What you will see
Restrictions, Sandy bottom, Sea Life, Wreck
Launched on 5th February 1975 and retired on 1999. Equipped for anti-submarine combat, with radars and torpedoes. It was more than a simple Corvette, almost like a light frigate. Designed for the Portuguese Colonial War, the resolution of those conflicts left this ship without a purpose. Therefore, it was used as an oceanic escort ship under the scope of NATO. Later on, it was disarmed with a reduced level of weaponry, as a patrol ship in the exclusive Portuguese economic zone. This type of ship was also sold to Spain, Morocco, and Egypt.
This shipwreck is part of the Ocean Revival Project. The Ocean Revival Project was born with the intent of promoting Algarve's underwater tourism, making it an not-to-miss destination. Besides "Corveta Oliveira e Carmo" there are also other 3 ships that make part of this project: "Fragata Hermenegildo Capelo", "Patrulha Zambeze" and "Navio Hidrográfico Almeida e Carvalho".
Nowadays the marine life we can find in it is tremendous! We can observe Nudibranches, juvenile fishes seeking shelter as well as shoals of larger fish such as Triggerfish and Seabreams.
When the conditions are favorable this is an amazing dive! When descending, at around 15mts deep on the mast, we can observe the entire ship and all of its life. On the bridge and superior deck area, we can enter and explore the ship from the inside. There are big openings in case we need to leave quickly.
The entrance on the inferior decks is only advisable to more experienced divers as they are deeper smaller spaces with no light, that require good buoyancy control in order to not raise sediments that can further compromise the visibility. Flashlight use is mandatory.
Be advised that after the strong storms is 2016 this shipwreck was broken in half, however, it is still an ex-libris of diving.
-- Photos By: Claudio Dias, Miguel Miranda, Pedro Bernardo, Rui Luís