The archaeological dives in Cavtat are definitely some of the more extraordinary dives I’ve done. When visiting Dubrovnik, Croatia as a scuba diver make sure to drive to Cavtat to go dive with very very very old pots, also known as amphorae and pithoi, which lie there since almost 2000 years.
From Cavtat it is possible to dive one of the biggest amphora sites under water. The Greeks founded a city called Epidaurus where today’s Cavtat is situated. The city was an important port for trading at the time with several thousand inhabitants.
Find more information about how to get to Cavtat, water temperature and so one have a look at the guide.
The 1800 amphorae have been used to transport oil and wine. It is assumed that these were on a ship which was caught in a storm and sunk around 300-400 AD. The wood of the ship is gone of course, only an anchor was found close to the site. The main area is in a cage as the amphorae would be worth quite some money on the black market….
One of the dive shop owners discovered the amphorae after the war in the 1990ies. Many more amphorae and pieces of such can be found in the area. The amphorae at the dive site were examined by archaeologists and still some number tags from this work can be found around the sites, meanwhile most of them are covered in algae and coral.
The dive site is reached after a 10 minutes boat ride. Besides the ancient pottery it is possible to find some marine life hiding between the amphorae like morays, lion fish, stone fish and some other small fish and critters, I’ve even seen some nudis.
At another dive site close to the amphorae (which is the name of the dive site as well) several huge pithoi can be found. These are huge storage containers which were most probably used to transport water on the ships.
On both dive sites the boat will be anchored close to the site/on the site and the line can be used as a reference for descent and ascent. The dives are fairly short due to the depth (27 m, 30 m).
In addition the region offers wall and wreck dives. With regards to marine life mostly small fish and critters can be found as well as octopus.