Divers in Malta now have a new attraction directly off Sliema’s coast, as a tug boat was scuttled near Exiles earlier this week. The tug boat is some 200 metres off the coast, making it an easy land dive from Sliema.
Those hoping for a Michael Bay-esque scene were sorely disappointed, as the first hour of the scuttling was as exciting as watching paint dry, with the boat barely sinking by a few inches.
Tourism minister Karmenu Vella, who was present for the event, said that the diving niche attracted over 84,000 tourists to Malta last year, putting it almost on par with the language travel industry.
Mr. Vella said that this is the 11th boat to be scuttled off Maltese waters, in a bid to improve Malta’s attraction as a diving destination.
The minister said that the tug boat has been thoroughly cleaned before the scuttling, and all oil was removed. The cost of the project is $80,000.
Mr. Vella explained how Malta offers a very attractive product in terms of cleanliness and clarity of our waters, but he said that more efforts need to be made in order to increase fish diversity.
According to the Malta Tourism Authority, which also organised the event, 27% of divers choose to stay in the Sliema area, therefore the newly scuttled tug boat will serve as an added attraction.