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Diving in Gozo
The three Islands that make up the Maltese Archipelago - Malta, the largest; Gozo, the mythical isle of Calypso; and tiny Comino, famous for its Blue Lagoon - form a very special diving site at the heart of the Mediterranean. The Islands invite you to discover their natural harbours, bays, sheltered creeks, cliffs, reefs and wrecks. The waters here are some of the most limpid and clear in the world. Visibility is excellent down to around 30 metres. So Malta is a dream destination for underwater photography. Marine life flourishes in a vibrant display of colours. 

With dive sites just a stone's throw away from each other, you will be able to explore a variety of underwater worlds. We've listed some 36 of the best known dive sites ranging from labyrinthine caves to reefs and wartime wrecks. For more excitement, try a night dive or dive deeper to 30 or 40 metres. Colours appear almost fluorescent by torchlight. For the more experienced, these dives offer a unique adventure.


        •        Irqieqa Point, Comino 
        •        St. Marija Caves, Comino 
        •        Reqqa Point, Ghasri, Gozo 
        •        Dwejra Point, Dwejra, Gozo 
        •        Mgarr ix-Xini, Gozo 
        •        Xlendi Reef, Gozo 
        •        Xlendi Cave, Gozo 
        •        Fungus Rock, Gozo 
        •        Crocodile Rock and Coral Cave, Gozo 
        •        The Blue Hole and The Chimney, Gozo 
        •        San Dimitri Point, Gozo 
        •        Ghasri Valley, Gozo 
        •        Double Arch Reef, Gozo 
        •        Xatt l-Ahmar, Gozo 
        •        Fessej Rock, Gozo 
        •        Il-Kantra, Gozo 
        •        Cominotto Reef, Gozo 
        •        Lantern Point, Comino 
        •        Billinghurst Cave, Gozo 



Irqieqa Point, Comino

A thin of land on the southwestern tip of Comino with a sheer drop-off to 40 metres. The water is clear and the cold currents support large shoals of sardines and bogue that are preyed upon by amber-jacks, dentex and, sometimes, tuna. The boulder strewn depths reveal families of bream and brown meagre.

Maximum depth - 50 metres.

 




Santa Maria Caves, Comino

This is an ideal second dive location for those who have made the boat trip to Comino and want an interesting shallow location. The caves are very pretty and for the underwater photographer the possibilities are endless. Octopus, moray eels, small groupers and countless small fish make this a relaxing dive.

Maximum depth - 20 metres.

 




Reqqa Point, Ghasri

This is the northernmost tip of Gozo. The beach road is rough, the entry is tricky with a strong swell, but it is a fantastic dive. The reef consists of a parapet at a depth of 30 metres and then a drop to 60 metres. However, there is an excellent vantage point at 15 metres. Here one is literally in a cloud of small fish feeding on the nutrient-rich waters. Large shoals of dentex have feeding frenzies, groupers are large and plentiful. Adding to this, there are large caves and deep water.

Maximum depth - 60 metres.

 




Dwejra Point, Dwejra

Dwejra is one of the most spectacular dive sites in Malta, with deep water (60 metres) and many caves and arches. The most dramatic is the 35 metre long tunnel that opens from the Inland Sea to the open sea, where the bottom drops suddenly. The clear waters and depths can be deceptive. This dive is the right place for divers looking for the abundant marine life.

Maximum depth - 60 metres.

 




Mgarr ix-Xini

Mgarr ix-Xini is a prohibited dive site and the Ta' Cenc cliffs do not offer an entry point. Consequently one must get into the water from the Ta' Cenc Hotel's private beach. The cliff continues underwater to a depth of 30 metres where it gives way to large boulders. These provide ample hiding places for groupers. This dive site is very popular with photographers due to a variety of species of fish, from gurnard, stargazers and even seahorses. There is also a cave, inside which one can surface.

Maximum depth - 60 metres.

 




Xlendi Reef

Xlendi Reef is located in the middle of Xlendi Bay. Part of the reef forms a pinnacle, which reaches up to within a metre of the surface. The reef is covered with seaweed and small fish. One can also see large numbers of damselfish, small groups of grey mullets as well as various species of wrasses and seabreams. The base of the reef is littered with large boulders. The reef comes to an end below the steep cliffs.

