Scuba Diving in Italy

Radiant and romantic Italy is a European country in the center of the Mediterranean. It is surrounded by five seas, so every diver will find a place for exciting underwater explorations here.
Sunken ships of different historical epochs, the narrow caves of Punta Chiappa (Italian Punta Chiappa), the famous statue “Christ of the Abyss” in the San Fruttuoso Bay (Italian San Fruttuoso) hide under the water.
Sicily (Sicilia) definitely deserves the attention of divers. In its waters there are gorges that were formed by volcanic eruptions. There are octopuses, sea anemones, rockfish and barracudas. Sardinia (Sardegna) with its cold and clear waters is a natural home for mugil, tuna and sea urchins.
Freshwater diving in the northern part of Italy attracts divers from all corners of the world. Lake Garda (it. Lago di Garda) is famous for its caves, underwater rocks andmysterious statues at the bottom.

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The rich marine fauna-schools of tuna, moray eels, sea eels and other fish, jellyfish, sea urchins and seahorses will impress even an experienced diver. In any resort there are underwater cliffs inhabited by demersal fish, anglers and cerianthuses. Besides that, rare protected animals such as the Mediterranean monk seals and dolphins swim in the waters of Italy.
The sculpture "Christ of the Abyss" (it. Il Cristo degli Abissi) is immersed in the waters of the Italian Riviera (it. Riviera ligure) and is considered to be an unrecognized wonder of the world. The 2.5 meter high statue is located at the bottom of the sea since 1954 and attracts divers from around the world. The sculpture of Christ was erected in memory of the first Italian scuba diver who died here. It is believed that the Savior prays for the protection of those who dive in local waters. In 2003, the statue was restored and returned to its original place.
The experienced divers have long been fond of the Strait of Messina (it. Stretto di Messina) separating Italy and Sicily. Due to the unique location between several seas, flow characteristics and other factors the strait is replete with diverse and bright marine fauna. Even if you dive straight from the coast you will immediately see schools of stone fish, admire the bottom covered with starfish, bryozoa and sponges. Swimming further you will see a local landmark. It is the underwater mountain of Monte Scylla (Monte Scilla). It is all occupied by a colony of colorful sea fans and there's life all around them.
The Strait of Messina (it. Stretto di Messina) impresses with a variety of diving sites. Here, there are traces of volcanic eruptions and frozen lava rivers, underwater channels and tunnels, rocks and caves, wrecks with an interesting history such as the military vessel Shuya blown up by a mine in the First World War. Night diving is also popular. Night divers can admire squids, sea anemones and meet a rare animal astropartus hiding from the sunlight.
Beginners will enjoy diving in the area of Punta de Fetovaia (it. Punta di Fetovaia) due to the underwater cliffs. When diving near the Aeolian Islands (it. Isole Eolie) divers explore the remains of ships and boats, caves and gardens of corals inhabited by small fish. Experienced scuba divers can dive into the waters of the National Park of Circeo (It. Parco nazionale del Circeo) where they walk through underwater tunnels favored by pelagic fish.

Diving Destinations in Italy

The Italian island of Sardinia (Sardegna) is rich with places for diving where you will find barracudas, tunas, octopuses which scurry past the shipwrecks sunk during the war.
The Strait of Messina (Stretto di Messina) attracts divers with its underwater space and cliffs covered with starfish, sponges and bryozoa between which stone fish swim. There is something here to explore.
The Elba Island is famous for its beaches. There are 70 of them: with soft sand or varied pebbles, even “wild” ones. Divers from all over the world come out to the island to admire its coral gardens.

Memo Notes
Currency EUR - European euro
Languages Italian
Timezone UTC +1
Phone code 39
Emergency Help 112
Electricity

Type C - 230 V, 50 Hz

Type F - 230 V, 50 Hz

Type L - 230 V, 50 Hz

Dive Shops in Italy

If you want to go diving in Italy, choose from the following: Sicily (Sicilia), Elba (Elba), Sardinia (Sardegna) and the Pontine Archipelago (Isole Ponziane). Also explore the depths of Liguria (Liguria), Calabria (Calabria) and Piedmont (Piemonte). There are famous wrecks and underwater objects.

Сlimate & Seasonality
Spring

Dives in Italy begins in April. The high season starts at the end of spring when it is already warm, and you can swim in the sea in the south of the country. In April-May the air warms up to +19... + 23 °С, water up to +18... + 20 °С.

Summer

Summers in Italy are dry and hot, but thunderstorms, hail and heavy rain are possible. The air warms up to +29 °С, the water temperature varies from +21 to +28 °С depending on the location and depth. It is high season.

Autumn

Autumn is the off-season in Italy. The air warms up to +19 °С, the water temperature in the sea drops to +14... + 19 °С, it rains. The diving season lasts to mid-November.

Winter

Winters in Italy are mild and warm. Snow is extremely rare on the coast. The daytime temperature, depending on the region, varies from +5 °C to +13 °C. The temperature of sea water does not fall below +12 °С. Its a low season for diving

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The Best Dive Sites

The Vervece rock (It. Vervece Roccia) near Sorrento (Sorrento) goes 50 meters into the deep, where the statue of the Virgin Mary and the cargo ship lie. The marine life changes depending on depth: there are shorthorn sculpins, octopuses, white pomfret, red sea fans.
In the sunken steam tug Colossus (Colossus) the cabins and galley have remained unchanged despite the active marine life in it.

Health & Safety

There is a relatively calm atmosphere on the Italian coast. You don't have to worry about your life but the same cannot be said about your wallet. Motorcyclists rip bags from the shoulders of women, merchants with a smile cheat or palm off forged notes. Tourist robberies on buses happen often. It’s better to keep your valuables with you, because the police doesn't always respond quickly. When entering Italy it is recommended to have vaccinations (DPT, MMR, etc.) as well as to purchase international medical insurance. Despite the fact that first aid will be provided free of charge, for further medical care you will have to pay more than average European prices.

Dangerous Marine Life

On the rocky bottom there is a high probability to step on a sea urchin whose sharp spines are difficult to remove from the body. It is dangerous to scare moray eels: their bites are painful and take a long time to heal. Weeverfish are another danger to humans in the warm waters of the Mediterranean. Their poison causes severe pain, and in large doses leads to paralysis, heart failure and convulsions.

Eat & Drinks

The Italian dishes (pizza, pasta and lasagna) are world famous. But these are not all the flavours of Italy. Taste the gelato, it is thick ice cream with the addition of fresh fruits and berries, chocolate and nuts. Also, try the prosciutto, it is dried ham from pork. The perfect one is from Parma. The traditional dish of Tuscany, Cacciucco, is a thick soup of seafood, red wine and tomato juice. It also deserves attention.
Italy is famous for its winemaking. Try wines of the country. Every region has its own sorts.
Water in Italy is drunk from the tap and from special drinking fountains on city streets.

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