Germany may not be that famous for diving, but it offers tons of diving opportunities with crystal clear alpine lakes, sunken cities, WWII wrecks, Baltic Sea dives and more. New divers will enjoy the variety of shallow dive sites, including accessible wrecks and calm lakes, while experienced divers will explore old quarries, deep lakes, and dark tunnels. Grab your drysuit and read on to find out more.
10 great places to dive in Germany
With its fairytale villages and pastel-colored medieval towns, it’s hard to take your eyes off northern Germany’s top highlights long enough to explore the underwater world. But if you do, you will be rewarded with crystal clear alpine lakes and exciting Baltic Sea dives.
With easy access to sea and ocean diving, Northern Germany is a playground for divers and is home to numerous wrecks as well as old man-made quarries, reservoirs and picturesque high mountain lakes. Dive in and discover artificial reefs with a variety of fish and vibrant flora.
1. The Baltic Sea
The Baltic Sea is littered with wrecks, many of which are accessible from Germany’s coasts. the Helland, an 18 meter long steel yacht is a popular shallow wreck and lies just off the coast of Kiel. Throw a pin at a map of the area and it will likely land on a wreck dive site. Covered with sea anemones and water lilies that Three-master is a beautiful wreck that lies around 27 meters deep and is home to numerous cod in summer. With a length of around 100 meters, the Dock gate is an impressive wreck to look into and is home to abundant Baltic life.
If you’ve got into wreck diving, take an excursion too Svaneke lighthouse for the opportunity to dive granite canyons and eye-catching rock formations at an old, abandoned harbor.
2. schweriner Lake
This glacier tongue lake is one of the most popular diving spots in northern Germany and offers a variety of interesting wrecks. There are deep-sunken engine and sailboat wrecks as well as the wreck of a MiG-17 aircraft of the Russian crew and an impressive 100-year-old cargo sailor, the Glider.
New divers are well catered for with shallower car and boat wrecks, and fun installations including a phone booth, benches, and signs.
3. SundhÃ¤user Lake
The SundhÃ¤user See is a unique and fascinating experience. Created specifically for scuba divers, this sunken city is full of interesting features including oak sculptures that are scattered all over the city. The good view of the water adds to the attractiveness of this special place and the water is full of life.
4. Stechliner See
If you are looking for a dive site for the whole family, go diving at the GroÃŸer Stechlin. This lake is the second deepest in Brandenburg and is located in a pretty nature reserve that offers seemingly endless opportunities for diving, hiking, biking, and swimming. There are plenty of accommodation options for families and even children’s camps. The abundant fish life in the lake will keep divers entertaining all day long while non-divers enjoy their adventures on land.
The peaceful turquoise water of the GroÃŸer Wummsee, a lake in Brandenburg, is enough to tempt any diver. If you love fauna and flora and quiet diving without the crowds, go scuba diving there. This lake is known for its lush freshwater plants and fish, as well as two islands in the lake. The water quality of the lake is excellent, it is drinking water and no boats are allowed.
Although Central Germany is not internationally known for its diving, it offers a hit with its interesting mix of WWII history and varied dive sites. There are sparkling lakes surrounded by emerald green forests, challenging flooded tunnels, and watertight underground factories with massive caverns to explore. With clear water and a diverse underwater topography, diving in Central Germany is a real insider tip.
Lake Sorpe, also known as Lake Sorpe or Sorpe Dam, is a deep reservoir that offers a variety of water sports, including excellent diving. Popular in summer, it is a great place to go on vacation with family or a group of friends, scuba diving and relaxing in the sun by the lake.
With its mix of depths and underwater topographies, Sorpesee is ideal for new and experienced divers. Go night diving, drift along a sheer wall that is up to 34 meters deep, explore wrecks and linger over lush seagrass meadows full of fish life.
7th Diving lake Horka
Have you tried geocaching before? Expand your cache hunt and try the addicting thrill of underwater geocaching at Lake Horka. This former mining quarry is popular with divers thanks to its unusually high water visibility and has an underwater forest and cache. To find out more, you have to dive up to 30 meters deep at the old quarry pump house.
The Geiseltal, the largest reservoir in Germany, covers a huge 18 square kilometers and offers numerous diving spots in calm waters. Excellent visibility makes it easy to explore the deeper dive sites on this lake, which are up to over 35 meters deep. With both land and boat diving, you can experience the sunken forests, gorges and the flourishing underwater life of the Geiseltal in no time at all.
You can cross many of Germany’s most famous sights from your wish list when visiting southern Germany. With the Black Forest, the Bavarian Alps, the Danube and numerous historic castles – to name just a few of the highlights – it is a fantastic destination. As far as diving in southern Germany is concerned, it is definitely one of the best diving spots in Europe.
9. Lake Constance
Lake Constance, the second largest freshwater lake in Western Europe, is 63 km long and offers an impressive sight and is a must for a fish-rich dive site. The lake is a popular summer destination and is surrounded by charming resorts, vineyards and views as far as the Alps.
The underwater cliffs and the sloping mountain slopes of the lake form an impressive backdrop for the numerous dive sites that can be found there. You are spoiled for choice with over two dozen dive sites including the Law. This is one of the most beautiful freshwater wrecks you will ever see and is around 38 meters deep. She is also one of the oldest paddle steamers in the world and sank in 1864.
The water of Lake Constance fed by the Rhine is cold. So pack a thick wetsuit to enjoy the excellent dives there.
Another breathtaking place for diving in Germany is the Walchensee, an alpine lake in the Bavarian pre-Alps with crystal clear azure blue water and numerous diving spots. Take a dip in the lake’s cold waters and find wrecked boats and cars, including a VW Beetle, sheer rock faces, giant boulders, and sunken trees. All are home to the diverse fish life for which this lake is famous.
What experience do you need to go diving in Germany?
With so many different travel destinations, Germany is suitable for all levels of diving experience.
When is the best time to dive in Germany?
Summer is the most popular time for diving in Germany, but you can dive there all year round. Visit in winter and you can even go ice diving.
What marine life can you see while diving in Germany?
There is an amazing variety of fish in Germany’s waters, including carp, pike, perch, barbel, catfish, sturgeon, salmon and trout. There are huge eels, many crustaceans and rich underwater flora at many dive sites. Go scuba diving in northern Germany and see a wide variety of marine life in the Baltic Sea.
Kathryn Curzon, shark conservationist and dive travel writer for International diving schools (SSI), wrote this article.