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Barbados Dive Sites - Barbados, Caribbean

Barbados dive sites are diving into south west coast, north from Carlyse Bay and a few Atlantic coast sites on the east of the island.

South West Coast - from Carlyse Bay to Oistens

Stavronika: The Stav is the most popular wreck in Barbados waters. She was a 365 foot Greek freighter built in Denmark in 1956 and originally christened the Ohio. On August 26, 1976, while en route from Ireland to the Caribbean and carrying a cargo of 101,000 bags of cement, the vessel caught fire, killing six crew members and injuring three others. An explosion that followed the fire destroyed all of the ship’s radio equipment, making it impossible for the stranded crew to call for help. Twenty four crewmen drifted in the open sea for four days before being rescued. The Stavronikita was then towed to Barbados.

The Stavronikita after the fire A year went by, and the vessel was still anchored off Carlisle Bay, Barbados. On October 24, 1977 , she was purchased at an auction for the sum of $30,000 by the Parks and Beach Commission. The ship was then stripped of all the machinery and brass that could be salvaged. She was cleaned of pollutants, namely the 70,000 gallons of oil being carried in her fuel tanks and towed to a spot just 400 yards offshore on the west coast of the island. On November 21,1978, the U.S. Navy demolition crew set seven charges totaling 200 pounds and blew holes in the ship’s hull, causing her to sink.

Carlysle Bay Marine Park

With its 6 shipwrecks in close proximity, this is an excellent site for divers of all levels of experience, from beginner to expert. Marine life including frog fish, sea horses, rays, barracudas, octopus, reef squid, mackerel, moray eel.

The park is roughly marked out underwater by old cannons , anchors and pylons to lead the way from one wreck to the next. We are very lucky to call this site home and as our house-reef we are in the park every afternoon at 2 pm. Snorkelers are encouraged to join in. This site is accessible as a shore dive however for convenience and safety sake is done daily by boat. This site is the location of our monthly Project AWARE Coral Watch Dive Operator coral bleaching assessment.

Carlisle Bay 20ft
A 70 ft long World War I French Tug Boat sunk in 1919 by her own crew. The Berwyn sits between 7 and 10 feet below the surface depending on the tide. As a result of the calm water in the bay and the age of this wreck the Berwyn is covered in marine life including healthy hard and soft coral growth and their associated reef creatures.

Carlisle Bay   45ft
The Ce-Trek, a derelict boat constructed of cement was sunk in January 1986. This shipwreck sits in deeper water on the northern edge of the park and is home to nice coral, soft coral and sponge growth.

Carlisle Bay  55ft
This 110ft drug boat was tied up for ~6 years in the Bridgetown careenage before it was sunk on 8th June 1996 in Carlisle Bay Marine Park. The wreck is easily accessqible for penetration and has an air pocket in the bow big enough to a conversation at 25′ under.

Bajan Queen
Carlisle Bay   35ft
She was Barbados’ first tugboat named the “Pelican” when the Bridgetown Harbour was being constructed in the 1960’s. A decade later, as more modern tugboats were purchased; the Pelican was then converted to a party boat called “Bajan Queen”. The Bajan Queen holds many memories for thousands of Barbadians and visitors alike. After years of operation as the party spot the Bajan Queen was donated to the Coastal Zone Management Unit. From there with the assistance of our very own Andre Miller the Bajan Queen was cleaned up and sunk on 19th May 2002 in Carlisle Bay Marine Park. She now sits only a few feet below the surface and is accumulating some excellent fish life and good coral diversity.

Carlisle Bay  15ft
A Canadian freighter sunk by a torpedo from a German U-Boat during World War II. This wreck was relocated from a very high boat traffic region of the bay to this Marine Reserve on 22nd October 2003.

Carlisle Bay  12ft
A Naval Landing Barge found in Carlisle Bay. This wreck is now home to numerous reef fish including the puffer’s bigger cousin the porcupine fish.

Friar's Craig
Off Asta Hotel 30ft – 90ft
A 70ft long freighter, sunk on 2nd July 1985 after 10 years at anchor in Carlisle Bay. This wreck has lots of bottom growth, and has broken into three (3) pieces due to a lot of surge.

Coral Reefs

Old Fort
Off Needhams Point 30ft – 90ft
Shallow barrier reef with lots of small fish life. Cannon balls and antique bottles can be found on this drift dive.

The Deep
Break off from Castle Bank 60ft – 130ft
Deep drift dive, good for photography with lots of fish life.

Lobster Reef
Off Drill Hall 30ft – 80ft
This inner reef can be dived in combination with the wreck Friar’s Craig. Great drift dive with lots of marine life with occasional sightings of stingrays.

Castle Bank
Off Drill Hall 50ft – 120ft
A barrier reef with a slow drop off on either side, great for macro photography (lots of barracudas).

Fork Reef
Off Hastings 60ft – 120ft
A barrier reef with a drop off on both sides of the reef. Lots of barracudas, snapper and cavalee may be seen on this reef.

