Costa Calida woos divers

Clear waters provide a perfect view of wrecks

The Costa Calida, in Spain’s Murcia region, is fast-becoming one of Europe’s top dive destinations with a variety of experiences for the beginner or the skilled diver.

For those keen to try diving or snorkelling for the first time, there are easy dives in shallow waters, while there is a huge selection of challenges for more experienced divers. Numerous diving centres offer courses and dive experiences for all levels: from beginners, to more technical dives to large shipwrecks, underwater caves and crevices, which are more suitable for the experienced diver.

There are five man diving areas in the region, namely Cabo de Palos – Islas Hormigas, La Manga – Isla Grosa, Cartagena – la Azohía – Cabo Tiñoso, Mazarrón and Águilas.

In Cabo de Palos, there are spectacular reefs brimming with fish, overhangs and many seemingly unexplored caverns.

In Isla Grosa, the remains of wooden vessels, both Roman and Phoenician, can be discovered at the Bajo de la Campana site, just off the Isla Grosa – which itself features a stunning underwater Posidonia Oceanica meadow.

Meanwhile, Cartagena, protected as it is from the easterly wind, offers the possibility of discovering archaeological remains, such as ancient amphora, in the sands.

The clear waters provide a perfect window on the resting place of many wrecks, from ancient times through to the modern. La Azohía is known for its cave diving, while Cabo Tiñoso has also, recently, been made a marine reserve.

Many of the wrecks here – including a Spanish minesweeper, the Dragaminas Nalon – have been sunk deliberately to create artificial reefs, which attract all manner of sea life including barracuda, swordfish, moray eel, grouper, conger eel, octopus, blue-spotted rays, and many more.