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World | Diving Turkey:

Turkey overview



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Turkey dive site map


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Scuba Diving in Turkey


Water temperature:

18°C (65°F) in May to 30°C (86°F) in August

Suit:

7mm semi dry in cooler months, 3mm wetsuit in July and August

Visibility:

20 to 40 metres (65 to 130 feet)

Type of diving:

Wrecks, reefs, walls, drop-offs, caverns and tunnels

Marine life:

Octopus, stingrays, groupers, barracuda, morays, sea bream, nudibranchs, seahorses and sponges. There is the possibility of seeing dolphins and turtles, but these encounters are not very common!

When to go:

The diving season runs from April to November at most centers

How to get there:

From the UK - A number of charter flights are available, usually flying to Dalaman or Bodrum. UK passport holders need an entry visa, which can be purchased on landing at a cost of 10. On departure, allow for plenty of time to get through airport security as hold ups are common


Gulet in Turkey - courtesy of Rik Vercoe

Turkey has become very accessible in recent years to European holidaymakers and as the tourisms industry has developed, so too has the diving industry. There are dive centers in most of the holiday resorts, offering try-dives and training to those who have never dived before. For more experienced divers, liveaboards and two-center trips are viable options to encounter a wider range of dive sites. Most of the diving in Turkey is done around the Mediterranean resorts of Bodrum, Marmaris, Fethiye, Oludeniz and Kas. Some areas are out-of-bounds to divers altogether.

On a visit to Turkey you can expect to find warm, clear waters and a large number of dive sites. The underwater scenery is varied and interesting, with tunnels, caverns and rocky pinnacles providing divers with plenty to explore. There are also a lot of wrecks along the Turkish coast, both recent and modern. However many of these sites are protected by law so cannot be dived on, although more are being opened up with time. It is also common to find the remains of pottery and amphora as you are diving.

Turkey is an ideal destination for a family or for divers who have a non-diving partner, or for those who want to try diving for the first time. It makes a great place to combine diving with a normal holiday and package deals tend to be very reasonably priced. The diving is typical of the Mediterranean, so although very pleasant, don't expect the amount of marine life to be as abundant as in the Red Sea or the Caribbean. If you are an experienced diver, you should enquire at your diving center before you book as to whether you will be grouped with new divers during your holiday. This is practice at some centers and can somewhat limit the dive sites you will be able to cover.

Above water you can visit ruins and other historical sites, go sailing, explore the countryside, shop in markets and if possible, try to fit in a trip to a Turkish bath! There are all the usual beach holiday activities on offer as well if you just want to relax in the sun and go swimming. Restaurants and bars are cheap and the food on offer is fresh and varied.


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