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World | Balearics | Diving Mallorca:

Mallorca overview


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Mallorca dive site map

- Mallorca dive site map



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Scuba Diving in Mallorca (Majorca)


Water temperature:

Sea temperatures vary from around 26°C (79°F) in August to 13°C (55°F) in January. In November and June you can expect a temperature of about 18°C (64°F), warming up the closer to the summer months you get

Suit:

In July and August a 3mm full length wetsuit will be a comfortable option, for the rest of the holiday season a semidry should be enough. If you dive out of season (November to April), you will probably want to use a drysuit

Visibility:

10 - 40 metres (30 - 130 feet). In the summer 30 to 40 metres (100 - 130 feet) of visibility can be expected at most sites

Type of diving:

Reefs, walls, caves, wrecks

Marine life:

Barracuda, octopus, moray eels, jacks, grouper, wrasse, goatfish, cardinal fish, damsel fish, blennies, gobies, starfish, sea urchins, sponges, hard coral, soft coral

When to go:

May to October. The nicest time of year to visit the island is either early June or late September when you can enjoy good weather but without having to share it with the large number of tourists that visit the island in the height of summer. By November and on through into April the weather is less reliable, so diving can be blown out

How to get there:

From the UK - Both charter and scheduled flights are available to Palma, Mallorca from airports all over the country. As a cheap option if you wish to create your own package holiday, try easyJet who are amongst the budget airlines who fly regularly to the island throughout the year


Mallorca

Mallorca (also spelt Majorca) is the largest of Spain's Balearic Islands. It is mountainous in the northwest and has flat plains in the east. Most of the tourist resorts are located down the eastern side of the island, but you may wish to stay away from these to get a flavour for what Mallorca was like before the tourists arrived. Whether in a restaurant, shop, or hiring a car, the majority of people you meet will speak English and German as well as Spanish, although most will appreciate it if you attempt to use some Spanish to converse with them - however influent you are!

Mallorca can be a picturesque island, with some wonderful mountain views and beautiful, clear blue seas. Undeniably however, Mallorca has been developed as a cheap tourist destination so in the built up areas it is not always as pleasant, with most of the buildings being constructed from concrete rather than using traditional architectural styles that compliment the landscape so well. Despite this, the island has something to offer for most people. If you enjoy Costa del Sol-style holidays, you will not have to travel far from your hotel or apartment to find some form of entertainment. Most resorts have been built around a beach and there are golf courses, swimming pools, and all types of water sports on offer as well as many cafés and bars to pass the time in. Accommodation is generally quite basic, with a range of apartments and hotels on offer and there is even a campsite on the east of the island.

To escape the tourism a little, why not hire a car and visit some of the more traditional villages or take a walk in the mountains? In the southwest of the island is the Dragonera Nature Reserve, which is relatively unspoiled and provides the walker with some great views out to sea and a selection of wildlife amongst the trees. The photo inset here on dive site directory was taken at Dragonera, but please don't expect the entire island to look this beautiful! Well worth a visit is the village of Randa in the Center of the island, which is home to a 13th Century monastery and a traditional Mallorcan café called the Cellar Bar. It is highly popular with the locals and serves some first class cuisine. On the east coast there are also some astounding cave systems such as the Ceuvas del Drach, where amazing stalactite and stalagmites have formed over thousands of years in extensive underground chambers. The only slightly disappointing thing about these beautiful caves is the concrete walkway plastered through the middle of them and the formidably bad lightshow and boat concert you are herded through to watch at the end.

There is diving available all around the island, although some of the best is around the southwest due to there being a number of marine reserves and because of the rocky nature of the seabed. Islands emerge out of the sea providing wonderful wall dives that are home to a large quantity of marine life. There are also many caves, caverns and tunnels that have formed in the carbonate rocks providing all levels of diver something a little different. A good base for divers is Santa Ponsa, which allows access to dive sites all the way from the wrecks at Palma to the nature reserve at Dragonera. The islands of El Toro and the Malgrats have also recently been made into marine reserves meaning fish are growing in numbers in what were once popular fishing spots. A dive Center in Santa Ponsa is also trying to get permission to sink a wreck in this vicinity, which will no doubt rapidly become covered with marine life and will make an interesting alternative to cave and wall diving.

dive site directory visited Mallorca in November to squeeze in some cheap, warm-water diving before the European winter really set in. Unfortunately there were only two of us diving with the Center we used, so we did not manage to travel to any of the sites more remote to Santa Ponsa, such as Dragonera or the Palma wrecks. Nevertheless, the diving was very good close to where we staying, but the weather at that time of year was not fantastic and the visibility was slightly reduced from the volume of rain that was falling. The dive Center had a very laid back attitude towards our diving and at times we almost felt like we were inconveniencing them - however they did always launch the boat despite there only being two of us. We also had no guide and sometimes we were provided with only sketchy descriptions of the sites before diving them. Whilst this may not be the norm and more due to the fact we were diving off season, it is something to be considered if you are thinking about booking a dive holiday to Mallorca. Another handy hint is to check whether your dive Center has its own boat before you go as some dive Centers merely put you onto other Centers boats, acting as a middleman and creaming in some of the profit. If you are not qualified as a PADI diver, it would also be worth asking if they know what your qualification means before you travel and if they don't, make sure you take a well filled out log book with you to use as an alternative.

Overall, Mallorca makes a great budget diving destination for Europeans, either to coincide diving with a package holiday or by putting together your own flights, accommodation and dive package to create your ideal stay. It is a good place to take a family if you have a partner who is willing to keep an eye on the kids whilst you sneak off for a morning and it is also somewhere you can dive solidly for a week without running out of interesting dive sites. Unless you are there in peak season when there are more likely to be the staff around to give you the attention you need as a beginner, the diving is probably best for those who are beyond their basic training.

 


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