Malta’s diving is suitable for beginners, advanced and technical divers. Its caves, reefs and wrecks are reached from either the shore or by boat. One of Malta’s most popular dive sites is the Blue Hole, located on the west coast of Gozo. The dive begins in a pool at 40 feet (12 meters), and leads through a crevice – your window to the ocean’s clear blue waters and the octopus and lobster that live amongst the rock formations. Mediterranean parrot fish – bright orange with silver and yellow markings – will also greet you. Advanced divers can marvel at the atmospheric water reflections in the deeper caves. Located in the north of Malta is Ċirkewwa. This is a shore dive with explores the reefs on shallow plateaus at 40 feet (12 meters). Wonderful arches and swim throughs take you to a Madonna statue at 60 feet (18 meters) where venomous scorpion fish come to pray for forgiveness. Luckier divers may spot a triggerfish. Advanced divers can continue off the plateau to 100 feet (30 meters). Due to the site’s topography it is recommended for night dives. Beginners can experience wreck diving; off the coast of Comino lies the scuttled P-31 patrol boat at a depth of just 60 feet (18 meters). Lizard fish have found a home here. Advanced divers can explore Um El Faroud, a 377 foot (115 metre) long, 10,000 ton tanker, which sank in Valletta’s harbor in 1998. Now scuttled to the south of Malta, the main deck of this upright wreck is found at 100 feet (30 meters), as are schools of barracuda that flash like a reflection on a kitchen knife. Divers qualified in wreck diving can enter the ship through the kitchen at its stern. If you’re not qualified in wreck diving – Malta could be the place to learn.
The warm Mediterranean waters around Malta provide a great variety of fauna, flora and fish.
The sea beds are gardens of seagrass where wrasse hide, and a fanworm’s tentacles are like delicate petals on a flower as they gently sway to scoop up plankton. Orange and red starfish slowly traverse the rocks, and an octopus squirts ink from cracks.
During the summer months seahorses can be found, and lucky divers may catch a glimpse of their ‘courtship dance’ as they hold tails and waltz on the current’s ebb. Groupers shelter in crevices, moray eels hide in holes, and red mullet dig for food in the sand with their whiskers.
John Dory rise from the deep blue to the warmer waters during the winter – long spines decorate their dorsal fin like a centurion’s helmet.
The great visibility makes for excellent photography, so take a camera and you won’t forget what you see.
For better readability of the table, pass into the landscape mode.