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Croatia, general divers info

Discussion in 'Central and Eastern Europe' started by Malisani, Jul 19, 2018.

  1. Malisani

    Malisani Angel Fish

    # of Dives: 0 - 24
    Location: Croatia
    I will try to write down some general divers info about Croatia, the rules, waters, temperature, waypoints, tides, waves, depths and other stuff for anyone wanting to come and experience the Adriatic sea.


    1. If you are diving with a diving center which will organize diving you will need:
    - your divers card from CMAS, PADI, SSI, NAUI, IANTD

    2. If you want to dive by yourself you will need
    - your divers card from CMAS, PADI, SSI, NAUI, IANTD
    - Ministry card from Harbor master (323 Euro per year sold in all Harbor master offices)

    Diving is not permitted at the following locations:
    1. In the areas of internal sea waters encompassing harbors, accesses to harbors, anchorage and the areas
    with a heavy traffic.
    2. In the strict and special sea reservates, natural parks and other protected sea and undersea areas.
    3. Near anchored warships and protected military facilities at the coastal edge on the distance of no less than 100 meters.
    4. Brijuni, Krka national parks.


    The Adriatic Sea has a very stable annual change of the surface temperature. The average annual temperature is 11°C. During the winter, the sea is the coldest and the surface temperature is about 7°C; very seldom, it can drop below that too. In the spring, the sea becomes warmer, and the surface temperature rises to 18°C. In the summer the surface of the sea reaches a very high temperature, of up to 22 to 25°C, and in the southern Adriatic and Istria up to 27°C. In the Adriatic, thermoclines, i.e. parts of the water column of the same temperature, are very well distinguished. The thermocline is most evident during the summer, and, in the winter, the isothermal process arises, i.e. equaling of the temperature throughout the water column. In the summer, we can notice the first thermocline at the depth of 3 to 5 m, the next one is at about 12 m, and yet another one at 18 metes, while below 30 m the temperature is mostly constant throughout the year


    In Northern Adriatic visibility is not as clear as in mid or south Adriatic
    because of influence of the river Po and flowering of the sea.
    In Mid and South Adriatic visibilities is excellent sometimes more than 50 meters


    Diving season starts during May and finishes in October, but the highest season is during July and August. Best months for divers which do not enjoy rushes and hard night life are during June & September.


    In the Adriatic, the high and low tides have relatively small amplitudes. In the southern part, the difference is rarely above some forty centimeters, while in the northern part it is somewhat bigger, so that it comes to 1 meter in Istria and the Gulf of Trieste. In some narrow channels and bays, the high tide can grow considerably during a strong sirocco. That phenomenon is characteristic for big and deep bays of the southern Adriatic. The tides are of a mixed type, which means that their rhythm is semidiurnal during the new and full moon and of a daily type during the first and the last quarter. Their amplitudes are very irregular.


    Sea currents occur under the influence of winds, the difference in pressure, temperature, and the differences in salinity. With respect to the direction, they can be horizontal or vertical. There are also bottom currents which appear as the consequence of moving of water from warmer areas to colder ones, during which the surface layer gets cold and descends towards the seabed. Currents are weakly observable in the Adriatic.The speed of currents changes in particular areas, but it also depends on time periods. The average speed of currents is about 0.5 knots, but they can also reach the speed of 4 knots.


    Waves occur primarily as the consequence of the blowing of winds. The bigger the reach, i.e. the surface across which the wind blows, the higher the waves will be. Their strength depends on the configuration and the exposure of the coast. In that way, mixing of the surface layer with water from the deep is enabled, and the interaction between the atmosphere and the sea. We distinguish the crest and the trough of a wave. The length of the wave is the distance between two troughs. Most often, heights of waves in the Adriatic are between 0.5 and 1.5 metres, and they very rarely exceed 5 metres.


    The area in which diving is performed must be visibly marked with an orange or red buoy or a diving flag. The maximum approved depth for sport and recreational diving is 40 meters


    BISAC - The British Sub - Aqua Club
    CMAS - World Underwater Federation (Confederation Mondiale des Activites Subaquatiques)
    IANTD - International Association of Nitrox and Technical Divers
    NAUI - National Association of Underwater Instructors
    PADI - Professional Association of Diving Instructors
    SSI - Scuba School International
    Temporary diving qualifications are not valid.


    Pula Obala maršala Tita 18 ++385 (0)52 222 037
    Rijeka Senjsko pristanište 3 ++385 (0)51 211 660
    Zadar Liburnska obala 8, P.P.226 ++385 (0)51 211 660
    Senj Obala kralja Zvonimira 12, P.P.1 ++385 (0)53 881 301
    Šibenik Obala oslobodenja 8, P.P.51 ++385 (0)22 217 378
    Split Obala Lazareta 1, P.P.31 ++385 (0)21 341 438
    Ploče Trg kralja Tomislava 24 ++385 (0)20 679 008
    Dubrovnik Obala S. Radica 37, P.P.31 ++385 (0)20 418 987


    ++385 (0)21 562- 035
    ++385 (0)21 562- 688
    ++385 (0)21 354- 511
    ++385 (0)21 361- 355

    ++385 (0)52 217- 877, mob :098/255 945, 098/219 225

    Length of the coast:
    5,835 km with 4,057 km of island coastline, islets and reefs.
    Number of islands, islets and reefs: 1,185. The largest islands are Krk, Cres and Brac. There are 66 inhabited islands.

    Money: Kuna .
    1 Euro = 7.5 kuna
    1 US $ = 6.5 Kuna (this is written and valid in July 2018)

    Credit cards: Most hotels, restaurants and shops accept credit cards (American Express, Diners Club, Eurocard/Mastercard and Visa).

