The 10 best diving spots in Cape Verde

Located off the coast of Senegal , the Cape Verde archipelago is made up of around ten islands shaped by volcanic activity. The music of Cesaria Evora, its picturesque villages and its beaches have contributed to the tourist development of the archipelago. Already very appreciated by hikers thanks to its relief , lovers of the big blue began to discover, a few years ago, the potential of Cape Verde’s diving spots. If, in general, it is possible to find sites for all levels, it should be noted that the currents can be quite strong in the archipelago and make the outing quite sporty.

1. Tchouklass

diving cape verde

Crédit photo : Facebook – Maio Plongée Cap-Vert

  • 📍 Departure point: the bay of Santa Maria on the island of Sal
  • 🌡️ Water temperature: 20-25°C
  • ☑️ Level: advanced
  • 🐚 Fauna and flora: soft coral, moray eels, rays

The site is located about 3 kilometers from the beach of Santa Maria. It is one of the most famous diving spots in Cape Verde due to its very diverse fauna and flora.

The dive begins on a ledge with yellow polyps where you can encounter schools of fish. The site allows you to go down to 35 meters deep and observe sea bream, marlin, crustaceans, rays including manta rays. If you are lucky, you may be surprised to see whale sharks there.

2. Tre Caves

CV dive

Crédit photo : Facebook – Maio Plongée Cap-Vert

  • 📍 Departure point: the bay of Santa Maria on the island of Sal
  • 🌡️ Water temperature: 20-24°C
  • ☑️ Level: intermediate to advanced
  • 🐚 Fauna and flora: trumpet fish, soft coral, moray eels, lobsters, diodons

The departure takes place, here too, from the beach of Santa Maria for this very popular site because it is renowned as one of the most beautiful diving spots in Cape Verde.

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The depth does not exceed 20 meters and the dive allows you to explore 3 caves in which the fauna is numerous. It is advisable to have a diving light if you don’t want to miss the spectacle of underwater life. From time to time, it is possible to cross paths with turtles.

3. The Wreck of the Boris

cape verde diving

Photo credit: Facebook – Maio Diving Cape Verde

  • 📍 Lieu de départ : la baie de Santa Maria sur l’île de Sal
  • 🌡️ Température de l’eau : 20-25°C
  • ☑️ Niveau : intermédiaire à avancé
  • 🐚 Faune et flore : corail, poisson-lion, raie pastenague

Thing promised, thing due! This is one of the most famous wrecks for diving in Cape Verde. It is an old Russian ship that was sunk in 2006 and lies 30 meters deep. Besides exploring the ship you can enter, the site delights underwater photography enthusiasts as it is inhabited by lots of nudibranchs.

You can also admire toad fish, scorpion fish and crustaceans. Among the schools of fish that swim there, manta rays sometimes come to visit you.

4. Hole

cape verde coral

Photo credit: Facebook – Maio Diving Cape Verde

  • 📍 Departure point: the place-Buracona, Sal Island
  • 🌡️ Water temperature: 20-24°C
  • ☑️ Level: beginner
  • 🐚 Fauna and flora: the site is more famous for its geology than for marine diversity

Voici le spot le plus connu et le plus fréquenté car accessible à tout le monde depuis la terre. Le site est surnommé l’œil bleu car il s’agit en fait d’une grande grotte volcanique creusée par les courants. Celle-ci dispose de 3 entrées dont la plus importante se situe à 26 mètres de profondeur.

The interest of the spot lies in its open dome which creates superb plays of light in turquoise tones. Of course, diving itself is only accessible to qualified divers, especially since you have to jump into the surf, but many tourists swim on the surface.

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5. WOW

cape verde fish

Crédit photo : Facebook – Maio Plongée Cap-Vert

  • 📍 Departure point: Porto Novo on the island of Santo Antao
  • 🌡️ Water temperature: 20-28°C
  • ☑️ Level: beginner
  • 🐚 Fauna and flora: nurse sharks, parrot fish

The advantage of the island of Santo Antao is to be relatively away from the usual tourist circuits, yet it has very beautiful seabed, perfect for diving in Cape Verde. This is the case of this spot whose name is the abbreviation of Wish you were here .

It is a labyrinthine reef with a sandy bottom that is home to most species living in Cape Verdean waters. You can thus observe nurse sharks, whitetip sharks, turtles and schools of tropical fish such as parrot fish.

6. Ponta Tubarao

cape verde fish

Photo credit: Facebook – Maio Diving Cape Verde

  • 📍 Departure point: Porto Novo on the island of Santo Antao
  • 🌡️ Water temperature: 20°-28°C
  • ☑️ Level: advanced
  • 🐚 Fauna and flora: crustaceans, groupers, barracudas

You have to go to the channel between the island of Santo Antao and Sao Vicente to access this spot. No reef here, the diving is done in the current to a maximum depth of 35 meters, but it is considered one of the most beautiful in the area.

Biodiversity forms a marvelous ballet there between schools of amberjack, trevallies, groupers, barracudas and parrotfish. Depending on the season, manta rays and turtles can swim in the current.

7. Atlantis Palace

biodiversity CV

Photo credit: Facebook – Maio Diving Cape Verde

  • 📍 Lieu de départ : Porto Novo sur l’île de Santo Antao
  • 🌡️ Température de l’eau : 20°-28°C
  • ☑️ Level: advanced
  • 🐚 Fauna and flora: corals, nudibranchs, nurse sharks

Just the name makes you want to start diving in Cape Verde! The site consists of a walk in a cave whose walls are covered with yellow coral.

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In general, the circuit begins with the deepest entrance. Do not forget your diving lamp to be able to explore the cavities and discover nurse sharks, colonies of colorful nudibranchs, lobsters and perhaps rays.

8. Volcano Beach

cape verde diver

Photo credit: Facebook – Maio Diving Cape Verde

  • 📍 Departure point: Porto Novo on the island of Santo Antao
  • 🌡️ Water temperature: 20°-28°C
  • ☑️ Level: beginner to intermediate
  • 🐚 Fauna and flora: dolphins, turtles, schools of tropical fish

Cette plongée au Cap-Vert descend doucement par une pente sablonneuse avant d’atteindre le récif qui descend jusqu’à 30 mètres de profondeur.

As in most sites in the region, the schools of fish are legion, they swirl and testify to a great diversity of underwater life. We find this mixture between Atlantic species and other more tropical ones. It is on this spot that you are most likely to come across dolphins, turtles and also whale sharks.

9. Shark Bow

boa vista diving

Crédit photo : Flickr – Kary Mar

  • 📍 Departure point: Sal Rei on the island of Boa Vista
  • 🌡️ Water temperature: 20°-28°C
  • ☑️ Level: advanced
  • 🐚 Fauna and flora: tropical fish, sharks

Another island very little known for diving in Cape Verde and which, however, conceals treasures. This is particularly the case with this spot which, as its name suggests, may allow you to swim with bull sharks, which are rather difficult to see. But there is normally nothing to fear with this non-aggressive species.

The dive explores a reef that goes down to 25 meters deep and is crossed by a large arch. It is especially in this place that an exceptional fauna is concentrated between trumpet fish, squirrels and surgeons as well as some rays and crustaceans.

You are now ready for a good diving session in Cape Verde!

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Mohamed SAKHRI

I am Mohamed SAKHRI, the creator and editor-in-chief of this blog, 'Discover the World – The Blog for Curious Travelers.' Join me as we embark on a journey around the world, uncovering beautiful places, diverse cultures, and captivating stories. Additionally, we will delve into mysterious and, at times, even bizarre destinations.

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