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The following section of Caving in Mallorca represents the result of further exploration and research carried out by the Pegasus Club in Mallorca, on the occasion of their visit in October 2001.

As such it can be considered Part Five of Caving in Mallorca, or conceivably it could become Part One of Caving in Mallorca Volume 2.

The Pegasus returned to the island as promised in October 2001, most of the team from previous years were present, although they arrived in a somewhat fragmented fashion.

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My wife and I flew out from E.M.A, late Friday night 5.10.2001, we had absolutely no idea whereabouts on the island we were headed for. It was a seriously late booking that we had secured. Cheg and Aileen flew from E.M.A. on Saturday morning, typically they were the most organised and had named accommodation in Puerto Pollensa awaiting them. Andy and the two Malcs were also flying out on Saturday, as Malc Debbage told us they too were staying at the hotel Aoa (that’s what it stated on their tickets). The lads were flying out from Birmingham. Trev had obtained a flight only deal and was looking to doss wherever he could. Lee and his entourage were flying out on the day that everyone else was returning. Well you know what they say about the best-laid plans of mice and men.

With such ramshackle arrangements, it will come as no surprise that no caving was done on the Saturday. We all met up for breakfast on Sunday morning to sort out the itinery for the week ahead.

We decided that as the garage that we normally purchased our Carbide from would be shut, our first priority should be to contact our old friend J.J. to discuss our diving options. We headed for the dive shop in Puerto Pollensa, only to discover that it too was closed for the day. On the way to J.J’s place we passed another dive centre: Scuba Mallorca, they were open so we called in.

We booked a couple of boat dives for the Wednesday morning, hoping to visit some sea caves. The shop had a couple of interesting books on display; 1) Isles Balearas – Guia Submarina by Andreu Llamas. ISBN 84-08-03544-4, and 2) Scuba Diving in Mallorca; The 50 best dives by Juan Poyatos and Anibal Alonso. ISBN 84-278-0796-9. Both books included descriptions of several cavern dives. The first book was predominantly written in Spanish, but had an English section at the end. The second book had been translated into English in its entirety. The dive shop didn’t have either of the books in stock for sale, but directed us to a bookshop that did. We located the shop and bought out their entire stock of 7 books, we also bought an English Sunday paper so that I could check out the football results. We then decided it was time to do some caving.



    Avenc de Les Cireretes de Pastor
    Cova de Ponent
    Coveta de la Xemencia
    L’Avenc Forcat
    Avenc de L’Esparraguera
    Avenc de la Teranyina
    Avenc de la Mortassa
    Cala Sant Vicente - Unnamed mine shafts
    Cova del Jeure
    Cova de Can Llunas
    Coves de Pilar
    Lighthouse Cave
    Coves de N’Hereusa
    Cova des Xots
    Cova de Piqueta
    Cova de la Columna
    Cova de Illa del Torro
    Cova des Coloms
    Cova de la Mere de Deu
    Cova de Mistral
    Cova Azul
    Cova des Amich


    Cova des Pont
    Cova del Pirata


    Sa Cova des Dimoni
    Cova den Jeroni
    Sa Cova des Pintor
    Sa Cova des Cavall
    Cueva de la Ventana


    Cova de Cala sa Nau
    Cova de Cala Morlanda
    Cathedral Cave
    West Dock Caves (Palma)



    Coves de  Cala Varques
    Cova den Besso
    Les Tuneles de Amor
    Es Colomer
    Ses Covettes
    Es Farallo de Cala Gat
    Sa Cova Blava
    The Rocks of Life
    The Tunnel ( Cala des Monjo)
    Coves del Calo des Cans
    Coves de Cap Vermell
    The Tunnel Shaped Cave ( Cap des Llamp )
    Cave of the Hermit Crabs
    The Underwater Bridge (Corberana)
    The Tunnel ( Baix del Trenc)


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We discussed our caving options in a bar (as you do) and fairly late on in the day we headed out to Cala Sant Vicente. After perusing ‘501 Grutas’ we decided on trying to locate Les Cireretes de Pastor (C42), it looked half interesting.

We parked as near as possible to the beach and set off up the dry torrent into the mountains, we were armed with the Encinas book, complete with accompanying map. For those of you unfamiliar with the map, suffice to say that the scale is rather small. Trying to find a specific cave in a one square inch section containing over two dozen entries was never going to be easy.

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Entrance to one of the many small caves and rock shelters to be found on the limestone plateau above Cala Sant Vicente.

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The first cave that we were due to arrive at was X4, Coveta de la Xemencia. I came across an entrance on the right hand side of the gully, which appeared to be in the correct location, a quick look inside convinced us that we were on the right track. Malc Debbage who was a further 50 metres up on the same side of the gully some 20 metres higher, called out that he’d found another cave.

We all assembled at the entrance, while Malc went in with a light. Problem! We couldn’t find anything in the book that remotely resembled this hole. It was slowly dawning on us that our chosen task was going to be more difficult than we had first thought. We left the cave and climbed up the side of the torrent to gain the flat limestone plateau above.

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Typical section of Cala Sant Vicente’s limestone pavement.

