Vassilios Wreck (Vis, Croatia — 70-175 fsw)

Vassilios is a large cargo ship that is only a 10-15 minute boat ride from the B-24 dive shop. It is about 350 feet long which means ample opportunity for exploration. I would recommend at least two dives on the wreck.

There is actually very little known about the origin of the ship. It was originally built in Osaka, Japan in 1920 for the US based High Seas Transportation and was then sold in 1938 to a Greek ship owner. It sank shortly after the sale on the night of March 19th, 1939 on the way from Swansea to Venice while transporting coal.

There are rumors that it was sank on purpose in order to get the insurance payout.

Below is a diagram from the great book on wrecks in the Adriatic, Treasures of the Adriatic Sea by Danijel Frka and Jasen Mesic. It is an indispensable reference for wrecks in that region.

Diagram of the wreck with photo reference markers

As the diagram depicts, the ship lays on the port side and is at the base of a cliff off of the Cape of Stupisce.

There is a permanent line attached to a concrete block near the bow section of the wreck so dives generally start there. The ship is right next to the slope so any decompression time accumulated can either be done on the line or in the shallows. The wreck slopes downslope with the deepest part of the stern in about 175 feet of water.

My first dive on the wreck was the second dive on my first day of the trip so it was relatively little decompression. I revisted the wreck a couple days later and spent more time on it taking pictures and trying to find the engine room. The prop is still on the ship and it is impressively large. The wreck is also covered in yellow sponges. The holds still have some coal in them and we found a few small lobsters making their home in there.

Below are some pictures from my dives with some information and context for each. The numbers in the photo comments are reflected in the diagram above to give an approximate location.

Photos

Photo 1 – Looking towards the bow from behind the anchor windlass
Photo 4 – Lobsters on coal inside the cargo hold
Photo 5 – Superstructure
Photo 6 – Walkway behind the bridge
Photo 7 – Looking up towards the lifeboat davits
Photo 8 – Smokestack — note the decay compared to the diagram
Photo 9 – Lifeboat davits
Photo 10 – Lifeboat davit & yellow sponge
Photo 11 – Base of the aft mast
Photo 12 – Prop & Rudder from the rear looking towards the bow
Photo 13 – Prop closeup from the stern to the bow
Photo 14 – Prop looking towards the stern
Photo 15 – Port side bollards near the bow

References

Wrecksite EU

Treasures of the Adriatic book

4 thoughts on “Vassilios Wreck (Vis, Croatia — 70-175 fsw)

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