Florida Keys Most Popular Dive & Snorkeling Sites

Upper Keys

Benwood Wreck

The Benwood Wreck is about 5 miles offshore at MM 105 in the Florida Keys. There are four mooring buoys B1 - B4 to tie to. The depth is 25 to 55 feet making the dive good for beginners and intermediate but not too good for snorklers. There is sometimes a moderate to heavy current here so beware.

The Benwood was a freighter built in 1910. She was 360 feet long with a 51 foot beam. She was wrecked in WWII in 1942. It is said that she collided with a 544 foot tanker both traveling off course at night in the dark. The Benwood sank 1/1/2 miles north of French Reef. Later she was used for target practice by the US military in the 50's and was eventually dynamited to eliminate the navigational hazard she posed.

The Benwood wreck sits upright in 50 feet of water. The hull is intact but is heavily damaged by the collision and subsequent demolitions by the Navy. The metal sides of the wreck are fully coated with coral and sponges. Look close to the bottom for moray eels, lobster and jawfish. One of the most impressive things about this dive is the amount of tropical fish that you'll see. They literally cover the top of the structure.

Back to List

Florida Keys National Marine Park Map

Click on the picture to enlarge in a new webpage