Darwin Harbour

Darwin Harbour is basically a muddy tidal estuary with crocodiles, box jellyfish, unusually poor viz and tidal rips to deal with. It does however, have a large number of wrecked vessels and aircraft, most of which are of second world war vintage.

Dive Locations in Darwin Harbour

Zealandia

Zealandia A converted passenger liner of 6,683 tonnes sunk not far from Fort Hill Wharf. After being hit by two bombs, she sank leaving only the tops of her masts visible. Substantial quantities of steel were salvaged by the Japanese in 1959, but a lot of wreckage remains. Max. Depth: 18 metres

29/01/2015 07:01 hrs
by
trimixguy

USAT Meigs

USAT Meigs An American transport of 11,358 displacement largely salvaged by the Japanese in 1959. She was the largest vessel in Darwin Harbor and during the attack came under continuous fire. Amazingly only two of her crew of 66 were killed. The tops of several trucks protrude from the silt and a Bren gun carrier … Continue reading USAT Meigs

29/01/2015 07:00 hrs
by
trimixguy

USS Peary

An American destroyer of 1190 tonne displacement attacked whilst at anchor with the loss of her captain, all officers except one, and 80 of her crew. She sank by her bow still firing her bow gun. Some of the wreckage was salvaged by a Japanese salvage company in 1959 but interesting portions remain. Plentiful fish … Continue reading USS Peary

29/01/2015 07:00 hrs
by
trimixguy

Tank Landing Barge

Tank Landing Barge A small wreck, largely intact, sitting upright with its landing ramp down. Not large enough to hold interest for long but an ideal second dive for the dive site collector. Situated south-west of the Zealandia the same distance from Fort Hill Wharf. Max. Depth: 19 metres

29/01/2015 06:59 hrs
by
trimixguy

Song Saigon

Song Saigon Sunk in October 1983 to initiate the creation of an artificial reef. It was a steel hulled fishing boat used by Vietnamese refugees escaping to Australia in the early 1980’s. It is now well covered by marine life and sits upright on the bottom. Max. Depth: 25 metres

29/01/2015 06:59 hrs
by
trimixguy

Pipeline Reef

Pipeline Reef This was the third site laid down in the area and consists of hundreds of tonnes of concrete pipes. Yet to be dived regularly, in time it should be a great home for fish and equal in interest to the other dive sites of the area Max. Depth: 25 metres

29/01/2015 06:59 hrs
by
trimixguy

Mauna Loa

Mauna Loa Another American transport similar in appearance to the Meigs with a displacement of 5, 436 tonne. Thirty five of the crew of thirty eight survived after she was hit in an open hatch by two bombs, caught fire, broke her back, then sank by the stern. Like the Meigs, she has some interesting … Continue reading Mauna Loa

29/01/2015 06:59 hrs
by
trimixguy

Marchart III

Marchart 3 The crown of the Fenton Patches artificial reef complex. Formerly a standby vessel for oil exploration rigs, this wreck was towed out and sunk for the benefit of the many fishing and diving enthusiasts. Fantastic fish life and excellent visibility are commonplace. Max. Depth: 28 metres

29/01/2015 06:58 hrs
by
trimixguy

Mandorah Queen

Mandorah Queen A small passenger ferry plying the waters between Stokes Hill Wharf and Mandorah before the cyclone of 1974. Its remains play host to the large Jewfish every angler loves to catch. An excellent dive, but this wreck is fast disappearing under sand. Max. Depth: 18 metres

29/01/2015 06:58 hrs
by
trimixguy

Kelat

Kelat A coal carrying vessel sunk towards the back of the harbor. Quite an enjoyable and interesting dive with good fish life being the main attraction. Large lumps of coal surround the wreckage. Max. Depth: 15 metres

29/01/2015 06:57 hrs
by
trimixguy

John Holland Barge

John Holland Barge A disused barge from this construction company sunk in the mid 80s to complement the Song Saigon. It is made up of large cylindrical pontoons which flipped over on sinking, causing one end to be perched off the bottom. Max. Depth: 25 metres

29/01/2015 06:57 hrs
by
trimixguy

Jabiru and Kookaburra

Jabiru and Kookaburra The final position was filled by these wrecks on 14th March 1995. They are also Chinese fishing vessels caught fishing illegally and able to be used as artificial reef material. Max. Depth: 28 metres

29/01/2015 06:57 hrs
by
trimixguy

Ham Luong

Ham Luong Another Vietnamese refugee boat, this time sunk in 1986. It sits upright on the bottom and completes a triangle with Song Saigon and John Holland Barge. Although very small (about 15 metres), it offers great fish life, particularly Jewfish. Max. Depth: 25 metres

29/01/2015 06:57 hrs
by
trimixguy

Galah and Heron

Galah and Heron Another site consisting of a pair of Chinese fishing boats confiscated for illegal fishing in Australian waters. Sunk on 14th March 1995, this site will no doubt be much visited in the near future. Max. Depth: 28 metres

29/01/2015 06:56 hrs
by
trimixguy

East Point Artificial Reef

East Point Artificial Reef This site was originally made up of a barge that broke up on sinking, forming a low profile unattractive to fish. It was added to in August 1995 by two boat hulls, a concrete agitator, a bottle washer, and other bits and pieces. It now has excellent fish life. Max. Depth: … Continue reading East Point Artificial Reef

29/01/2015 06:56 hrs
by
trimixguy

Dieman

Dieman A fishing vessel sunk N-W of Mandorah in less than 12 metres of water. This is a popular wreck with divers due to its ‘normal’ orientation, therefore ease of navigation. Usually blessed with loads of fish life, particularly large rock cod Max. Depth: 12 metres

29/01/2015 06:56 hrs
by
trimixguy

Cockatoo

Cockatoo Another confiscated Chinese fishing boat sunk in position No. 5 at Fenton Patches. These ships were permitted to be used as artificial reef material due to their solid timber construction. Sunk on 8th March 1995, they may later be joined by Albatross. Max. Depth: 28 metres

29/01/2015 06:55 hrs
by
trimixguy

Catalina Flying Boat

Catalina Flying Boat Several flying boats were sunk in the harbor during the war. The fascination lies in figuring out what might have happened to them 50 years ago, and in looking at the wide variety of fish that have made them their home. Max. Depth: 9 metres

29/01/2015 06:55 hrs
by
trimixguy

The Bus Stop

Bus Stop Position No. 2 of the Fenton Patches complex is a collection of boat parts, bus shelters and tyres. Located one nautical mile from Marchart 3, the Bus Stop is buoyed and easy to find. As at Marchart 3, fantastic fish life with schools of Jewfish in their hundreds. Max. Depth: 28 metres

29/01/2015 06:55 hrs
by
trimixguy

Brolga and Eagle

Brolga and Eagle This site consists of a pair of timber hulled Chinese fishing vessels code named Brolga and Eagle after confiscation by Australian authorities for illegal fishing. Sunk on 8th March 1995, it is anticipated that fish will find this wreckage as attractive as Marchart 3. Max. Depth: 28 metres

29/01/2015 06:55 hrs
by
trimixguy

Brolga and Eagle

29/01/2015 06:54 hrs
by
trimixguy

Bellbird

Bellbird A fishing trawler which was one of several vessels that capsized in the mountainous seas whipped up by Cyclone Tracy on Christmas Eve. Once you can orientate yourself to the way the wreckage lies, it is a very interesting dive. Max. Depth: 16 metres

29/01/2015 06:54 hrs
by
trimixguy

Wet Caves and Shipwrecks Australia