    Electricity: 220V, 50Hz
    Water: Tap water is drinkable throughout Croatia.

    Country telephone code for Croatia is +385.
    Time zone: GMT plus one hour in winter and GMT plus two in summer.


    Because of Natural differences between North Adriatic, Mid Adriatic and South Adriatic, Croatia offers big variety of great places for diving.

    North Adriatic
    North Adriatic, because of river Po (which comes in to the Adriatic in Venice, Italy) which has during thousands of years been pumping sand and mud in to the sea, so the depths are low, mostly down to 40 meters which is great for wreck diving. The most famous wreck is for sure Baron Gauch of coast from Rovinj and Pula.
    Underwater nature is nice on some islands as Losinj where you can find lots of different interesting underwater spaces and also the last large community of good dolphins (tursiops truncatus) in the North Adriatic inhabits the waters of Losinj.

    Biggest problem in North Adriatic for divers is low visibility caused by flowering of the sea, which happens in some parts of the year.
    Best diving locations are fare from the diving centers so the boat trips to and from diving locations are up to one hour, but worth a trip.
    Most famous places to dive are Rovinj (cave in the island, Baron Gauch), Pula (National park Brioni, Baron Gauch), Lošinj (bio diversity, wracks, caves), Cres (wracks, caves).

    Mid Adriatic and South Adriatic
    From Kornati National park all the way down to Dubrovnik Adriatic is famous for huge dropoffs which on some places go from surface all the way down to more than 100 meters depth. For best diving sites you usually have to go on islands as Kornati, Vis, Korcula, Lastovo with the exception of coastal area of Rogoznica. On these cliffs there are huge number of caves, cracks, corals, Gorgonia fans and different fish life. You can also find a huge number of wrecks but only a smaller number is on accessible depths for recreational divers. Underwater visibility is much better than in North Adriatic sometimes up to 50 meters.

    Most famous places to dive are National park Kornati (dropoffs), Rogoznica(dropoffs, eco dive, wrecks, caves), Hvar (dropoffs), Vis (dropoffs, wrecks, caves), Lastovo (dropoffs, wrecks, caves), Korcula (dropoffs, wrecks, caves), National park Mljet (bio diversity, dropoffs).

    I will write on specific locations in a new thread, this is more of a general info.
  2. cjibber

    cjibber Nassau Grouper

    # of Dives: 1,000 - 2,499
    Location: UK

    Is there anywhere you particularly recommend in the Pula/Rovinj area?

    Next month, I will be driving from Rijeka to Pula and I have about 6 or 7 days spare before I have to get to Pula. I would like to do a few days diving. I could get to Pula 6 or 7 days early and dive from there or I could go via somewhere else in that area on my way. I would be interested if you could recommend any dive operators or dive sites
  3. Schwob

    Schwob Solo Diver

    # of Dives: 200 - 499
    Location: Illinois
    Thanks for the writeup. Possibly quite helpful for a trip sometine in the more distant future.
    Not urgent at all in my case, but might you be able to explain that incredibly costly "ministry card" a bit more? Is it "just" a tax, or is it meant to discourage individual divers or is it like a business liscense... what is it?
    Is it a one time fee (lifetime?) or an annual fee or?
    Is it required for each individual diver if there is a group (or a club) of those, or ...?

    Are some of those locations shore dive locations or is it pretty much all boat dives?

    What constitutes as "diving with a dive center"? Or broader, what allows you to not need a ministry card?
    Does it mean a DM employed by the dive center has to be in the water with you?
    Or does it mean you have to dive off a boat controlled or owned or hired by the dive center, but you can be in the water w/o DM supervision?
    Or does it possibly suffice to get your air from the dive center and maybe know their phone number? ... or?
  4. Vicko

    Vicko Barracuda

    # of Dives: 0 - 24
    Location: Croatia
    The ministry card is next to useless as most of the Adriatic is under concession and you are not allowed to dive in the concession area without a dive master with a official permit, usually with a dive center.
    By law a dive master should always be present in the water.

    I have personally never refused a card isued by any diving organization, no matter which one and I never heard of it happening in any other dive center. In the last month I hade UTD, GUE, CMAS, RDI (whatever that is, I can't even find their website) and PSS divers in in the dive center.
    George Ivanov likes this.
  5. Schwob

    Schwob Solo Diver

    # of Dives: 200 - 499
    Location: Illinois
    Thanks. Well, that is different...
  6. ja_som_tomo

    ja_som_tomo Garibaldi

    # of Dives: 50 - 99
    Location: Slovakia

    Any recommendations for dive center in Krk island?

  7. leadduck

    leadduck Barracuda

  8. admikar

    admikar DIR Practitioner

    # of Dives: 100 - 199
    Location: Bosnia and Herzegovina
    It might not be the usual guided dive. Divemaster must be in the water, but you are somewhat free to roam on your own.
    For anyone interested in Pula area Diving Pula | foto & diving is open all year round (many dive centers are seasonal). Nice staff and some really nice locations nearby. Shore diving is not that attractive due to mostly rocky nature of Istrian coast.
  9. American Digger In Europe

    American Digger In Europe Angel Fish

    # of Dives: 200 - 499
    Location: Germany
    I was in Bol 2 years ago and had a great time at this dive center! It's located directly on the beach about 400 meters from Zlatni Rat!

    Diving Dolphin
  10. Snoweman

    Snoweman Loggerhead Turtle

    # of Dives: 50 - 99
    Location: Atlanta, GA
    Nice writeup. Thanks.

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