North Male Atoll Diving Sites
Hans Haas Place
As if Mother Nature wished to provide something for everyone, a section of wall has broken and fallen away here to leave a 100 metre long area of reef to be explored, free from the currents normally sweeping through the Maldives. Within this basin are a series of overhangs and caverns in which even the least experienced diver can enjoy the sights.
Many of the overhangs boast ceilings of intricate purple sea-fans and play host to groupers and soldierfish. Less common sightings also include scribbled filefish, freckled hawkfish and leaf scorpionfish. You may even see a few firsts. Have you an idea what any arrowhead soapfish looks like? What about a white-banded possum wrasse? It might be an idea to get the fish books out before dropping in here. Indeed it is little surprise that the site takes its name from the legendary Austrian underwater pioneer.
You will also spot a number of vibrantly coloured anemones which make great photographic subjects, especially when displaying their vivid red undersides. In and around the reef you should also keep an eye out for octopus and turtles resting on a ledge. The shallows here are a little bleached but are beginning to show signs of re-emerging from the damage caused by El Niño. This doesn't stop the butterflyfish and surgeonfish from calling it home and it is very pleasant to spend the last few minutes of this dive with such colourful and wonderfully active reef dwellers.
This is one of the few dives suitable for all levels and is also a marine protected area. Provided beginners can control their buoyancy sufficiently to avoid the overhang ceilings, the conditions should be just right for everyone to relax and enjoy the delights of Hans Haas Place.
Hans Haas Place Reef Basics: Wall dive
Depth: 5 - 30m
Visibility: 15 - 35m
Currents: None or gentle
Surface conditions: Usually calm, can be choppy
Water temperature: 27 - 30°C
Experience level: Beginner
Number of dive sites: 1
Diving season: All year round. Liveaboards less likely to visit May to July
Distance: Just south of Gulhi Falhu, 5 km west of Male Town
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