Where to SCUBA dive in North Carolina


North Carolina is a very diverse state - especially when it comes to outdoor recreation opportunities. This weekend you could go hiking or kayaking in the mountains, watch a hot air balloon festival near Raleigh, and go wind surfing or fishing at the coast. And if you've got your SCUBA certification, you could go diving in the Graveyard of the Atlantic! In this blog post I focus on the diving, and create an interactive map of the dive sites...

Before we get started, here's a picture of me on a dive trip. I got certified about 10 years ago through Reef and Ridge Sports in Raleigh, and went diving at several locations off the NC coast (including the Indra, U-352, and Meg Ledge).

There are several lists of places to dive in North Carolina, but each list seemed to mainly focus on one area of the coast (usually an area within the range of the various charter dive shops). But I wanted to pull them all together and plot them on an interactive SAS map, so I could easily tell what wrecks were available in what area, and then click on them to find more information. This would help me plan future vacations & dive trips!

So I searched the web, and started compiling a list of dive sites (mostly shipwrecks), and some basic information about each one. The critical information (and the most difficult to find for some of the locations) was the latitude/longitude coordinates. Some of the shipwreck pages had the coordinates, and I was able to find some in the NC Artificial Reef guide. Collecting the data probably took more time than writing the code to draw the map. Here's an example of what my text data file looks like:

And here's the map I was able to create, using SAS/Graph's Proc Gmap. Click the image below to see the interactive version. Then you can hover your mouse over the red markers to see summary info about each dive site, and click each marker to launch a Google search for more information.

In addition to the map, I also created a table of the data (scroll down below the map on the interactive page), with html links from the wreck/site names to launch a Google search. People with less experience & training should stick with shallower dives, therefore I sorted the list by depth. Here's a screen-capture showing part of the table:

Are you a SCUBA diver? If so, have you ever been diving on any of these shipwrecks off the NC coast? Which was your favorite? (feel free to leave a comment)



About Author

Robert Allison

The Graph Guy!

Robert has worked at SAS for over a quarter century, and his specialty is customizing graphs and maps - adding those little extra touches that help them answer your questions at a glance. His educational background is in Computer Science, and he holds a BS, MS, and PhD from NC State University.

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  1. This year, I'm planning a vacation and with it, a scuba bucket list! I've always wanted to dive the Queen Anne's Revenge wreck, but I didn't realize there were others. Thank you for the ideas, I'll definitely incorporate them:) When I return, I'll be sure to write about my experience!

  2. Robert, your article reminded me of my last vacation and dives in Italy. Now I have even more desire and passion to continue diving and explore new dive places North Carolina first in my list, thanks)

  3. I haven’t done any diving yet, but I have done quite some snorkeling! The most amazing underwater world I saw was the Great Barrier Reef in Australia! I hope one day to return with a diving certificate to see a lot more!

  4. Scuba diving is one of my biggest passions. The main reason I love diving is the adventure, because you never know what you will find below the water surface. The second reason would be the wonderful diversity of the marine life. I use the https://dive.site map to find new diving spots and the logbook to keep track of my dive adventures.

  5. I am planning a trip to America next year and along with it, a scuba bucket list! I have always wanted to dive the Queen Annes Revenge wreck, but I was unaware of some of the others. Thanks for the inspiration these will definitely be added onto it :) I will be back to post about my experience when I return!

  6. Karen McCarron on

    How cool! This brings back great memories. We dove the Hutton, Suloide, Parker, and the John D. Gill many years ago. Haven't made it to see a U-boat... yet!

  7. Will Phillips on

    Interesting from both a diving and programming perspective. Could you provide more info on how you created the links to Google? I recently annotated a floor plan with html pop-ups....thanks to you in no small part. Looking at your map has given me food for thought about providing the end user more info via a link.

  8. Cool! I'm pretty sure my daughter did a certification dive in one of the quarries near Raleigh. I think she said there was a bus at the bottom.

  9. Jade Walker on

    I have to pick just one? My opinion is that you can never go wrong with the Naeco stern (the bow is 4 miles further out) or the Box Wreck.

    • Robert Allison
      Robert Allison on

      I figured this blog post might catch your attention! Glad you checked in! :)

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