Diving with Sharks in Fiji

August 2, 2012 - Filed under Scuba Diving

4m Tiger Shark — Fiji

It’s pretty hard to describe the feeling that comes over you when you’re face to face with a 4m Tiger Shark. No cage… no chainmail… no spear gun…. “Awesome” is really the only word I can think of!

This was our second time doing a shark dive. The first was a year and a half earlier in Roatan, Honduras, however it’s a bit like comparing apples and oranges. The main difference? The sharks! In Roatan, the sharks are all Caribbean Reef Sharks, averaging about 2m in length — in Fiji, there are up to 8 different species of sharks, including Bulls and Tigers, which can get up to 3-4m long. Read More…

Posted by: Kelly

Fiji — A vacation from our travels

August 1, 2012 - Filed under General, Scuba Diving

Novotel Suva Lami Bay

We had a rough idea of what we wanted to do in Fiji before we arrived, but apart from our first night’s accommodation we hadn’t actually booked anything when we landed. There are two main modes of transportation between Fiji’s 332 islands – flights & ferries. Mike hates small planes with a passion, and as a general rule, won’t fly in anything less than 16 rows, so that left us with the latter as our only real option for getting around. Unfortunately reliable information about Fiji’s ferry schedules is pretty hard to come by online, so we decided to wait until we arrived before making any solid plans.

We spent our first couple of nights just outside of Suva while we organized and booked our transport up to Taveuni. The hotel staff were quite perplexed when we told them we’d prefer to take the 14 hour overnight ferry, instead of the short 1 hour flight. They had to call around a bit to find out the actual schedule, as they didn’t have that information either. Much to our luck there is a new ferry service between Suva and Taveuni that leaves twice a week, and it was scheduled to leave the next day which meant we only had to spend one extra night in Suva. Read More…

Posted by: Kelly

Shark Dive Video – Roatan, Honduras

May 20, 2011 - Filed under Scuba Diving, Underwater Photography

Following up on Kellys post about the shark dive we did with Waihuka Dive Center, here’s a quick video I put together from the footage that day. Hope you enjoy!

At Cara a Cara, you descend a line to approximately 20-25 meters to a coral ridge that shelters you from the current. Thankfully, the day the 8 of us went there was no current, so we were able to swim freely with the sharks when they weren’t feeding. The dive master brings down a sealed bucket with a fish head in it. The sharks will swim around you until the bucket is opened at which point, they fight for the fish, then quickly disappear back into the blue. Total dive time was approximately 40 minutes and we saw somewhere between 10 and 14 (Caribbean) grey reef sharks..

Posted by: Shim

Roatan Shark Dive with Waihuka Dive Center

May 9, 2011 - Filed under Scuba Diving, Stuff to do, Underwater Photography

One of the things we wanted to check off our to-do list before leaving Roatan, was the Shark Dive. It was something we wanted to do on our first trip, but somehow time slipped away from us, and we just never got around to it. When we were back this fall we made sure it was a priority.

Pretty much all of the dive shops or resorts on the island can book the Shark Dive for you, but if you’re short on time it might be a good idea to book this in advance, especially if you’re coming in high season, or on a cruise ship day. We purposely booked on a non-cruise ship day, and got really lucky as our group of 6 were the only ones scheduled for that day. Read More…

Posted by: Kelly

Scuba Diving at Playas del Coco

February 11, 2010 - Filed under Eats, Scuba Diving, Underwater Photography

Since arriving in Costa Rica nearly 6 months ago, we haven’t been scuba diving much compared to the 80+ dives we did last year in Southeast Asia. We did a 2 dive trip to the Catalina Islands from Tamarindo a couple months ago where we saw a few eagle rays, a school of jacks, and 3 or 4 white tip reef sharks, but the visibility was really poor and with the Papagayo wind in full effect since then, we haven’t attempted another dive until this last weekend when we decided to take a quick trip to Playas del Coco.

