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DIVING CENTER - KIRINDA

 

WELCOME TO KIRINDA DIVING CENTER

Kirinda is a coastal village located in the Southern Province of Sri Lanka. It lies about 10 km South of Tissamaharama and is a beautiful and attractive popular with both foreign and local visitors.


There is a rocky outcrop from which one can enjoy a magnificent view of this desolate coast with its long stretch of golden beach and sand dunes with the great blue ocean beyond. On a sunny day the lighthouse on the Great Basses Reef appear like a needle in the far distance.


Kirinda is an ideal place to experience scuba diving during the inter monsoon period. The archeologically important diving spots, caves and the Long Basses reef with crystal clear water, vertical walls, shallow water soft corals and also the long sandy beach gives any recreational diver a mesmerizing inspiration to enjoy an unforgettable experience in the pristine waters of Serendib.

 

ENDLESS UNDER WATER TREASURES

            The geographical and geological conditions of the area around the Great and Little Basses reef resulted in many unknown sailors going down with their ships and belongings in these blue waters. Hence there are many identified archeologically important old ship wreck sites around the Basses site and there also exists many unknown sites waiting to be discovered.

Therefore as a Maritime Law Enforcement Agency, the SLCG plays a major role to protect these archeologically important wreck sites from treasure hunters and fishermen using destructive fishing methods.

 
 

Wreck sites around the Basses


          •     Bottle Wreck at Great Basses Reef
          •     Silver Coin Wreck at Great Basses Reef
          •     Copper Wreck at Little Basses Reef
          •     Iron Wreck at Little Basses Reef
          •     The 40 gun frigate Daedulus
          •     Flute Overness sunk in 1704
          •     Alette Adriana sunk in the 1760's in Great Basses
          •     Ancient harbour site at Godawaya 



Bottle Wreck at Great Basses Reef


This is a shallow site very close to the reef opposite the Silver Coin wreck. Mr. Peter Throckmorton and Dr. Arthur C. Clarke found this wreck of the early British period. According to history a ship had docked at Port of Galle in its eastward passage to collect a shipment of soda bottles from a company by the name of "Clarek and Company" which supplies pointed - bottom soda bottles.

The remnants of the mysterious bottle wreck lies on the land side of the Great Basses ridge. This wreck is very badly deteriorated because of the shallow water and residual surge conditions.

The wreck is almost integrated into a reef and the only well-defined objects are two large anchors. Only a very few bottles from its original cargo remain as most bottles have been taken away by treasure hunters. The two large anchors also face danger of been removed by treasure hunters.


Silver Coin Wreck at Great Basses Reef


On the 22nd of March 1961 a team of divers including late Rodney Jonklaas , Sir Arthur C. Clarke and Mike Wilson discovered, an unknown wreck in Great Basses containing sacks of silver coins minted in Surat, India. This ship belonged to the Moghul Emperor Aurangzeb, son of the great Shah Jehan who built the TajMahal in Agra. The valuable cargo had been on its way to the Far East for trade but unfortunately was deposited in the bottom of the ocean when the ship sank during a storm off the Great Basses.

Sir Arthur C. Clarke, in his report to the Archeological Department in 1962/63 had mentioned the retrieval of 1 British cannon brass tray, cannon balls and 350 lbs of silver coins. Coins were in thousand coin bags and now the bags have decayed and the coins remain in lumps of thousand coins each. Some of these coins have ended up at the famous Smithsonian Museum in Washington DC, USA.

This ‘Silver Coin Ship’ is a star attraction among keen divers and also senseless treasure hunters. Therefore, it is of vital importance for the SLCG to protect it for posterity.


Copper Wreck at Little Basses Reef


The Dutch-origin wooden ship wreck is situated in Little Basses in the depths between 18 to 20 meters. The history of this wreck is not known yet and this is also under threat from treasure hunters. It is a small steam ship with one boiler and the hull is made of copper plates. Only the propeller shaft, engine, boiler and the keelson remains to be seen.


Iron Wreck at Little Basses Reef


This large iron wreck lies near the Little Basses reef 4 km west to the Little Basses in very shallow water. The Maritime Archeology Unit Team measured and compiled a report about it after the exploration carried out in 2008 and 2009. The wreck has been ruined by explosions used by fishermen and treasure hunters.

The top part of the engine is just two feet under water. A large propeller is still intact to its shaft, while the extra propeller lies quite near. The stern is still intact and has become an excellent breeding place for marine life.


Ancient Harbour site at Godawaya


Godawaya is a village south of Ambalantota and is a historic site. The findings and excavations carried out at the ruins of this ancient harbour and stone pillared dock have shed new light on the Sri Lanka’s maritime heritage.

The ancient wreck is situated at 2 ½ nautical miles South of Godawaya lies at 100 feet depth. The discovery of ancient clay pots at this site is a strongly indication of Sri Lanka’s Naval history which dates back a far as 2500 years.

