Download GPX file for this article
-34.27545018.370167Full screen dynamic map

From Wikivoyage
Jump to navigation Jump to search

The dive site Albatross Rock is an offshore rocky reef in the South Peninsula area on the Atlantic seaboard of the Cape Peninsula, near Cape Town in the Western Cape province of South Africa.


See also: Diving the Cape Peninsula and False Bay#Understand

This is a site that was mostly dived in the past on searches for wrecks of ships known to have sunk in the area after striking the reef. It might be dived to monitor the marine biodiversity of the area, but there are not many other reasons that come to mind. There are many reefs with more biodiversity and more spectacular topography within much easier reach of the popular launch sites.


  • 1 Albatross Rock: S34°16.527' E018°22.210' — (Outer pinnacle)

This site is in the Table Mountain National Park Marine Protected Area since 2004. A permit is required.


The name "Albatross Rock" is the name for this area used on the SAN charts. The rock was named after a tug of the same name which was wrecked there.


Maximum depth is probably about 20 m. and the top of the pinnacle is specified on the charts, but is shallow enough to have been hit by several ships which then sank nearby, and it is charted as a navigational hazard. Some of wrecks have been found, and are occasionally dived. They are described in their own articles.


Visibility is likely to be better after a south easterly wind, and may exceed 10 m, but is more likely to be around 5 to 6 m.


Fairly rugged profile sandstone reef, mostly relatively flat on top, but with deeper gulleys and undercuts in deeper water. Sand bottom to gullies below about 12 m. Gullies appear to mostly run approximately north/south.

Geology: Ordovician sandstone of the Peninsula formation. Dip small, probably less than 10°. strike unclear, probably about east-west. jointing also unclear,but probably mostly north-south.


The site is exposed to wind and sea from the north west to south west, and should be dived only in fairly flat seas. The site is protected from south easterly seas, though it will catch the wind.

The site is most likely to be diveable in late spring and summer but there will be occasional opportunities at other times.

Get in[edit]

See also: Diving the Cape Peninsula and False Bay#Boat dives

The site is only accessible by boat. It is 11.2 km from the slipway at the old crayfish factory north of Scarborough (Soetwater), about 17.1 km from the launch site at Kommetjie and 27.5 km from Hout Bay harbour slipway.


Marine life[edit]

See also: Diving the Cape Peninsula and False Bay#The marine ecology

Fairly dense laminaria down to over 12 m, fair amount of red bait in small sizes, and heavy undergrowth of plocamium and other small red and brown algae. Hottentot seabream, shy sharks, and klipfish have been seen, and large numbers of West coast rock lobster.


There are several wrecks near Albatross Rock. These include the SS Thomas T Tucker, the SS Umhlali, the SS Bia, the Star of Africa, the SS Albatross and the SS Nolloth.


Macro photography is most likely to deliver acceptable results unless the visibility is unusually good, in which case wide angle natural light may produce good kelp forest studies.

Suggested Routes[edit]

No particular routes recommended

Stay safe[edit]

See also: Diving the Cape Peninsula and False Bay#Stay safe


No site specific hazards known.


No special skills required.


See also: Diving the Cape Peninsula and False Bay#Equipment

No special equipment recommended.


Albatross Rock and nearby dive sites. The orange line is the border of the Cape of Good Hope restricted area

Back to the Alphabetical list of sites, or list of dive sites in the Atlantic South Peninsula area

Other regional dive sites:

This dive guide to Albatross Rock is a usable article. It has information on location and equipment as well as some complete entries on what to see. An adventurous person could use this article, but please feel free to improve it by editing the page.