Scuba diving in the Netherlands. For some a nightmare and for others a lifelong passion. Not many people know that the Netherlands offers the most beautiful dive sites of Northern Europe. During scuba diving season people come from Belgium, Germany and even France for scuba diving holidays to Holland. However the Netherlands is also known for it's treacherous waters and not all dive sites are accessible to every diver. What are the best locations for starting scuba divers to explore the dive sites of Holland.
The Netherlands offers salt and fresh water scuba diving locations. In this article I'm focussing on the salt water dives sites as this is usual the reason why scuba divers take a scuba trip to my country. The Netherlands has much to offer, even for starting scuba divers. Some of my friends always talk about learning to scuba dive in Egypt or the Caribbean. I always urge them to start scuba diving here in the Netherlands. If you can dive here, you can definitely scuba dive in clear blue waters.
Scuba diving in the Netherlands can be dangerous. We have treacherous waters with strong tidal
currents, cold temperatures and low visibility. An important rule for me: "Scuba dive to your level of expertise". Meaning if you have 10 dives in your logbook, you just can't scuba dive a location with strong tidal currents. Be careful.
The Grevelingen Lake
Luckily the Netherlands has lake Grevelingen. Lake Grevelingen was created when the area was closed off by a dam in 1971. The lake has a total surface area of 11,000 hectares of water. The elimination of the tide created an area ideal for (starting) scuba divers. The dam has several inlets which still keep the lake connected with the North Sea, which means the lake is still salt water and has loads of marine life.
Most of the dives sites can be found on the southern coast of lake Grevelingen, between Bruinisse and around Brouwershaven. Below is a map of the lake and below that an overview of the top 10 dive sites for starting scuba divers.
I have dived many times on the dives sites below and I can recommend them all. Off course there are many more dive sites to to explore in the Netherlands, but below is a great central starting point.
- Het Koepeltje
Has a great reef wall which you can dive along side. Le SerpentThe wreck itself is for more experienced scuba divers. However the two little wrecks, reef balls and platform are definitely worth checking out and accessible for starting divers.
Just right of Le Serpent you can find a small bay area in which you can scuba dive.
- De Muur
Take a ladder with you, you'll need it to climb the wall. The dive site isn't easy to reach, which means not many divers go here. Loads of smaller marine life (especially snails).
- Den Osse Nieuwe Kerkweg
This is one of my more favourite locations with artificial reef balls which hold a score of different marine life.
- Den Osse Haven
It will take some time swimming out, but then you have a dropp off you can follow down. On your way back it's scuba diving on 2 to 3 meters depth, but smaller marine life is abundant here.
Easy dive site with not that many divers.
This one is a bit more dangerous as you're scuba diving below a sea lane. Remember not to make a direct ascend here!
- Dreischor Frans Kokrif
Also one of my favourite dive sites. Easy to enter the water and left or right there is always an abundance of marine life.
- Dreischor Gemaal
Somewhat more difficult to enter the water, but definitely worth it! When reaching the Gemaal you can expect a beautiful view.
The dive sites above are not just for starting scuba divers. They are just as interesting for any experienced diver. I still do most of my scuba diving on these locations. If you want to know what to expect scuba diving here, check out my Dutch adventures below.