Maria la Gorda, Cuba is a nice resort. To be added
Dive Travel - From February 27 through March 5, 2016
Weather: Rain on Saturday @ arrival, Sunny and 75’ air temps through Wednesday. Rain Thursday afternoon and on departure day.
Flying in to the Island was a breeze as there are regular flights from almost anywhere every day of the week. Getting through customs was about as easy as it gets with the normal customs paperwork filled in before you land. Getting taxi service is also very easy. As soon as you’ve cleared your baggage just head towards the exit and you will find a ticket counter just before you go out the doors on the left where you can purchase a shared cab ride to anywhere on the island. If you miss it you will be pointed in the right direction. They will designate your cab based on the area you are traveling to. We went to Hotel Cozumel, which was a 10 minute ride that cost me $12.00 and trust me a $2-3.00 tip is more than enough. While you’re on the island if you don’t rent a car or motorcycle and choose taxi remember, everything is negotiable, and if you wait on the right taxi you’ll get the right price Downtown is only 5 minutes from the Hotel. It cost us $6.00 to get there. Coming back one driver said he would transport us for $10.00. We passed and the next cab took us for $5.00.
Downtown is great for fantastic food and if you like shopping or for your typical tourist stuff there is plenty of it there. While we were in town there were 7 cruise ships at port. If you average 3K travelers a vessel, that puts you in town potentially shopping with 21,000 people. The town of San Miguel’s population is about 75K so that makes shopping crowded. Every shop you pass buy you are solicited by vendors standing in the street yelling, “Hey it’s my turn now. come in my store I have what you want!” Long story short only one vendor spoke the truth when he said, “Hey sir! You want to come in my store and give me a chance to rip you off just a little bit?” True story! Long story short there are numerous shops, and all of them have the same stuff. You can however, work some good deals. It’s a fun place to visit during your off gassing day before your flight home.
Hotel Cozumel was our choice as we’ve been there before so being familiar is very convenient. It does happen to be one of the best deals on the Island if you like an all inclusive 3 dives a day package. The hotel boasts a buffet style restaurant with several cook stations. Hours of operation will guarantee you a meal no matter when you dive. There is a well stocked bar at the restaurant and also a bar at every eating station at the place. Outside by the pool there is what they call a snack bar but it’s more like a meal bar. You can eat there throughout the day. Just across the street next to the Dive Paradise Dive Shop is their Beach Club where drinks and food flow all day long. You can access the Beach Club and dive shop by walking across the street, or avoid a treacherous traffic crossing travel across in an underground tunnel that connects the hotel to the other side.
What’s your New Year SCUBA resolution? Night dive amongst vivid phosphorescent plankton, finally get face to face with the gracious Whale Shark? Whatever it may be, I know divers carpe diem – so don’t wait to seize that day.
If you’re wondering where you can go that’s in season for a perfect sub-surface holiday after 2016 rings in – look up some of my top choices below on the Dive Report Animal Calendar and get your fins on:
Micronesia is seen in the dive community as a world class destination - made up of thousands of small islands in the western Pacific Ocean and in season year-round.
Known for superb visibility in all of its islands, Micronesia offers something for everybody – whether you’re just starting out or a fully-fledged SCUBA monkey.
In season until mid-May - you can find whale sharks and mantas in the waters surrounding the Similans, most often dived from the mainland section of Thailand known as Khao Lak. The Similan National Park – although well known as a top South-East Asia diving destination, is not only off season but also closed completely between the months of June and September, give or take a few weeks.
The British Virgin Islands
60 islands and islets that are mostly within a few miles of each other and spread out amongst shallow waters - the locals have a saying ‘’you need a shovel to dive below 30 meters’’ and it’s not far from the truth.
Shipwrecks of British Navy vessels are common sights in the islands. The most visited
Sitting somewhere near the surface of every SCUBA divers bucket list is the mammoth-size marine mammal known to scholars as the Rhincodon Typus. These funny words roughly translate into English as ‘Awesome Big Spotty Shark’. This is close to, but not exactly, accurate.
These magnificent migratory pods are most commonly found…’’What’s that?’’ ‘’Oh for heaven’s sake I’m trying to write an article here’’. The strange words I used earlier are actually just Latin for ‘Whale Shark’, it seems someone woke up in a mischievous mood.
‘’Steve was that you?’’ ‘’Michelle! I highly doubt that’’
Typical Steve. All apologies, so I was informing you about our friend the Rhinco… the Whale Shark. SCUBA divers Love these highly decorative plankton-chomping filter-faces so much I have taken the liberty of putting together a fun and informative Dive Report calendar based facts sheet; the best place to spot a Whale Shark any time of the year!
