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Diving at dive site Qawra Reef
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The reef itself actually starts just before the L-Cave at Qawra point, goes out about 300m to the wreck of the Imperial Eagle, and than a further 300m to the main part of the reef itself. This I personally consider to be Malta’s most beautiful reef.
The boat anchor can be put down on 15m very close to the edge of the reef. Going over the drop-off and following the wall to the right, you will see a series of caves going inside and under the reef. The entrances are quite wide and the caves are not deep and very safe. This is the place to find Spiny or Slipper Lobsters, Hermit Crabs, Nudibranchs and spider crabs. The bottom of the caves is sloping down from 29 to 33m and is made of fine sand.
Outside of the caves it goes down to 40m and more, and there are huge boulders around which a grouper or two can be spotted. It is also here that one can see the now very rare Axinella verrucosa (Mediterranean 'finger' sponge).
Back above the reef, one can see large shoals of damsel fish snapping at the various columns of air bubbles that are coming through the roof of the caves. Groupers, octopus, morays, parrot fish, breams, wrasses, blennies, slugs, amberjacks and also barracudas can be seen here. The latter can be found in any number from one to a few hundreds.
This is the only place in Malta were I have personally dived with over a thousand barracudas, a Mediterranean Manta ray, 5 Trigger fish, a ramora and a giant spider crab. Pelagic fish like Dentex and Bonitos do occasionally show up as well.
WARNINGS: Keep your eyes on the depth, time and air supply. There can be occasional currents on top of the reef so use the anchor rope to descent and ascent.
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