Rated one of the top ten wrecks dives in the world, the Zenobia is a real treat for experienced diver. The Zenobia lies on her port side with 108 articulated lorries which can still be seen alongside the wreck. MS Zenobia was a Swedish built Challenger-class RO-RO ferry launched in 1979 that capsized and sank in the Mediterranean sea, close to Larnaca, Cyprus, in June 1980 on her maiden voyage.
For this dive a minimum certification level of Advanced Open Water is required. All divers must have a dive logged and signed within the past 6 months, without this you will first need to complete a local dive with us.
If your last dive was more than 1 year ago then you will be required to complete a refresher before joining any of our scheduled dives.
The marine life in and around the wreck is unique in Cyprus. Nowhere else will you get the chance to see grouper, barracuda, tuna, turtle and triggerfish… the list of marine life is endless and all at the same dive site. Outside of the Zenobia you can see a variety of fish from large Groupers to barracudas and tiny Damselfish. If you look closely you may also see tiny Pink Flabellina nudibranchs that make the Zenobia their home.
The trucks and their cargo have never been salvaged, and are now laying on the seabed, still chained to the decks for you to see.
Two dives on the Zenobia Wreck is a start, but it’s simply not enough!
Its a bright and early start for this day trip with a meeting time of 06:30 at Cydive. We will then check all of the paperwork and organise any equipment which you may need for the day including dive computers and torches. Once all the divers are ready we will set off for Larnaca Marina, this journey takes roughly 1.5 hours which will give you some time to catch up on sleep!
On your arrival to Larnaca Marina, all of the equipment will be loaded onto the charter boat, Queen Zenobia. We will put together all of the equipment and get half into our wetsuits, your dive guide will then give you a briefing. The briefing will include everything you need to know such as dive route, maximum depth and marine life you can see. It is only 20 minutes from the harbour to the Zenobia dive site.
Dive number 1!
The first dive covers the rear of the wreckage including the propeller, rear doors, cargo hold and cargo deck. As you first descend onto the wreck you will drop onto the starboard side at 18m. The side of the wreck (now the top) is covered in algae which make its a great feeding spot for wrasse and sea cucumbers. You will also see grouper resting on the wreckage and large schools of sea bream.
The propeller is at 24m at the back of the wreck and is still in perfect condition. This is a great place to get some photos! From there we will drop behind the wreck, through the loading doors and then towards the cargo section. The cargo section is the deepest part of this dive at 30m (or 40m for those with the deep specialty). The trucks that were once chained to the deck have now fallen and lay in a stack on the sea bed. Many of these trucks still have cargo inside! There is often a loggerhead turtle roaming this area of the wreck.
During the surface interval our team will provide you with water and light nibbles, there is also tea and coffee available onboard. You will spend an hour and a half at the surface in between dives, this is a great time to chat to other divers or find out about our other great dive sites!
Dive number 2!
During the second dive you will cover the remainder of the wreck, including the lifeboat section, anchor, cafeteria and saloon area. This dive is also offered as a partial penetration dive for those divers that would like to see inside of the wreck! The lifeboat section is beginning to crumble after over 40 years under the sea but offers great photos and refuge for marine life. You will often find barracuda hiding amongst the ropes and broken boats.
The first area of penetration is the wheel house, this area has large windows which have all been popped out so divers can enter safely. You will exit the bridge at around 27m via one of the windows and head towards the anchor. The anchor is still attached to the bow of the wreckage next to the winch and is absolutely huge! The second are of penetration is the cafeteria, once inside you can still see the coffee machine attached to the breakfast bar. The cafeteria continue through to the accommodation but we will exit through the large windows in the ceiling. The last section of the dive is a favourite for many divers. Inside one of the funnels is a large air pocket with two openings. If you and your buddy both put your heads inside the pocket you can speak to each other through your regulators at 24m!
Following the second dive you will disassemble all of your equipment and the BBQ lunch will be ready! Enjoy your lunch as you head back towards Larnaca Marina. You will then load all of the equipment back into the car or bus before returning to Paphos.
Once you are back at Cydive you dive guide will assist you in filling out your logbooks and help you identify all of the marine life you have seen on the dives. You will get back to Paphos at around 15:30/16:00 (depending on traffic) and should be finished by 16:30.