Pieces of Eight
Hastings 40ft – 60ft
This drift dive is good for photography with lots of fish and marine life

Off Rockley Beach 20’ – 60’
Shallow reef dive good for novice divers and photographers. Regular sightings of large schools of Bermuda Chubs on this dive.

Caribbee Reef
Off Caribbee Hotel 60’ – 120’
Barrier reef great dive for all types of photography, lots of marine life. A drift dive.

Off Sandy Beach ~ 40’ – 80’
Nice drift dive, lots of turtles to be seen on this dive, regular sightings of Eagle Rays. Good marine life, small derelict Coast Guard boat sunk here.

The Muff
Off Worthing Beach 60’ – 130’
Virgin reef, great fish life (horse-eyes, blackjacks and barracudas) excellent for photography. Home of the famous sponge.

Mount Charlie
Off Dover Beach 70’ – 120’ 
Deep reef dive, outer barrier reef, lots of marine life, turtles, snapper, horseye, and barracuda. An excellent dive for photography.

Highwire Off
Dover Beach 70’ – 120’
This reef is between Mount Charlie and Close Encounters. There are underwater cables that are suspended over this reef. Plenty of small creatures can be found good location for photography.

Close Encounters
Off Doverbeach  ~ 40’ – 80’
Inner reef that is good for feeding fish and interacting with stingrays, lots of marine life. This reef also has underwater cables passing over it.

Bottle Ground Carlisle Bay 45’ – 100’
This area was anchorage for wooden sailing vessels and the bottom is littered in 18th & 19th century bottles. You get to keep what you find. Lots of interesting marine life can be found here.

Clarkes Bank
Off Brighton Beach 30’ – 130’
Good dive site, lots of horse-eye, eels & barracudas. Location of the Atlantis Submarine Dives, you may even get to see the Submarine on some dives.

West Coast - North of Bridgetown

Paynes Bay
Off Fitts Village ~ 30’ – 50’ ~ Shallow patch reef, good for novices. This reef has big coral heads, lots of small tropical fish, usually done after Victors or Stavronikita as a second dive.

Off Fitts Village 50’ – 120’
This reef is located on the outer side of the Stavronikita. One of the more underrated reefs in Barbados not dived on very often. Soft and hard corals combine to make this site very different.

Off Holetown  40’ – 100’
This is a very popular reef, it has beautiful corals, barracuda, bar jacks, yellowtails and turtles can be found regularly on this dive. You can dive this site on more than one occasion and not be tired of it. One of the more popular of the dive sites on the west coast.

Sandy Lane
Off Sandy Lane Hotel  70’ – 140’
Barracuda and other small tropical fish are found on this reef. Lobsters can also be found but they are usually hiding in the reef.

Off Paynes Bay v70’ – 80’
A typical west coast reef, well worth a dive as the corals remain as beautiful as ever harboring all the small reef creatures often missed when you are concentrating on not missing bigger fish. Abundant with soft corals, barrel sponges, tube sponges, and a large variety of schooling tropical fish, barracudas, turtles, parrot fish, and much more. Very consistent conditions make this a popular dive site.

East Coast - Consett Bay to Bathsheba

East Coast sites 30’ – 130’
On the Atlantic side of the island, there are about ten different sites available depending on the weather conditions as seas are usually rough. Best times are in the summer months. Plenty of big fish including sharks can be seen here.

Dive Holidays Sportif

Sportif Dive is a specialist tour operator offering a wide range of diving holidays all over the world. Our choice of destinations is extensive from established locations in the Red Sea, Maldives, Caribbean and the Far East to the exotic and unusual such as Rodrigues Island in the Indian Ocean, Wakatobi, Truk, Palau, South America & the Pacific. Whether you are looking to for a Learn to Dive course, group expedition or trip of a lifetime we can help. With over 30 years experience and a personal approach, we can advise on the ideal location to suit your needs, at a price to suit your budget.

Our extensive knowledge of the destinations means we can recommend the right location for you. Our diving centres are selected for their excellent standards of service and safety. Whatever your priority, whether starting out or wishing to dive a technically challenging site we can recommend a range of options offering the best diving for when you wish to travel. We can organise all your travel arrangements for you, pre-book equipment and diving packages in advance to maximise your time when you get there.

As an independent tour operator, we select only the hotels, liveaboards and diving centres that offer the best standards and quality of service but at the right price. Without the overheads of a large mass market operator, we can offer the best value diving holidays often with great discounts and special offers.

Our consultants have many years experience in travel and are divers. They are able to closely match your needs and take time to recommend from a carefully selected range of accommodation and diving packages. With first hand knowledge, they are passionate about diving and travel and providing the perfect holiday for you.

Sportif also have a specialist multisport division offering instruction and rental packages for windsurfing, kitesurfing and surfing. Our specialist centres are located in some of our diving resorts, often minutes from the Dive Centre for easy coordination of activities. Packages offered included taster and learn to right through to intensive coaching weeks up to expert level. Children can start from 8 years.

Sportif Dive are an ATOL bonded operator which means that every element of your holiday is secure. With the worry of disruption to your holiday plans from weather disruption or airline failure you can be sure that we will be there to help every step of the way.