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Gulen - Shipwreck's Paradise of the North

3 years ago
Scuba Diving
2 727
Gulen - Shipwreck's Paradise of the North
Home to the well known fjord in and the longest in the world. World-class diving spots. Fantastic marine life and huge number of wrecks. Rich wildlife, beautiful landscape or the magic northern light. Yes, I am talking about Norway, to be precise Gulen. Only a few destinations can compare to Gulen when it comes to diving; both underwater world and the land offer fantastic views. Every year divers from all around the globe travel to its coast to find out whether Gulen is worth its reputation. Indeed, it is and here is why.

Norwegian west coast was a strategic area during World War II leaving big wrecks behind. Moreover, Gulen has over 1500 islands to explore so the diving possibilities are really endless here. Both marine life and the wrecks are fantastic, and they are on all kinds of depths. Kelp forest, soft coral reefs, wrecks or excellent macro diving (the house reef has more nudibranchs than anywhere else in Norway) - all can be found here.

Having a a huge playground with dozens of dive sites in their backyard, Gulen Dive Resort is probably the most famous dive center of the area. Being situated on the western coast, north of Bergen, a city surrounded by mountains and fjords, including Sognefjord, the country’s longest and deepest, the resort has  been diving both in the fjords and out on the coast, both less than half an hour away with their fast RIB. Being the only full Tec resort in north of Europe (with over 10 years experience within that field), with more than 20-25 different wrecks  in all depths, there is no other choice for divers than choose those guys, provided you want to dive with the best. Being technical divers themselves they know the area like the palm of their hand.


Gulen Dive Resort


Photo: © Christian Skauge


Photo: © Wenche Strand

Frankenwald

Gulen Dive Resort offer 20+ wrecks and several of them are truly world class. To start with, anyone who's been to Norway will probably recommend Frankenwald, voted Norway's Best Wreck in 2009 by the Norwegian dive magazine. Although it's located a little off the beaten track, the wreck is, as everyone says, worth to see as it's almost entirely intact.


Frankenwald's pride: the majestic bow at 34 meteres. Photo: © Alex Dawson


Photo: © Alex Dawson

Standing upright at 44 meters depth, this 122 meter long German freighter is a truly magnificent sight. She's still in extremely good condition after over 70 years at the bottom of the sea, and several dives are necessary to explore all her secrets. The deck lies at 24-34 meters, and this dive is suitable for anyone with a little experience and an Advanced Open Water certification.

KNM Uller

Those who'd like to go deeper and have the right equipment, training and attitude, Minelayer KNM Uller sitting at 55m might be a good tip. The wreck has been actually discovered only recently (in 2009) which makes it for a unique experience and special feel with the past. Uller was initially a fiat-iron gunboat and her huge cannon pointing towards the surface is the main attraction.


It's KNM Uller's over-sized cannon and mines that draw divers to 55 meters deep sandy bottom the wreck lies on. Photo: © Håkon Sevheim

Ferndale and Parat

Another popular site is Ferndale and Parat with depth ranging from 7 to 60m. This twin wreck spot (four hours after Parat sank, Ferndale followed) is suitable for both technical and sports divers and also photographers. After all, how often do you get to dive two WWII wrecks simultaneously? On top of that, it's huge and views are just spectacular. This is definitely one of the highlights of the area.


Spectacular view of two wrecks on top of each other. Wreck diving can't get better than this. Photo: © Wenche Strand

Much has been written about Gulen's wrecks and there are tons of others worth to check: S/S Havda, Welhaim, Solvang or SS Lynx to name but a few. However, I am sure that better than below lines is the real experience and for that reason - and plenty of others - you should check Gulen out. You will be not disappointed, that's my promise.

Zdroj:
www.gulendykkesenter.no
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