that. In most of these programmes you will cover background materials by doing a bit of reading, watching informative videos and discussing concepts in pre-dive briefings. Then you make two to four dives in the activity depending on the Specialty.

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What sort of diving experience do I need?

Most of the SDI/PADI Specialty diving programmes run by Go Dive Marlborough require that you be a certified Open Water diver or equivalent. (Deep, Wreck and Search, & Recovery Diver being exceptions), no more experience is necessary, in fact the Specialty dives are a great way to gain extra diving experience under the guidance of our SDI/PADI diving professionals. PADI Advanced Open Water Adventure dives or SDI Advanced Adventure Diver dives, (if you are advanced certified), happen to be the first dive of many SDI/PADI Specialty dive courses and can be credited to your SDI/PADI Specialty course, so if you tried, say a photography Adventure Dive on your Advanced course, this counts for the first dive on your Photography Specialty course. It works the other way to, if you say, complete the SDI wreck specialty course, then the first dive can be credited towards your PADI Advanced Open Water certification or SDI Advanced Adventure Diver course..

Recommended Specialty Adventures

The Marlborough Sounds of New Zealand offer a unique opportunity for some excellent wreck, naturalist and photography diving.

The three Specialty Adventures we highly recommend while you’re in Marlborough include U/W photography (2 dives), Wreck (4 dives), and U/W naturalist (2 dives). Our Specialty Dive Instructors have advanced knowledge in wreck diving, marine biology and camera systems. Equipment supplied with the course includes, Intova camera systems.

Other specialty diving adventures available

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Deep diver (4 dives) Shore diver (2 dives)
Night diver (3 dives) Drift diver (2 dives)
Equipment (no dives) Multilevel diver (2 dives)
Search & Recovery (4 dives) DPV (2 dives)
U/W navigator (3 dives) Project Aware (no dives)
Boat diver (2 dives) Fish Identification (2 dives)
Peak Performance Buoyancy (2 dives) Computer aided dives (2 dives)
Enriched Air Diver (2 dives) Wreck Diver Non-penetration 2 dives, Wreck Diver Penetration 4 dives


Go Pro SDI or PADI Dive Master

Scuba diving is an exciting, dynamic recreation that supports a growing worldwide industry with many professional opportunities. Owning and operating a Dive Centre or Resort, working full time on a live aboard dive boat or teaching in an inland or resort environment are just a few possibilities.

See Dive Master Internship


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Most divers begin their full or part time career in diving as a SDI or PADI Divemaster. As a certified Divemaster, you may supervise and assist with both training and non training dive activities. Dive facilities and Resorts employ Divemasters to help with diver level training as well as lead guided dives. You may also conduct the confined water sessions on  Scuba Discovery Dives,  Discover Local Diving experience and Scuba Review programmes; you can also become an EFR or CPROX adminstrator after additional training. Non divers may also enjoy a visit to the underwater world under your supervision during the Discover Snorkelling experience and the Skin Diver course.

What’s involved?

During the Divemaster programme, your level of diving knowledge will be brought up to Instructor level standards. You will learn how to conduct and supervise both recreational and training dives by building on and applying the skills you learnt during your Rescue course. You will also polish your diving skills to demonstration quality through confined water sessions. To achieve this you will review and discuss the following topics:
The Role and Characteristics of the SDI/PADI Divemaster
Supervising General Diving Activities for Certified Divers
Assisting with Student Divers in Training
Dive Theory
Decompression Theory and Computer use
Divemaster Conducted Programmes
Risk Management
The Business of Diving
Your Diving Career

Getting started

Like all SDI/PADI dive courses, flexibility is the key, and the SDI/PADI Divemaster course is no exception. Go Dive Marlborough offer two options in the way you choose to do this programme. The first and by the far most effective option is internship training. This is where you study independently of your instructor, using the reference materials supplied, you will have theory review sessions where your instructor will discuss and review your progress. Practical experience in supervising recreational dive operations and training is gained by joining in on our dive tours and diver level training courses. Scheduled courses of 10 days duration is the second option, this option includes classroom presentations and review sessions, plus practical experience in dive supervision and conducting experience courses.


Go Dive Marlborough will provide you with all the required materials to help you succeed.


To enter the SDI or PADI Dive master programmes, you need the be a SDI or PADI Rescue Diver or equivalent, have logged 40 dives (60 dives with at least 30 covering a wide range of environmental factors required for certification), be 18 years of age or older on commencement of the programme. To enter the SDI Divemaster programme you need all of the above plus hold the SDI Advanced Diver qualification or PADI Rescue with 4 specialty ratings, including verifiable experience in deep, navigation, night and limited visibility specialties.  Also you need a sufficient level of fitness to complete the stamina and water skills exercises, and provide a medical evaluation form completed by a physician within the last 12 months. If you do not have the pre-requisite training, we are happy to customize a total training package to suit. Dual SDI & PADI qualifications can be achieved within the one training package.

