Sharks, Nudibranks, seals and swim throughs. It’s all happening under the water at Nelson Bay.
No matter what time of year, it’s a good time to go diving!See our handpicked guides to Newcastle
If you’ve ever thought about going diving, and discovering what lies beneath, you’ve more than likely considered jumping on a plane and heading north to the Great Barrier Reef. What you may not have considered is taking a much shorter trip to Port Stephen’s Nelsons Bay, and discovering the area’s underwater wonderland. Sitting just 14 km’s nor-east of Nelson Bay’s d’Albora Marina, out of sight from those on the shore, Broughton Island largely goes unnoticed by passers-by. It has, however, become a must stop for dive enthusiasts from all over the world.
The Looking Glass has also become the hang out, and breeding ground, of grey nurse sharks where, at certain times of year, up to 20 or more can be seen lazily patrolling the swim-through. The sheer walls of the Looking Glass are covered with baitfish, small sponges and, for a lucky few, even large Eagle Rays can be spotted.
For those who prefer to keep closer to shore there are a number of dive sites that are equally impressive. Emma from Let’s Go Diving describes how Halifax, Fly Point and the Pipe Line provide all the underwater eye candy you would normally expect to see in tropical waters. Pipe Line is notorious for its colourful critters, seahorses, nudibranks and cowrys, with some species of nudibranks normally only seen Indonesian waters. Somehow these tiny little critters have caught onto the Eastern Australian current and, thankfully for us, have decided to stop on by for a while. It's all very "Finding Nemo".
Any diver familiar to the area will emphatically agree on how lucky we are to have such diversity in our own backyard. No matter what time of year, it’s a good time to go diving!