The plateau was riddled with holes and crevices like Swiss cheese, we were certainly in real cave hunting country. Unfortunately apart from the extensive flat lapies there was very little else, it was difficult to choose any landmarks to navigate by. Eventually we spotted 3 small cairns pretty much aligned with each other, all of these were investigated in turn; they all denoted cave entrances, but nothing to write home about. To be honest I really can’t fathom the reason for building these cairns in the first place.

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Andy descending the entrance ‘pitch’ of  Avenc de les Cireretes de Pastor.

Several other minor caves were subsequently located and descended, some appeared to match descriptions given in the Encinas book; some didn’t. We decided to abandon our search for Les Cireretes and return to base, here sod’s law came into play. We discovered the desired cave completely by accident on our way back. How we missed it the first time around I don’t know, it had by far the largest opening of anything we had encountered all afternoon, resembling a mini Rowten Pot. An initial inspection appeared to indicate that tackle would be needed to descend. Andy began to search for a convenient place to rig a ‘Y’ hang. Seeing that Andy was having difficulty in achieving his objective, I decided to have a closer look at the free-climbing possibilities. An easy scramble down a gully gained an obvious ledge, the lip of which was guarded by a vicious looking bush having sharp barbed fronds. After clearing sufficient foliage to squeeze past without lacerating myself, the edge was arrived at. It was not possible to finish the descent by conventional means, but a tree was growing from the base of the pot’s open crater. The top of this willowy sapling was enticingly within reach of my fingertips.


Now it’s a long, long time since I last scaled a tree, in fact I can’t ever remember climbing one by starting at the top and going down, but here was a challenge not to be spurned. After I had convinced myself that the uppermost branches would indeed support 14 stone of fit, healthy caver, the climb down was quite easy, the climb back up was a bit more tricky but still OK. Andy abandoned his attempt at rigging the rope and followed me down.

As usual Antonio’s survey flattered to deceive, the passage from the base of the open pot soon fizzled out into impassable dimensions. Although the cave was very short, both Andy and myself were breathing heavily and sweating profusely when we returned to the daylight chamber. Like so many other caves that we had tackled in Mallorca, this one too had dangerously high levels of CO2 present. When we retired to a nearby bar later on, the general consensus of opinion was that the various holes we had descended were: P26. Cova de Ponent, X4. Coveta de la Xemencia, F14. L’Avenc Forcat, E6. Avenc de l’Esparraguera, C42. Avenc de les Cireretes de Pastor, T10. Avenc de la Teranyina and M15 .Avenc de la Mortasa.

We can’t be sure that these were the actual holes we looked at. What is certain, is that had this limestone plateau been in the U.K., all these sites would have been dug to reveal (probably) more open cave passage.

Malc Debbage in entrance to unnamed military mined adit.



At the same time that we were cave prospecting around Cala Sant Vicente, Cheg and Aileen were also active in the same vicinity. The Chesters had elected to go for a stroll up what appeared to be a well constructed road leading up to the high point of the peninsula, this road gave every indication of being of military origin. The road leads off from the left hand side of the road to Cala Barques in Cala Sant Vicente, approx. 50 metres before the car park at the beach. The road is accessed via a flight of steps between two private residences, it does in fact show on the map, but is difficult to distinguish from the contour lines.

Shortly before reaching the end of this road, which at first sight appears to lead nowhere, Cheg’s trained eye spotted a couple of spoil heaps high on the hilltop. Being a keen mining enthusiast these immediately attracted his attention. Both these spoil heaps were the result of shafts being sunk into the hillside. A passing couple who had holidayed on the island continuously for the past 30 years, informed Cheg that these shafts were used to access chambers used as munitions dumps from the second world war.

Later the following day when we all met up, Cheg told us of his find, and we decided to investigate them. We duly reached the first shaft and Andy set about putting a bolt in the top of the shaft wall, while the rest of us continued up on towards the second shaft higher up the hill, and a possible third shaft nearby on an adjacent hillock.

Meanwhile Cheg had a bit of a wander further up the military road and chanced upon an adit entrance. Andy’s bolting exercise was thus rudely interrupted by Cheg calling up to him from the shaft bottom. 

The adit led into the hillside for about 20 metres, turned through 90 degrees to head towards the shaft bottom, turned through 90 degrees again and once more to lead back onto itself. The second site was identical, while the third site appeared to have been completely infilled. The adits and shaft complexes are not overbig, but are sufficiently interesting to warrant a visit, particularly if you’re in the area anyway.

The following day, we managed to meet up with JJ and sort out a further opportunity to dive at Cova  de Sa Gleda. We also identified a more reliable source of carbide at Can Munar, 33-37 Carer Lluna, Sa Pobla. We then paid a further visit to Cova des Diners to fully explore and photograph the extensive upper series, the week was beginning to take shape nicely.

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Top of first shaft accessing presumed military munitions store.



The final cave we investigated in Mallorca was the cave designated as J6 in the book; this was looked at while the team was paying a visit to the lighthouse at Cap de Formentor. I have absolutely no idea what Del Jeure translates as, but Andy thinks it should mean Goat’s Toilet.


