This is a unique dive as it is a dive on the wreck of the world’s first every aircraft carrier. Diving on aircraft carriers is normally very unique and provides lots of things for divers to do, and as this was the first one produced this is a remarkable dive.
The wreck was sunk in 1942 by the Japanese Navy and the boat sunk in less than an hour. The wreck was largely unknown due to the Sri Lankan civil war that raged up until 2009. It has only been since then that the wreck has been dived and fully explored. The boat is located on a small island that is reached by a ferry taken 7 hours out of the city. The journey though is worth it as the dive is really is unforgettable.
The visibility normally surpasses 30 metres and this allows divers to see many parts of the boat from the surface. The wreck drops down to around 52 metres so some parts are not accessible within the reaches of recreational diving. The guns, the flight control tower, and the main part of the hull all lie at the level of the deck, which is at around 20 metres. Most of the boat is now covered in different types of coral. The propeller is buried in the sand and so only partially visible. Many parts of the ship are still intact including parts of the flight deck, the control tower where divers can see the gauges and other fittings, and the emergency lights with their light bulbs still screwed in.
The wreck is also now home to a huge variety of marine life. Jacks, groupers, and large tuna all gather in schools around the deck and one grouper has grown to around 2 metres in length. After more than 70 years underwater, it is easy to see that this wreck has been taken over by underwater marine life.