Scapa Flow, Scotland
One of the most famous wreck sites in the world, this 200 square mile expanse of water was once used by the Royal Navy’s Grand Fleet as a safe anchorage. In June 1919, the German Fleet was scuttled to elude Allied hands, littering the seabed of Scapa Flow. Some of the wrecks waiting to be explored include three 177 metre/580 foot battleships and four 155 metre/510 foot cruisers. Strong tides run here bringing nutrient-rich water that supports an bountiful sea.
Located off the east coast of the England / Scotland border are the Farne Islands. Inquisitive grey seals and a deafening plethora of seabirds can be found here such as puffins, terns and guillemots. You can find anemones and sponges of colours you can only imagine and you may spot a Yarrell’s Blenny peering out at you from their abode.
This stunning island offers warmer waters than mainland UK and can provide divers an option for the cold winter months. Jersey has one of the biggest tides in the world creating exhilarating drift dives and shore dives where you can see rays, flat fish, wrasse, cuttlefish and colourful reefs. Wreck diving is possible here too, teeming with marine life such as conger eels and sea squirts. Boat trips are available further out from the island, where you can find fan corals and sponges covering reef walls. Impressive kelp forests are where resident seals come out to play.
St Kilda, Outer Hebrides, Scotland
You will find the archipelago of St Kilda 40 miles off the Outer Hebrides, a mecca for British divers. It’s isolation from the mainland means a significant reduction in sources of pollution, resulting in exceptionally clear, blue oceanic water. You’ll be surprised to find a level of marine flora and fauna which isn’t commonly seen in this part of the world along with dramatic topography underwater and on land. It’s a great place to spot seals and puffins diving into the ocean due to fantastic visibility, as well as finding huge lobsters and multi coloured jewelled anemones.
The Manacles, Cornwall
This well-known Cornish dive site is located off the Lizard Peninsula and offers divers impressive drop offs, reefs and pinnacles covered with jewel anemones, dead mans fingers and Gorgonian sea fans. There’s a famous wreck, the Mohegan which sank in 1898 and is said to be haunted, as well as over 100 other shipwrecks waiting to be discovered.