In no particular order, here are 10 top locations for Scuba Diving in the UK:-
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Scapa Flow, Orkney, Scotland
Scapa Flow is protected by five surrounding islands and is one of the world’s best natural harbours, so it’s not surprising that it was once the Royal Navy’s principal naval base. At the end of the First World War 52 ships of the German Navy were scuttled here and their wrecks are a magnet for divers from all over the world.
Plymouth, Devon, England
One of the most popular dive sites in the UK, Plymouth has a large selection of wrecks, reefs and shoals. Famous wrecks include the US ship Eagan Layne, sunk in World War 2 by a U-boat. Advanced divers head for HMS Scylla. Many consider Hands Deep the best reef with clear water and plenty of sealife on hand.
Weymouth & Portland, Dorset, England
The area is rated as one of the top ten best UK diving locations. There are more than 120 wrecks within a 20 mile radius ranging from sailing ships to wartime wrecks. The presence of scenic reefs and ledges too mean divers are spoilt for choice. The sheltered harbour makes year round diving possible.
The Farne Islands, Northumberland, England
The Farne Islands are popular with divers because of the seals and wrecks. Many ships have been wrecked on the the Farne rocks over the years, so there are plenty to be explored. Another major attraction is the 5,000 strong grey seal colony who are fascinating to watch underwater.
Porthkerris, Cornwall, England
On the east side of the Lizard peninsula is a shore diving site that is sheltered from the westerlies. It has pinnacles, drop-offs and shallow reefs. Invertebrates are in profusion because of the highly tidal waters. There is also the famous wreck of the SS Mohegan, a passenger liner that sank in 1898.
Skomer Island, Pembrokeshire, Wales
The Skomer Marine Reserve contains some of the most beautiful reefs in the UK. Walls drop from the surface to over 50 m and there are intact wrecks to see, like the Lucy. The marine reserve teems with sealife of many different kinds, including seals at Rye Rocks.
Anglesey diving is among the best in the UK. There are a variety of wrecks and reefs attracting plenty of fish and marine life. There are also many dive sites for amazing pinnacle and drift diving. Trearddur Bay, and Holyhead are popular launch sites and the numerous coves around Holy Island are perfect for shore diving because of their protection from dangerous offshore currents.
Lundy Island, Bristol Channel, England
Lundy Island just of the North Devon coast near Ilfracombe offers some othe best UK diving. There are over 40 dive sites comprising reefs, pinnacles, drop offs and 8 wrecks, including the 1906 wreck of the HMS Montagu. Lundy Island is also a marine nature reserve and there are many seals, other varieties of marine life and birds.
Sound of Mull, Scotland
This narrow stretch of water separates Mull from mainland Scotland and offer some very interesting dives, with the benefit of clear and sheltered waters. Many ships have been wrecked on the numerous islets and shallow reefs – the Hispania wreck is a must see. The fast currents mean plenty of marine life can be seen and drift dives are popular. There are vertical drops full of sealife on many of the reefs.
St Abbs, Scotland
Some of the best shore diving in the UK can be found at St Abbs Marine Reserve off Scotland’s North Sea coast because of the combination of relatively deep water close to the shore and strong tides. The unique double archway of Cathedral Rock just 50m offshore is the highlight for divers on their first visit and the kelp-topped gullies and vertical walls near the harbour wall teem with marine life. Greenends Gully and Weasel Loch at the Eyemouth end of the Reserve are also excellent diving locations.