Shipwreck Diving: The waters around Bermuda are well known and very popular due to the hundreds of sunken ships that can be explored along the ocean floor, immortalized by the 1977 diving film “The Deep”. Although most of these remains can be explored by certified divers through organized and guided dives, divers must have a relatively high skill level to visit some of the most challenging and deeper boats. With approximately 400 different shipwrecks to explore, Bermuda waters are the destination of divers to dream of. The remains date back to the 15th century and bear a rich history. For example, The Blanche King, an American schooner launched in 1887, was traveling to Bermuda from Virginia when it sank in 1920 after hitting a coral reef. King Blanche is now located 35 feet below the surface of the ocean. Christopher Columbus is Bermuda’s largest shipwreck, measuring 499 feet long and three decks high. That luxury Spanish ocean liner operated between New York and Central America, and was shipwrecked in October 1936, when it crashed into a coral reef. Today, she lies in 55 feet of water and has attracted large groupers and a variety of reef fish. The remains of The Christopher Columbus are scattered in 100,000 square feet of seabed, offering endless hours of fascinating exploration. Another interesting shipwreck is The Maria Celestia. one of Bermuda’s most mysterious shipwrecks: a Confederate blockade corridor with multiple identities. In an effort to confuse and evade monitoring by Union spies, this cunning ship operated under a variety of names: Marie Celeste, Mary Celeste and Bijou. Designed as a high-speed side steam engine, it was built in England and rented to the south during the American Civil War. He smuggled much-needed weapons, ammunition and food into Charleston harbor. The elegant 68.5M/225FT ship sank in 1864 after crashing into a reef near our south coast. The wreck is located in 17M /55FT of water with one of its paddle wheel frames upright as a miniature Ferris wheel. There are several companies that organize dives throughout the season, which runs from mid-March to November. Blue Water Divers and Watersports, for example, is Bermuda’s oldest dive operation. Certification courses are available, and approximately 22 shipwreck dives are offered through the company. Most dive organizations can provide complete diving equipment for all dives, courses and certification programs.