Diving the St. Pete Area
While our local waters are not the crystalline, azure blues of the Florida Keys or the Caribbean the dive sites offshore of St. Petersburg and West Central Florida are varied and support a multitude of marine life. The St. Petersburg / Tampa area has an extensive, well-maintained artificial reef system. These artificial reefs consist of wrecks, bridge rubble, culverts and even some army tanks. The waters from St. Petersburg north to the Tarpon Springs area has more than 40 artificial reef sites ranging from 200 yards to 38 miles offshore. For more information, photos and video of the Pinellas County artificial reef program, please visit their website at:
Located offshore of Florida’s Gulf Coast are natural limestone ledges. These ledges are remnants of Florida’s pre-historic past when due to varying water levels Florida’s coastline was constantly changing. Many ledges have deep undercuts and can vary in height from a few inches to well over twelve feet. These ledges provide habitat for a wide variety of sea life. Florida’s Gulf Coast is world famous for spearfishing and is home to game fish such as, grouper, hogfish, snappers and amberjack. There is very little beach diving in the area, so most dive sites are only accessible by boat. At Jim’s Dive Shop, we do not have a charter boat but listed below are a few local charters that can get you to your Gulf Coast underwater adventure!