36°01.038' N 014°17.238' E
36°01'2" N 014°17'14" E
MV Cominoland is one of the three diving wrecks off shore Xatt l-Ahmar in south east Gozo. Cominoland was former Captain Morgan Cruises passenger ship doing tourist day trips around Comino and harbour cruises around Valletta. She was scuttled in August 2006 together with MV Karwela to create an artificial reef for scuba diving. The third wreck MV Xlendi was scuttled seven years earlier in 1999.
MV Cominoland wreck is about 35 m long and sits in a perfectly upright position on a sandy seabed with a maximum depth around 40 m. The wreck has two decks which offer plenty of potential for exploration, and is safe to penetrate because of the various openings cut before scuttling. The wreck starts at 32 m with the deck at 35 m and her bows in 39 m depth.
Cominoland lies about 60 m east from Karwela and is probably the second most dived wreck around Gozo, as she is more interesting than upturned Xlendi but farther from shore and smaller than Karwela. All three wrecks are usually done as shore dive, but can be dived from a boat as well.
Cominoland wreck history
MV Cominoland was built in England by Philip & Son Ltd in 1942 as an 'M' class small minelayer. The ship had gross weight of 295 tons and was 34 m in length with an 8 m beam. Commissioned as M6, her original name was Miner VI (N16). After her career with the Royal Navy, she was sold to E. Zammit & Sons in 1966, converted as a ferry boat to operate a ferry service between Valletta and the island of Comino, and renamed first Minor IV and few years later MV Minor Eagle and in 1976 MV Cominoland. In 1980 she was converted for pleasure cruising and renamed MV Jylland II. In 1982 she was sold to Captain Morgan Cruises and renamed MV Cominoland again, and operated day cruises for tourists in Grand Harbour of Valletta and to Comino island.
Gozo Tourism Association scuttled MV Cominoland on 12th August 2006 (watch video) together with MV Karwela. Before scuttling the ship was made safe for the environment and also safe for divers to penetrate, and during the scuttle buoyancy tanks and lift bags were used to ensure the wreck landed upright and not upside down like nearby MV Xlendi. Both vessels were thoroughly cleaned before scuttling by Cassar Ship Repair. As an experiment Cominoland was completely stripped off all of its outer paintwork, whereas Karwela was left with paint on, to see which technique would better encourage marine life settlement on the wrecks.
More info about MV Cominoland dive site
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