JU88 aircraft

Explore Malta’s Virtual Underwater Museum

Wreck diving is one of the most exciting underwater experiences. The shores of Europe have their fair share of wreck dive sites. From ancient wooden vessels to recent purposely sunk ships, the Mediterranean is littered with wrecks of all types, sizes, and ages. As the diving season in many parts of Europe is coming to a close (unless you enjoy diving in cold water), we can now move online and still do a little bit of “diving.”

This year, the Malta Tourism Authority, the University of Malta, and Heritage Malta launched the country’s first Virtual Underwater Museum. The platform offers a way for people to access the underwater wreck sites of Malta straight from the comfort of their homes.

The Historical Wrecks of Malta

The Virtual Underwater Museum of Malta features ten dive sites, including the 7th-century-BC Phoenician shipwreck, the popular HMS Maori Tribal-class destroyer, the B-24 Liberator American heavy bomber, and the HMS Stubborn S-class submarine. More dive sites will be added in 2021.

“The concept of the Museum highlights the importance of Malta’s heritage that can only be found underwater. What we see today is just the tip of the iceberg,” says Professor Timmy Gambin, from the University of Malta.

An Immersive Experience for Everyone

The images and data were collected over a lengthy period of about five years. VR video, 3D models, and photography are used to provide users with an immersive underwater experience. Many of the wrecks lie very deep and are otherwise accessible only to technical divers.

Visitors can also find information on each of the wrecks on their corresponding webpages. You can learn about the history of the ship or aircraft and find information about the artifacts found on the sites. The picture gallery displays historical images and sketches that show how the wrecks used to look before they reached their final resting place.

Malta is already considered one of the best diving destinations in Europe, but this new project will hopefully shine more light on the diving potential of this sunny island in the Mediterranean.

Image credit: Malta Virtual Underwater Museum

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