Kittiwake Shipwreck and Artificial Reef

1320 W Bay Rd, West Bay, Cayman Islands

While Grand Cayman’s waters harbor legendary coral reefs, there’s another treasure waiting to be discovered below the surface in a marine park off Seven Mile Beach. About 60 feet down rests the intentionally submerged Kittiwake, a historic U.S. Navy rescue ship renowned for—among other feats—finding the long-sought black box from the space shuttle Challenger disaster in 1986. Whether you’re snorkeling above the vessel’s smokestack and main decks or diving into the engine rooms, decompression chambers, captain’s bridge, showers, bathrooms, galley, and crew quarters, the 251-foot Kittiwake makes for a surreal outing. Among other denizens, barracuda, garden eels, horse-eye jacks, and the occasional nurse shark await you there.

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Kittiwake Dive Site

While the Grand Cayman has world famous coral reefs, there’s another hidden treasure waiting to be discovered. Sixty-four feet below the pristine water lies the wreck of the Kittiwake, a historic U.S. Naval rescue ship renowned for finding the long sought black box from the Challenger space shuttle disaster. Whether you are snorkeling above the vessel’s large smoke stack and main decks or are diving into the inner engine rooms and crew quarters, the Kittiwake is fantastic for exploration and adventure.

The USS Kittiwake wreck

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