Caravan Reef is a large area of granite reef to the north east of the slipway at Miller's Point, and as such is very close to the launch area. One would think that it would be a popular dive site, but it is largely unexplored, unlike the adjacent wreck of the SAS Pietermaritzburg, which is one of the most frequently dived sites on the Cape Peninsula.
Approximately half a square kilometer of reef centred about 750 m north-east of the Miller's Point slipway, and about 700 m in diameter.
- 1 Caravan Central north pinnacle: S34°13.417’ E018°28.527’
- 2 Caravan Central east pinnacle: S34°13.433’ E018°28.550’
- 3 North Caravan: S34°13.352’ E018°28.733’
- 4 South Caravan: S34°13.513' E018°28.721'
- 5 PMB Pinnacles: S34°13.311' E018°28.564' — named for its proximity to the wreck of SAS Pietermaritzburg
- 6 Inner Caravan: S34°13.500' E018°28.450' — (estimated)
This site is in a Marine Protected Area (2004). A permit is required.
This site is offshore of the caravan park at Miller’s Point, which may be the origin of the name "Caravan Reef".
- Central: Maximum about 12 to 15 m, Top of reef about 5 m
- North: Maximum about 22 m, Top of reef about 12 m
- South: Maximum about 20 m, Top of reef about 4 m
- PMB Pinnacles: Maximum about 22 m on the sand to the east. Top of highest pinnacle about 6 m.
This is an extensive area of granite reef. It can be subdivided into a number of sections:
North Caravan Reef: Sand at about 22 m on the east side. Top of the reef is at about 12 m. There is a long ridge running roughly north-west/south-east which is high to the south-west side, with a steep wall and occasional transverse jointing, and low to the north, with steeper parts further south. This section is separated from Central Caravan Reef by a band of sand bottom at about 20 m depth.
Central Caravan Reef: The largest contiguous section of reef, and roughly central to the other sections. Much of this section is low profile outcrops and scattered boulders, with quite a lot of narrow sand tongues breaking the reef up, but there are a few pinnacle areas of medium profile reef. Depth on the surrounding sand varies from around 16 m on the inshore side to about 19m on the north-eastern side. The reef is only partly surveyed.
South Caravan Reef: Separated from Central Caravan Reef by a narrow belt of sand. Huge granite outcrops with scattered smaller boulders on a shelly sand bottom. Quite a lot of cracks, but mostly quite narrow and not very deep. A few small overhangs. The pinnacle is quite shallow, at about 4 m, but most of the outcrops are much lower, and are seldom as shallow as 10 m.
Inner Caravan Reef: Separated from Central Caravan Reef by a narrow belt of sand. Not yet surveyed.
PMB Pinnacles: Separated from Central Caravan Reef by a narrow belt of sand. This section has a compact group of fairly massive boulders, including an almost pyramidal pinnacle, standing on a flattish base of rock at about 15 m, and rising to a small peak about 4 m from the surface. Nearby to the south, across a very narrow sand belt, there is a patch of mostly low reef with a few boulders rising above 15 m. The adjacent sand is at a depth of 18 to 22 m.
Geology: Late Pre-Cambrian granite corestones of the Peninsula pluton on a sand bottom.
The site is moderately protected from south westerly swell. South east chop may make it unpleasant on the surface, but it may be quiet below the wave base, however a strong south easter or one that blows for a long time will push up a swell that will make it unpleasant all the way down. Generally considered a winter dive site but there are also occasional opportunities in autumn and spring.
Boat dive from Millers Point. About 1 km from the slipway (Caravan North) or less.
A wide range of typical False Bay invertebrates may be found on the reefs.
Southern area: In the 15 to 20 m depth range the cover is split between a dense turf of large sea squirts with common feather stars on the steeper surfaces, occasional gaps with Strawberry anemones or encrusting sponges, and upper surfaces often covered by Red chested or Mauve sea cucumbers, with a scattering of golden cucumbers. Some low areas with serpent skinned brittle stars. A fair number of gorgonian sea fans, a few Cauliflower and Sunburst soft corals. Quite a number of smallish thickets of arborescent hydroids. Occasional small plocamium. In shallower areas a lot of red-bait or similar on top of the reef.
No particular routes recommended.
This is an area where boat traffic may be heavy. Great white sharks have been sighted near this site.
No special skills required, though the ability to deploy a DSMB is useful in case you need to surface away from the shot line.
Surface marker buoy recommended if you ascend away from the boat as this is an area with a lot of boating traffic, not all of which pays a great deal of attention to diving flags.
- 1 Insanity Reef
- 2 Omega Reef
- 3 Rocklands Blinder
- 4 Alpha Reef
- 5 Spaniard Rock
- 6 Stern Reef
- 7 SAS Pietermaritzburg
- 8 Caravan Reef - PMB Pinnacles
- 9 Caravan Reef - North Caravan
- Caravan Reef - Caravan Central
- 10 Caravan Reef - South Caravan
- 11 Caravan Reef - Inner Caravan
- 12 Miller's Point slipway
- 13 Miller's Point tidal pool
- 14 Murphy's
- 15 Miller's Point - Rumbly Bay
- 16 Boat Rock
- 17 Festival Pinnacle
- 18 Fan Reef
- 19 Shark Alley
- 20 Pyramid Rock
- Pyramid Reef - Sansui Reef
- 21 Phone reef
- 22 Outer Castle
- 23 Castle Rocks North Side