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Dive Sites

Places beneath the sea

 

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Go to: Wrecks around St HelenaOther dive sites

Wrecks around St Helena

We have eight diveable wrecks which are in fairly good condition and are protected by the wrecks and marine archaeological ordinance 2014 to protect the wreck and its artefacts. Listed below are a few of the popular wrecks. Please note we do not permit wreck penetration.

Go to: PapanuiDarkdaleFrontierBedgelletWhite Lion (Witte Leeuw)

Papanui

The Papanui was a passenger/cargo steam ship with a length of 101 meters, which caught on fire and sunk in James Bay on 05 September 1911 in a depth of 6 - 12 meters of water. Today it makes a wonderful home for the marine life and an excellent welcoming dive to St Helena. The hull is very much scuttled but the boilers and stern post are still as they were.

Darkdale

The Darkdale is our largest and deepest wreck recorded on the Island reaching a maximum depth of 48 meters. However the depth to the deck is around 30 meters, which requires a minimum certification of advance diver (or equivalent). She was a British Royal Navy Fleet Auxiliary which was torpedoed by a German U-Boat on 06 August 1941. The wreck is now classified as a war grave.

Frontier

The Frontier or locally known as the drug ship was confiscated after entering into our waters in 1990s with a consignment of drugs. In 1994 the vessel was sunk by St Helena Government which now forms part of our wreck diving experience. She lies in a maximum depth of 26 meters with 18 meters to her deck level in Lemon Valley Bay.

Bedgellet

The Bedgellet was a small ship used to salvage goods of the Papanui. She was intentionally sunk in 2001 between Long Ledge and Billy Mayes Revenge as an artificial reef. The Bedgellet lies in 16 meters of water with a deck depth of 12 meters. This wreck is paired up with a combination of swim-through and overhangs.

White Lion (Witte Leeuw)

The White Lion was a Dutch cargo ship which sunk in 1613 just east of James Bay. She lies in a depth of 30 to 33 meters unfortunately there is not much left of her other than several canons, an anchor and the ballast stones.

Other dive sites

Here is a selection of the more popular dive sites around the island.

If you want to dive somewhere else please contact us to discuss how we can help.

Go to: James Bay Dive 1James Bay Dive 2Youngs ValleyRobertsons/Cavalley RockLemon Valley PointRed Rock/Red IslandLong LedgeBilly Meyes RevengeHorse Pasture CoveCat Island/Lighter RockBennett’s PointEgg Island EastEgg Island WestPeaked Island

James Bay Dive 1

A shallow coastal dive with a maximum depth of 12m. On this dive you will be rewarded by seeing the number of 18th century anchors and remains still lay on the ocean bed. You will also be guaranteed to see a variety of endemic fish which include large schools of butterfly fish and possibly a few resident hawsbill turtles.

James Bay Dive 2

A deeper dive, starting at the northern end of James Bay behind the local boats mooring field. Maximum depth of this dive is 30 meters but can be started at 18 meters for open water (or equivalent) certified divers. The sea bed consists mainly of sand and scattered rock. Amongst this you will find the occasional canon, bolts, anchors and remains from sunken wrecks. The anchoring points for the local boats is always an attraction for various schools of bait fish and bottom fish which includes moray eels, scorpion fish, grouper, flounders, squirrel fish and so much more.

Youngs Valley

Maximum depth 14 meters

This dive consists of a combination of rocky reefs and a sandy bottom. The reefs, crevices and overhangs provide shelter for a larger number of various species of reef fish including all of our endemic fish. The colouration of the marine organisms and fish is vibrant due to the shallow water, the reef itself follows an “L” pattern and is ideal for new divers.

Robertsons/Cavalley Rock

Maximum depth 14 meters

A shallow dive consisting of scattered boulders sitting on white shell sand. Large number of trigger fish can usually be seen spawning on this site. Cavalley Rock makes an excellent night dive.

Lemon Valley Point

Maximum depth 19 meters

Normally dived as a drift dive, following the coast line to the west. You will encounter various reefs throughout the dive on a sandy bottom, once again an abundance of reef fish and other marine life can be seen on this dive.

Red Rock/Red Island

Maximum depth 14-15 meters

A very popular reef dive which follows a horse shoe formation. This dive makes a perfect night dive as it is easy to navigate. The reef itself is full of crevices, overhangs and rocky outcrops. Both devil rays and lobster can normally be seen here.

Long Ledge

Maximum depth 22 meters

Probably the most popular dive site on St Helena. The ledge itself extends towards the north with a sheer drop to 22 meters. The rock formation on the northern side is a must see to appreciate the appearance of an almost man made formation of rocks stepping up to shallow water.

The ledge is covered in growth; such as whip and orange cup coral and other plants and marine organisms. Inshore the ledge leads you into a large cavern where there is various corals, fish life and crustaceans.

Billy Meyes Revenge

Maximum depth 24 meters

A reef dive which consists of vertical rocks and crevices. This site is heavily colonised with various types of coral and fish life.

Horse Pasture Cove

Maximum depth 15 meters

A shallow drift dive with several overhands and swim-throughs. Glass eye snappers and squirrel fish intermix here in large amounts and often fill the swim through and overhangs. Lobsters can be found in some sandy caves.

Cat Island/Lighter Rock

Maximum depth 24 meters

A small island which is close to the mainland which is also connected to another Island known as Lighter Rock which is in deeper water. The Islands are connected via a rock ledge with a maximum depth of 24 meters.

The inshore areas consist of some excellent swim-throughs and overhangs. It has an interesting rock formation which is covered in sponges and corals and an abundance of various other marine life.

Bennett’s Point

Maximum depth 25 meters

A dive site consisting of an archway, rolling boulders, rocky outcrops and overhangs. Several swim-throughs and caverns can be found in the shallow water providing shelter for many marine species.

Egg Island East

Maximum depth 30 meters

A deeper dive consisting of a vertical rocky wall to the sea bed where a few caves can be found.

Egg island itself holds the largest population of sea bird life on St Helena. The Island is surrounded by a sandy sea bed.

Egg Island West

Maximum depth 16 meters

A vertical rocky wall as per the east side but in shallower water. The sea bed consists of bed rock and boulders with some interesting overhangs and crevices.

Peaked Island

Maximum depth 25 meters

Probably my favourite site. It starts in a “U” pattern and circumnavigate around the island with depths of 25 meters in places. There are several sand caves on the north west side of the island where crayfish normally hide. A shallow swim through is also present and a shallow reef making a perfect safety stop.