Shipwreck diving in Zadar archipelago

Discover amazing shipwreck Michelle in shallows

Approximately one nautical mile from the Veli Rat lighthouse to the north lies the wreck of the Italian cargo ship Michelle. It is one of the most accessible underwater locations in Croatia located at depths of 3 - 5 meters, so it is attractive even for less experienced divers. For an unforgettable experience, you only need a mask, a snorkel and a pair of flippers or sea shoes.

The ship was intentionally run aground in 1983, legend has it, to pay out the insurance money. The ship stood above the sea for a long time, but due to the aggressive action of the sea, wind and waves, over time it lost most of its superstructure and plating. On another smaller part of the ship, it is possible to stand and walk, but be sure to be careful because of the countless metal parts as sharp as a knife.

Wreck info

Dimensions | length=76.0m, width=10.1m
Coordinates | 44.16700° N, 14.81163° E
Depth | 3 - 5 metres
Distance* | 22 n/m, approx 1 hour 10 minutes driving
* driving distance from Zadar harbor

Shipwreck Michelle - old photo
Shipwreck Michelle - aerial
Shipwreck Michelle - navigational chart

Although the depth at which the wreck lies is quite small, don't be fooled by that. Sea currents and waves in that area can be quite strong, so it is best to organize a dive with professional and experienced guides. As a rule, it is better to organize a visit to the wreck in the morning when there is not so much wind from the west, which as a rule rises after noon and interferes with diving.

On the ship you can see the remains of the ship's equipment, ship's rooms, masts lying on the side of the ship, a large propeller buried in soft sand. The wreck is also home to many species of fish and other marine organisms that can be seen when diving into the hidden corners of the ship. In a way, the ship now functions as a small reef that provides perfect protection for smaller fish, crabs and other marine inhabitants of the Michelle wreck.

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