10 Sunken Civilizations to add to your SCUBA Diving Bucket List
The discovery of underwater ruins remains a hot topic amongst armchair backpackers and sofa SCUBA divers, or at least those who put pen to paper. Although possible, exploring submerged structures is not always safe and the risks involved should never be taken lightly. That being said, in the right conditions with a competent instructor, meeting the new tenants of a man-made structure below the surface can be a fascinating experience. Not to mention the effects additional structures and materials can have on the marine ecosystem.
From Cursed Cities sent to the depths to submerged monuments swarming with sea life; welcome to our top ten sunken civilizations to add to that bottomless SCUBA Bucket List.
we're from Bali Dive Trek, a new Dive Center in Amed, Bali
Join us as we take you on a journey through the beautiful oceans of Bali.
While the Thresher sharks are the headliners of the local diving, there is a great variety of other diving as well. There are currently over twenty dive sites in the area including ship wrecks and drift dive sites. Of the twenty sites over a dozen are within a few minutes of the island. There is diving available from training sites for those just learning to dive to those who are advanced divers. Gato island is a special two dive trip that most dive center make a few times a week. The area is a hour away and is known for its abundant corals and sponges as well as a great place to see sleeping white tip sharks and sea snakes. Advanced divers looking for something different will find it here as well. A tunnel runs under the island that advance divers can transverse. Back on Malapascua, Just off shore from the island's lighthouse is the, well, the lighthouse reef. It is a shallow reef that is used as an open water training site by some dive centers. The beautiful coral gardens make for a wonderful relaxing dive. As wonderful the reef is for training, it is a very special sunset dive. The reef is the home of a vast number of Mandarinfish. Generally considered the most colorful of the reef fish they are also known for their exotic mating dances. Starting around twilight the males start their dances hoping to attract a female to dance with them.
Is it Safe to Dive during my Period?
Is it safe to dive whilst I am on my period? A commonly asked questions and the answer is yes… pretty much.
Many divers feel a concern over menstruating underwater. Be it shark attack, weakness, visual or hygienic issues this is a question asked over and over again in the dive community. Here to put your mind at rest I can tell you that you will be physically safe, however you may need to take a couple of safeguards into consideration.
Is there a chance of shark attack if I dive on My Period?
Thankfully, sharks are not going to smell your blood and come pursuing you because you’re menstruating. The warning that a shark can smell blood from three miles, or five kilometers, away is taken as fact, but this does not mean the smell makes the shark any more interested in you as it would be a floating log.
While diving is a year round sport in many locations, the number of divers and dives greatly increases in the summer months. As we head towards that time of the year, there are a number of items we should do to get the most out of our dive season.
1. Annual Services
Certain items of your kit, such as your regulators, needs to be services annually by certified technicians. Some manufacturers of regulators will provide lifetime service parts, however, to stay under the terms of the warranty you must have the piece of equipment services annually. Missing a service can mean no more free service parts. While not an annual requirement when you have your regulator serviced, ask to have your Submersible Pressure Gauge (SPG) checked. Most dive centers have a calibrated pressure gauge. They can compare what your gauge reads to their calibrated gauge at different pressures. Few SPG can be adjusted, however, a gauge giving different reading might not need to be replaced. As an example, if your gauge reads 10 bar higher than the calibrated reading at different pressures, you just need to remember that and adjust your dive plan accordingly. A dive plan that calls for an accent at 70 bar, would be 80 bar on your SPG. However, if the test show a variation that differs at different pressures (ie shows 290 at 300 bar ten low, but 60 at 50 bar ten high) the gauge must be replaced.
In the early days of scuba diving, a military surplus life preserver, nick named a Mae West, was an often used flotation device on the surface after a dive. This was replaced by a horse collar style flotation device, which itself was replaced by early BCDs. The double hose regulator was mostly replaced with a regulator with one hose, Oval face masks were replaced with low volume mask. The development of the wet suit provided an alternative to the rubber dry suit in certain waters and the dry suit itself saw changes. The list of improvements even lead scuba diving away from a He-man activity to a family sport.
Do You Consider A Dive Computer A Mandatory Device?
Electronics in general and dive computer specifically have greatly evolved over the last few decades. Dive computers go beyond the recommending of dive dives and depths. Most models allow a connection to a computer to transfer detailed information. Dive logs can be examined with a range of different information being provided. Many recreational divers see a dive computer as mandatory as a depth gauge, pressure gauge and a watch are. In many cases the gauges have been replaced with a dive computer that has a pressure functions built in.
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