Karwela, Hephaestus & Fessej Rock

964.00 full boat
The trip is for 6 divers and 2 guests

Need assistance? Contact us.


Category

    Dives in this trip:

    • Certification: Advanced
    • Depth: 15 meters
    • Dive type: Adventure dive
    • Certification: Advanced
    • Depth: 42 meters
    • Dive type: Wreck
    • Certification: Advanced
    • Depth: 30 meters
    • Dive type: Reef

    Description of a MV Karwela, MT Hephaestus & Fessej Rock dive tour:


    History and Adventure

    Sunken ships are not just remnants of the past. Each wreck tells a unique story, often involving dramatic circumstances like storms, wartime battles, or old age.

    All shipwrecks become artificial reefs over time. They provide a structure for coral and other marine life to grow, creating new habitats and supporting biodiversity. This transformation turns wrecks into bustling underwater ecosystems, making them fascinating sites for observing.

    Wreck diving offers unique challenges and learning opportunities. Navigating a shipwreck’s interior requires advanced diving skills and careful planning. These dives allow divers to develop and hone their technical diving abilities in a complex and dynamic environment​​.

    MT Hephaestus

    The MT Hephaestus wreck, situated off the coast of Xatt l-Ahmar in Gozo, Malta, presents an intriguing dive site for divers. The ship found its final resting place on the seabed at a depth of 46 meters after running aground off Qawra Point during a heavy storm on February 10, 2018.

    The wreck of Hephaestus is noted for its accessibility both from the shore and by boat, with the use of an underwater scooter recommended for shore dives. The site offers a blend of adventurous diving experiences, featuring a significant depth range of 35 – 47 meters.

    The dive offers a glimpse into the ship’s structure, where divers can explore the engine room and observe the machinery left undisturbed. The area around the wreck attracts a variety of marine life, including species like barracuda, grouper, moray, octopus, and stingray, enhancing the underwater experience.

    The MT Hephaestus wreck adds a unique dimension to Gozo’s diving landscape, offering an exceptional experience for those who seek adventure and are equipped to handle the depth and technical aspects of the dive.

    MV Karwela wreck

    The MV Karwela wreck, located off the south coast of Gozo, Malta, is a popular dive site known for its rich history and unique underwater structure. Originally launched in 1957 as the MS Frisia II, the vessel was later renamed to MV Karwela after being transferred to Malta in 1986 by Comino Marina Ltd. It served as a passenger ferry, transporting tourists around the Maltese islands until 2002.

    The Karwela wreck was intentionally scuttled in August 2006 along with the MV Cominoland as part of an artificial reef project for scuba divers. The wreck lies at a depth of 42 meters, immediately in front of the kitting-up area at Xatt L-Aħmar. It is known for its impressive size, measuring 50.31 meters in length and 8.50 meters in width.

    Divers can access the wreck from the shore at Xatt l-Aħmar, following a descent down the reef to the drop-off, where the forward section of the Karwela becomes visible. The wreck is sheltered from northern winds, and the shallow reef nearby is ideal for decompression and safety stops.

    The Karwela wreck is celebrated for its several open passageways and swim-throughs, making it a safe and fascinating site for penetration diving. The wreck is populated with algae, marine invertebrates, and sea firs along the rails, which attract nudibranchs. Large spiral tube worms are also common in the area, and divers might spot sea horses. Inside the wreck, divers can explore the wooden deck, steel staircase, bridge, and ship’s bow, which are all photogenic and illuminated by natural light through windows.

    Fessej Rock

    Fessej Rock, also known as Black Rock or Skoll tal-Fessej, is a notable dive site located near Gozo. This prominent geological feature rises about 15 meters above the water level and is situated approximately 350 meters southeast of Il-Kantra. It’s known for its dark and imposing appearance.

    The diving experience at Fessej Rock typically involves circumnavigating the rock along a wall, which is dominated by huge boulders and interesting swim-throughs. This offers a unique underwater landscape for divers to explore. The dive site is accessible both by boat and from the shore with DPV. The average depth around the rock is about 30 meters, but it can extend to over 50 meters in certain areas, making it more suitable for advanced divers.

    The marine life around Fessej Rock is diverse and includes species such as dusky groupers, barracudas, black squat lobsters, amberjacks, tube worms, lobsters, common octopuses, tunas, dentex, and saddled breams. The visibility in the water averages around 20 meters but can vary between 10 and 30 meters depending on conditions.

    The site is not only renowned for its natural beauty and marine biodiversity but also for the interesting rock formations and boulders surrounding the main rock, which create a fascinating underwater topography.

