Wellington Underwater Club

Wellington Underwater Club draws on a long active history. Founded in 1951, our members have a broad range of skills and experience. We are fortunate to have some of the most easily accessible shore diving in NZ but we also organise trips to dive destinations all around New Zealand. We are involved in recreational and technical dive activities as well as exploration projects and marine conservation.
The Club is highly networked in the local marine and conservation community and engages with other clubs and organisations in and beyond the Wellington region.
Whether you call Wellington home or are just visiting, get in touch and we’ll show you some fantastic diving at our doorstep or you can join us on one of our trips.

The Wellington Underwater Club (WUC), officially established in 1951, is thought to be the oldest dive club in New Zealand. An extract from the 25th Jubilee celebrations held in August 1976 reveals:

It all began when a hardy pioneer noticed he wasn't the only diver on the beach. Each, from thinking he was the only one, suddenly realised that there were 20 or more people actively diving around the Wellington coast. These divers used largely home-made equipment and seldom had to venture further afield that the road's end or the tram terminal to get full and easy catches of crays, moki, butterfish and paua.

By the summer of 1950/51 they were meeting for informal group dives often enough that a club seemed logical. Once the idea was mooted and word got around, the level of interest was surprising. Apart from local pioneers, there were people who had dived in the islands during the war or while serving at met. stations, and who wondered what diving was like at home. Deerstalkers and other huntsmen fancied the idea of similar sport without the hassle of tramping miles into the mountains. Surfers and swimmers also fancied a take-home profit from their aquatic activities. So the Club was born - the first, we like to think, in New Zealand.


A club is about the people. It is about people that share an interest and support the individuals in within this community.
Diving in a group with dive buddies, doesn't only make this sport safer it also makes it more enjoyable, and also affordable.
In the early days the divers in the club would share their ideas and develop new gear that wasn't available to buy or way too expensive.
Nowadays we still share costs for dive trips and can help eachother out when gear fails at the dive site. But most importantly we can share the amazing experiences we have with our friends.

Find some stories of club members about what sparked their interest in the underwater world and how Wellington Underwater Club provided the right setting for their activities.

winning a trophy is part of what motivates people to join a sports-club. The trophy rewards our competitiveness.
In the early years of the club the motivation for most members was spearfishing and catching the biggest fish. That was a very competitive sport and there were many trophies to be awarded at the end of a season or after a competition.
Nowadays the club has moved away from spearfishing and while some people still get their kaimoana at times the days of trophy hunting are over and we have moved to observation and conservation of our marine environment.
Trophies awarded today are for different aspects of photography, improvement of dive skills etc.

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Wellington Underwater Club