Divers and snorkelers won't be disappointed with the excellent underwater opportunities awaiting in the Perth region.
Boasting a long stretch of coastline, nearby islands, abundant marine life and numerous shipwrecks just offshore. Join one of the many dive boat or sailing operators and dip deeper into the magic of the underwater kingdom, departing from Fremantle, Rottnest Island, Hillary's Boat Harbour, Mindarie Marina and Mandurah.
For something different snorkel, reef walk or go diving in the aquarium at Hillary's Boat Harbour and explore the beauty of Western Australia underwater in the one place! Or, have a look at our list of some of Perth's best dive sites, wrecks and diving precincts to experience the underwater wonders of the sea first hand.
Top diving spots
Perth's premier diving destination, Rottnest Island is home to sparkling bays and water temperatures 3 to 4 degrees warmer than the mainland. Tropical species of fish relish in the warmer waters and limestone caverns surrounding the island. Calm bays attract snorkelers and lucky visitors are regularly greeted by playful seals who love to interact. The Rottnest Shipwreck Trail tells stories of the 14 shipwrecks found along its coast - information plaques can be seen on the ocean bed.
Marmion Marine Park
Head to the Sunset Coast where you can wade into the sparkling waters of the Indian Ocean and within a few metres of the shore you're floating above a reef. Mettams Pool, just north of Scarborough, is a calm snorkelling spot within 30 minutes of Perth CBD and is ideal for families and beginners.
Shoalwater Islands Marine Park
Cavernous reefs, seagrass meadows and even more shipwrecks can be found surrounding the islands of Shoalwater Marine Park, near Rockingham. In this area near Penguin Island, the Caves diving spot is part of a limestone reef ranging in depth of about 9 metres from the surface. You can also go on a guided swim with wild dolphins and explore the waters around Seal Island!
West Coast Dive Park
Just off the coast of Rockingham, 45 minutes south of Perth, the West Coast Dive Park was created by the WA State Government to offer divers a world class scuba diving and snorkelling area. The park already has 10 ships wrecked within it and a number of superb snorkelling sites. In May 2005, the first purpose-sunk ship, the Saxon Ranger joined the existing sites of the Park.
Coogee Maritime Trail
The first of its kind in Western Australia, the award-winning Coogee Maritime Trail is centred around the Omeo Shipwreck and includes an underwater dive and snorkel trail and a land-based trail. The trails not only provide access to our beautiful marine life, but also offer a unique opportunity to educate and build awareness about out significant maritime history and archaeology.
10 Metre Spire
Located at Rottnest Island this site is for advanced divers. Average depth is 18 metres with a maximum depth of 27 metres. Top of the reef starts at about 10 metres. Most ground at around 18 metres or so. Swim north to find a large amphitheatre cave which is usually teeming with fish life. There are plenty of swim throughs, big overhangs. Hard and soft coral varieties are abundant. Access via boat, 60 minutes.
How to find the dive site: 1 mile south of West End, 32'01.966"S 115'26.405" E is for the top of the reef. 32'01.946" S 115' 26.418" E is for the cave.
Caution: Exposed site, so best to dive in less than 1 metre of swell with winds of less than 10 knots. Can be prone to strong S/W currents.
North Point Reef
Located at Rottnest Island this sit has an average depth of 20 metres and a maximum depth of 30 metres. A fairly large ravine within the top of the mound that marks the southern 14 metre mark on North Point Reef can be a great dive given the ideal conditions (light winds and swell below 1.5 metres). The ravine (26 metres on the bottom) shows up well on any echo sounder. After swimming through the ravine the ground to the North at around the 20-25 metre mark is also well worth a look. Access via boat, 60 minutes.
How to find the dive site: 31,58.597'S 115,29.820'E
Located off Salmon Bay at Rottnest Island, Jack's Patch is an open water dive site. Average depth is 15 metres with a maximum depth of 27 metres. Best described as a north/south running strip of limestone reef that has a very good covering of hard and soft coral. Plenty of swim throughs and ledges and one big cave towards the northern end. Shallowest part of the reef is around 13 metres with most of it around 15 to 17 metres, it can get a bit deeper towards the southern (27 metres) and western side (22 metres). This dive site supports a very diverse marine ecosystem and is a photographers paradise in good visibility. Access via boat, 50 minutes.