Maximum depth - 25 metres.

 




Xlendi Cave

Xlendi Cave is found in Xlendi Bay. It is best to swim across the bay either on the surface on underwater. The maximum depth of this dive is 12 metres. The cave is a bent tunnel leading from one side to another of the rock wall. At the entrance of the cave floor one can see goatfish, damselfish and cardinalfish. The cave walls are brightly coloured with starfish, sponges, algae and bristle worms. Further on in the tunnel there are large boulders and it gets progressively shallower. Towards the end of the tunnel, the seabed is covered with smooth rocks and shingle.

Maximum depth - 12 metres.

 




Fungus Rock

Fungus Rock is a huge rock in Dwejra Bay, on the western coast of Gozo. Access is only by boat. The average depth is of 40 metres. This isolated rock has a hole running through its northern part. Underwater, the scenery is as impressive as above, with vertical walls, fissures, gulleys and caverns created by boulders, which provide excellent habitat for the largest groupers. Looking upwards, one can often see tuna, amberjacks and barracudas. The walls of the rock are covered in algae, sea urchins, tube worms, starfish, bristle worms and sea potatoes, with their brilliant red colour.

Maximum depth - 45 metres.

 




Crocodile Rock and Coral Cave

The crocodile-shaped rock is just offshore between Dwejra Point and Fungus rock. It can be reached both by boat or from the rocky shore. Heading westerly towards the left of the rock, one finds a square shute pointing towards the deeper water, revealing a steep cliff. The cliff drops vertically down to 38 metres, where the seabed is covered in boulders. In this area one can see groupers and shoals of salema. Keeping the cliff-face to the right, one will eventually reach the Coral Cave. This is a huge semi-circular opening with 20 metres across the sandy bottom, at a depth of around 22 metres. Within the cave, using a torch, one can see different types of coral sponges, virgin lace, and the quite rare marine goldfish.

Maximum depth - 45 metres.

 




The Blue Hole and The Chimney

This site is located in front of the Azure Window at the bottom of Dwejra Point. It is a shore dive, which is reached via a fairly difficult walk over rough coralline limestone, however steps have been carved into the rocks leading down to the Blue Hole. This is a natural rock formation carved out over the centuries by wind and waves which goes down to a depth of 26 metres. The hole is about one metre above sea level and and no more than 10 metres wide and 5 metres across. However, a few metres down, this gives way to unlimited access to the sea on exiting a huge archway. A large cave can also be found at the bottom of the hole. The Chimney is entered one diver at a time through a fissure in the almost vertical rock. This opens up at a depth of around 8 metres. Througout the dive, one can see various species of fish, starfish and bristle worms. This dive is perfect for photography.

Maximum depth - 50 metres.

 




San Dimitri Point

San Dimitri Point is at the most westerly point in Gozo. It is an imposing rock jutting out from the shore, and is only accessible by boat. The first part of the dive is quite gentle, after which one comes across a large boulder with smaller ones littering the seabed at a depth of about 30 metres. Throughout the dive one can come across large shoals of barracuda. Grouper, dentex and damselfish are also commonly seen, as well as octopus and moray eels.

Maximum depth - 50 metres.

 




Ghasri Valley

This dive site is located between Reqqa Point and Forna Point, on the North coast of Gozo. Ghasri Valley is a spectacular deep cut which widens as it reaches the sea. This dive site is also known as the Blue Dome or Cathedral Cave. This dive is ideal for all levels of divers. It commences on a shingle beach where the water is shallow, but becomes deeper at a maximum depth of 30 metres. The seabed is covered in anemones, and large boulders covered in algae, sea urchins and starfish. One can also sea damselfish, seabreams, and scorpionfish, and might even come across a seahorse. The cave itself is only 5 metres below surface and leads through a domed vault, where one can surface and breathe freely. The seabed of the cave is covered in boulders, but the most impressive part is the view to the outside ocean. Towards the end of the valley, at a depth of approximitely 20 metres, one can encounter octopus and groupers.

