Ibiza has taken the top spot when it comes to diving in Europe. And with this lot in store it’s easy to see why…
Ibiza has always been a Dr Jekyll and Mr Hyde sort of island. On the one hand, it’s a meditative island of pin-drop quiet beaches and yoga retreats. On the other, it’s a place of endurance clubbing, inverted waking hours and stamina-testing DJ sets.
Recently, though, a third ‘face’ of the island has been revealed. According to PADI, Ibiza is Europe’s best diving destination. There are more than 20 top dive spots off Ibiza’s coast, and the gin-clear waters of the Mediterranean Sea means visibility ranges from 20 to 40 metres.
As far as underwater eye candy is concerned, you’ve got shipwrecks, caves and meadows of underwater Neptune grass. On top of all this, the water temperature can get as high as 28 degrees in summer, making you feel like you’re diving at the bottom of a bubble bath.
You’ll find these two small rocks four kilometres off the coast of Ibiza Town’s harbour. The boulders beneath the sea here are the stomping ground of moray eels and octopus. You’re also likely to see twitching curtains of damselfish.
The wreck of a cargo ship, just off Ibiza Town’s main port has recently been opened up to recreational divers. The boat sunk here in 2007 and, measuring up to 140 metres in length, it’s the biggest wreck of its kind in Europe.
This dive site is just off the coast of Ibiza Town. The underwater wall here hides a mini world of marine life. Shy brown meagre fish seek refuge in the nooks and crannies, and conger eels tie themselves in knots trying to fit into the crevices in the wall.
The Mariana Platform
The scene that greets you at this dive site, between Ibiza and Formentera, looks like the sort of installation art you’d find in the foyer of the Tate Gallery. It’s a landscape of concrete columns and metal structures. In its day, it was a platform used in a fish farm, but it fell into the sea after the farm was abandoned. The deeper you dive, the more likely you are to spot grouper, scorpionfish and barracuda.
This site is near Es Vedra. Divers here can choose to explore as close to the surface as 3 metres or they can dive down to 30 metres. Lobster, grouper and the occasional scorpionfish are the usual suspects in this neck of the woods, and the rock surfaces are coated with sponges and colonies of anemone.