Spain is one of the best European countries for diving. All along its coast, you will find dive shops and a variety of underwater environment. Of its coastal areas, Catalonia arguably offers the best diving. Here, you can find a wide range of wrecks, underwater mountains and corals in a warm and safe environment. For ease of discussion, Catalonia’s dive sites can be split geographically into Costa Brava, Barcelona and Tarragona.
The province of Girona, locally referred to as Costa Brava, is the most popular dive destination in Catalonia. Here divers will find Los Ullastres, a series of three underwater peaks; the Medes Islands with their protected seabed; Cap de Creus, the first Maritime Terrestrial Nature Reserve of Spain; and the Formigues Islands which host a long history of shipwrecks.
To the south of Girona, the major metropolitan area of Barcelona also hosts several dive sites. Just twenty minute’s drive from the city, divers will find a wide variety of underwater habitats including underwater meadows, cliff faces and a couple of shipwrecks. One site in particular is known for its ‘underwater flight’ of eels.
Finally, Tarragona in the far southern region of Catalonia is the least visited dive destination. That doesn’t mean the sites aren’t worth exploring. Advanced and technical divers will love El Cavour, a steamboat sunk in 1917 that today rests at 170 feet (52 meters).
Diving in Catalonia is possible year-round, although winter temperatures are a bit cooler than those felt during the hot summer months. Water temperatures average from 60-75°F (16-24°C) throughout the year. Most diving takes place from a boat, although in certain areas a limited number of shore dives are possible. If you are interested in diving Spain, consider Catalonia as your destination. It has some of the best and most diverse dive sites, but is far less crowded than other area’s of the Spanish coast.