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Code: Ocean
Zone: Salema
Access: 50' by boat
Type: Archaeological
Seafloor: Mixed
Depth: 6 to 9 meters

Classification: Excellent

Difficulty: Easy


Excellent for photography

Use a torch



Centro de mergulho no Algarve - SUBNAUTAThe Océan, a vessel of approximately 60 meters in length and armed with 80 cannons, was the admiral ship of a French fleet of 14 vessels which was involved in a confrontation with the ponderous English Armada during the Seven Year War.

The final chapter of what was known as the Battle of Lagos took place on 18th August 1959 at the forts of S. Luís de Almádena and Zavial, when the Océan and the Redoubtable sought the defence of the Portuguese artillery to sweep the beach and save more than 800 souls on board.

Swallowed in the mists of time, this story came to light again in the 1970's when the Océan was found and became the target of a salvage operation.

It was not until 1984, with the first intervention and underwater archaeological study in Portugal, that more was discovered about the tragic maritime history of this imposing vessel, and an itine-rary was subsequently created that links the various stations of the wreck, describing its various parts and enabling divers to take a tour of the ruins.

Among the remains is the imposing "âncora de misericórdia" (anchor of mercy), around five and a half meters in length and weighing more than three tons, and some iron cannons (weighing eight, twelve and eighteen pounds), as well as a large pulley block and hitch, which was used in the iron bow.

But the most fascinating thing is being able to find, partially hidden by the sand and concrete structures, the remains of the wooden skeleton of the old vessel, which has rested on the bottom of the ocean for 250 years.

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