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Scuba Diving in Turkey
Dive Site: Mexican Hat
Location: Fethiye, Turkey
Description: Wall / cavern dive
Depth: 18 - 30 metres (60 - 100 feet)
Visibility: 30 - 35 metres (100 - 115 feet)
This must be one of the most beautiful caverns around Fethiye. It was a sunny day with beautiful sky and the view of the forest covered mountains was amazing. After a pleasant and calm 45 minute journey on a hard boat we came to our dive site which is next to the cliff face / wall but has no access from the land. We started our dive right next to the wall, descending down to 30 metres, and our dive leader pointed us to turn left and there it was a cavern with a huge entrance. We turned our torches on and kept following him. As our eyes got used to the light of the cavern we started to understand why they call it Mexican Hat: inside the cavern looks like a big sombrero. Then we noticed hundreds of little tiny lights right on the edge of the cavern which we were told were the local family of shrimps.
After we spent 5 - 6 minutes in there we came out and keeping the wall on our left hand side we gradually started to come shallower. While we were following our dive leader at around 15 metres we came to a kind of a corner where a stingray was laying down on the sand far deeper than us. Our dive leader was also pointing into the blue at a school of jackfish. When we got to around 9 -10 metres, we got to a freshwater tunnel where seals are sometimes found in the summer season. We went in the tunnel around 7 metres and the dive leader stopped and turned us back to look at the exit of tunnel. We didn't see any seals but the turquoise blue light shining through was gorgeous.
The name of this dive site comes from the shape of the hole which goes up and looks like a Mexican hat. The hole is at 20m / 66 ft and is large enough to accommodate 6-8 divers at one time. Also good buoyancy is important to stop stirring up the bottom, which is sandy. Using your dive light you can find large mullet, shrimps, soft coral and some groupers hiding amongst the cracks. The hole is also home to some moray eels that lay and wait for some unsuspecting prey. At the exit for the dive there is an amazing underwater archway one can get excellent photographs of buddies swimming through.
Gavin Arundell, PADI Rescue Diver
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