Located to the west of Morocco, in the Atlantic Ocean, the Canary Islands feature a mild climate. All year-round, the water temperature does not go below 20 degrees centigrade. This allows scuba divers to put on their scuba masks at any time of the year without having to worry about getting too cold.
The 7 main islands making the archipelago include Gran Canaria, Lanzarote, La Palma, El Hierro, Fuerteventura, Tenerife, and La Gomera. While the islands are different, they all originated from volcanic action.
The sites for diving in the Canary Islands are varied and are capable of accommodating both experts and beginning scuba divers. People who enjoy shipwreck diving will be impressed by the fact that approximately 50 shipwrecks lie around the Gran Canaria. Irrespective of whether you will be going to the Canary Islands for the shipwrecks or the marine animals, you should have fun in the following Canary Islands diving sites.
The Top Canary Islands Diving Sites
1. Cueva Palm-Mar
If you have already dived for long enough to understand how to stay safe when scuba diving, this site for diving in the Canary Islands should be ideal for you. If you are new to diving, Cueva Palm-Mar may not be an ideal destination.
The dive site features a depth of approximately 32 feet to 131 feet (10 meters to 40 meters). The site is about 200 meters off the Palm-Mar beach on Tenerife island. After donning your scuba diving boots and dive gloves, you can reach the site via a boat, from either the port of Los Cristianos or Las Galletas.
The site features great underwater visibility, a large number of marine creatures, and a mysterious cave. Some of the sea life you may come across includes moray eels, sea bream, leopard-spotted morays, wrasse, and zebrafish.
2. El Condesito
If you like to explore wrecked ships, you should consider heading to the South coast of Tenerife, where you should find El Condesito near Las Galletas. The ship crashed into a rock and sank during a storm back in 1972.
The wreck sits in shallow waters. However, the site for diving in the Canary Islands is recommended to experienced divers only. This is because of the strong currents available on the site.
The ship’s deepest point lies at about 69 feet (21 meters) while its highest point is at 20 feet (6 meters). The underwater visibility on this dive spot is known to range between 20 and 30 meters.
While exploring the Canary Islands diving site, you should expect to see trumpetfish, dolphins, octopuses, lobsters, lizard fish, barracudas, stingrays, jacks, morays, and even scorpionfish. Although diving is possible all year round, the best time to visit the dive site is between April and October.
3. Museo Atlantico
Officially opened back in 2017, Museo Atlantico has managed to become the most popular dive site on Lanzarote island. The site for diving in the Canary Islands features 35 sculptures created by Jason De Caires Taylor. The underwater museum covers an area of approximately 2,500 square meters.
You should expect to find the sculptures at a depth of approximately 12 to 15 meters, off the Playa Blanca coast. This depth is not just ideal for divers. It is also ideal for people who love snorkeling or freediving.
Over the years, the sculptures have created an artificial reef that is evolving continually. Some of the marine animals you may come across after grabbing your scuba tank and diving include bream, barracuda, butterfly rays, octopus, angel sharks, and others.
4. La Catedral
La Catedra, located about 20 minutes north of Las Palmas, is one of the few Canary Islands diving sites featuring unusual rock formations. The rocky massif drops from a depth of about 6 meters and stops at approximately 40 meters.
If you learn how to take pictures underwater beforehand and take your diving camera with you when heading to La Catedral, you should be able to photograph numerous caves, crevices, arches, and lava tubes.
To stay safe when exploring the dive site, you will need to choose your route carefully, in advance. Also, you must take the current and wave conditions into account before getting into the waters. If you are looking to dive in Gran Canaria, get in contact with Leagues Ahead Diving.
5. The Arona
This is a shipwreck that sank back on 23rd April 1972 due to a fire that originated from its engine room. The wreck is only 20 minutes away by boat, south of Las Palmas. It is the biggest wreck you will find in the Gran Canaria waters.
The 361 feet (110 meters) ship sits on her side at a depth of approximately 115 feet (35 meters). The wreck’s compartments are still intact. You can take advantage of this fact to discover artifacts or enter the holds to check out the machinery.
This site for diving in the Canary Islands is recommended to advanced-level divers. This is because of the occasional but strong currents and considerable depth.
6. La Restinga
This Canary Islands diving site is available on El Hierro. When compared to the other islands available in the Canary Islands, El Hierro is the smallest. To get to La Restinga, you will need to fly to Tenerife before boarding a ferry. The diving experience you get from the site for diving in the Canary Islands makes the effort worth it.
La Restinga is a marine reserve featuring turtles, dolphins, and tunas. If you are lucky, you may be able to dive with the sharks. Whale sharks do make occasional appearances on the site.
7. La Burrera
This site for diving in the Canary Islands is about 20 minutes by boat from the Caleta de Sebo village. If you have not been wearing your scuba diving wetsuit for long enough, meaning you are not very experienced, diving at La Burrera is not recommended. The site is ideal for advanced divers only.
The Canary Islands diving spot features interesting rock formations, including arches, stones, rocks, and columns. If you carry your lens for underwater photography while exploring the dive site, you should be able to take interesting pictures. Some of the marine animals you may come across include Canary drum, common drum, garden eels, duckbill ray, sea urchins, eagle rays, wide wing rays, etc.
8. The Kalais
The Kalais is a shipwreck lying just outside the Las Palmas. The 100-meter long cargo ship was scuttled back in the 1980s after its owners failed to pay the required mooring fees. The vessel sits upright on the sea bed, just outside the harbor works. It is in an ideal preservation state and features numerous equipment and artifacts.
At the deck, which is about 27 meters below the water surface, you can enter the wreck’s hold, which still features much of the cement bags the ship was carrying. At the stern, the walkways offer a great swim-through.
When exploring the shipwreck, you will come across a wide range of sea animals. Some of the animals you will come across include angel sharks, bream, parrotfish, damselfish, wrasse, morays, lobsters, glass eyes, damselfish, and barracudas.
9. San Sebastián
San Sebastián is a site for diving in the Canary Islands located on the east side of Gomera island. The dive site is ideal for all scuba divers, irrespective of their skill level. It is popular for its biodiversity.
If you do manage to get underwater on the dive site, some of the marine life you should expect to see include trumpet fish, barracuda, octopus, morays, shrimp, sponges, corals, sea cucumbers, garden eels, goatfish, crabs, arrowhead, star puffers, Turkish wrasse, etc.
The closest airport is available on Tenerife island. You will have to take a ferry after landing on Tenerife island to get to the dive site. To avoid diving during the rainiest period, you should avoid visiting the Canary Islands diving site from November through to January.
10. Morgan Wrecks
If you are looking for an ideal first wreck dive, you should consider visiting the Morgan wrecks dive site, available just outside the Morgan harbor. Their compact nature and shallow depth make the 2 wrecks available on the site for diving in Canary Islands ideal for beginners.
The 2 shipwrecks are just 21 meters below the surface and only 40 meters apart. The ships were sunk back in 2002 to offer a Yellow Submarine adventure.
Of the 2 wrecks, the Cermona II is more interesting and more photogenic. It is 32 meters long and it’s still possible for divers to dive along the bridge, hold onto the wreck’s rails, and even check out its engine. Some of the marine animals you may come across while exploring the site include parrotfish, crustaceans, and other schools of fish.
Globo Surf Overview
The Canary Islands have a lot to offer. The destination features wrecks and a wide variety of marine life. The good thing about visiting the Canary Islands is that you should be able to find a scuba diving spot that fits your experience level. Additionally, the clear and warm waters support scuba diving all year round.
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