Truk Lagoon Dive Sites
Truk Lagoon is famous for the giant lagoon that is the final resting place for over 80 ships that were lost during the WWII between the Allies and Japan.
Truk Lagoon dive sites are a must for any serious wreck diving enthusiast.
Operation Hailstone, a major WWII battle resulted in a massive loss of military ships. The wrecks or maru are now submerged in the lagoon area and have become an artificial reef. The vessels often swarmed with marine life, have good sponges and corals growth
There are many war artefacts still onboard in the cargo holds or structure and relics are regularly found close by.
Most of the wrecks can be enjoyed by advanced divers as they are within recreational dive limits. However, there are some that do require technical diving certification and equipment. The liveaboard cruises can accommodate, but advance notice is necessary before joining the vessel.
Take a look at the Liveaboard Cruise options below.
Truk Lagoon Dive Sites - 2 LIVEABOARDS
Thorfinn Liveaboard, Truk
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Most are in the recreational diver range, but tec divers are also supported here.
The area is unique, with so many wrecks in such close proximity in relatively shallow water.
The Wrecks of Truk Diving Highlights
Diving in Truk Lagoon is an adventure you will never forget. WWII wrecks are scattered across 77 square miles. The wrecks are covered with life. There are over 300 varieties of hard and soft corals.
A 135m Japanese Freighter used as an aircraft ferry that sits in 34m of water on a sandy bottom upright with the upper decks covered in soft corals with lionfish, blends and clownfish.
The cargo hold has spare parts for Zero Fighters including props, wings, fuselages, components for machine guns and sake bottles. It is possible to swim through the cargo hold and exit through the torpedo hole. There is an encrusted bow gun on a raised platform
She rests on her port side at 34m of depth and is visible from the surface. She was sunk by one bomb which hit the 3rd hold causing a massive hold in the hull. The wreck is known for the for the 18inch shells in the hold that are scattered randomly and the remains of a steamroller. There are also air compressors and construction equipment in the hold.
Is a 108m freighter sitting upright at 44m, she lists to the port side but is upright due to the depth there is little coral, she is suitable for tec divers. She was sunk by three bombs and has interesting artefacts in the hold along with a well-preserved wheelhouse. The bridge, helm and structure are intact and surrounded by glassfish
The hold contains shells, mines, fuel drums, crates of bottles, gas masks and shoes. There are 3 Howitzer guns on the starboard deck and a tank hanging partially overboard and another lying on the bottom underneath the wreck.
The largest wreck in the lagoon at 165m and lies on her port side at 34m. She is a converted cargo and passenger liner used as a submarine tender.
Th vessel name is clear and readable on the bow, and there are large passageways, engine rooms and bridge.
The hold has torpedo bodies with a winch, pulleys and chains all used to move them in and out of storage. On the deck, nine 15m periscopes are lying together.
A medium size freighter at 25m that sits upright, she was sunk by a bomb in the aft hold that ignited ordinance that caused vessels destruction, to make the diving safe 284 depth charges were removed.
She has excellent soft coral coverage on the mast and deck that support reef life. The forward part of the ship is well preserved, but the small stern section is 50-60m away from the main structure.
The cargo onboard are trucks, small arms, crates and boxes aircraft parts and medicine bottles
She was a British and New Zealand that was captured and is now lying in 36m of water after being sunk by a bomb that caused massive damage to the vessel after igniting the cargo of aviation fuel. Care is required on this dive as fuel can still seep from the drums if disturbed.
A varied cargo is found onboard, with bombs, ammunition, bulldozers and four different truck and tractors.
One of the oldest wrecks here and sits in 40m of water upright, she has a severely damaged bridge and the funnel is now lying on the deck. Her holds are empty except for number 1 which contains personal items for soldiers, such as drinking flasks, gas masks, boots and military china. There is a large bow gun that is good for photography and good coral growth on the decks at 25 to 30m.
Rio de Janiero Maru
She was once a luxury passenger vessel but converted to a cargo carrier for wartime use. She sank due to a bomb and lies at 36m upright, but with an extensive list to the port, shallowest part is at 10 - 15m of depth.
One of the larger wreck here her holds contain empty Saki bottles and crates of beer. The engine room is large and has many fish within it, the prop and rudder are also huge and good for photography. The exterior shows several holes which indicate an internal explosion of stored ammunition near the bow.
Located the furthest from Moen and is a fighter that was sunk by three torpedoes causing a fire fueled by aviation fuel onboard. Sitting almost on the reef at 34m she has excellent coral coverage and little damage due to infrequent diver visits.
The destroyer sits upright in 38m of water with the shallower decks at 21m, and she is covered in corals attracting a large variety of life. She was sunk while in Truk for repairs, and her hold has railroad tracks and torpedo carriages.
The plane is a Mitsubishi G4M1 attack bomber who sank during a landing attempt where she broke the nose by being a few hundred meters short. The starboard wingtip and engines are located a 100m off the port side.
Is a passenger-cargo ship lying on her port side at between 27 and 40m. She sank due to a large bomb hit causing an explosion and long burning fire before finally sinking. The holds at the stern contain fuel drums, aircraft parts and even a fully dismantled plane. Truck and more plane parts are in hold 3.
The bridge still has the telegraph, speaker tubes and rudder stand and there is a field gun on the poop deck.
Is a 153m oil tanker sitting upright at 40m with the shallowest point at 12m, she is covered in soft corals making her one of the most beautiful wrecks in the lagoon. Sunk by two air attacks that left a hole in the engine room she is easy for divers to penetrate there and the superstructure.
A bow gun, photogenic bridge with three telegraphs, bathrooms and medical table are all worth visiting as well as the engine room.
Is a 151m converted passenger freighter sitting upright between 24 and 64m of water. She suffered significant damage from bombs causing an explosion and fire. Antiaircraft guns at her deckhouse and stern are still pointing upwards, and personal effects are still in the vessel.
San Fransisco Maru
She is a deep wreck of a passenger-cargo ship sitting upright between 42 and 63m of water. She suffered catastrophic damage to the hull causing the causing her to flood at the stern and be dragged under with the weight.
The holds are full of cargo such as torpedoes, lorry parts and ammunition, but it is the three large tanks, a staff car and aircraft guns that are the most photographed.
A submarine tender that sank in shallow water from 3 to 37m after suffering torpedo damage that caused here to disintegrating on impact. Lying on her port side on a steep incline, the holds were almost empty when she sank.
There are personal effects and torpedoes to be found in hold 2, and the rudder/propeller are in shallow water ideal for photography.
Reef Dives of Truk Lagoon
On the outer reef, you'll find mountains of coral that stretch as far as the eye can see, and drops off into the abyss. Here it is not unusual to see pelagic sharks.
Pizon Reef, a wall dive with large coral blocks in the shallow area.
Shark Island, a cleaning station for sharks with plenty of action.
Numerous plane wrecks, around 250 planes were destroyed in the lagoon leaving wrecks in shallow water. They are suitable for third dives of the day.
On board some of the cruises it may be possible to arrange visits to adjacent islands in Truk where there are various ruins from WWII.
Marine Park and Conservation in Truk Lagoon
Truk is designated as an underwater museum due to the history and the taking of relics is prohibited.
There are no national park fees, but there is a port permit and tax fee which is payable.