Gradac

dive site type: nature
difficulty: medium
depth range: 0-60 m
distance from the diving center: 2 nm
short characteristic: a vertical northern wall with several cracks inhabited by various, also rare, crustaceans and benthic fishes located close to a wide bay

 

The northern coast of the Vis island consists of high rocky walls, almost vertically rising above the sea. In the area of Gradac Bay, the highest peak is 105 m ASL, and the slopes often reach 30°. This part of the coast is even more severe due to the northern exposition of the slopes. Almost unlit, they resemble fairy-tale-like darkness. During the formation of the Dalmatian coast, the rising Adriatic Sea only flooded the previously formed forms. Therefore, it is reasonable to presume that the visible coastal relief has its continuation under water.

Close to the Gradac Bay there is located vertical wall going down to 60 m BSL. Enormous, dark, with several cracks looks majestic. Divers can get the impression, that the wall is inhabited by the legendary sea monsters. Diving in this place is usually drift. It is finished in a calm, lightsome bay, and started close to the wall, on which fireworms can be seen. In the holes, different in sizes, moray eels, giant scorpionfish and forkbeards can be seen. As the predators occur, their food cannot be lacking. Using torches, divers can find shrimps and small crabs in numerous holes. Large crustaceans are often found at greater depths, among which spiny lobsters, slipper lobsters and European spider crabs can be distinguished.

Northern exposure and the resulting insufficient light cause lack in the floral diversity. Nevertheless, there is one species of green algae, which intensively grows in this place, as well as many other places in the eastern Adriatic. It is Caulerpa racemosa, commonly known as sea grapes. This invasive tropical alga came to the Mediterranean Sea probably from the Red Sea and fouls the rocks like an ivy, reducing other plants the access to light. Regardless, the sea grapes with small crabs moving on them, are graceful photography objects. It is worth not to focus only on the wall, but from time to time take a look into the blue. Specially in the moments, when all the little fish are swimming fast to the wall. It is a sign that in a moment a trained eye will have a chance to see hunting tunas.