Located in the German state of Thuringia, the small town of Nordhausen has several small manmade lakes on its outskirts. The largest of these, Sundhauser See, is a popular regional dive site. The site also draws divers from further afield thanks to some unique additions to what would otherwise be a pretty standard lake.
Diving in Sundhauser See
In recent years the dive center located next to the lake has worked on a project they’ve dubbed “Nordhausia,” an artificial sunken village on the lake bottom. Started in 2011, this project has seen the construction of various buildings and statues on dry land. Once they’re finished, the shop deposits them on the lake bottom for divers to explore. At the time of my visit the village consisted of a church, a graveyard, a gallows, a small prison and various other small buildings, all of which are accessible to divers. When the visibility is murky, the graveyard and gallows become extra-spooky, like the setting of a horror film. The whole village sits at around 30 feet (10 m) so is easily accessible to all levels of diver. There is also a small wreck on the way to the village.
The lake has three entry points for divers, two of which lead to the village. The third offers access to the larger wreck of a fishing boat at around 68 feet (21 m). This is also
part of the project at the other end of the lake.
Apart from the manmade structures, there is also a large population of crawfish and various fish including pike, perch and carp.
The site has plenty of parking, though can get busy on the weekend. Divers can also camp onsite or book one of the holiday chalets for overnight accommodation. There is a € 10 fee per day for diving and divers can rent gear from the dive center as well as getting air fills. gear can be hired from the center as well as air fills.
Dive type: manmade lake
Depth: maximum 98 feet (30 m)
Water temperature: varies year round
Visibility: 32 feet (10 m) to 49 feet (15 m)
When to go: summer is best, but you can dive here year-round