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October 22, 2012

The Wonders of an Underwater Adventure

Earlier this month, shipwreck dive enthusiasts celebrated the 30-year anniversary of the discovery of King Henry VIII’s favorite ship, Mary Rose. Built between 1509 and 1511, she was one of the first ships able to fire a broadside, and was a favorite vessel of the infamous king. After a long and successful career, the Mary Rose sank accidentally during an engagement with the French fleet in 1545. In 1982, her rediscovery and raising were seminal events in the history of nautical archaeology.

So much wonder and amazement can be found in underwater discovery. At Sandals Resorts and Beaches Resorts across the Caribbean, exciting, undersea adventure can be a reality for guests interested in maritime discovery, as dive voyages are available to experts and novices alike. Check out our list of some of the top wreck dive sites of Sandals Resorts and Beaches Resorts:

Ocho Rios, Jamaica

The Catherine Shipwreck

The Catherine shipwreck is the most popular dive site in Ocho Rios. It is an artificial reef at a depth of 50ft. An old minesweeper was sunk in 1991 to create this reef. The ship is approximately 120 ft. in length. From the surface to the uppermost part of the ship it is 20 ft. This reef is home to a wide variety of aquatic life like squirrelfish, blue head wrasse, hamlets, grunts, snappers and black coral. Behind the wreck, caverns, eels, sergeant majors, barrel sponges, stingrays, flaming scallops, nurse sharks, lobsters, sea snakes and sea fans can be found lurking about.

Negril, Jamaica

The Tug Boat

This wreck was sunk in 1993 to provide the vibrant marine life with an artificial reef. Settled on a sandy patch, this unique wreck and colorful reef are sights to be seen. Look out for barracuda, scrawled filefish, and the occasional eagle ray passing through the area. Swim in through the 55-foot long boat and out into beautiful coral.

Antigua

Jettia’s Wreck

This Old French steam powered freighter sunk in 1817 and sits at a depth of 25 ft. The wreck is broken up into mainly the bow, the boiler, the engine and the stern. There is coral growth where small, colorful fish, including parrotfish, grunts, trumpet fish, blue tangs and Spanish hogfish lurk about. Occasionally large barracuda, eel, and turtles make appearances along with the large dog snapper.

St. Lucia

Lesleen M Wreck

Lesleen M is the wreck of a cargo vessel sunk as an artificial reef in 1986. It sits upright on a sandy bottom at a maximum depth of 65ft. There is an excellent swim-through along the walkways where pockets of air form above you and a ladder leading to the main cabin decks, which are interconnected. The 167ft. wreck dive offers open access to the surface and is inhabited by anemones, fire coral, and a vibrant marine life including lobster, moray eels and reef fish. On occasion, juvenile frogfish, groups of angelfish, snappers as well as shoaling jacks, and tuna can also be seen.

The Bahamas

LCT & Mahoney wrecks

With a maximum depth of 20 ft., the LCT wreck is a landing craft that has been down for approximately 30 years and is surrounded by reef. The Mahoney wreck is a 25-year-old steamer blown to pieces due to navigational hazards. It was scattered for about a ½ mile distance. Maximum depth is 30 ft.

Learn more about other amazing dive sites before your next trip and how to get certified with Sandals Resorts’ comprehensive scuba program.

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