A seemingly rock which contains a large history. The reef has a length from North to South about 180 m and width 80 m. According to the ancient Greek historian Herodotus, he describes that during the invasion of the Persians in Greece, at least three of the Persian galleys of King Xerxes II ran into the reef and sank. After that event, King Xerxes II ordered the Persians to carry blocks of stone weighing of between 700 to 1,200 pounds to be built on top of the reef to form a stone column. This was done by the Persian king to highlight the risk posed by the site and to ensure safe navigation for future vessels. It is considered the most ancient architectural feats in the area as it was erected 2,800 years ago. Segments of the column were pulled up with the help of divers in 1928. Diving around the reef offers a very unique archaeological and ecological experience.
Another impressive route for your dive exists a short way beyond the two shipwrecks. Vertical walls are lost in deep shades of blue, meadows of countless corals and vibrant underwater life. All of these features combined create a fascinating underwater scenery able to move and excite even the most experienced of divers. At this site, you will dive to the shipwrecks ”Vera” (7 m -27 m) and ”Volos” (35 m -64 m).
The cargo ship “Vera” is 58 m long and was built in 1956 in Holland. This vessel crashed on the Lefteris Reef over two decades ago heading from “LARKO” locations in Larimna Fthiotidas in the northern Evoikos whilst carrying a cargo of 1,160 tons of rust to Thessaloniki, Greece’s second largest city.
The ship was run aground as a result of adverse weather conditions.
A few months later, it snapped into two pieces which sank to a depth of 25 m. The crew was transferred safely in Platanias (Pelion Penninsula) from the fishing boat “Koula”. Its bow is standing at a vertical position, while its stern a few meters further lies at the bottom on its side.
Today the wreck hosts an abundant marine ecosystem, which in combination with the mysterious atmosphere of the wreck and its ideal depth of 7 m – 27 m makes the wreck “Vera” a center of attraction for diving enthusiasts sure to intrigue even the most demanding diver.
The German commercial ship “Volos” (ex Thasos) 85,6meters was built in 1902, crashed and sunk on Lefteris reef on 21/2/1931.
The ship was loaded with tobacco, oil and mineral spirits and was traveling from Istanbul to Edinburg through Thessaloniki – Volos.
The crew was transferred to Volos from the Sweden ship S/S Belos. Few years later the crashed-ship had the leading role to a historical documentary film, “Menschen unten Heien” (Men among Sharks) of the Austrian marine biologist Hans Hass. In the film among others you can see parts of the ship, like a wooden steering wheel, that unfortunately was taken away from the local sponge divers. You can also observe the ship in vertical position with the foremast pumping up the surface of the sea. Few years later the ship was slipped away deeper and today’s location is in 35-64meters by the side on the bottom of the sea, being maybe one of the most beautiful shipwrecks in the Greek region.