From Manacor take the road numbered PM.V 401-5 signposted to the Cales de Mallorca. Follow this road until you arrive at a T Junction, which heralds the Porto Colom / Porto Cristo road. This spot is easily recognisable by virtue of two garish signs, which stare you in the face as soon as you hit the T Junction. The signs advertise a tropical park and also exotic parrots. Turn left towards Porto Colom, immediately after turning you will see a large isolated detached villa on the right hand side just set back from the road, a private lane reaches this house.

Another private lane is reached on the same side after a further 50m. Turn right down this second private lane. There are signs at the beginning of this lane indicating it’s private status. I’m not entirely certain whether or not this precludes access, but be sure to act in a diplomatic manner if you continue on to this land, if it is at all possible to ask for permission to cross this private land and to visit the caves thereupon, then do so.


The lane soon deteriorates into an unmade track, after a few hundred metres there is a turning on the left leading to a private farmhouse. Just before this turning there is a collapsed doline on the left, a few metres on the other side of the wall bordering the track.

This doline marks the entrance to Cova de Can Llunas, more or less opposite on the right hand side of the road at a similar distance from the wall is Camp de Pou (see Caving in Mallorca Part Four). Cova de Can Llunas was recently dived by our Spanish caving colleague Bernat, with JJ sherpaing. The dive failed to yield any significant passage but Bernat reports that a British dive line was in situ.

Continue on past the turning to the farmhouse, until the end of the track is met at a juncture with two gates. Park up here as close to the side of the track as possible, take care not to hamper access to either of these gates. Both these gates will almost certainly be locked, and both gates are clearly marked to indicate that entry onto this private land is not allowed.


The gate facing you at the end of the lane leads to the coastline. Straight on you will discover the collective Sea caves at Cala Varques. There are four separate entrances, three of these (C, D & A) have been connected by JJ underwater. The submerged passages of these caves drop to over 30m in depth and as such must be considered quite a serious undertaking.

Further down the coast the Coves de Pilar are shown on some large-scale tourist maps. We did not visit these caves but they must be presumably of some substance to warrant inclusion on such maps, likewise further down the coast the Coves de Cala Sa Nau are also indicated on these same maps. The sea entrance to Cova Dets Ases and the Cova Dets Colom, both previously mentioned in Part Four are also found in this stretch of shoreline.


Diving in this cavern is not considered particularly dangerous. The cave comprises of a single chamber with no side passages and it is not possible to stray beyond the light from the cave’s entrance at any time. A line is not considered necessary, but it is advantageous to carry a torch for extra illumination.

If you have a small RIB which you can tow behind a car or you fancy a long snorkel out (not recommended), you can get there by road. The directions are as follows; leave the small village of S’Horta and head towards Cala Ferrara. After 1km take a small-asphalted track on the left hand side of the road, this will bring you to Cala Sa Nau. You can launch your boat here or swim from the beach, if you have a larger boat it is necessary to leave from Porto Colom.

On the left hand side of the cove, going there by sea, there is a whitish coloured cliff at the beginning of the cove’s entrance. After 150m just before a small inlet, at the point where the cliff starts to loose height and verticality, a large horizontal crack above water level indicates the cave entrance 7m below. The bottom of the cave lies at 10m and has a sandy and rocky floor.

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On the left hand side there are deep crevices full of stalagmites and stalactites which usually house Groupers and Brown Meagres. The main passage is 20m in length, at the end is a prominent rock that goes up to 3m, from here it is possible to turn around and admire the formations in the passage thus far traversed, bathed in the half light of the entrance.

In the middle of the passage there is an outstanding column, following this column upwards you will surface in a dry chamber of considerable dimensions. There are some oxbows that it is possible to explore on the way out, with additional attractive calceous formations. At the end of the cave is a sandy passage on the right inhabited by shrimps, wreath-tufts and cerianthus.


There is a large cave entrance visible above sea level in the cliffs, directly below the lighthouse in a small cove. This cave has no appreciable passage either above or below water, but by diving down directly below this entrance, it is possible to enter some easy tunnels that pass through the rock. This is a popular open-water diving site.


Approximately 10 miles inland from Porto Colom almost directly to the west you will find Son Barbut. Son Barbut is on the Campos - Felanitx road. The Globetrotter Travel map of Mallorca and Menorca, ISBN 1-85368-460-0 shows the Coves de N’Hereusa just under a mile away to the southeast of Son Barbut, unfortunately we did not have time to check these out.


While considering the submerged caverns in this area, it would seem appropriate to mention the current developments at Den Besso (Caving in Mallorca; Part Four). JJ has successfully passed the collapse that formerly curtailed exploration of this cave. 

A further 2km of open passage has been discovered, exploration is ongoing promising great things for the future. Don’t forget you heard it here first.


Back at the parking area, the gate on the left leads after approx 1km to the twin shakeholes housing the entrances to the impressive connecting caves of Cova des Pont and Cova del Pirata. At the time of our visit Cova del Pirata was locked and we were unable to access its magnificent lake and decorated galleries.

We did however manage to visit Cova des Pont, the gate to the cave had been left open, enabling JJ to undertake an exploratory dive with the ultimate aim of connecting these two caves to Cova de Sa Gleda.

