Diving Princess Alice, Azores
by Jorge Mezcua on May 18, 2023
Princess Alice, whose name derives from an expedition in 1896 aboard the "Princess Alice" commanded by the Prince of Monaco, is located between the islands of Pico and Faial and could without a doubt be considered the most spectacular dive site in the Atlantic and one of the great attractions of diving in the Azores. Princess Alice is a seamount with a minimum depth of 40 meters, but that gets lost in the abysses of the Atlantic, which exceed depths of more than 500 meters.
Access to Princess Alice is by boat after a three hour journey, which is an added attraction as it offers exceptional views of Faial and Pico and it is not surprising to see whales, dolphins or turtles. Once there, as we descend the buoy, we are greeted by curious mobulas that swirl around the divers. In addition to mobulas, blue sharks, Galapagos sharks and large schools of carangids, tuna, bicudas, manta rays and even black marlins can be seen at Princess Alice.
Diving at Princess Alice, one of the most spectacular dive sites in the Atlantic. Image by ©James Rd Scott
You don't have to be an expert diver or go down to 40 meters to have an unforgettable dive on Princess Alice. We can hang from the blue at 5, 10 or 15 meters and see mobulas or other pelagic fish just a few meters from the surface. However, it is important to remember that this is an open sea dive with strong currents, so some experience is required.
Those who are able to dive beyond 30 and 40 meters will be able to see an abundance of colorful marine life with damsels, fredis, cabrillas and pejeperros... but always keeping an eye out for the amazing groups of pelagics that congregate here.