Martins Haven is a great shore diving location, based in the Skomer Marine Nature Reserve. This is one of the UK’s deepest shore dives, but to get the depths means getting out from the shore, and if the tides turn, you may struggle to get back in, so be careful and if your plan is to dive the deeper parts, I’d suggest having boat cover (I can provide this if you need it).
The beach can be reached via a concrete track down from the car park. The rocks can be quite slippery, and care must be taken at low water. Cars however must be parked at the top of the hill in the NT car park.
This dive site can be challenging, as there is constant boat traffic from 9am-4pm during the spring and summer predominantly from charter boat operators ferrying tourists back and forth from Skomer Island so care is needed when diving. The beach itself is comprised of loose pebbles so be careful as low tide exposes slippery kelp rocks.
There are two sides to the bay, both are good dives, however, the left side is advised to avoid due to the boat traffic. If you go in the Authumn or winter and the jetty is removed, then its a fair bet that the boats are not running. But check locally at the Natural Resources Wales office based next to the public toilets, one hundred metres from the beach.
Left Hand Side of the bay description: There is NO DIVING allowed around the boat jetty as it is in constant use throughout most of the day. Its best to swim on the surface and descend on the boat mooring buoy and its shot line. The seabed is comprised of soft sand and rocky outcrops teaming with all manner of marine life. Follow the contours of the reef keeping it on your left hand side until you reach around 12-18MTRS (depending on tide) here you will find a loose lobster pot on the seabed and above it a beautiful Pink Sea Fan.
Once you have passed the Pink Sea Fan you have two choices, turn around and head back with the reef on your right hand side or head for the drop off and the Scallop beds. Bear in mind that once you are at the drop off it can turn into a drift dive – and you wont get back to the beach without boat cover. Maintain regular checks on your air and depth. The drop off is actually a wall and here you will find much marine life covering the wall.
Right Hand Side of the bay description: Enter the water and descend to the seabed, keeping to the right. Kelp forms the majority of the bay on the right hand side with a sandy seabed becoming visible in the center of the bay. There is lots of life to be found here as well as curious seal pups that may pay you a visit. Keep the reef on you right and follow it around to the edge of the bay and you will come across small boulders, small outcrops of reef as well as large Scallop beds. This side of the bay is more prominent with Octopus and large anemones, and appears to have more fish.
Large spider crabs can be seen in the kelp as you swim out to the corners of the bay.
Due to boat traffic we recommend that all divers use an SMB or DSMB at all times on both sides of the bay when diving Martins Haven.
Be aware that the MCZ is a no take and anyone caught taking marine life from the bay can be prosecuted and fined up to £50k.
Fancy a guided dive or any other diver training – then get in touch on 07534 387152 or using the links here;