Above and Below the World

Dive at Llafranc: Ullastre I

Summary:

  • Date & place: 04/07/2020 | Llafranc, Mediterran sea
  • Level: Open water (18m. max) / Advanced
  • External & underwater conditions: wavy sea | Good, without currents
  • Duration, visibility & water Tª: 53 min | Medium (+10 m) | 21 ºC
  • Max. depth & Gas: 27 m | Nitrox 32
  • Surface time:  1h

Activity type:

Categoria de buceo - diving activity

Profile/Map:

Location:

Llafranc, a small town located on the Costa Brava of Catalonia, is less known than Illes Medes, but diving in this area will surprise us with a lot of life and marine landscapes with spectacular canyons and rock bottoms!

The Ullastres are 3 underwater mountains that do not protrude from the sea surface, about 500 meters from Llafranc beach.

Ullastre I is the Ullastre closest to Llafranc, so the duration of the trip from the port is very short, only takes 5 minutes.

Although it is the smallest of the three Ullastres, we will not be disappointed by the diving in this underwater mountain, which begins at 11 meters and gently descends to 28 meters through rocks with corals and gorgonians, where there are many cracks with full of live such as macro life and nudibranchs.

Our second dive of the day

After the first dive of the day and returning to the port we take the second tank. It is already noon and we are going to do the second dive of the day, which is closer to the port, actually it is only 5 minutes away by boat. In this second dive we are only 4 people on board! so we will have a very calm dive and also with almost no waves, so perfect conditions.

In this case we face the diving descending through the anchoring chain and heading towards the North face of the Ullastre. From here we gain depth and move East. In this area there is a valley formed in the N-S direction, which in our opinion is the most beautiful area of ​​this dive that will consist of touring this valley, scrutinizing the nooks and crannies that form the rocks.

Big nudibranch, Doris type, about 20cm

Violet nudibranch Flabellina

In this dive, as in the first one, the macro life is beautiful and abundant. We see many nudibranchs and some of them quite large (about 20 cm).

As we have better visibility than in the previous dive, we are be able to better enjoy and take more photos of the landscape and the gorgonians.

Gorgonias details

As in the previous dive, we will see sargus, sparidae, chromis,… and some moray eel stick its head out of the rocks!

Morey, very common in shallow areas and rocky bottom.

Sparidae fish, frequent species on rocky bottoms

As we have not moved far from the Ullastre, when the computer shows us a short bottom time (less than 5 minutes) to enter in decompression, we gradually go up the east face of the Ullastre until we find the ship’s chain and so on after the security stop (3 min at 3 meters) we conclude the dive.

Very satisfied, we return to the diving club, wash all the equipment and have our lunch picnic in the same club since they have a small terrace with tables and chairs. What a good day!

More information about the Snorkel Diving club:

  • On the outskirts of town, good access by car, with a large private parking lot where it is possible to park for free.
  • Equipment can be cleaned with fresh water, bathrooms and hot showers, as well as a terrace with tables and a barbecue.
  • Good facilities with changing rooms, 
  • Link to Snorkel Diving website
  • We recoomend in the area:
    • Hiking: GR92 ‘Camin de ronda’
    • Kayak and Snorkel at any nearby beach
    • Visit and eat in Calella de Palafrugell, a beautiful town in the coast nearby

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