The Mediterranean around Kaş offers arguably the best visibility (up to 30m) and greatest range of sea life along the entire Turkish coast. Fish you’re likely to see – especially in spring or late summer – include grouper, barracuda, amberjack, garfish and ray; smaller common species include cardinal fish, damselfish, parrotfish, flying fish, ornate wrasse, breams and pandora.
Kaş notionally holds around ten dive operators, many operating out of Küçük Çakıl hotel basements, but in terms of boat comfort, safety standards, equipment condition and thorough instruction, only three stand out: Sun Diving, inside Kaş Camping (t0242 836 2637, wturkey-diving.com/divecenter-sundiving.html), Anemone, Uzun Çarsı Sok 16 (t0242 836 3651, wanemonedc-kas.com), and BT Diving, Çukurbağlı Cad 10 (t0242 836 3737, wbt-turkey.com).
It’s quite common to dive only in the morning or afternoon, so prices are per dive rather than per day. The recommended operators advertise single dives at about €25, making Kaş the least expensive place to dive in Turkey. A PADI Open Water course costs €260, plus €42 for course materials, and advanced Open Water €200, plus €35 for course materials.
There are nearly sixty dive sites in the area, many along the Çukurbağ peninsula, with most others around the islets at the marine frontier with Kastellórizo. Beginners visit a tunnel at 15m and a shoreline cave fed by an icy freshwater spring in Bayındır Limanı, or “Stone Edge” or Güvercin Adası off the Çukurbağ peninsula. Moderately experienced divers are taken to “Canyon”, where they drop through the namesake formation past a reasonably intact Greek cotton-carrying freighter that ran aground in the 1960s. This was later dynamited to remove the navigational hazard, so its stern lies in 35m of water. Next there’s a traverse of a big-wall dropoff, and then a return north with prevailing currents via a tunnel system. Only advanced divers can visit a wrecked World War II bomber shot down between Kaş and Kastellórizo, resting nearly intact in 65m of water at “Flying Fish”, just beyond “Canyon”.