 

 

 

Bottle Wreck at Great Basses Reef

 
 

Caves Around the Basses

The Basses reef is the best place to go cave diving in Sri Lanka. The magnificent natural features like ravines, pillars, pinnacles, caves and sand pockets surrounded by high wall corals and crevices created by the heavy currents and surge conditions though out the year entice divers to tirelessly discover its wonders and surprises. Even during the annual season this place tends to contain some current however if one wants to enjoy cave diving in Sri Lanka this would be the ideal location to have a life time experience.

 

 

 

ENDLESS UNDER WATER TREASURES

            The geographical and geological conditions of the area around the Great and Little Basses reef resulted in many unknown sailors going down with their ships and belongings in these blue waters. Hence there are many identified archeologically important old ship wreck sites around the Basses site and there also exists many unknown sites waiting to be discovered.

Therefore as a Maritime Law Enforcement Agency, the SLCG plays a major role to protect these archeologically important wreck sites from treasure hunters and fishermen using destructive fishing methods.

 
 

MARINE ECOLOGY                      

This is the place to see varieties of fish like groupers, moray eels, lobsters, tuna, angelfish, rays, napoleons, coneys, red hind, snappers, parrotfish and millions of other denizens of the ocean and while moving through these waters you can see festoons of black corals and deep water sea fans. Watch out for sea turtles at the Basses. Hawkbill turtles and green turtles are frequently observed here resting in the protection of a ledge.

Fauna and Flora

This is a good place to see marine life like groupers, gray sharks, tuna, angelfishes, rays, giant Maori Wrasses (napoleons), snappers and millions of other denizens of the ocean. Undoubtedly the Basses are the foremost place to dive to witness the vast marine bio-diversity in Sri Lanka.

 

 
 
 

SLCG Actions Towards Conservation

Site Monitoring.

Updating and maintaining a registry wreck.

Collecting of wreck site data including photography, video, and physical source.

Conservation of artifacts if found necessary under guidance of experts.

Safe rendering of unexploded explosive and other hazard.

Management and entry control to under water wrecks.

Local Police and Archaeological Department will be informed that SLCG approval is required for any diving expedition in Basses reefs.

Foreign and local diving expeditions are allowed only under SLCG supervision to ensure no treasure hunting.

Coastguard diving center kirinda take action towards protecting under water archeologically valid  dive site  and other wrecks around basses reef .These significant areas marked with buoys and allow  underwater photography only in limited areas.

Further, foreign and local recreational divers are allowed diving only under the supervisions of SLCG divers to ensure no treasure hunting and vandalism.

 

 

 

 
 
 WE FACILITIE TO YOU

FREE WIFI

Guest can use free Wi-Fi provided by the diving center during their stay.

CHANGING ROOMS WITH HOT WATER SHOWERS

Divers can use changing rooms with safe lockers and enjoy hot water facility after their diving for free of charge.

FOODS AND BEVERAGE

Guest can enjoy hot meals and beverages arreanged by our own staff for decent prices.

LOBBY WITH RELAXING AREA

Divers can relax their stay here at air-conditioned lobby area with television facilities or enjoy staying outside veranda area facing great basses light house and sea.

DIVE GUIDANCE

Foreign and local divers can contact diving center at any time to get any informations regarding weather or sea conditions around basses or best dive locations in the area or any other important reservation.

DIVE EMERGENCY 

There is a recompression chamber located in the naval base, Trincomalee which is operated by navel staff, a 24 hour a day medical service provides guarantee with quick response to a dive emergency which is possible anywhere in Sri Lanka.

 

 

 
 

WE FACILITIE TO YOU

FREE WIFI

Guest can use free Wi-Fi provided by the diving center during their stay.

CHANGING ROOMS WITH HOT WATER SHOWERS

Divers can use changing rooms with safe lockers and enjoy hot water facility after their diving for free of charge.

FOODS AND BEVERAGE

Guest can enjoy hot meals and beverages arreanged by our own staff for decent prices.

LOBBY WITH RELAXING AREA

Divers can relax their stay here at air-conditioned lobby area with television facilities or enjoy staying outside veranda area facing great basses light house and sea.

DIVE GUIDANCE

Foreign and local divers can contact diving center at any time to get any informations regarding weather or sea conditions around basses or best dive locations in the area or any other important reservation.

DIVE EMERGENCY 

There is a recompression chamber located in the naval base, Trincomalee which is operated by navel staff, a 24 hour a day medical service provides guarantee with quick response to a dive emergency which is possible anywhere in Sri Lanka.

 

 

 
 

               These diving expeditions only possible during inter monsoon periods mainly from March to mid of April and a strong current can be present from time to time but there is no general problem in basses because of the depth conditions and great visibility in the season. The great basses reef can be reached from diving center, kirinda though arranged boat service. The boat ride will take approximately 1 to 1.15 hours to great basses reef.


 
 
 

Contact us

Coast Guard Station ‘Kirinda’
Thissa,
Kirinda,
Sri Lanka
Tele phone : +94 473 625 376