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J.J. preparing to undertake an exploratory dive in Cova des Pont.

We were invited to sherpa for JJ on this dive. JJ started his dive from Lake Victoria and laid a line through a previously unexplored tunnel, to emerge in the lake of Galeria des Teriat after passing an airbell en route. From this lake a further 150m of line was laid out in open passage heading towards sa Gleda. The line was then tied off to the left of a collapse and an exit was made, surveying on the way out.

While JJ was diving the rest of us had ample time to explore the dry sections of Cova des Pont, including a visit to Sala de Tanga which necessitated a short swim in dry grots. The water was pleasantly warm and made a change from the unpleasant immersions in UK caves. Sala de Tanga houses an active Bat colony, ample evidence of which is furnished by the generous carpeting of guano throughout.

The whole cave is large and welcoming and boasts an array of formations from grandiose columns to delicate straws and helictites. Given that Cova des Pont has six easily accessible lakes compared to the solitary Lake Martel in Drach, it would potentially make a much finer showcave. Rumour has it that every year, many thousands of pesetas are proffered by interested parties  to the authorities, to ensure that neither des Pont nor del Pirata are granted permission to develop and operate as showcaves. Having visited the caves in question I find this easy to believe.


After exiting Cova des Pont, JJ showed us the entrance to Cova des Xots (pronounced Shots) .The entrance is located midway between des Pont and del Pirata in a direct line, no connections have been made however. A half-collapsed doline enclosed by a semi-circular dry stone wall, 2m high by 1m thick, leads down by steps set in the wall to a low arched entrance well hidden by brambles. This low arch is floored by a pool of what appears to be semi-dry concrete made with slurry, we were extremely careful not to step in it. Immediately inside, the stooping sized passage enlarges and splits into dividing galleries, both passages slope down steeply to join up again. The large chamber formed by the rejoining of the passages continues to slope down steeply before finally closing down to become a narrow muddy tube. The muddy tube in turn closes down to a point where the roof meets the flat, scummy, mud-encrusted floor. A rock casually tossed onto this ‘floor’, caused the scum to divide to reveal a chocolate coloured stagnant pool . The pool was only visible after a cloud of a thousand mosquitos had dispersed; the resulting aroma was quite memorable to say the least.

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Cova des Xots; Main chamber.

Now I’m no seasoned cavediver but I’m in no way surprised that this siphon has retained its virginity. In four decades of cave exploration, this is indeed the most disgusting sump I’ve ever come across

Though nowhere near as impressive as it’s near neighbours, Cova des Xots is worth a visit in it’s own right. Continuing along the line of collapses from Pirata to Xots to Pont, a fourth cave Cova de Piqueta is met. This cave was not investigated on this occasion.

The locations of all these caves plus other interesting sites are shown in detail on the large-scale area map; S’Estany d’en Mas. Map No; 700-4-8 along with a map of the adjacent S’Espinagar; 725-3-1.

The visit to Cova des Xots concluded an enjoyable and successful days caving. Before electing to visit any of these sites, it is recommended that cavers try to obtain permission from the farmhouse mentioned earlier. Not only will this make your visits legal, it will also enable you to park nearer to the cave entrances.


Although this cave is only a few hundred metres from Porto Cristo, it is notoriously difficult to find. If you wish to visit this site you would be well advised to do so in the company of divers who know the location and the interior of the cave thoroughly. Albatross diving in Cala Millor dive here on a fairly regular basis, as do the Triton club from Palma.

The submerged entrance at 6 metres depth is the only one used by divers, allegedly there is also a ‘secret’ dry way in. This dry entrance is supposedly used by Devil-worshippers to practice their Satanic Masses underground, hence the name for the cave. This piece of folklore probably arises from the fact that remnants of red candles have been discovered by divers on top of stalagmites in the cave’s dry chamber. 

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Diver surfacing in main dry chamber of The Devil’s Cave.

Some divers have also reported seeing shadowy figures fleeing into the darkness on surfacing in the dry vault. It’s hard to believe that no visiting divers have shown sufficient curiosity to try and locate the whereabouts of the ‘secret’ entrance. Perhaps the candle carriers were not Devil-worshippers, but free-diving cavers practicing the Norbet Casteret technique.

The underwater entrance is easy and large but once inside the ongoing tunnel narrows and splits, there is no indication as to which is the correct passage to follow, in order to get to the dry section of cave. Once again it is stressed that it is essential that visiting divers are fully conversant with cave-diving practices and that a line is always used in this cave. The vault where the candles are found is about the same size as a basketball court, (surely it can’t be that difficult to find the way out from there). There are some nice formations both above and below water, and the dive is considered by many local divers to be one of the best on the island. The visibility is always exceptional but it is still wiser to visit in small parties only.


Cala Morlanda is near Sa Coma, between Cala Millor and Porto Cristo. It is a cove with a rocky beach that boasts both clean water and good visibility. It is also easily accessible by car and shore diving is not a problem. 