How to find the dive site: 32'01.90" S,115'31.08" E - about 1/2 mile S/W of Salmon Point
Located at Safety Bay, near Rockingham, this is an open water dive site. Average depth is 4 metres with a maximum depth of 7 metres. On seaward side of the main reef there are several large caves, most being swim through, with sightings of dolphins, seals, crayfish and stingrays common. This is a great spot for the beginner to the more advanced diver or snorkeler.
How to find the dive site: follow Point Peron Rd to the end, turn left, then right into the car park – water entry is 80 metres to the right. Surface swim 100 metres at 300 degrees to the edge of the reef.
Caution: when there is a swell of over 1.5mts there can be quite a surge in the caves.
Boy in a Boat Reef
Located at Hillarys Boat Harbour this is an open water dive site. Average depth is 4 metres with a maximum depth of 7 metres. There is a dive trail you can follow where you find various plaques. The site has a mixture of weedy reef opening to clean sandy bottom, as you explore clockwise around the reef you will find some lovely caves, swim throughs and ledges. Being a shallow dive there is plenty of time to study the nooks and crannies. Access via shore, 5 minutes.
How to find the dive site: park behind AQWA and walk out to the T-section in the pier. Here you will find an information sign located next to a set of steps. The reef is located inside a rectangle formed by four yellow vertical marker buoys. The dive site is in the section that's located near the eastern end of the reef.
The Omeo is an historically significant and federally protected iron steamship that was built in 1858 in Newcastle (England) and later converted to a sailing ship. It was used to lay the Bass Strait Telegraph cable, and the Overland Telegraph linking Australia to Britain via Singapore. This vessel was involved in international trade and participated in inter-colonial passenger networks. It traded for many years between Adelaide, Melbourne and New Zealand, and famously collided with, and wrecked, the Swan Spit pile lighthouse in Port Phillip in 1881, before becoming a coal hulk. The Omeo was driven ashore and wrecked in 1905.
Located 120 minutes off the coast of Lancelin the Key Bascane wreck has an average depth of 25 metres and maximum depth of 44 metres. The ship sank in 1982 while being towed to Perth for modifications. Key Biscane is a deep dive a long way off the coast. Some dive shops run the odd trip out there but you need great weather and almost no swell. She rests in 44m but the wreck starts at about 25m.
North Mole Wreck
Located only 160 metres off Fremantle's North Mole, the wreck sits in 9 metres of water. It is broken up but in good condition. The best time to dive is before the sea breeze with a swell of less than 2 metres. Beware of fishing line, broken glass and rusting steel.
Located at Point Peron the SS Orizaba is a former steamer that now lies in water up to 8 metres deep. The boilers are still intact and interesting to look around, although deteriorating in parts. Various places around the hull create nice caves where you can observe a range of marine life. Access via boat, 20 minutes.
How to find the wreck: GPS Required. On a calm day the wreck is visible from the surface when you are directly above it. There are no markers. Lat: 32Â° 16.9780 ' S, Long: 115Â° 37.5950 ' E
Caution: be careful in conditions with a heavy undertow, as you can be bumped into the wreck quite easily if you are not prepared for the next surge.
Located 5 minutes off the Rockingham foreshore these wrecks are in open water with an average depth of 13 metres and a maximum depth of 17 metres. It consists of two planes and four boats, two tyre sets, a pole and a washing machine. This is a great site for beginners or any diver trying out new gear. It is pretty much protected in all weather. Interesting marine life and a lionfish lives in one of the planes.
How to Find the Wreck: Park in the car park directly opposite Flinders Lane. Make entry via the steps and swim out to one of the buoys that mark each of the wrecks – all of them, except two, are joined by rope. It is suggested you pick up a map from Perth Diving Academy in Fremantle or from Bell Dive across the road.
Caution: The visibility will be poor.
More adventure on the water
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