Türkiye’s 10 Most Beautiful Dive Sites

With more than eight thousand kilometres of coastline along the Black, Marmara, Aegean and Mediterranean seas, Türkiye offers incredible dives in clear turquoise waters. At the intersection of ancient cultures and maritime trade routes throughout history, Türkiye welcomes divers of all levels throughout the year to enjoy the country’s mild climate, comfortable accommodation, and ease of transportation.

Extraordinary aquatic flora and fauna, ancient and present-day shipwrecks, and centuries-old treasures submerged in the blue depths are waiting to be discovered in Türkiye. Home to crucial maritime trade centres for thousands of years, Türkiye presents divers an unparalleled opportunity to explore the traces of human history along its eight-thousand-kilometre coastline.

Captivating with its diverse marine life as well as riches above ground, this ancient geography promises an exciting exploration of brilliant underwater fauna amid reefs, canyons, caves, and shipwrecks. At the meeting point of civilizations and outstanding in terms of its cultural and archaeological riches, Türkiye also invites visitors to discover the submerged remnants of Mediterranean cultures.

In addition to the quality of its dive sites, accommodation, and ease of transportation, Türkiye stands out with its mild climate, offering divers a year-round selection of distinct underwater geographies. As the country continues its activities in underwater cultural routes with the Türkiye Inventory of Shipwrecks Project, numerous studies are ongoing to ensure that its cultural assets are as visible underwater as on land. Continuing to open newly discovered shipwrecks to diving tourism, Türkiye now presents Çanakkale’s incredible Gallipoli Historical Underwater Park as a distinctive diving route.

Let’s dive into the turquoise waters of Türkiye and explore the most beautiful dive sites, surrounded by coral reefs and shipwrecks.

Uçanbalık, Kaş-Antalya
Offering an excellent field of vision in its clear waters, Kaş is one of the top ten diving spots in Türkiye and the world. In the heart of the Turkish Riviera, the region has 21 dive points that attract attention with vibrant underwater life. Uçanbalık, among the first sites that come to mind for dives in Kaş, is a spot that master divers should not miss. With a depth ranging from 55 metres to 71 metres, Uçanbalık is notable for the wreck of the Savoia-Marchetti SM79 model Italian bomber. The poignant remains of the plane, shot down while bombing Meis in the Second World War, offer a memorable diving experience.

Aquarium Bay (Akvaryum Koyu), Fethiye-Muğla
A true aquatic paradise, Fethiye’s Aquarium Bay is considered one of the best diving spots in Türkiye. Taking its name from the clarity of its water, this dazzling bay appeals to both beginner and experienced divers. Aquarium Bay is famous for the diversity of its marine life, and divers will be amazed at the creatures they encounter.

Big and Small Reefs (Büyük ve Küçük Resif), Bodrum-Muğla
The Bodrum Peninsula invites you to swim in clear waters teeming with fish, octopus, algae, seagrass, and sea sponges. Home to 20 dive sites with a depth of up to 30 metres, Bodrum’s two most popular diving spots are the Big and Small Reefs. These reefs, named according to their diameters, are located just at the exit of Bodrum Harbour. With depths ranging from seven to about 33 metres, these dive spots are home to school fish and various other aquatic life.

Pirates Cave and Lovers Cave (Korsan ve Âşıklar Mağarası), Antalya
Two exciting underwater caves await divers in Alanya, an increasingly popular tourist destination in the Antalya province. In the Pirate (Korsan) Cave, divers can observe a wreck at a depth of 25 metres. The cave appeals to beginner divers with its shallow waters but is also suitable for experienced divers; thanks to its open and wide structure, it is also possible to come to the surface at night and observe the bats through flashlights. Like the Pirate Cave, the Lovers’ (Âşıklar) Cave, 15 minutes from Alanya Harbour, is a spot suitable for divers of all levels. The cave, a lively habitat for underwater life, also features an ancient ship’s anchor at a depth of 21 metres.

Dana Island (Dana Adası), Mersin
Mersin, the shining star of the Turkish Riviera, is a beautiful diving spot, with bays and gulfs adorned with ancient ruins. As a city inhabited by the Hittites, Assyrians, Persians, Greeks, Romans, Armenians, Seljuks, and Ottomans, divers can discover the traces of Mersin’s past in the blue depths of the bordering Mediterranean Sea. Dana Island, a key point in commercial and military expeditions and seafaring communities throughout history in the Eastern Mediterranean, is among the top diving spots of Mersin. The island, an independent city, called Pityussa during the Roman era, features a three-thousand-year-old shipyard discovered in 2018, along with ruins of the ancient city. Divers will surely be fascinated by the area’s shipwrecks, rich underwater life, and a past that preserves its mystery.

Kadırga Bay (Kadırga Koyu), Marmaris
Standing out with its excellent visibility, the most popular diving centre of Marmaris is undoubtedly Kadırga Bay. One can dive at every level in the area, opposite the Kadırga Lighthouse which stretches up to 40 metres. At a depth of 15 metres lie the remains of a Hellenistic ship surrounded by moray eels and amphorae – because of the rocky terrain, hundreds of amphorae are attached to the rocks.

Fener Island (Fener Adası), Çeşme-İzmir
Fener Island, which attracts attention with its diverse sea creatures, is one of Izmir’s most popular holiday spots and an ideal centre for underwater adventures. The island’s waters are inhabited by sea sponges, corals, sargo, and sea breams. The luckiest divers may encounter seals in the island’s old seal cave.

Gelibolu Historical Underwater Park (Gelibolu Tarihî Su Altı Parkı), Çanakkale
Set at the meeting point of the Aegean and Marmara seas, the Gallipoli (Gelibolu) Peninsula is an excellent dive spot where visitors can discover the region’s glorious history – underwater. There are 216 shipwrecks in the depths of these blue seas, the site of the Dardanelles campaign, one of the most dramatic fronts of the First World War. Aiming to preserve the underwater cultural heritage of the region and carry it to the future, Türkiye introduced the Gelibolu Historical Underwater Park to raise awareness regarding the Dardanelles campaign. Brought into diving tourism in September 2021, the park features 14 different diving points. Greeting divers at depths ranging from 18 to 28 metres, the cargo ship Lundy, which sank after being hit by a torpedo in 1915, and the ships HMS Majestic and Captain Frangos are waiting to tell their stories in the depths of the Gelibolu Historical Underwater Park.

Heybeli Island (Heybeli Ada), Kalkan-Antalya
Located 45 minutes from Kalkan Harbour, Heybeli Island offers divers a distinctive experience with its rocky area. In the southern part of Heybeli, which consists of two small islands with a maximum depth of 24 metres, divers can see schools of dentex (Dentex dentex) and, in the eastern area, large groupers (Epinephelus aeneus) hiding amid reeds and rocks. In addition to colourful marine life, an unknown wreck lies in the depths of Heybeli. Visitors can swim around both islands.

Blue Cave (Mavi Mağara), Kekova-Antalya
Named for the brilliant blue hues of the light penetrating through its tunnels, the Blue Cave is a dive spot suitable for divers of all levels. In the clear waters of Kekova, the Blue Cave features channels and islets, as well as inner and outer galleries; the inner gallery has a chamber that allows surfacing. Bright corals and colourful seasonal shrimps live in both galleries, creating colourful images in the water’s depths.