This Sand dredger which sank on 25 March 1996 was known as the Bom Rei. However, in its shadowy past it was also known as the Bowbelle. On the 29 August 1989, the Bowbelle was involved in a tragic accident on the River Thames in London, UK, as it rammed the dance-club boat called the Marchioness. The sad result of the accident was 51 dead. One year later, the boat was sold to a company in Madeira as a sand digger and renamed to Bom Rei.
During routine sand dredging operations, the boat broke in the middle and sank at a depth of 32 meters. The wreck is still in good condition and offers refuge to a varied range of fish and marine life. After only a short time, marine plants grew in abundance on the wreck and the boat has become a pulling point for underwater photographers and video enthusiasts. Due to its relatively shallow location (from 18 meters) this wreck is the ideal location for the special wreck diving course.
There are so many interesting points to see that more than one dive will be necessary. This is a great opportunity for NITROX diving. Strewn around the ship are many parts, such as the vacuum head, chains and ripped off pipes. The boat is partly clear underneath enabling divers to swim under the belly.
The digger which is situated on the sand filled deck offers a home to various Moray Eels. At the forward end of the ship, two large Groupers have made a home.
Depending on the weather, we dive at this location at least once a week.
Depth: 18 m - 27 meters
Boat: approx. 40 min