5 Interesting and Unusual Artificial Reefs

Artificial reefs are created to help marine life thrive, increase the amount of fish in an area, control erosion, attract scuba divers, and/or improve surf. Man-made reefs have been built for centuries and for a variety of different reasons. However, there are certain reefs being built for purposes you may not know.

Neptune Memorial Reef – Key Biscayne, Florida

artificial reef

via flickr/Elkman

This artificial reef was originally thought up and designed by Gary Levine and Kim Brandell. It’s an underwater Atlantis built to act as a cemetery. Cremated remains were mixed in with rubble and cement to build the structure. It’s the largest underwater man-made reef ever conceived and will cover 16 acres of the ocean floor when completed. It costs about $2,000 to claim a memorial spot.


“The Silent Evolution” – Cancun

artificial reef

via flickr/julierohloff

Comprised of various human sculptures, the artificial reef is made out of material that helps to promote coral growth. It was designed by the British artist Jason de Caires Taylor and installed in December, 2010. Four hundred life-size human sculptures, and many marine life forms, now call this reef home off the coast of Cancun.


Governor’s River Walk Reef – Palm Beach, Florida

artificial reef

via puravidadivers.com

Governor’s River Walk is made up of four sunken ships, large blocks of limestone, and concrete corridors that run between each ship. At a depth of about 90 feet, it provides a haven for numerous species of fish, including creole-fish, large goliath groupers, and a variety of jacks.


Kovalam Multi-Purpose Reef – Kerala, India

artificial reef

via asrltd.com

As India’s first multi-purpose artificial reef, the Kovalam Multi-Purpose Reef stabilizes coastal erosion, dissipates wave energy by helping waves break, provides a habitat for fish populations, and creates a top-notch surfing destination.


Subway Car – Atlantic City

artificial reef

via njscuba.net

Off the coast near Atlantic City lies one of the most unusual reefs you can find. A number of New York City and “Brightliner” subway cars lie between 80 and 130 feet at the bottom of the ocean for marine animals and divers alike to enjoy.


  1. All those destinations are awesome! It is just amazing to dive among artificial reef, so beautiful… :-)

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