We got on the local bus to Liberia at 9am which meanders in and out of each town on the way to it’s destination; picking up and dropping off school children, workers, and food and drink vendors as it goes. Liberia is approximately an hour away from Tamarindo by car, but the local bus takes anywhere from 1.5 hours to 2.5 hours to get there. We got off the bus before Liberia at the turn off to Playas del Coco (shortly after Filadelfia) and switched buses. Our next bus came along within 45 minutes and we continued on through Sardinal. Within a half hour, we had completed our 3.5 hour journey arriving at Coco.


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Posted by: Shim

Sipadan Dive Video

August 7, 2009 - Filed under Scuba Diving, Underwater Photography

Here’s just a taste of the what we saw diving at Sipadan. David, one of the guys from our 2nd day of diving had a Canon Mark II 5D in an underwater housing and was shooting video in HD. He was nice enough to give us the footage and I’ve edited together a little piece from the day. Check out all the turtles, sharks, and the barracuda tornado!

View on YouTube

Posted by: Shim

Week 47: Diving Sipadan and Mabul

I’m a spoiled scuba diver. I started diving last October in the Philippines when I realized that my motorcycle habit wasn’t going to be fulfilled and was instantly fascinated with the underwater world. Over the last year, I’ve done around 80+ dives (not too shabby for a recreational diver!). While I’ve enjoyed almost every dive, the first 40 or so tend to be the most memorable since they took place in the Philippines.

The Philippines pretty much had it all as far as I was concerned. Great macro and muck diving in the Dauin area. Fantastic wall dives at Siquijor. Beautiful soft corals and schools of fish at Apo Island. Turtles at Moalboal and sharks at Malapascua. It’s a package that was hard to beat. Traveling through Thailand, Indonesia, and Malaysia, I never came across a place with the diversity that the Visayas offered. Sure, there were some amazing hi-lights along the way like the whale shark in Thailand and manta rays in Indonesia, but never matching the sheer range of corals, creatures, and dive opportunities. Until Sipadan…

Sipadan, Borneo
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Posted by: Shim

Week 25: Things to do before leaving the Philippines

February 22, 2009 - Filed under Drinks, Planning, Scuba Diving, Travel, Weekly Report

With a week left before we head to Thailand, we’ve attempted to mark off the last few random things remaining on our Philippines checklist…

#1. Try San Miguel Strong Ice

We’ve never seen anyone drinking it. Is it a cider? Nope, it turns out that it’s yet another pale pilsen. This time its ice filtered and packing a bit more of a punch. 6.3% alcohol, making it a close second to Red Horse Strong Beer.

San Miguel Strong Ice
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Posted by: Shim

Learning to Dive in the Philippines

October 19, 2008 - Filed under Scuba Diving, Stuff to do, Underwater Photography

While Kelly is a certified Dive Master and has done more than 150 dives during her various travels, I was always somewhat reserved about getting involved in the sport. Partially because it was her hobby and I was into motorcycles, giving us each our own independent, expensive, recreational interests. More so because the idea of submerging yourself underwater with a can of air can be daunting at first. But, given that we’re in such legendary aquatic surroundings, I decided to do a discovery dive.

After getting fitted with a wetsuit, fins, mask, weights, regulator, and BCD (Buoyancy Control Device… basically a vest that fills with air) another couple and I submerged below the surface of the five foot deep pool at the resort and proceeded to learn the basics of diving from Phillip our instructor. Learning to clear the mask when full of water, signs to communicate underwater, how to find the regulator if you should lose it, and basic buoyancy control came to me quickly. So that afternoon we continued the discovery dive in the house reef beside the resort. Lucky for me, the house reef at El Dorado is a marine sanctuary with an abundance of fish, corals, and sea life. Going no deeper than 10 meters, I had an amazing first dive surrounded by all kinds of coral and small fishes. I was even lucky enough to see a turtle. Needless to say, I was hooked and dubbed the ‘Canadian Fish’.
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Posted by: Shim