Shipwreck and Kelp Forest Diving Package in Cape Town

Organized by
full day
Occasionally sporty
From 12 years-old and up

Discover the wrecks off the shore of Cape Town on this exciting day of scuba diving! This package includes 2 dives in one day - Open Water PADI level required.

This package includes two dives in one day. The first dive will be in a wreck.

In the year 1488, the first European ship sailed around the Cape Peninsula, under the command of Bartolomeu Dias. After being blown of course by a storm, he named the Cape the "Cape of Storms" - and that name has reverberated through the ages, as around 800 ships have sunk around Cape Town!

For almost 400 years, up to the opening of the Suez Canal in Egypt, the route around the Cape has been the most important and viable one between the east and the west. This has left Cape Town with a rich collection of different shipwrecks. These wrecks include wrecks from 37 different nations, including wrecks from the Portuguese, the Dutch, English, and French East Indian Companies, the British Royal Navy, Oil tankers, 19th century passenger liners, WW1 and WW2, and the list goes on!

The second dive will be in South Africa's world renowned Kelp Forest.

Kelp forests are recognized as one of the most productive and dynamic ecosystems on Earth! When one swims between them, you will find loads of little fish, crabs, and other sea animals hiding in there. Kelp can grow up to 30 meters plus, which means looking down into them is like looking down into a forest!

With so many excellent underwater worlds to explore in Cape Town, once the bug bites you, all you are going to want to do is dive, dive, dive!

Below are just some of the wrecks that we scuba dive on in Cape Town:
SAS Pietermaritzburg (PMB)
With the full name of SAS Pietermaritzburg it’s no wonder divers call it the PMB for short. This dive site is located 1km off shore form Millers Point in Cape Town and is very popular. The wreck is around 70m in length and sank in 1994.

History of SAS Pietermaritzburg
This ship was originally a ocean minesweeper that formed part of Britain’s Royal Naval fleet during the Second World War. Originally named the HMS Pelorus, this ship was one of the thousands of vessels that participated in the invasion of Normandy on the 6th June 1944, more commonly known as D-Day. The HMS Pelorus led the invasion, sweeping the area for mines before the invasion fleet attacked.

The ship was later sold to the South African Navy in 1947 where it was renamed the HMSAS Pietermaritzburg. Here it was used for both training and sweeping for mines. After it was decommissioned, the ship was used as a form of accommodation for the squadron of Mine Countermeasures during the years 1968 – 1991. On the 12th November, 1994 it was purposefully sunk to form an artificial reef in the area near Cape Town.

SAS Pietermaritzburg scuba diving facts:
Scuba dive depth: 17 - 22m
Boat or shore: Boat
Minimum qualification: Advanced Open Water, and Wreck speciality for penetration
Possible night scuba dives? Yes
Additional equipment? Torch
Best time to scuba dive? May – October

SS Maori
Off the rocky shore line of Karbonkelberg lies the oldest and one of the most popular wreck diving sites in Cape Town. Located about 7.5 km from Hout Bay Harbour, the wreck is only accessible by boat diving. Stranded on a rocky reef with an overall length of 122m and in amazing condition for its age, the SS Maori is a new experience every time! Points of interest on the wreck include the steam engines, the railway lines for cargo and lots more!

History of SS Maori
Originally a British cargo steam ship created in the 1880’s, the SS Maori ran aground on the 5th August, 1909 on a run from London to New Zealand. Upon reaching the Cape, the vessel encountered some bad weather and ran aground and eventually capsized next to Sandy Bay. The ship was carrying loads of goods from British manufacturers ranging from railway lines to explosives, piping to crockery. 32 out of the 53 crew members on the vessel died. A lot of the wreck has been salvaged for fittings and most of the crockery has been taken however, it is now protected under law, and you'll no longer allowed to remove artefacts. The bell of the ship can be found in the Hout Bay Museum in Cape Town.

SS Maori scuba diving facts:
Scuba dive depth: 13 – 21m
Boat or shore: Boat
Minimum qualification: Advanced Open Water, and Wreck speciality for penetration
Possible night scuba dives? No
Additional equipment? Torch and 7mm wetsuit
Best time to scuba dive? October – May

Antipolis is a fairly new wreck, located opposite the Twelve Apostles Hotel in Oudekraal. Mainly salvaged, the remains lie on a rocky reef 20m from the coast line. Wreck dive points of interest include, the many crayfish that inhabit this site and the pump/boiler room that remains fairly intact and is large enough to swim through.

History of Antipolis
The tanker Antipolis was being towed by a tug with another tanker, the Romelia, from Greece to the Far East, via Cape Town, to be sold to scrap metal merchants. However, a North Westerly gale caused the line connecting the tankers to the tug to get caught on the sea bed and consequently snap, causing the Antipolis to run aground on the 28th July, 1977. Because of its proximity to shore, the wreck was converted into night club for the young, and people used to party on it. It even had its own bar! However when the wreck became too unstable it was closed down and later salvaged.

