The Dodecanese, a group of 12 larger and numerous smaller islands in the southeastern part of the Aegean Sea, is one of Greece's treasures. Known for its rich history, ancient monuments, and beautiful beaches, the Dodecanese also offers unparalleled scuba diving experiences. From vivid marine life to wrecks from World War II, diving here is like stepping into a different world.
Best Scuba Diving Spots for Experienced Divers
Rhodes – Plimiri Wreck: Situated off the coast of Rhodes, the Plimiri Wreck is a cargo ship that sank in the early 1970s. Lying at depths of 18 to 32 meters, this site presents a myriad of compartments and rooms to explore.
Kalymnos – Cave of Neptune: This cave system, extending 50 meters into the island's heart, has breathtaking stalactites and stalagmites formations, providing an ethereal underwater experience.
Best Scuba Diving Spots for Beginners
Kos – Kamari Bay: Ideal for novice divers, this site offers a diverse array of marine life in relatively shallow waters, with depths not exceeding 12 meters.
Leros – Agia Marina: Featuring sandy bottoms interspersed with seagrass meadows, this location is perfect for beginner divers aiming to spot colorful reef fish and learn the ropes in calm conditions.
The marine ecosystem of the Dodecanese is bustling with life. Divers can encounter species such as grouper, octopus, cuttlefish, and the occasional barracuda. The seagrass meadows often hide seahorses, while the rocky formations can house moray eels and colorful nudibranchs.
The ideal diving season in the Dodecanese runs from May to October. During this period, water temperatures hover between 68°F to 78°F (20°C to 26°C). Visibility is outstanding, often reaching 30 to 40 meters. As with other Aegean regions, checking local conditions is crucial as winds can affect dive sites, especially during the Meltemi season in the summer.
Diving costs in the Dodecanese can range from $50 to $95 per dive, depending on the island and specific dive center. Packages for multiple dives or PADI certification courses can sometimes be more economical. It's always recommended to check if equipment rental is included in the given price.
In conclusion, the Dodecanese offers a rich and diverse diving experience, blending the marvels of natural underwater landscapes with relics from history. Whether you're a seasoned diver or just beginning, the waters here promise a memorable adventure.