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Diving in Portugal

Information about scuba diving in Portugal, about the country, dive sites and diving centers.

Map of Diving in Portugal

Important to know about Portugal

Portugal, rich in history and culture is considered as one of the top cultures from the age of discoveries. With many beautiful historical sites like the Belem Tower or the Jerónimos Monastery in Lisbon that makes Portugal a top place to visit in Europe. Some of the most popular tourist destinations in Portugal are Lisbon, the Algarve region and Madeira Island.

Capital: Lisbon. Language: Portuguese. Currency: Euro. Population: Approx. 10,460,000 Climate: typical Mediterranean climate. mild, wet winters and hot, dry summers.

Scuba Diving in Portugal

Diving fans of Portugal can find diving places all over the coast, but the best diving in Portugal is found in the islands of Azores, the Algarve Region and Madeira. The shipwreck of the Madeirense in Porto Santo is considered top 10 worldwide. Other dive sites are The Berlengas archipelago near Lisbon, the U-boat U1277 and the liner Tiber in Porto.

Weather Today in Lisbon

Diving Sites in Portugal

Diving Centers and Schools in Portugal

AlentejoScuba Diving Flag
Algarve Scuba Diving Flag
Azores Isl. Scuba Diving Flag
Centro Scuba Diving Flag
Lisbon Scuba Diving Flag
Madeira Isl. Scuba Diving FlagAzul Diving Center
Norte o Porto Scuba Diving Flag
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Dive Sites in Portugal

Madeira Island

Madeira is part of a Portuguese archipelago that lies in the north Atlantic Ocean and an outermost region of the European Union. The archipelago comprises the major part of one of the two Autonomous regions of Portugal, that includes the islands of Madeira, Porto Santo, and the Desertas, administered together with the separate archipelago of the Savage Islands. Madeira was re-discovered by Portuguese sailors in 1419 and is considered to be the first territorial discovery of the exploratory period of the Portuguese Age of Discovery.

Today, it is a popular year-round resort, noted for its Madeira wine, flowers, landscapes, nature, embroidery artisans, its annual New Year’s celebrations that feature the largest fireworks show in the world, as officially recognized by the Guinness World Records, and it beautiful seacoast and marine fauna. Due to the geographic situation of Madeira, the island enjoys an abundant marine fauna and a large amount of fish of various kinds. The moderate weather, the sea temperature between 17 and 24°C (62 and 75°F) and the crystal clear waters around Madeira make this island an ideal location well known to scuba divers all around the world.

Describe types of diving in the area: The clear waters and marine life of Madeira, known for its numerous nature reserves and marine areas, offer countless fascinating and electrifying dive spots. The marine fauna of this region consists mainly of coastal species. Sandy and rocky bottoms host numerous species of marine creatures.

Best sites in the area: Desertas Reserve. Best time to dive: July.
Suit required: Long Wet Suit/Hood 7mm. Minimum depth: 8M/26F.
Maximum Depth: 40M/132F.
Wrecks: no wreck. Visibility: Perfect.

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List fish commonly seen in the area: groupers (Epinephelus guaza) and other serranids, salps , sea bream , mullet , scorpion fish (Scorpaena scrofa), moray eels, octopus, cuttlefish , barracuda, damsels are just some of the species that divers may commonly spot. Among the invertebrates, besides various species of anemones and starfish , we emphasize the presence of numerous bearded fireworms (Hermodice carunculata), known for their considerable size (up to 30cm) and for their painfully stinging bristles. Common are also several species of crabs; the most curious of them is definitely the arrow crab (Stenorhynchus seticornis). Large, typically pelagic organisms can also be occasionally encountered: tuna, cetaceans (i.e. the spotted dolphin and Risso’s dolphin), sea turtles, manta rays and mobulas, and the famous but very rare monk seal (Monachus monachus).