Maximum depth - 20 metres.

 




Double Arch Reef

This dive site is found a short distance to the east of Xwieni Bay, on the north coast of Gozo. It requires a 200 metre swim in a northerly direction, where a drop-off is reached. Nearby there are two distinctive holes through a vertical rock face, which are known as Double Arch Reef. The top of the rock is at a depth of 16 metres, whilst the rest goes down to a depth of 36 metres, with the lower arch being the larger of the two holes. On the way one encounters seagrass inhabited by cuttlefish, octopus and even the seahorse. Often a large shoal of of small barracuda can be seen in this area.

Maximum depth - 36 metres.

 




Xatt l-Ahmar

This site is a small bay southwest of Mgarr. Access is generally from the shore. The dive starts across a wide horizontal ledge, about 9 metres deep, which is covered with seaweed where sprats and sardines can be found. At the edge, the ledge drops down to around 22 metres, where the seabed is covered in boulders ranging from small ones to extremely large ones. These rocks apart from providing habitats for small octopus, goatfish, seambreams and more, also act as swimthroughs. Throughout the dive, one can also come across parrotfish, scorpionfish and shoals of damselfish. In 1999, the Gozo ferry boat, the Xlendi was sunk here, as an artificial reef.

Maximum depth - 30 metres.

 




Fessej Rock

This dive site is found offshore from the Mgarr ix-Xini inlet along the south shore near Mgarr Harbour. Fessej Rock is a tall, circular and vertical column of rock which rises about 15 metres (50 feet) above the water and plunges vertically 50 metres (165 feet) to the seabed, amidst a number of huge boulders. The average depth of the dive is of 30 metres (100 feet), and one encounters large schools of fish, tube worms and squat lobsters, dentex and amberjacks. Barracuda, tuna and grouper, as well as octopus and other lobster can be found on this dive.

Maximum depth - 50 metres.

 




Il-Kantra

This site is located inside the western entrance to an inlet called Mgarr ix-Xini. At the western side of the inlet a number of rare fish can be seen, such as the flying gurnard, the red gurnard, the star-gazer and if luck the John Dory. Other species include seabream, scorpionfish, small octopus and large cuttlefish. There are also two caves. On entering the caves one can see anemones and even some shrimps hidden amongst the walls. The seabed away from the cliff face is of coarse sand, with occasional seagrass, above which rarer fish are found.

Maximum depth - 14 metres.

 




Cominotto Reef, Gozo

Cominotto is a smaller island off the north-west corner of Comino. Northwest of Cominotto is an underwater reef. This is a boat dive with good anchorage. The average depth is of 18 metres and the maximum depth is 36 metres. During the dive one comes across massive boulders with interesting holes and caverns, where creatures such as burrowing anemones and peacock worms hide. There is also an abundance of tube worms, soft corals and red sponge, which add colour to these shaded areas.

Maximum depth - 36 metres.

 




Lantern Point, Comino

This dive is a boat dive and starts from a shallow rocky shelf at 6 metres, where the boat usually anchors. Above the entrance to a 'chimney', an almost vertical tunnel, drops down to 16 metres. The tunnel is wide enough for divers to manoeuvre without touching the sides with fireworms. Outside the tunnel and slightly to the right, divers can enjoy a maze of swimthroughs, underneath the massive rock, where starfish can be seen. Behind the large rock, there are boulders, giving way to a gentle slope at about 50 metres. Nooks and crannies close to the seabed are home for large groupers and the occasional dentex.

Maximum depth - 50 metres.

 




Billinghurst Cave

Billingshurst Cave is found to the west of Reqqa Point in the Northern part of Gozo. The top of the cave entrance is just above the surface and the bottom is at 27 meters. A long tunnel called The Railway Tunnel, leads to another cave deep inside the rock where divers can surface. Entry is from Reqqa Point. Immediately inside the cave there are plenty of red sponges, soft corals, cardinalfish and other types of marine life. On the way back, the sight of the blue open water with the sun shining through from the outer reef, is breathtaking and perfect for silhouette photographs.

Maximum depth - 30 metres.