    Travel Overview:

    Here’s a brief overview of the main stages of the tour and the experiences awaiting participants:

    • Boarding the boat at the agreed berth: Participants are greeted at the berth, where they board a comfortable boat specially equipped for diving.
    • Unpacking and assembling equipment: Divers prepare their gear, checking it for safety and functionality.
    • Sea journey with a view of Malta from the sea: The journey starts with a scenic boat trip, revealing stunning views of the cities of Malta, Comino & Gozo.
    • Briefing on the dive MT Hephaestus.
    • Up to 45-minute dive: This dive will allow participants to familiarise themselves with the ship MT Hephaestus.
    • Surface interval with tea or coffee.
    • Briefing on the dive MV Karwela wreck: Instructors provide information about the dive and the history of MV Karwela wreck.
    • Up to  45-minute dive: This dive allows participants to explore the MV Karwela wreck.
    • Surface interval with a snack: Participants relax on board, replenishing energy with a light snack.
    • Briefing for the dive at Fessej Rock: Instructors prepare the group for the dive into the Fessej Rock.
    • A 45-minute dive: The third dive offers a unique experience of exploring underwater.
    • Return to the sea with discussions of impressions and viewing photos, videos: Upon returning to the boat, participants share their experiences and review photos and videos taken.
    • Packing and stowing equipment: After completing all dives, divers gather and pack their equipment.
    • Disembarking from the boat at the agreed-upon berth: Participants return to the berth, concluding their unforgettable adventure.

    Every dive around these wrecks feels like a privilege – a chance to step into a different world, where history and nature intertwine in the most unexpected ways. It’s an experience that stays with you long after you’ve toured.

    Malta offers various options suitable for any budget and preferences. Here are key aspects regarding accommodation in Malta:

    • Hotels: From budget-friendly to luxurious options.
    • Apartments and Aparthotels: Provide more independence and convenience for tourists who prefer to cook or need extra space.
    • Boutique Hotels and Guesthouses: Small, often themed or unique, offering a more individual and cozy lodging experience.
    • Hostels: Popular among youth and budget travelers, offering shared rooms and basic amenities.

    These dishes not only delight your taste buds but also introduce you to Malta’s culinary traditions. Dietary catering is also available in Malta directly on the boat.

    1. Fenek (Rabbit Stew):
      • Traditional dish often stewed or baked with wine, garlic, and herbs.
      • Considered Malta’s national dish, known for its tender taste and flavorful sauce.
    2. Pastizzi:
      • Flaky pastries with ricotta or pea filling.
      • Popular Maltese treat, perfect for a light snack.
    3. Aljotta (Fish Soup):
      • Maltese fish soup with various seafood, tomatoes, and aromatic herbs.
      • A Mediterranean dish with a rich flavor.
    4. Timpana (Baked Pasta):
      • Baked pasta with meat sauce, often including layers of eggs and cheese.
      • A hearty and nutritious dish reflecting Italian influence in Maltese cuisine.
    5. Gbejniet Moqli (Fried Maltese Cheese):
      • Fried Maltese cheese often served as a snack.
      • A unique local cheese that pairs well with light wines.
    6. Kapunata (Maltese Ratatouille):
      • Maltese version of ratatouille, including eggplant, peppers, capers, and olives.
      • Ideal as a side dish or light vegetable salad.
    7. Maltese Bread (Ħobża tal-Malti):
      • Crispy outside, soft inside bread, often served with tomato paste, olive oil, and various fillings.
      • Known for its freshness and taste, a staple of Maltese cuisine.

    Taxis:

      • Available in all major tourist areas. Prices may be fixed or metered.

    Taxi Booking Apps:

      • Services like Bolt and eCabs are popular and convenient. Taxis are typically available in under 5 minutes on average.

    Car Rental:

      • Ideal for those wanting to explore more remote areas and holding an international driver’s license.
      • Malta drives on the left hand side of the road.

    This briefing covers essential safety aspects and must be observed by all passengers.

    1. Life Jackets:
      • Always wear a life jacket. Ensure you know where they are located. When wearing, make sure it fits well and is fastened.
    2. Onboard Safety:
      • When moving around the boat, hold onto reliable supports. Avoid standing or walking on the edges of the boat.
    3. Captain’s Instructions:
      • Listen carefully to and follow the captain’s instructions on the boat.
    4. Emergency Equipment:
      • Familiarize yourself with the location of lifebuoys, fire extinguishers, and signaling devices.
    5. Precautionary Measures:
      • Do not jump into the water while the boat is moving. Avoid consuming excessive alcohol during the trip, monitor your condition.
    6. Weather Conditions:
      • Be prepared for changes in weather. Follow additional instructions in case of worsening weather conditions.
    7. Emergency Situations:
      • In case of an emergency, remain calm and follow the captain’s instructions.

    Important

    If you need a diving partner, guide, or instructor, we can help you find someone. You can also rent the following equipment from our diving partners:

    Scuba tanks and weights

    Dive gear

    Underwater scooter (Diver propulsion vehicle)

    Rent diving equpment

    Dive trip locations:


    The boat:

    Each and every dive trip on our boat includes the following extras:

    Fresh water

    Sunshade

    Shower

    Water/tea/coffee

    What to bring with you:


    Towel, water, and a personal first aid kit; Order catering from the “Local Cuisine” menu; Order hot drinks for the return trip to the port after diving; For the winter period, bring: Wind and rain-resistant clothing; A hat or headband to protect your head and ears from the wind.

    Join Us!

    This diving you will experience stunning underwater landscapes and also unforgettable moments aboard our boat. It’s the perfect blend of adventure, comfort, and exclusivity that every passionate diver should experience.

    Book your place on a boat:

    The trip is for 6 divers and 2 guests

    964.00 full boat


    Need assistance? Contact us.