Atlas of Dive Sites of South Africa and Mozambique

Bookshelf: Atlas of Dive Sites of South Africa & Mozambique

Atlas of Dive Sites of South Africa & Mozambique – Fiona McIntosh

Atlas of Dive Sites of South Africa and Mozambique
Atlas of Dive Sites of South Africa and Mozambique

This is a brand new release from MapStudio and diver-author Fiona McIntosh. McIntosh specialises in outdoor adventure topics (hiking routes, caving, etc.) and she has produced a handy volume detailing the best dive spots around South Africa in some detail. The “atlas” moniker is accurate: the volume includes maps of the whole area, with inserts depicting the dive sites in question. This potentially enables experienced divers to explore sites independently of a local operator.

There are only a few sites featured in each area, but the dive sites featured are the “best” in each location. They have been selected on the basis of safetly, and pristine condition. There are additional sites listed, along with their locations, but maps and reviews only appear for the short list of top dive sites in each place.

There are lots of interesting sidebars detailing local attractions (for example, a shyshark and catshark feeding dive offered in Mossel Bay, seahorse hunting in Knysna, the chokka dive in Port Elizabeth every August, and shark cage diving in False Bay at Seal Island). The dive site descriptions include details of what marine life can be seen, and the nature of the entry (important for shore dives). Made me want to put on my kit and get in the water again as soon as possible! The weekend is too far away…

I was interested to see the quality of diving offered on the south coast in locations such as Plettenberg Bay. Apparently there are also some super dives in Hermanus, though no permanent dive operator there. The atlas definitely made me want to travel!

At the back of the atlas is a section on marine life, by SURG‘s Georgina Jones. It’s a whirlwind tour, of necessity, since it covers not only the Cape but the entire South African coastline.

Dive Atlas launch function
Dive Atlas launch function

The book also includes contact details of the various dive operators around the country, as well as general dive tourism information. I was pleased to note that in the Cape Town section, McIntosh includes the web address of Peter Southwood’s wikivoyage page on diving around the Cape Peninusla and False Bay for those who require more detailed information.

Tony and I attended the launch last week, at the NSRI Station at the Waterfront (very cool venue!) and enjoyed catching up with the diving establishment of Cape Town. Fiona gave a whirlwind tour of diving in Southern Africa (the Mozambique section of her talk – and of the atlas – made me drool), and Georgina did a natural history tour of Cape diving for us. We are definitely very fortunate here in the Cape!

You can get a copy of the atlas here.

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Lapsed mathematician, creator of order, formulator of hypotheses. Lover of the ocean, being outdoors, the bush, reading, photography, travelling (especially in Africa) and road trips.

3 thoughts on “Bookshelf: Atlas of Dive Sites of South Africa & Mozambique”

    1. Hi Ina, you can either order it online from MapStudio ( or from – there’s a link at the bottom of the post to the book’s page on the Kalahari website. Compare the prices – I think Kalahari might be cheaper!

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