With more than 5000 km of indented shoreline on the beautiful Adriatic Sea, Croatia is among top diving destinations with plenty of opportunities. The Croatian climate is Mediterranean with dry and warm summers and very mild winters. And with that in mind, divers are active all year round. With more than 115 official diving sites, scattered all over the coast and seemingly endless islands, caves and archaeological treasures on the seabed, it’s no wonder that Croatia is seen by many as the diving paradise. For those of you, who are considering taking a trip to this beautiful country, following are some of the best sites for you to explore.
1. The Baron Gautsch – Rovinj
Nearby the city of Rovinj is location of one of the best spots for the wreck divers in Croatia. Wreck in question is Baron Gautsch, an Austro-Hungarian passenger ship that sank in the northern Adriatic Sea. With the lower deck on 42m and upper deck on 28m, this diving spot is certainly not ideal for beginners. The stunning shipwreck was built in the year 1908 and it sunk in 1914. Since than it serves as a home for local flora and fauna. The best time to enjoy a dive there is from May all the way to September, when the water temperatures are averaging between 18-25 degrees Celsius.
2. Margarina Reef – Susak
Especially popular place among less experienced divers is diving spot near the west coast of Losinj island, better known as Margarina Reef. Spot is available through entire year. But the most pleasant experience is guaranteed between from May to September, when water temperatures average at 24-25 degrees Celsius. Middle of this reef is the location for impressive looking canyon which starts at 5 meters and goes as deep as 17 meters. At this spot divers can explore fragments of an ancient ship, broken amphora and other antiquities hidden on the sea floor.
3. Taranto – Dubrovnik
Wreck of Taranto is located not far from Dubrovnik and serves as a popular spot for advanced divers. Taranto wreck is 62 meters long and has been used as Italian navy transport ship during WWII. The 45 degrees angle of the wrecked ship gives a great depth drop. The deepest natural hull is 50m deep and the nose of the ship is at 20m, making it more accessible. The shell is buried among sands since 1943. Cargo from the ship, the two tractors, is still visible on the seabed. Creating a larger underwater playground of rich sea fauna and flora including mullet fish, sponges, lobsters, and cardinal fish. Best time for diving at this location is from the month of April all the way to November, when the water temperatures are around 22-25 degrees Celsius, with air temperature being around 27C.
4. Cathedral of Premuda – Premuda Island
This small Croatian island located in Dalmatian Region of Croatia is one of the favorite diving spots for locals. That is thanks to the complex of beautiful caves hiding underwater, better known as The Cathedral. Sun shafts are piercing the caves at variety of spots, creating especially ethereal mood for divers. With WWI Austro-Hungarian battleship Szent Istvan wreck located at 40-60m of depth, it’s no wonder why this spot is one of the most the attractive in Croatia. Of course, it’s worth mentioning that entering The Cathedral and the ship wreck it’s not suitable for inexperienced divers. Water temperatures between May and September vary between 12-24C.
5. Bisevo Grotto – Vis Island
Location of this beautiful diving spot, also known as Blue Cave, is 5 km south-west from the Vis Island. You can visit this site from city of Split via rent a boat services, or from Vis port. Bisevo Grotto is a top diving spot with logged sea waters, mystical sea caves and abundant marine life. Still, the main attraction of this spot is show cave and blue light that appears at certain times of day. With 25 meters in length and 10-12 meters of depth, this spot is open for divers of all skill levels. More than 10,000 tourist visits this spot every year, all thanks to its natural beauty and ease of access.
These diving spots are among the most beautiful Adriatic treasures. They offer authentic and breathtaking sites which every diving enthusiast can appreciate. Naturally, these spots are just a tip of the iceberg. Croatia has plenty more to offer on its long coast and over thousand of islands. Dive on!