Bahrain To Sink Boeing 747 For Underwater Theme Park
Bruce Parkinson, Open Jaw
The Persian Gulf country of Bahrain is hoping to attract divers from across the globe with a new "underwater theme park" -- an expansive diving site spanning 100,000 square meters with some unusual features.
The centerpiece of this underwater extravaganza? A sunken Boeing 747.
A plane at the bottom of the sea might be of dubious taste -- but that's not putting project managers off the concept.
The subaquatic project is the product of a partnership between the Supreme Council for Environment, Bahrain Tourism and Exhibitions Authority (BTEA), and the private sector.
The diving site will apparently also feature a replica Bahraini pearl merchant's house, artificial coral reefs and art sculptures.
The site is intended to be ready for explorers by summer 2019, so plans are already in full swing.
The Bahrain Tourism and Exhibition Agency said the aircraft will be specially prepared before it is lowered into the water.
"All aircraft surfaces will be subjected to a high-pressure wash with bio-friendly detergents to ensure all post-production coatings, oil and grime are removed," a spokesperson told CNN Travel.
"Furthermore, a vast amount of time has been spent removing contaminants from the aircraft. This has included removing all wiring, all hydraulic, pneumatic and fuel systems, and all adhesives, insulation, plastics, rubbers, chemicals or other potential toxic substances."
Bahrain's proposition is not the first time an airplane's been deliberately sunk to create a diving attraction. There are a couple in the U.S. and in Canada divers can explore a decommissioned Boeing 737 in the Stuart Channel near Chemainus, BC.
Bruce Parkinson Editor-in-Chief
An observer and analyst of the Canadian and international travel industries for over 25 years, Bruce uses the pre-dawn hours to prepare a daily news and information package to keep industry members up to date.