There exist many diving possibilities from this site, including some easy cave diving that allows entry to a dry cave after a very short dive. The entrance to the cave lies at a depth of 6m, just under the point of the small cape that marks the extremity of the right hand side of the cove.

The dive is very straightforward, shallow and easy. However this cave, like any other cave, must be entered with the right attitude and equipment. A small metal cross just under the cliff on the surface serves as a memorial and a stark reminder of how a free-diver lost his life here while trying to swim through to the airbell.



The Cova den Jeroni is by all accounts an excellent dive, unfortunately it is also most awkward to access.The nearest port is Puerto Pollensa from where it is possible to undertake a boat dive with either Scuba Pollensa or Scuba Mallorca who are both based in Pollensa. The cave is a popular choice with other clubs on the island, and boats from as far afield as Palma visit the site.

The entrance to the cave is found just after the rocky formation of Punta de Vent, beyond Cala Murta and Cala Gossalba. This rocky venue is popular site with open water divers in it’s own right, it is known locally as the Pinnacle and is a superb wall dive. Anchor under the cliff about 30m from the vertex of the point. There is nothing obvious on the wall that indicate the presence of a cave below, except for a small crack that indicates the place to fin towards in order to reach the submerged entrance. 

Because the entrance is so unobtrusive, the inside of the cavern has remained totally unspoiled. The location also makes it accessible only in calm, settled weather. Being in the interior of the cave during a heavy swell is like being on the inside of a washing machine on full cycle. On the day we selected to dive, the weather thwarted us for the second year running, and we dived instead at the nearby ‘Tuneles  de Amor’.

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If you are fortunate enough to find conditions conducive enough to dive in Jeroni, you will surface after a short swim in a dry cavern of spectacular proportions (by local open water diver standards that is) This cavern has a reported dry connection with the adjacent Cova de la Columna, although this cave is not listed in ‘501 Grutas’. The average depth of a normal dive here is 9m reaching a maximum of 19m. 

There is traditionally a rather naff nativity scene maintained in the dry chamber by the club Triton, it is normally visited each Christmas. The cave was named after it’s original discoverer, Jeroni Puigcerver, apparently he made the discovery after free diving into the dry chamber, holding his breath while surveying the scene, and free diving out again. He was needlessly worried that the air may have been unbreathable, all credit to the man. 

Despite this fact, the local divers still disrespectfully insist on referring to the place as Geronimo’s Cave.



The Tunnels of love are a short distance to the east of the Morro del Pont, this strip is only accessible by sea, consequently Puerto Pollensa is normally used once more for the starting point for this dive, the dive is often done as a second dive for people visiting Jeroni.

     The tunnels are relatively shallow at approx. 7m depth and as such the swim through them can be quite bumpy in times of heavy swell, it was when we dived there. Between the two tunnels a low bedding type cavern can be penetrated for about 10m wearing back-mounted cylinders.

The name ‘Tunnels of Love’ was coined by our friend JJ, all in all, the entire site lends itself to be an excellent introduction to cavern diving.


The Colomer island is an impressive 103m high crag, it lies to the west of Cap Formentor at the far north end of Mallorca The whole of the island’s coastline comprise of rugged, steep cliff faces. The potential depth here, reaching 40m plus and the location of the islet add a degree of difficulty to any dive undertaken here. It is usual to reach this site by boat. The hour’s boat trip from Puerto Pollensa, can, I assure you from personal experience, be very nauseating.

The normal anchorage is at the south of the islet, above a rock substratum at a depth of 17m. Once in the water, swim towards the southwest end of Colomer where a great hole traverses the islet from one side to the other underwater. Again in times of heavy swell, the wall of the tunnel can appear to reverberate, making for a sporting swim through.



The bay of Cala Agulla, near Cala Ratjada is a very popular open water dive site. The diving can be undertaken from the shore, and the water is clean and clear due to the frequent currents. Despite these factors, the coastline around Cala Ratjada remains relatively unspoiled.

There are some easy dives, some very easy dives and some dives for trained cave divers only.It is possible to swim to the area where the caves are to be found. It is also possible to hire a scooter at the Club Mero in Cala Lliteres, this is an attractive proposition if you are lazy or unfit, or both. 

The caves are in an area directly below a huge mushroom shaped rock formation about 50m from the cove. An initial dive through a short tunnel leads to an area of large underwater caverns, some of these have narrow side passages, it would be advisable to use a line and lights should you wish to explore them.


The El Toro Island is a popular dive site and offers a choice of diving from beginner’s courses to advanced deep diving, the site is even used to impart professional courses. Nearby at the Unidad Coasta Norte Diving Centre in Port Adriano, there is a hyperbaric chamber. 

There are no underwater caves here, but the island itself has a huge rock shelter in the cliff face. This shelter in turn houses a large stone-built building, it is directly below a prominent tower on the cliff top. All diving done at this site must be undertaken from a boat.

Stone building crudely constructed in rock shelter of Illa del Toro.


According to Juan Poyatos and Anibal Alonso in their book “Scuba Diving in Mallorca – The 50 best dives”, the Cathedral Cave is possibly one of the most magnificent dives that can be done in the Balearic Isles. 

