Port Elizabeth is one of South Africa’s highest rated cold water dive locations which is one of the biggest tourist attractions to the friendly city. Offering you a wide variety of colour in the reef’s, different diving experiences ranging from dramatic reef’s to ship wrecks, making Port Elizabeth one of the most magical places to visit for diving.
Your diving experience in Port Elizabeth will not be limited to just one diving location, Port Elizabeth is well known for its many vibrant diving spots and these can be broken up into these categories: Shore Entries, Boat Dives, Wrecks and Islands.
Most divers who come to Port Elizabeth often slip up on the benefits of Shore Entries, or just aren’t aware of them. Shore entries are usually cheap and easy, because all you have to pay for is oxygen. Most inland divers who dive here on holiday have not tried this yet, and it would be a good idea to at least look it up if you would like to dive but not spend too much. There are a few spots you can try for Shore Entries, such as the slipway off Humewood Beach, Postmans off the Holiday Inn.
The most widely used dives by tourists are boat dives, which must be booked through one of the operators in Port Elizabeth and takes you out to many reef diving spots. Some of the popular Boat Diving spots in Port Elizabeth include Avalanche, Thunderbolt Reef which gets its name from the HMS Thunderbolt which struck this massive reef in 1847, and Riy Banks.
Colourfull fish at one of the many reefs in Algoa Bay.
Wrecks have to be one of the most magical diving sites to visit, there is always something exciting about diving through and exploring vessels from the past, disappearing from reality above the surface of the water and diving down to a different time. This also allows you to view a totally different side of Port Elizabeth’s coast, one that not many locals even know about. Popular wreck sites include Cape Recife with its many wrecks and North End Wrecks which is the site of the single largest maritime ship in South African history. In 1902 a gale force wind struck and 18 vessels were lost including many smaller craft, leaving the bay a graveyard of ships.
There are a few islands around Port Elizabeth to offer you a different diving experience and for many a permit is needed to dive here as they are marine sanctuaries thus boasting an abundant sea life. These islands include St Croix and Jaheel as well as Brenton Island.
Diving in Port Elizabeth offers you a chance to view this magnificent city from a totally different perspective, with its many different dive sites you are guaranteed a experience of awe and amazement at its beauty each time, and with establishments such as Pro Dive to help train you in diving as well as take you out on excursions, you will be coming back for more.
Underwater Photos courtesy of Pro Dive - your one stop shop for all your diving needs.