Diving at Port Elizabeth

Location Port Elizabeth
Sites dived In the bay: Bell Buoy, Haarlem Wreck. Further offshore: Rie Banks.
The Wild Side Reefs: Gasmic, Avalanche, Thunderbolt.
Dive Centre Recommendation
We dived with Pro Dive, a dive centre with a great vibe, run by two young PADI Instructors, Michelle Glass and Louis Van Aardt. Their dedication and enthusiasm for the diving around PE was infectious and the consideration for their clients has won them a loyalty throughout the local area. As the ocean is teeming with very photogenic life, Michelle, herself a keen u/w photographer also runs the u/w photography specialty course for budding enthusiasts.

Pro Dive, located at the unmissable Red Windmill, Hobie Beach, has 2 Rigid Inflatable Boats, equipment rental and servicing on site and they dive every day, weather permitting. Other diving options include shark diving in the tank at the local oceanarium. For large groups visiting PE they can arrange accommodation and excursions to nearby game parks. See Prodive’s comprehensive website for details on all services.

To dive the ‘Wild Side’ email Eric Stone or Peter ’10 Bar’ Michaelides of Wild Side Divers. Although they are not a charter operation they will accept guests on board the boats for minimal charge to cover costs of petrol. Club members will naturally take priority.

Nearest Launch Sites Hobie Beach for ‘Inside the Bay’ and Noordhoek Ski Boat Club for ‘The Wild Side’.
Best Time to Dive With the Westerlies in Winter. Locals dive year round but find September through to mid November has the most unpredictable weather.
Water Temp 16-20 degrees celcius in the bay / 8 – 14 degrees on the Wild Side. The water temperature tends to cool in summer time (October – March).
Visibility Average 5-6meters. Up to 15 meters on a good day.
Exposure Protection You’ll start shivering after half an hour (unless you’re really tough) in several layers of 5mm with hoods and gloves. Although this is the local norm we’d advise that you stick to your drysuit, hood and gloves if you have one. Half an hour is just not enough time to appreciate these beautiful reefs.
Average diving depth Bell Buoy / Haarlem – 18 / 20meters. Most other dives are classed as Advanced Dives. Average depth 30meters with erratic currents and reasonably strong surge.
Possible Marine Encounters Leopard Shy Sharks and Pyjama Shy Sharks (both types of Dogfish), Ragged Tooth Sharks, Red Romans, Juvenille Hammerhead Sharks in December/January. Regular boat-based sightings of Dolphins, Jackass Penguins, Southern Right Whales in Winter, Humpback Whales all summer.




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