Although the entrance is relatively shallow and comfortably large, once the diver has entered the cave and has begun to swim towards the inner galleries, the entrance begins to appear increasingly small. Just as many of the island’s larger dry caves are accessed by a singular small entance, so is this undersea cavern.

For this reason it is imperative that all divers entering this system must be fully practised in correct cave diving procedures, or at least should be in the company of a trained guide who knows the internal layout of the cave well.

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Cathedral Cave’s main dry chamber.

On no account should the dive be undertaken without a dive line. Inside the entrance the passage quickly bi-furbicates. The right hand option soon changes from a narrow tunnel to a spacious well decorated dry chamber after 60 metres. It is normal practise to do this part of the cave first, returning to the entrance after exploring the dry section.The left hand passage is of similar length but has a number of narrow side passages leading off, all the left hand side is totally submerged Exploration of any of these side passages requires extreme caution and the confidence that comes from full and proper training. The whole cave, both above and below water level is extremely pretty and largely unspoiled. The maximum depth attained is 19metres.

To reach the cave it is necessary to go by boat from the launching point at the public slipway of Cala Ratjada, the nearest port. Heading northwards from the port, the coastline is followed for approximately 5km passing the attractive beaches of Cala Agulla and Cala Molto. After passing the point of Na Foguera, look out for a small inlet with a fissure in the rockface that indicates the location of the cave entrance. 

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The undersea entrance to Cathedral Cave.

It is important to anchor the boat near to this crack in the rockface. When diving at this site it is also important to be wary of the weather, this is inclined to change in a sudden and dramatic fashion.


A dark coloured sort of cave indicates the anchoring point for a dive on the Rocks of Life. The “Cave” at the very end of the Cap Andritxol does not extend any great distance either above or below sea level. 

The caves and crevices in the cliff face below the surface are sufficiently large enough to provide a suitable habitat for Moray eels, Lobsters and other such  examples of Mediterranean marine life, they are not Caver sized. 

The cliff bottoms out at 33m and as such makes a nice scenic wall dive.


The Cova des Coloms (Cave of the Pigeons) is an open cave with a large visible entrance at sea level. It has traditionally been the home of pigeons, unfortunately these have now been largely obliterated by fishermen using cartridge shotguns. Tourist boats regularly visit this spot during the holiday season. It is possible to get a small RIB right inside the cave, but caution must be exercised, as the water inside the cave is very shallow. From the caver’s or diver’s point of view this cave has little of interest to offer. There are no formations and very little marine life.

The cavedivers interest is satisfied by the two interconnecting underwater caves. The entrance to the first one is visible from the small pebbled cove of Cala des Vell Mari (Cove of the Mediterranean Seal) where it is situated. The first cave is reasonably large as sea caves go, and has a number of passages and concealed spaces that provide a shelter for Capetown Lobsters and Brown Meagre amongst other things.

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Obvious open entrance to Cova des Coloms.

One of these passages connects with the other cave to exit in the cliff face on the south side of the cove. Unless you are an experienced cavediver suitably equipped it is advisable to visit the two caves separately. There are some curious mounds of muddy sand on the cave floor. Craters in this sand serve to confirm the abundance of nocturnal marine life to be found here. This mud can quite easily be disturbed to quickly spoil the visibility, bear this in mind.

The caves however, are considered to be suitable for open water divers who wish to experience the sensation of diving within the confines of a cave.

To access these caves you can either launch a RIB from Cala Ratjada or you can drive to Cala des Vell Mari by car and do a shore dive from there.


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If you wish to undertake a second dive while in the Cala Ratjada area, the Farallo dive would make a good choice. There are a number of small tunnels and caves that can be investigated, all in relatively shallow depths not exceeding 18 metres. It is preferable to do this dive from a boat, as the Farallo islet is difficult to reach by road. The southeast side of Es Farallo de Cala Gat, is the side which houses the main tunnels and caves.

The weather and consequently the sea conditions change quite rapidly in this particular area. It is a good idea to pick the brains of the local divers at the Mero Diving Centre in Cala Lliteres for advice and information before diving at this site.



At the opposite end of Canyamel to Cap Vermell, just south of Punta de Les Pi is Cap de Les Piner. This rocky outcrop has a succession of small and mysterious caves at it’s most eastern edge.

The Cave of the Hermit Crabs is one of the many caves that can be explored here. The cave is not very big, is difficult to find and has a sandy bottom which is easily disturbed.  However if you’re into Hermit Crabs and their abodes, I’m sure the lads at Albatross diving would be happy to take you there.



The beautiful beach of Canyamel lies between the bay of Arta and Cala Ratjada. This area is where the huge crag of Cap Vermell looks out onto the Mediterranean. The crag is one of the most easterly tracts of land on the island. The inside of the Cap is riddled with caverns, ample proof of which is provided by the magnificent showcave at Arta.

At the beach of Canyamel you can launch a boat from the cliff’s base by the point of the Cap. Here the cliffs drop sheerly to a depth of 24m, where a number of small caves and crevices harbouring Groupers and Scorpion fish can be explored.    
This particular area is notorious for extreme currents as well as strong thermal winds, consequently it is best to visit the site with someone who knows the place well. One such group of people are the Albatross divers from Cala Millor.


