Diving the Zenobia Wreck had been high on my list for a while, although I didn’t know much about it. When finally the time was there for a cyprus trip, early summer 2019, I first started to look up some more information about this famous wreck.
The MS Zenobia was a 172m ferry ship, built in late 1979. It went on a first trip in 1980 going from Sweden with direction Syria, with a cargo of none less then 104 trailer trucks on board. On the way to Athens the ship started to have ballast problems and was listing to port side. The ballast problem was due to a software error, which pomped too much water in the ballast tanks. On 7 june 1980 the ship capsized just out of Larnaca Bay, and is now laying on port side in the ocean at a depth of 42m.
The ship has become very popular as a wreck dive destination. It is no surprise this wreck is always in top ten wreck dive sites of the World.
So ofcourse during my cyprus trip I booked some dives on it. I went with Alpha divers, who are honestely one of the best dive centers I ve ever seen. Brand new equipment (wings!), very qualified, security first, good briefings.. I made clear to the owner Chris that overhead dives were a first for me, and he made sure that I was looked after very well. Go with them, you won’t regret it!
I did in total 4 dives on this wreck, 1 around and 3 inside the wreck itself. I only did 4 cause I did not have more time unfortunately, but you can easily stay a whole week diving this wreck, there is so much to see! Nitrox is a must, with depths up to 42m.
The first dive was a reconaissance dive.
We did half of a tour around the wreck, which shows you how big this thing is. It is really impressive. Nice to see as well are the 2 giant propellers at the back of the ship, lying at around 20 and 30m.
The next dives we entered the wreck. We did some fixed routes that our guides knew by heart. Due to the depth you can only visit small parts at a time, but they are all impressive. You have to take into account that the ship is lying at around a 45° angle, so everything is a bit upside down, but once you got the picture, it looks awesome.
We did following routes:
- Canteen & Accomodation room
- Captain’s quarters
- Upper Lorry deck
Going inside the wreck is pretty amazing! You can still see carpets, a painting, mirrors,.. basically everything is still there. It is falling apart ofcourse, but it is still pretty cool to see. Absolute highlight for me was the upper lorry deck.. Diving between trucks (some of them collapsed cause the steel chain holding them give away) at a depth of around 25m gives a very special feeling!
Unfortunately I did not make any pictures/vids myself (due to a gopro crash!) , but following video on youtube gives you exactly how everything goes with apha divers and shows you the rotes I described. Note that at the end of the vid they also did the Engine room, considered a more difficult dive (I need to go back for that one!). Enjoy watching and just go diving there!