An underwater shipwreck museum was opened off the coast of Turkey’s Çanakkale province on Saturday, 2 October. Scuba divers can now admire with their own eyes the traces of the fierce clashes fought in the region by countries embroiled in the First World War.
The first attraction that awaits divers visiting the region is the 120 m long Wreck of the British battleship HMS Majestic. The giant vessel rests at a depth of just 24 metres. So we don’t need to be a very advanced diver to see this huge piece of history with our own eyes.
There are many other shipwrecks lying on the seabed nearby, many of which are very well preserved. This makes them wonderful objects to admire and photograph. Whereas visibility under water It can be so good that taking a camera is an absolute must.
Turkish photographer Savaş Karakaş was one of the first people to dive into the newly opened shipwreck museum. As he stated after the dive, underwater he managed to reconnect with his grandfather who fought at Gallipoli in 1915.
I remember that my grandfather’s hands were deformed and burned. That is why I was always afraid of them. When I dive on Gallipoli, the rusted metal and steel on the wrecks remind me of my grandfather’s hands. I feel like I am holding his hand underwater. – Karakaş said.
The Battle of Gallipoli was a huge battle that lasted almost eight months. An underwater museum of shipwrecks opened its gates to divers 106 years after the Ottoman Empire and the German Empire jointly repelled an invasion by British, French, Australian and New Zealand troops. It thwarted an Allied plan to control the straits connecting the Aegean Sea to the Black Sea, where the Russian Empire’s navy was trapped.
The Battle of Gallipoli began on 25 April 1915 and lasted until 9 January 1916. The Entente states wished to launch a larger operation in this way and eventually capture Istanbul, then the capital of the Ottoman Empire. Undoubtedly, if the Allies had achieved their objective, they would have taken control of the Turkish straits and unblocked the supply routes for military supplies to Russia. As a result, they would also have eliminated the Ottoman Empire from the First World War.
In the end, the whole operation ended in the failure of the entente states. The losses on all sides amounted to 131,000 killed and 262,000 wounded. It should also be noted that the Battle of Gallipoli was the largest landing operation during the First World War. Today, in modern Turkey, resistance from the Ottoman Empire is a source of deep pride.
Malta is a great place for a diving trip. Very diverse in terms of diving sites and level of difficulty. You can read more about diving in Malta in Carollina Wells’ article, which we published in issue 17. DIVERS24 quarterly! The digital version of the magazine is available free of charge, while the printed version can be purchased from our webshop.
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