The New Cool destination for scuba Diving?
People are getting tired of the same all same scuba destinations… please no more trips to Honduras… or no more same all same Hawaii… what about something different. What about Croatia?
Well it seems that Croatia is not the new Scuba Destination to keep in mind…
While the beaches of the jagged Croatian coastline fill up with tourists during the summer period, those who can, escape into the silence and darkness of the abysses, amidst the archaeological sites and sunken wreckage from the two world wars. About 150,000 scuba divers search for peace and emotions in the Croatian waters each year. A group of clients that the country is now eyeing closely thanks to so-called ”underwater safaris”. With about 400 underwater archaeological sites counted by the Croatian Ministry of Culture, including 200 dating back to prehistoric times, Croatia is the fourth country in Europe for its number of underwater archaeological sites. And to protect this immense patrimony, the Croatian ministry has declared 92 cultural heritage sites, placing them under protection.
No diver can travel alone among the wreckage and archaeological sites. Individual dives are prohibited, but they are allowed in groups. In 2009-2013 alone, the Cultural Ministry issued 25 permits to organise underwater activities at protected sites. These are, according to the Croatian tourism group, the four archaeological areas around the island of Mljet, Lastovo and Vis and in the area of Cavtat. In these areas there are 35 sites. Among the hundreds of opportunities offered to scuba divers, the most important are represented by vessels sunk off the eastern Adriatic coast between the World War I and World War II.
The most famous site on the Croatian Adriatic coast is ‘Barun Gautch”, (84 metres long and 11 metres wide), the Austro-Hungarian passenger ship, which was sunk at the start of the Great War by a mine in the waters off the coast of Rovinj. Various Italian ships can be seen, including the ‘Francesca da Rimini’, which sunk off the southern coast of Kaprije island, in the Sibenik archipelago, after being torpedoed by the Allies in 1944. Forty-two metres long and 12 metres wide, before the ship was hit, it was used to transport military cargo between the Croatian and Italian coast. After September 8 1943, it was used by the Germans for the same purposes. In the Kvarner Gulf is another Italian vessel, the wreckage of the ‘Lina’, while near Cres is the Italian freighter, ‘Tihany’. Fascinating due to its vertical position on Split seabed is the ‘Teti’. A final example is the German torpedo-boat S-57, which sank off the Peljesac peninsu