Calo des Cans is at the North end of Mallorca, near to Colonia de Sant Pere in the bay of Alcudia, it is between Can Picafort and Cala Ratjada.

In the middle of Calo des Cans there is an enormous rocky area which is full of small caves and caverns, the caves are of all shapes and sizes, none lie any deeper than 6 metres. This site makes an excellent training area for first time cavern divers.

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Al Steans silhouetted in entrance to typical submerged sea cavern.



The rocky seabed of El Baix de Es Trenc is full of boulders guarding comfortably sized holes. There is also a largish underwater passage which almost looks as though it could have been man made. This tunnel, like so many other locations in the Mediterranean Sea around Mallorca, makes an ideal training site for erstwhile cavedivers. The tunnel is approximately 18m long and is quite narrow. 

There are also some rock arches and other nooks and crannies in the immediate area to add further interest to the dive.
The dive site is too far from the coastline at Es Trenc to make shore diving a realistic proposition. A boat, preferably equipped with echo sounders or a G.P.S. is needed to reach the site in open water at Lat 39-19,75N and Long 002-58,46E. The dive bottoms out at 19metres.


Cap des Llamp (Cape of Lightning) is between Port d’Andratx and Santa Ponca, the underwater cave here is to be found just under the point of this cape. The cave is relatively easy to explore, since it comprises a single passage with only one way in and out. It is not considered essential to use a line reel, but at the end of the day this is your choice. It is, however, considered important to carry a torch and back-up lighting.

The cave starts off large before narrowing halfway through and then reverting back to its former dimensions to enter a large sub-aquatic chamber. Great care must be exercised in the narrow section to avoid stirring up the silt, and thereby ruining the viz. As such it is better to dive this cave in no more than buddy pairs, or to dive solo if you’re happy to do this.
Large divers may find the narrow section impassable, and too small to allow turning around, it would therefore necessitate reversing out. If in doubt do not enter, either way make sure you have sufficient air to go to the end past the narrow section, and to go back out the same way, there is no airspace anywhere in the cave.


The three caves of Palma’s west dock are located between the dock and the Palace of Marivent. They are all to be found at a depth of approximately 12 metres, in one of them it is possible to surface in a breathable vault.

The dive is by necessity a boat dive and it is recommended that the caves are visited in the company of divers who know the place. There is a local club that dive there frequently, they are Calumet Diving S.L. and are based below the Bonanza Hotel in Illeres.

The three caves are not connected, should you wish to visit them all on the same dive, you will need to descent to 12metres and ascend to 0metres three times. This should provide you with an interesting dive profile on your computer; it may also give you earache. It shouldn’t present a problem to any self-respecting cavediver though.

The main cave can be seen from the surface and it is possible to anchor in front of it, the current and the abundance of marine traffic can however prove to be a handicap. Falling free-climbers, who frequently practice their art on the cliff above, especially in the summer months can also be a hazard.

Just further down from Palma on the left hand side of the bay, another coastal cave is shown on the tourist maps. This cave, Cova de la Mere de Deu (Portais  Vels)  has so far not been investigated by us.


The Calo de Monjo is a very pretty and unobtrusive cove situated between Peguera and Camp de Mar, in the southwest of Mallorca. A visit to the cave is done as a shore dive, starting from either the small-pebbled beach or the little jetty. 200 metres away from the beach on the right hand side of the cove, the entrance to the tunnel is encountered at a depth of 8-10 metres in the cliff wall. The entrance is clearly visible from the surface. The tunnel is 25 metres in length and has a right hand turn followed by a left hand turn in the middle. If you are diving without a torch, you will lose the light from the entrance after turning right, you will however regain the light from the exit after turning left. The floor of the tunnel is sandy and the roof of the tunnel is only a few centimetres above your head, because of this it is easy to disturb the sand and cloud up the visibility. The passage however is very wide and there are normally no currents, so the reduced viz shouldn’t pose too much of a problem, particularly if you do the through trip.

From Palma take the road towards Andratx and drive through Peguera, here you will find a left hand turning to Cala Fornells at the end of the town. Follow this road until you arrive at a bistro called Es Verger, turn right here onto a paved road. This road soon deteriorates into a dirt track, but it is still wide enough to accomodate a car. After following the track to the right through some woods towards the sea, you will eventually be stopped by a wall with a door in it marked private. Although this land is private, access to the coast is still permitted; a 200m carry brings you to the dive site.


Dragonera lies off the southwest end of Mallorca, geologically it is a continuation of the Sierra de Tramuntana. Much of the outcrop is calcareous offering a number of caves and sinkholes, amongst the dry caves worth a mention is the  Cova des Moro or Cova de sa Fonts.

