Scuba diving in Tenerife

The island of Tenerife offers a wide range of scuba diving options, with attractive diving spots where a wealth of biodiversity in shallow waters can be seen.

The Northern coast, dominated by a steep rocky sea bed, has developed in certain areas an arid yellow landscape due to the presence of algae, underneath which a variety of environments as sandbanks, caves, changes of height and rocky platforms with gorgonian formations, corals, anemones and sponges, together with a good representation of the marine fauna characteristic of the Canary Islands –viejas, from the family Cichlidae, moray eels, haddock, damselfish, breams, etc.-. Areas such as the northern coast of Teno, Garachico, the surroundings of Puerto de la Cruz and Los Roques de Anaga are very appealing diving spots, although some of the best areas, such as the latter, are more difficult to access.

In the Southeastern coast, the algae side-line has been dwindled due to the action of the long-spined urchins and powerful herbivores that have been favoured by over-fishing, however the variety of habitats is nurtured by the abundance of sandbanks, that more often than not are covered in sea-grass meadows, that form a layer of greenery resembling a field of lawn. The sea-grass meadows and the sandy environments result in a very peculiar fauna –seahorses, red mullets, rays, angel fish, soles, cuttlefish, etc.-, especially the garden eels and their particular way of life. Sandbanks, caves, flat surfaces and rocky grounds can also be found in the rock formations, together with the previously mentioned characteristic fauna of rocky sea bottoms, which is wealthier in areas where sand and rock border. Radazul, Las Eras, El Porís de Abona, Abades, El Médano-Montaña Roja, Agua Dulce, Montaña Amarilla and las Galletas offer an ample representation of such biodiversity. In certain cases, such as Montaña Amarilla, the beauty of geological submarine formations, with basalt pillars and other structures, add to the diving experience.

From Punta de la Rasca to Teno, in the South western coast, waters are warmer and calmer, and while biodiversity is quite similar to other areas, it is home to big caves such as La Cueva de Los Cerebros in Playa de San Juan and Los Camarones in La Rasca area, as well as smaller but equally populated caves. The side-line of algae has also been reduced in this area, but there are some extraordinary sandbanks in La Rasca and Teno, where black coral formations can be found as near as 20 metres deep –in the cliff area of Teno, known as Diente de Ajo. There are several beautiful sandbanks in the surrounding areas of Playa de San Juán-Alcalá. When scuba diving in this area, the visitor may well come across turtles and other less common species such as angel fish, the dark electric ray and other rays.

The shape, geographical location and volcanic nature of the island, together with its size, height and orientation in regards to dominant winds and the train of waves ultimately make this a heterogeneous area with different environments populated by a varied biodiversity. The exceptional climate adds to an extraordinary all-year-round diving experience.

The above  was originally posted by Discover Tenerife
For more info on Tenerife read the Red Queen Musings everyone’s favourite Tenerife Blog
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