Nestled in the northeast corner of Spain is the autonomous community known as Catalonia. Known for its majestic mountains, sparkling Mediterranean Sea and bustling metropolitan towns like Barcelona, it is the ideal destination for a holiday. Explore below the surface and be rewarded with caves, wrecks, corals and surprising diversity.
Costa Brava has some of the most spectacular diving in the Mediterranean. The rippling seagrass meadows, ancient wrecks and rugged underwater topography creates a veritable playground for experienced scuba divers, while the clear, turquoise waters and easy-entry shore dives are ideal for complete dive novices.
Diving in Catalonia
Catalonia is found on the north eastern coast of Spain, flanked by Valencia to the south and France to the North. This coastline is otherwise known as the Costa Brava. The diving in Catalonia is some of the best in Spain and can be split into three geographical regions - Girona, Barcelona and Tarragona.
There is a long history of scuba diving in Catalonia and as a result, there are plenty of dive centres and dive resorts scattered all along the coast. The majority of these offer diving courses from beginner to professional. Though it is possible to dive year round in Catalonia, some establishments close during the wintertime. There are no liveaboards operating in the area as most dive sites are found close to shore.
There are lots of shipwrecks strewn on the seabed, ideal for divers. The limestone quality of the rocks that create the famously rugged landscapes mean that there are lots of caves, tunnels, swim throughs, pinnacles and other interesting topography to explore below the waves. There are several marine reserves, famous for their diversity and surprising density of fish life.
Best places to dive
Medes Islands - Off the coast of L’Estartit is this marine reserve with many stunning dive sites to explore. It is protected against fishing and as a result has an impressive array of fish and marine life.
Cap de Creus - Another marine reserve, this one near the Bay of Roses has lots of gorgonian sea fan covered rocks and interesting caves to explore. Again, it is protected against fishing and has lots of fish which has been known to attract whales and dolphins.
Formigues Islands - Just up the coast from Blanes is this archipelago of islands. These 16 islands have an abundance of dive sites to explore, full of big boulders, caves, tunnels and swim throughs to explore. It is covered in coral and there is a wreck called The Boreas.
Los Ullastres - Made up of three pinnacles plunge down to the seabed at 50m. They are teeming with fish life and big schools of sardines, barracuda and jacks are common. Its remote location and potential depth makes it better suited to advanced divers.
Costa Dorada - In quiet Tarragona is the Costa Dorada which is adorned with many shipwrecks including the famous El Cavour, a steamboat sitting at 52m, perfect for deep and wreck divers.