Diving ancient wreck sites

YiS Team: Alessandra Vigliotta


Sunday, August 18th, 2019


Diving ancient wreck sites

Sardinia’s underwater sites are a treasure trove of fabulous scenery and plenty of marine fauna, filled with endless surprises resting on the seabed.

From Cagliari to Carloforte, along the south-western coast of Sardinia to explore the shipwrecks that rest in the clear water of the sea. The Golfo degli Angeli has always been a safe haven for ancient civilizations as they sailed around the island, often battling for control over the sea. The gulf has also been the theatre of world wars, and a variety of shipwrecks rest on the seabed, one of the many aspects that make the underwater environment in this corner of the Mediterranean such a special place.

Cagliari

The strategic location of the island’s capital city at the centre of the Gulf of Angels makes it the point of departure for scuba diving excursions. The most exciting dives are wreck dives, and many of the wrecks here sank in the early 1940s, when Cagliari was the Mediterranean capital of war operations. One of the most fascinating dives is to the Romagna, a tanker built in 1899 that was requisitioned by the Italian Royal Navy during World War II. In early August of 1943 it was hit by a mine just off of Capo Sant’Elia and sank to 40 metres, where it now lies providing a habitat for bream, damselfish, conger eels and groupers that roam between rusting bulkheads and the sea sponge-covered bridge.

Santa Margherita di Pula

Dive boats depart on their fascinating excursions from the little tourist harbour of Cala Verde in the Pula area. The rocky walls of the Capo Spartivento stacks teem with bright and colourful sea life of all kinds and slope gradually downwards to the sea bed at 40 metres below the surface. Once you’re down, you’ll spot relics from the Roman Era spread out over a wide area, the remains of mercantile vessels that plied the coastline of the gulf more than two thousand years ago. A few minutes from Cala Verde is another great diving location known as the Candeliere (Candelabra), a granite formation surrounded by three spires where it is easy to spot amberjack, puffer fish and barracuda. The rock walls are covered with orange-yellow mantles of flowering anemones, sea slugs and starfish.

Isola di San Pietro

The second largest island of the Sulcis archipelago has a rocky shoreline and is the perfect place to go scuba diving. The little island of Corno below the Capo Sandalo lighthouse is a dive site that is not to be missed. The seabed goes down to 40 metres with sandy stretches cut by deep canyons. Once you’ve immersed yourself into the rich marine flora and fauna, you will spot colourful sea slugs, lobster, damselfish and a variety of other species. Don’t miss out on the Tacche Bianche descent at a depth of 17 metres, where a colony of coral covers a rocky arch frequented by fish of all sorts.

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