Antipolis scuba diving facts:
Scuba dive depth: 7 – 10 m
Boat or shore: Shore
Minimum qualification: Open Water
Possible night scuba dives? No
Additional equipment? N/A
Best time to scuba dive? May – October

SS Clan Stewart
The SS Clan Stewart is a wreck 100 m from Simons Town's shores at Makerel Bay in Cape Town. It contains various species of aquatic wildlife, making it an interesting wreck with the engine, boilers and shaft available for exploring! Just look out for some sharp iron edges. Some of the ship's features can be seen from the shore at low tide.

History of SS Clan Stewart
The British steamer vessel transporting a cargo load of coal ran aground on 21st November, 1914. The SS Clan Stewart weighing around 3.500 tons was blown to shore by a strong Cape South Easter, which even caused the vessel to drag its anchor all the way! Four months were spent trying to get the vessel to float again, but to no avail, it joined many other wrecks in Cape Town.

SS Clan Stewart scuba diving facts:
Scuba dive depth: 7 - 9 m
Boat or shore: Shore
Minimum qualification: Open Water
Possible night scuba dives? Yes
Additional equipment? Torch
Best time to scuba dive? May – October

Smitswinkel Bay Wrecks
In Smitswinkel Bay there are five wrecks that you can visit in one dive! These Wwecks include the SAS Transvaal, the MV Orotava, the MV Princess Elizabeth, the SAS Good Hope and the MV Rockeater. The dive ranges over 400 m covering all 5 wrecks, starting at the SAS Transvaal to the MV Rockeater.

History of Smitswinkel Bay Wrecks
The SAS Transvaal was a Loch class freighter that was sent to the South African Navy in Cape Town for construction in the 1940’s. In 1978 the ship, now having been sold for scrap metal, was scuttled in order to form an artificial reef in Smitswinkel Bay.

The MV Orotava was a British vessel created in 1958. It was a steel trawler and was kindly donated to the False Bay Conservation Society. Donated along with it was the trawler the MV Princess Elizabeth, after being badly damaged in a fire. The two trawlers were scuttled in 1983.

The SAS Good Hope was also a Loch class freighter sent to the South African Navy for construction in the 1940’s along with the SAS Transvaal. It worked as a convoy escort at the end of the Second World War. Later, it was used as a flagship for the South African Navy until 1978, when it was sold for scrap metal and scuttled in 1978.

The MV Rockeater was an American coastal freighter used by the United States Navy in 1945. In 1964 it was bought by Ocean Science and Engineering South Africa, and was used to conduct surveys for map profiling. The ship also had a drilling crane, which was used to take core samples. This can be found next to the wreck as it was cut off beforehand. The ship was scuttled in December 1972.

Smitswinkel Bay Wrecks scuba diving facts:
Scuba dive depth: 21 – 36 m
Boat or shore: Boat
Minimum qualification: Advanced Open Water and wreck speciality for penetration
Possible night scuba dives? No
Additional equipment? Torch, DSMB/SMB and a compass
Best time to scuba dive? October – May

Book your activity

Practical information

You will complete 2 dives in 1 day.

FREE pick-up and transport from your hotel and back if required (in the central Cape Town area, for 2 dives or more).

When you dive with Into The Blue, you will have:
- Good and professional instructors and dive masters.
- Well maintained gear (the dedicated technician goes though all the gear at least once a week to check for any problems!)
- A ratio of max 5 clients per Divemaster or instructor. They aim to always have at least 2 Divemasters on the boat to make sure that, should you have any problems, someone will be able to assist you.
- Unlike many other dive schools, they aim to dive where the conditions are the best on the day - they are willing to go to further sites to find good diving conditions if necessary.

Course of events

You will not take a boat t

Activity requirements

All participants must have completed their PADI Open Water course or equivalent.

Special terms

Most of customers prefer to make the most of the day by doing at least two dives. You could, for example, combine a seal dive with a wreck or a reef dive in the vicinity.

Into the Blue is the premier dive shop in Cape Town. Their focus is on giving you value for money; a quality, safe, and fun experience.

You will have to pay R160 per extra tank.

You can rent a Go Pro for: R400 per day.

Meeting point:
Into the Blue: 88 Main Rd, Sea Point, Cape Town, 8005, South Africa
Spoken languages:Afrikaans, English
  • Equipment rental: full set and 1 tank
  • MPA permit: valid for one month
  • FREE wi-fi in the shop
  • FREE washing of any gear that you might use
Do not forget to bring
  • Towel
  • Bottled water and snacks
  • Sunscreen

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