The Cueva de la Ventura (Cave of the Window) is one of many excellent dive sites situated around Dragonera. Although the inner reaches of the cave are quite spacious, the entrance itself is partially obscured by rocks and is not easy to find. (This could possibly be the cave referred to briefly in Caving in Mallorca part four). The entrance is some 2 metres in diameter and has its base at 16 metres with the lintel at 14 metres. The ensuing passage leads landwards in an initial direction of 155 degrees, after 25m the maximum depth of 18m is reached, at the end of this passage the cave continues upwards by a totally vertical chimney to ascend 15m and break surface in an enchanting air chamber. The roof of this chamber some 12m long by 3-4m wide is hung with pristine stalactites. At the end of the chamber is a dry shelf, large enough to permit the visiting diver(s) to de-kit and explore the further dry passages. A bit of muddy thrutching and scrambling soon gains a window (hence the cave name) overlooking the open ocean some 8m above sea level.

On returning down the inclined tunnel leading back towards the shelf, a further second dry chamber of smaller dimensions can be entered on the left hand side, this chamber can also be reached by a very narrow underwater passage.

If you wish to visit this site, it would be a good idea to contact one of the local dive centres such as ZOEA based in the nearby Santa Ponca on the mainland. ZOEA regularly run boats to this cave.


The Isle of Cabrera is situated of the southernmost point of Mallorca. It is arrived at by taking a ferry from Colonia de Sant Jordi. Since this entailed a long car journey from where we were based in Pollensa, followed by the boat crossing, we did not find time to visit on this occasion. The tourist maps show at least three caves on the island; Cova des Mistral, Cova Azul and Cova des Amich, there are also a couple of recommended dive site on the islands. JJ thinks this area shows excellent potential for further exploration and discovery of both dry and sub-aquatic systems. We intend to spend a couple of days over there on our next visit to Mallorca.


Not really an underwater cave, but a group of rocks that form the shape of a bridge which provides numerous arches large enough to swim through in pairs. The extraordinary landscape of “caverns” formed by the many arches and cavities makes for a superb dive.

A torch is necesary to clearly view the myriad species of sponges and corals that line the walls and ceilings of these underwater shelters. A maximum depth of 26m is attained on this dive.


The Cova Blava is found at the foot of the dramatic cliffs that drop steeply into the sea near the Punta de Soller. The wide cave entrance permits the approach of medium sized dive boats. The cave itself is of generous proportions with two entrances, the larger of which is situated to the south and is visible in part, above the sea level. This entrance avails easy access to a hall 40 metres in diameter, all at a constant depth of 12 metres. The larger entrance in itself measures 40 metres across and thereby lends itself to particularly easy access and exploration.

On the north side of this underwater vault a gaping tunnel leads after 20 metres to another chamber, this second hall has a diameter of 30 metres and is totally submerged. At the western end of the second chamber an opening in the rock at 7 metres depth,  forms a wide shelf connecting through to the open sea. Since the first chamber has light filtering through from the area open to the surface, a torch is not needed for the initial reaches of the cave, it is recommended to use additional lighting if a full reconnaissance is to be made. A dive line would also be an extra precaution.

If you dive here in the afternoon, the sun’s rays coming from the west will serve to intensify the blue colour of the Mediterranean Sea, hence the name Cova Blava (The Blue Cave).


Cova de Pintor is easily recognisable by the enormous entrance in the cliffs above. At the base of the dry cave entrance there are a series of man made concrete steps availing easy access to the inside of the cave. These steps were reputedly built by a painter who allegedly lived in the cave. Now I know that painters can generally be considered to be eccentric characters, but living in this cave ? I don’t think so. Local inhabitants maintain that the steps were built by habitual smugglers in post-war years, this explanation seems more feasible. If you are unable to dive at this site, it is well worth making a visit on foot. the inside being quite large and spectacular.

The diver’s entrance is directly below the painter’s front door at a depth of 13 metres. This ascends to the surface via a kind of chimney. Good buoyancy control is necessary if you contemplate this ascent, otherwise you’re liable to become stuck to the ceiling, it is not possible however to get lost in the cave. Seeing the whole of the underwater cave will not take long, the rest of your air can be used exploring the surrounding cliff face rocks which teem with life.

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Smuggler’s entrance to the Painter’s Cave


Cova des Cavall can be an interesting through trip, it is normally entered underwater but has an independent dry exit. For the most part the cave represents easy going for experienced, careful divers, however the chimney at one end can turn the dive into a nasty trip. This chimney, which surfaces in a short dry chamber leading to the open air, is very narrow and must only be entered by one diver at a time.

It is not possible to turn around in the chimney; it is only possible to turn around after surfacing in the dry section. This dry cavern is in itself only large enough to accommodate a maximum of three divers at a time, unless someone wants to de-kit and thrutch through to the outside.

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Diver entering the submerged entrance to Cova des Cavall.

The entrance to the cave lies at 20-24 metres, this represents the deepest part of the dive. It goes without saying that anyone contemplating a through trip needs to have good buoyancy control, a cool head and cave diving experience and equipment, side mounted cylinders would undoubtedly be a bonus.

This cave is north of the Port of Soller and the nearest dive centre is Octopus Diving in Canonge Oliver Street, Soller. Octopus organise boat diving trips to the cave and hire out equipment. If you are self sufficient as regards boat and equipment, they also do air fills and will advise you on the location of the cave.

ACKNOWLEDGEMENTS, Please see Caving In Mallorca Parts 4
The End

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