South Africa Dive Sites - Sodwana Bay Dive Sites

Image - Sodwana Bay Dive Sites

Sodwana Bay is divided into a number of dive sites with names such as Seven Mile Reef and Five Mile Reef indicating the distance from the access point; the closer the reef is to the shore, the more popular it is with the dive operators. Over 35,000 divers visit the location every year, but the crowds tend to be localized and much of the remarkable coastline is virtually unspoilt. Each site has something special to offer and reefs such as Two Mile and Anton's are particularly popular due to the large schools of fish, primarily bigeyes and goatfish. This is fairly unusual and provides prime opportunities for photographers.


Potholed and Sponge Reef

This is a comparatively large and flat section on the eastern part and deepest side of 2 mile Reef. Light penetration is poor because of the depth, so the coral covering is sparse. The north eastern section is interspersed with large potholed reef structure, huge sponges and red gorgonian and black coral are common in the area.
Location: On two mile Reef.
Average depth: 27m
Maximum depth: 42m.

Five Mile Reef

This reef is jealously protected by the charter skippers and Natal Parks Board. It is an extremely delicate, large and flat reef with an astounding variety of fine coral, and is remarkably intact. Diving here creates the sensation of diving in an aquarium. In order to preserve it in its pristine state, one dive per day is granted to each concessionaire.
Maximum depth: 21m
Location: North of Jesser point and 1km offshore.

Seven Mile Reef

The drop offs and mushroom shaped pinnacles, characteristic of this wonderful reef with its great diversity of marine life, make it a favourite among divers. Turtles and rays are sighted often and shoals of brightly coloured goldies and other small fish hover above the coral.
Maximum depth: 24m.
Average depth: 18m.
Location: North of Jesser point

Gullies, Caves and Overhangs

A series of sandy gullies cut through the shoreward-facing overhangs, coral arches and pinnacles.
There are large potato bass here (up to 1.5m long) which are now unafraid of divers, providing good photographic opportunities. Sea turtles are also often seen here.
A wide range of coral and invertebrates occur in this zone because of the shallow depths and good light penetration.
Location: On Two-Mile Reef
Conditions: Because of the shallow depth, there can be surge.
Average depth: 10m (33ft)
Maximum depth: 15m (50ft)

Anton’s Reef

This is one of the most popular sections of Two-Mile Reef, with a fantastic variety of residential tropical fish and dense shoals of big-eyes, goatfish and snappers which part gently to let the diver through. Scorpionfish, small moray eels, big potato bass, marbled rays and triggerfish are often sighted.The coral is dense and varied, forming spectacular vistas with small overhangs, walls and swim-throughs. Photographers will be in their element.
Location: On Two-Mile Reef.
Average depth: 15m (50ft)
Maximum depth: 18m (60ft)

Chain Reef

The long anchor chain attached to the corals here gives the site it’s name. The corals are scattered and support a large variety of tropical fish and leaf fish are often seen.
Location: On Two-Mile Reef.
Average depth: 15m (50ft)
Maximum depth: 18m (60ft)


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