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Diving the USS Oriskany Reef

Updated on June 26, 2012

Dive in Pensacola Florida

Well now the secret is out!

Pensacola Florida is one of the premiere dive destinations in the US. Pensacola is home to some of the best wreck diving that you can find anywhere, and is also home to the world's largest artificial reef, the 888 ft aircraft carrier, USS Oriskany!

Pensacola became an international diving destination, when the Oriskany sank to the bottom of the Gulf of Mexico in 2006. The wreck is now widely known as the 'Great Carrier Reef'. Diving on this huge reef is a fun and challenging adventure. The sunken ship is located about 25 miles south of Pensacola Pass and rests in about 212 feet of water. The ship's tower is a little more than 70 feet from the surface, providing a very large relief from the bottom. Divers can experience up close time with a large variety of fishes and sea life.

Top of Conning Tower
Top of Conning Tower | Source

Diving Pensacola, FL and the USS Oriskany


U.S.S. Oriskany GPS Coordinates

The world's largest artificial reef rests at the following coordinates:

N30:02.542 W87:00.374

Have a great wreck dive and be safe. Follow your training, experience and best judgement when diving this reef. Weather, currents and water conditions can change in a hurry. Some of the fish species you may see include red snapper, grunts, grouper, amberjack, barracuda and sharks.

USS Oriskany after Hurricane Ida

Diving The Oriskany 2007

Visiting the area ...

A good base point for many divers is to plan their trip and stay in the Perdido Key, Florida area. It is just next door to Pensacola and within convenient proximity of all the area has to offer. You can get online information on accommodations, vacation rentals, cottages, lodging, beach houses, condos, properties,restaurants, attractions and diving charters. After your day on the water, you can then relax and enjoy the barrier island for all of its beauty.

In addition to the dive on the Oriskany, there are other wrecks and reefs that are sure to deliver a world-class diving experience. What a lot of divers do not yet realize is that this area along the Panhandle of FL, is a secret diving hot spot that is waiting to be discovered.

Ever experienced a scuba diving trip on the USS Oriskany wreck?

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DisclaimerThe content of this page is not affiliated with the company names or products discussed, listed, presented or shown. The information provided is for general information purposes only and without warranties of any kind. Company names and products shown may be trademarks of their respective owners.


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      aquaforce 7 years ago

      Today my son Collin Harvey and I dove the mighty O he is perhaps the youngest diver to see her underwater at age 11 he did a tower penetration and had a great time the viability was about 50 to 60 feet it was a great day to be under the sea. Jeff Harvey Gulf Breeze FL.

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      Jim 8 years ago

      The Oriskany wreck sounds like a cool dive spot.

    • LRobbins profile image

      Laurel 8 years ago from Germany

      Great site, I haven't dived in Florida yet, but I've heard it's great, your article has just bumped it up my list. Thanks.