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Anna’s Favourite Warm Water Dive Destination #7 – The Elbow, Belize

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The Elbow – Turneffe Atoll – Belize – Caribbean Sea   Where is Turneffe Atoll and what’s so special about it? Turneffe is one of the only four atolls in the Western Hemisphere, three of which are in Belize (sandwiched between Mexico and Honduras). Almost every diver will be familiar with the Maldivian atolls of the Pacific– typically a ring-shaped coral rim, a chain of islands surrounding an extinct volcano that has eroded leaving a central lagoon. Turneffe Atoll is…

Anna’s Favourite Warm Water Dive Destination #6 – Lembeh Strait, Indonesia

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LEMBEH STRAIT, NORTH EAST SULAWESI, INDONESIA   Where is the Lembeh Strait and what’s so special about it?   Following on from last week’s colourful wall dive site of Efrata, the Lembeh Strait lies within sight of Pulisan Resort on the mainland, just to the East and the “strait” runs for around 15 km between the two. The dive sites are typified by shallow, generally rather murky visibility on seemingly quite barren, black sand slopes. It’s so very special because of…

Water in the Blood

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  I was only 11 when my Grandad, Bertie Wilfrid Chalk, died in 1985.  I knew him pretty well, and heard much about his amazing travels as part of the RAF during the Second World War and afterwards.  He was a camera man, filming extraordinary events such as the famous 1943 Barnes Wallis bouncing bomb trials at Chesil in Dorset which went on to achieve the strategically important Dam Buster raids. Post-war he filmed daring world land speed records –…

Anna’s Favourite Warm Water Dive Destination #5 – Efrata, Indonesia

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EFRATA, NORTH EAST SULAWESI, INDONESIA   Where is Efrata and what’s so special about it?   Efrata, rather than being an area, or a village, or a resort, is the name of a specific dive site that sits off a beach, at the far end of the very tip of the immense peninsula that is Minahasa, North Sulawesi. It looks out on the shore of the little island of Bangka, home to big currents mixing the Celebes with the Molucca Seas…

Anna’s Favourite Warm Water Dive Destination #4 – Saparua Island, Indonesia

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SAPARUA ISLAND – BANDA SEA – INDONESIA   Where is Saparua and what’s so special about it?   Saparua is such a tiny island that a Google Map search probably won’t leave you much the wiser as to its location. Where many avid divers have heard of Raja Ampat (an area, not a single location), a few of those now consider Raja to be dived out, and favour a longer but ultimately more rewarding trip further south to the Lease Islands….

Maisie’s Scuba Story

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My name is Maisie, I am now eleven years old and earlier in the year I passed my Junior PADI open water and dry suit diver qualification in February 2020 when I was ten years old. I saved all my money I got from my family for Christmas to be able to pay for the course. The course was tough and being in February very cold; but the Ocean Turtle Team were incredibly supportive. I got inspiration for diving when I…

Anna’s Favourite Warm Water Dive Destination #3 – Siladen & Bunaken Islands, Indonesia

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Siladen & Bunaken Islands, North Sulawesi, Indonesia   Where are Siladen & Bunaken Islands and what’s so special about them?   Siladen is a tiny speck of an island to the east of its larger, busier sister island of Bunaken, a stone’s throw from the bustling city of Manado at the very north eastern tip of Sulawesi, Indonesia.  Both islands are within the 5 island cluster comprising Bunaken National Marine Park, one of the first marine parks in Indonesia, established in…

Anna’s Favourite Warm Water Dive Destination #2 – Belize’s Great Blue Hole

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The Great Blue Hole – Lighthouse Reef Atoll – Belize – Caribbean Sea   Where is the Great Blue Hole and what’s so special about it?  Imagine this…it’s 1971, you’re scoping out the shallow reefs and coral heads, singing “Just my Imagination” by the Temptations. You’re 60 miles from the Belize mainland, south of Mexico, North of Honduras, west of Cuba, but it’s not a pleasure dive, you’re helping navigate a channel guiding Captain Jacques Cousteau’s huge wood hulled exploration…

Anna’s Favourite Warm Water Dive Destination #1 – Mexico Cenotes

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The Caribbean Sea – Mexico – the Cenotes – TULUM Photo credit: Tom St George /www.bestcenotedives.com    What are Cenotes? Cenotes are limestone sinkholes, allowing access to flooded underground caves, linked by water filled passages. The surface layer is freshwater, and doesn’t mix with the lower, saltwater layer, causing a halocline. The water is typically absolutely crystal clear with amazing visibility.    Who can dive them? Many guided dives require only an Open Water certificate – but to really enjoy…

Stephanie’s Scuba Story

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Blog by Stephanie Hodnett   One cloudy 2019 June afternoon, I was driving back from Bournemouth with my mum and stress levels were running high. We had visited Bournemouth University that day as part of the grand search for where I was going to live and study for the next 3 years of my life, and frankly I was letting the pressure of making such a big decision in a short space of time get to me. After only just…

How To Make Any Destination a Dream Diving Destination

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You’re thinking powder white sand snaking to a turquoise horizon, crystal ripples lapping your toes, the distant ting-ting of your tank being swapped out for the next dive. You’re dreaming schools of mantas photo bombing your perfect turtle shot and you’re seeing a comfortable dive boat barely quarter full of a friendly crowd of your best mates looking like they stepped out of a PADI video … The reality could be this idyllic, but sometimes we just don’t ask ourselves…