Bassas do India Yacht Dive, Mocambique Channel

12 day
Bassas do India Yacht Dive.

Sailing out of Vilancoulos, Mozambiqie

Just like the rest of Africa's dive destinations, Bassas da India is an undiscovered, pristine marine wilderness and must be one of the worlds wildest and most beautiful dive sites. This great sunken volcano, encrusted with corals and wrecks of numerous ships, is a haven for marine life and is a once in a lifetime destination for the diver who has a taste for adventure.

This itinerary is a guideline only and is subject to weather conditions and other climatic factors beyond our control.

Situated roughly halfway between Mozambique and Madagascar, the tiny coral atoll of Bassas da India sits perched on the edges of an underwater volcanic mountain that rises 3000m (6000ft) from the ocean floor of the Mozambique Channel. The outer walls or rim of this seamount provide the base for the narrow fringing reef, which is approx. 100 m wide and encircles a shallow central lagoon approx. 11-km in diameter and only 15 metres at its deepest.

This is a destination for the adventurous diver, someone who has dived the world's top spots and is now looking for the ultimate experience safari tour in Mozambique. Few people have heard of Bassa da India and even fewer have had the chance to dive this site which can only be reached by private charter yacht.

Marine Life

As the conditions are as near pristine as one can get the fish life around the atoll is prolific and all species are of noteworthy size. Expect the BIG five, big sharks - oceanic white tips, silver tips and grey reef sharks, hammerheads, shoals of large tuna, barracuda, kingfish and many other large reef fish - of all species.

Explore gently sloping reefs passing giant table corals until you reach the edge of the drop off that plunges from 20 metres down into the dark depth of the ocean - watch our for the vertigo! Schools of rainbow runners and kingfish occupy this deep blue along with yellowfin tuny, silver tip shark and hammerhead.

In the shallower water you can explore coral outcrops spread across a sandy bottom where large schools of parrotfish, fusiliers, anthias and solitary groupers mix with moray eels, wrasse, butterflyfish and angelfish.

Because of the depths of the wall dives, time is spent snorkelling or fishing in between dives. Swim through huge schools of yellowtop fusiliers and have close encounters with giant kingfish (up to 50kg) and watch parrotfish feeding at low tide along the exposed coral with their fins out of the water.


Though the atoll is fairly well charted, and has been so for centuries, it is a most treacherous reef simply because it cannot be seen at high tide. For this reason it is a graveyard of ships.  Nobody seems to know exactly how many - but the place is littered with wrecks, perhaps as many as a hundred. Some of these wreck are centuries old, others more recent.

The most famous of these is the Santiago, a Portuguese East Indiaman that ran aground here en route to Goa in 1585, the remains of which are still is visible on the reef. Salvage divers have recovered around 10,000 Spanish pieces of eight, emeralds, jewellery, 20 bronze canons and a rare Portuguese nautical astrolabe from this wreck site. The 4.5m long anchor lying on the reef-top visibly identifies this wreck.

You will head out from Vilanculos, Mozambique past the tropical paradise islands of the Bazaruto Archipelago and set sail - due east. At 240Nm, sailing time is approx. 30 - 40 hours. Your adventure begins long before you make your first dive on the reefs of Bassa da India as you cross the open seas. Fishing from your yacht en-route is always good and guaranteed to provide for a memorable onboard fish braai.


Diving while moored at the atoll is unlimited and as easy as falling off the back of the boat. As the atoll is a long way from any medical facility, your yacht will carry an extensive medical, first aid and full oxygen kit. Nevertheless, only diving on computer will be allowed. In the interest of safety dives must have proof of the diving qualification - Advanced Divers only.  Divers will also be interviewed by the dive master prior to diving on this safari tour in Mozambique. Please note that any decision taken by either the dive master or skipper must be accepted as safety is paramount to fully enjoying the experience offered at Bassas da India.

Yacht: Dean 400 Catamaran

Just after her launch in December 1995, Bossi sailed in the Cape to Rio race where she finished 2nd overall in the Multi hull class. Since then she is taking it a lot easier and spoils clients on her spacious deck and well appointed interior with spaciousness not easily found on other 40ft yachts. The combination of her dive platform, comfort and sail capabilities, makes her a good all rounder to do dive trips, island hopping as well as longer sailing trips. She has four private double cabins, with 2 bathrooms comprising of h/c shower, basin and toilet, sleeping a total of 8 persons.

The spacious saloon, galley and modern navigation station is elegantly combined in an open plan arrangement, with the saloon extending into the outer cockpit area. For on board entertainment there is a radio/CD, books and games. Your full time 5 star chef mans the galley with 2 fridges, 1 freezer, stove and double sink. Crew consists of a host/dive leader, skipper and chef.

Bedding is supplied. A hat, sunglasses, sunblock are essential. 220v - Mosquito pad burners are available on yacht. Please bring mosquito pads (Peaceful Sleep, Baygon, Doom...) According to your own music taste you may bring CD's. Remember to bring enough camera films!! There is 220v on Yacht for battery charging. You can bring Video Cameras to film your ocean safari tour in Mozambique.


Please, bring your own mask/snorkel, fins and wetsuit. All other gear is provided. A Dive platform offers comfortable access to the ocean.

Beer, wine, bottled water and soft drinks are available from the Yacht's cash bar. If you like to nibble on sweets, chips, chocolates or biltong, please bring along.


Full board accommodation (3 meals per day) onboard Yacht, all activities, like snorkel, 2 to 3 scuba dives per day(while the yacht is moored at Bassa da India - no diving while sailing to and from the destination) , fishing, sailing. Linnen are supplied. We supply compressor, bc,regs,cylinders and weightbelts onboard. 220v electricity for charging of cameras and use of laptop computers for downloading photos.


Visas, all return flights to Vilanculos, Mozambique departure tax of US$ 10 per person.  Drinks on yacht and on land, travel & medical insurance. When you visit some of the Mozambique islands, you could be charged a once off US$10 National Parks fee. Please make sure that you get issued with a receipt, to show on arrival at the next island. Tips for the crew. Must bring their own 'soft gear' for diving - mask, fins, snorkel, wetsuit and towels.

We do not guarantee weather to and at Bassas da India and it is the skippers prerogative to turn around if weather conditions are unsafe. Client will have no claim against DiveWild, if trip is interrupted by weather conditions.  BASSAS DA INDIA is a French territory, and we do not take any responsibility should a French navy boat ask the Yacht to depart within 48 hours.

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