Jervis bay has arguably the best diving south of the Great Barrier Reef. It is a large, safe harbor, protected by the towering stone cliffs on the seaside that sink deep into the ocean.
This part of the coastline is close to the continental shelf, with clear water coming up from the deep ocean and no large rivers to dirty the area, visibility averages at around 15 to 20 meters throughout the year.
There is a permanent breeding seal colony here with groups to the north and south of the heads. Whales regularly stop in to rest here as they move up and down the coast, and there are multiple marine sanctuary’s and a vast national park in the area to support the abundant marine life.
Because of the shape of the bay and headlands, Jervis Bay is diveable in all but the worst weather. There are over 65 different dive sites both inside and outside the heads to choose from.
There are sheer soft coral walls, multiple caves and swim throughs, wrecks including planes and ships, shark nurseries, macro life and miles of rocky coastline to explore for both recreational and technical diving.
Port Jackson Sharks
Jervis Bay is one of the largest Port Jackson Shark breeding areas in Australia. Port Jackson sharks begin to enter the Bay and surrounds in large numbers from August to November, their peak breeding season is September and October where they can carpet the ground inside and outside the Bay itself. The female sharks lay a pair of eggs each fortnight, and push them up under rock crevasses and into small gaps under rock ledges. These eggs will be found around the Bay for months after breeding season.
The Seal Colonies
Jervis Bay has two seal hangouts which are part of our breeding colony, this year we counted 24 new pups joing the almost 200 seals that live here all year round. These sites are generally divable from April to December because of their breeding habits and prevaling winds, although the colonies are there all year round. Diving with the seals is amazing but even over seal season, the boat skipper will make the decision depending on conditions, weather and how the colonies have been behaving recently as too whether we will dive with them.
Critters and Macro Life
We are home to a vast quantity of macro life, from Nudibranch to sea spiders, Weedy Sea Dragons and pipefish are endemic to the region. There are a number of varieties of pipefish that are endagered that are found here, there is also several sea horses such as the Eastern Big Belly. There are also vast numbers of soft corals, anemonies and fans. Rare fish include the Eastern Blue Devil Fish, Spiney Garland and the Red Indian Fish. if you are an avid macro diver we have an on staff marine biologist who can assist you not only with idetification but also finding the critters. Feel free to join her for a camera dive.
There are two main wrecks, the Firefly a small fighter plan sitting in around 12m, due to its location visability on the plane is generally poor, but the main features such as the props, wings and tail are all clearly visable. One of the main features of the firefly is that the baby PJ's hang around it. there are usually up to 20 there in peak breading season. The other major wreck Depth 28m; the remains of a 40m, 178 tonne steamer which crashed into the Drum in 1915 and has since settled into the sandline at 28m. Her ribs, boiler, anchor winch, and props are all viable out of the sand. and she is home to a large macro population especially around the boilers and props.
If you are an advanced snorkeller, or a free diver you can come out with us on one of our boats. We will choose a dive site that is suitable for your skills and under the careful watch of the boat skipper you can explore the area. Because of the visibility you will often see many of the areas pelargic marine life swimming below you including grey nurse sharks, wobbygongs and PJ's. If conditions permit we can take you to the seals, and you can watch them swim and play around you.
What ever your diving preference, we have it check out our list of dive sites.