Scuba Diving and Snorkeling in Portugal

Scuba Diving and Snorkeling in Portugal

Scuba diving information in Portugal

Under the Portuguese blue waters is a world of color and life, with corals, rock formations, shipwrecks and big fish life. Some of the main dive sites in the north of the mainland include the wrecks of the Tiber steamboat and the U 1277 German submarine. There are some great dive sites in the center of the mainland like Portinho da Arrábida, in the Sado region and Fonte da Telha, in the Caparica Coast, unique due to its walls covered in sea life. The southern Alentejo and Algarve also provide great diving sites, with good reefs, caves and wrecks to explore. There are opportunities for diving around Vila Nova de Milfontes, Zambujeira do Mar, Sines, Sagres, Lagos and Tavira. The Azores and the Madeira archipelagos stand out due to the variety and quantity of fish, and the geologic configuration of the sea bottom, with great caves, walls, arches and other bizarre lava formations well worth exploring. In the Azores there is a great myriad of marine life. It’s one of the best places in the world to see wild dolphins and sperm whales. Some of the most popular dive sites in the Azores are Arcos de Caloura, Boca das Caldeirinhas, Baixa das Castanhetas, Baixa do Sul, Vila Franca do Campo, Formigas Islets, Dollabarat, Gruta Profunda, the Dori Wreck and the Princesa Alice. Madeira Archipelago allows year-round diving in warm waters. There are a number of shipwrecks including the Bowbelle, one of the most popular dive sites. Other sites worth mentioning in Madeira Archipelago are the Garajau Marine Reserve, Machico Bay, Canical, Ponta de São and Porto Santo. Black coral can be found at many caves in this area. While diving in Portugal you may come across many marine species like bottle nose dolphins, lobsters, conger eels, sea bass, mackerel, octopus, squid, blue fin tuna, scorpion fish, groupers, snappers, starfish and colorful nudibranchs as well as some seals, sea turtles, humpback, beluga and sperm whales, sharks, eagle rays and manta rays. Most diving in Portugal is done by boat. The average visibility can range from anywhere between 10 and 25 meters. The best time to dive in Portugal is in the summer months between June and September when the water is at its warmest.

Geography and climate

Portugal is a country in Southeast Europe, specifically in the west part of the Iberian Peninsula and in the North Atlantic archipelagos. This westernmost country of the European continent is surrounded by Spain to the north and east, and by the Atlantic ocean to the south and west. Besides the continental part, Portugal also has two archipelagos: the Autonomous Regions of Azores and of Madeira. Portugal has a mediterranean and semi-arid climate, and is one of the warmest European countries. The annual average temperature in mainland Portugal varies from 13 °C in the mountainous interior north to over 18 °C in the south and on the Guadiana river basin. Annual precipitation in Portugal varies from 3 000 mm in the mountains, to less than 600 mm in southern Alentejo regions. Both the archipelagos of the Azores and Madeira have a subtropical climate, although variations between islands exist owing to topography, temperature and humidity.

Entry requirements

To enter Portugal you may need a passport or a visa, depending on your home country and why you are visiting (tourism, work, study). Citizens of the European Commission do not need a visa to enter Portugal. For more informations, please contact your travel agent or the Portuguese Embassy/Consulate.

Health and safety

No vaccination is required to enter Portugal. However, the International Certificate of Vaccination for Yellow Fever is required when travelling from an infected area and when the traveller is more than one year old. For more informations, please contact your doctor or the Portuguese Embassy.

Time zone

Portugal has two time zones: UTC and UTC -1 (Azores), DST in the summer.


As for communications, Portugal has a modern telecommunications network. Phone booths can be found through the entire country, which you can pay with prepaid cards (from a post office or Portugal Telecom stores) coins or credit card. There are also cell phones from the Vodafone, TMN and Optimus networks. You can use your own cell phone by acquiring a prepaid card or through your country's roaming service. You can also access the internet available in cafés, bars, hotels and libraries.

Power and Electricity

Electricity in Portugal is 230 volts by 50 Hz. The plugs and sockets are the Euro type, with two round pins.

Other Informations

A large percentage of the younger population speak English and many Portuguese understand basic Spanish.

Scuba Diving locations in Portugal

Which are the best scuba diving locations in Portugal? Below, you will find a list of all locations of Portugal, organized by regions, in which you can dive and snorkel.

Scuba diving locations and photos from each location in Portugal

Which locations in Portugal have underwater photos? Below, you will find the list of locations from Portugal and for each location a list of underwater photos.

Marine Species and photos of each species in Portugal

Which marine species can I observe in Portugal? Below, you will find the list of marine species and the photos for each species.

Underwater Photographers and photos from each photographer with photos taken in Portugal

Which photographers have taken underwater photos in Portugal? Below, you will find the list of underwater photographers and their photos in Portugal.

Scuba Diving centers in Portugal

Which scuba diving centers can I dive with in Portugal? Below, you can see the list of scuba diving centers in Portugal. Click on “more info” to find out more about each scuba diving center.

Dive Spot

Armação de Pêra

Wahoo Diving

Santa Maria Island

Espirito Azul

São Miguel Island


São Miguel Island


São Miguel Island

Porto Santo Sub

Porto Santo Island

Liveaboards in Portugal

Which liveaboard can I dive with in Portugal? Below, you can see the list of liveaboard in Portugal. Click on “more info” to find out more about each liveaboard.

Accommodation in Portugal

Which accommodation can I rest after my dive in Portugal? Below, you can see the list of accommodation in Portugal. Click on “more info” to find out more about each accommodation.