Your Investment in becoming an SDI/PADI Diving Professional.

The step from being a recreational diver to becoming a professional diver is a major decision that should not be taken lightly. As a dive leader you will be a team player and role model, you will be responsible for the adventures and safety of other divers. Your investment is the commitment you show and time that you put into your development through the Divemaster programme with Go Dive, an investment that will pay of with major rewards and a start to a rewarding career.

Assistant Instructor

The SDI Assistant Instructors (AI) course not only provides valuable preparation for the Open Water Scuba Instructor training, but also expands skills that enhance an AI’s professional capacity. During the course you’ll concentrate on developing an academic presentation style that allows you to effectively conduct classroom sessions for any SDI course.

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What will SDI AI qualifications allow me to do?

Having a SDI Assistant Instructor on staff is desirable since you may conduct several SDI programmes independently, including but not limited to Altitude, Boat, Computer, Equipment, U/W Photo and the IDC with minimal guidance.


Include at least six months diving experience, certified as a SDI Divemaster or equivilant leadership level with another recreational diver training organization (note PADI Divemaster is not equivalent unless you hold specialty ratings in deep, night, navigation and limited visibilty). Submit a medical statement for diving conducted within the last twelve months and have logged 60 dives or 50 hours and 25 hours accumulated bottom time.

Although the Assistant Instructor qualification is not a pre-requisite to entering the SDI Instructor Development programme, we highly recommend it. AI candidates consistently show good results during Instructor Development and Instructor evaluations.

Getting started

As with the Divemaster programme, the Assistant Instructor programme offers two options in how you choose to do the course. The internship option is ideal for local residents; the 7 day scheduled course option is ideal for travelers.

SDI Instructor Development

Take a giant stride into a new career

The SDI/TDI Instructor Development Course (IDC) is amongst the worlds most recognized and respected Scuba Diving Instructor Development programme. No other programme will give you the credentials and scope for employment, as this course will. It is the ultimate step in becoming a Diving Professional, with a SDI Open Water Instructor qualification, you will become part of a international team of highly respected instructors, working through a network of SDI/TDI Dive Centres or Resorts.

Instructor level courses

Emergency First Responder (EFR) Instructor

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Because several PADI courses require students to have CPR/First Aid training, becoming an EFR Instructor allows you offer all-inclusive programmes. Earning an EFR Instructor certification is as easy as completing an Instructor training course, over one day with Go Dive Marlborough’s Course Director
The MSDT programme is designed to train you in how to organise, promote and conduct PADI Specialty course. Having this qualification enables you to give your students many choices for pursuing continuing diver education. MSDT are the preferred choice by Dive Resorts and Dive Centres. Go Dive Marlborough’s 5 day Master Scuba Diver Trainer programme, includes the following Instructor Specialty ratings:
Boat Diver
Deep Diver
Wreck Diver
Underwater Naturalist
Underwater Photographer

SDI/IDC Staff Instructor

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IDC Staff Instructors work with Course Directors as important team members in the instructor training process. As an IDC Staff Instructor, you may staff and teach instructor development programmes.  Go Dive Marlborough’s SDI Staff Instructor programme involves a 2-day pre IDC course and auditing a complete IDC.

Career Courses

A career in Marine Tourism is a career for the future

The marine tourism and dive Industries are without doubt growth industries. As more people turn to adventure activities like scuba diving, dolphin and seal swimming, a demand for qualified multi-skilled professionals has been created. Like any industry the dive and marine tourism industries, needs people with a variety of skills including, boat handling, sales management training, airfilling, compressor and boat maintenance, and marine biology. It is these extra skills and training that will boost your chances of success in a full or part-time career.

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Go Dive Marlborough offer two full time career programmes designed to meet the specialised requirements of the Dive and Marine Tourism industries. Both programmes are unique to the market as they offer industry experience working alongside our professional team on snorkel and dive operations. The industry experience you gain during these programmes could well be the determining factor that puts you ahead of others when applying for employment.

Studies in Marine Tourism, Recreational Diving & Dive Operations Management

Diving and Adventure Tourism are exciting, dynamic recreations that support a growing global industry. Along with this growth comes an increasing demand for well trained staff experienced in all facets of these exciting industries.

Go Dive Marlborough offer a unique range of vocational and recreational programmes, which result in a combination of internationally accepted qualifications. Go Dive Marlborough recognises that knowing how to apply these qualifications in the workplace is just as important than the qualifications themselves. Being based in Picton, one of New Zealand’s Marine Tourism hot spots allows students the opportunity to gain “real world” industry experience, by hands on application of new found skills via our Dive and Marine Tourism Resort and associate Marine Tourism operations.

Many of Go Dive Marlborough graduates have successfully obtained employment in the Marine Tourism and Dive industries in New Zealand, Australia and throughout the Asia Pacific region.