Paradise - - Traveller -

USS Tucker, Espir­itu Santo Van­u­atu is known equally for its wrecks – big and small – and its eas­ily dived colour­ful reefs.

The USS Tucker was a World War 2 de­stroyer that struck a US mine and sank near the west point of Aore Is­land, off Espir­itu Santo. At 104-me­tres long, both the stern and bow are clearly recog­nis­able as the wreck is stand­ing up­right on the flat bot­tom.

There are lots of places where you can shine a torch into the nooks and cran­nies, the beam light­ing up a myr­iad of very sur­prised and colour­ful fish – mo­men­tar­ily held cap­tive by the light. Div­ing the USS Tucker, it’s pos­si­ble to en­vis­age, that fate­ful mo­ment, the ex­plo­sion and vi­o­lent af­ter­math that tran­si­tioned quickly to a silent, wa­tery world. Vis­i­bil­ity: 20m Depth: 24m Abil­ity level:

Stay: No longer recog­nis­able as a 124-me­tre ship, it’s more like a reef built on a me­tal, rather than rocky, sub­strate.

Fun to ex­plore, ev­ery sec­tion has its own spe­cial marine in­hab­i­tants: sweet­lips and bat­fish hover mo­tion­less in ev­ery shel­tered spot, potato cod have their own clean­ing sta­tion, bump head par­rot­fish roam the sur­round­ing sands, and even two tur­tles have taken up res­i­dence. You can dive it four times in one day – and still want to go back and ex­plore more. Vis­i­bil­ity: 20m Depth: 5–20m Abil­ity level: Open Wa­ter,

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