To get good underwater photos follow these top tips:
1) When photographing marine life, give it somewhere to swim to in the photo. Framing too close to the head of a turtle, for example, often leaves a lot of negative space behind the subject.
2) Let the turtle come to you. You will never be able to outswim anything underwater and chasing marine life is harassment. Plus, you'll only end up with the back of a turtle's shell in your photo.
3) Pre-focusing your camera can save time. Pick a nice feature- a colourful sponge for example- then focus your camera on that feature. When the turtle swims past it you are ready to shoot with pre-programmed settings.
4) Visualize the shot before you take it. Jumping into the water and haphazardly swinging your camera around snapping shots is great if your goal is to delete a lot of images, but it probably isn't. Stop, think, then act.
5) Once you think you've composed the shot, take it several more times. Backscatter and fish photo-bombing the frame can ruin a good shot. Digital cameras make it easy to take multiple shots.
There is history like no other hidden in the Ionian Sea. Go
diving off the Greek island of Kefalonia to discover 2,000 year old shipwrecks
and ancient archaeological artefacts.
With the island being first settled in 1200 BC, the
surrounding Ionian waters harbour shipwrecks dating back over 2,000 years.
There isn’t much left of the wrecks themselves, but what can be seen is
hundreds of ancient artefacts and amphorae.
Off the north-east coast of Kefalonia lies a very small
rocky islet with just one church on it. The islet is mentioned in Homer’s
Odyssey as ‘Asteris Island’ but is more commonly referred to today as Daskalion
Islet. Drop down beneath the surface and you’ll discover that this is actually
a submerged mountaintop which is surrounded by marine life. Octopuses, moray
eels, groupers and nudibranchs can all be encountered here; although it is not
the marine life that sets this dive apart.
At 30-35m you will find the remains of a 2,000 year old
Roman shipwreck which presumably wrecked on the rocks of Asteris Island. Although
most of the vessel has been eroded away (bar a few wooden struts and ballast
weights) it has left behind hundreds of amphorae, some of which are still
intact and have been undisturbed for thousands of years.
Excellent visibility, which often exceeds 20 metres, makes
it possible to see the vast extent of the ship’s cargo scattered across the
seabed. Underwater, you get a real sense of the magnitude of the history,
imaging what it must have been like thousands of years ago and how the ship
must have met its end there. Past becomes present and history comes alive as
you see all of the amphorae that the ship once carried.
From a historical point of view, Kefalonia is an extremely
interesting island. Archaeological finds date back 40,000 years in time. This
is reflected in the diving, which allows an opportunity to discover a type of
history unseen by most people. Whilst you may not get the perfectly preserved
type of wrecks that more modern history offers, instead you get a story and
ancient archaeological artefacts that you’ll struggle to match anywhere else in
Amphorae can be seen at several dive sites around Kefalonia
as well as during dives off the neighbouring island of Ithaca. As Ithaca is one of the more remote and less
inhabited islands the marine life and quality of wall dives there is
spectacular. Ithaca is also where Homer’s Odyssey was based; a testament to the
quality of history that these islands provide.
Kefalonia offers diving steeped in rich history combined
with average visibility of 30m, 28°C water temperature and diverse marine life.
Contact Aquatic in Agia Efimia, to enquire about all diving possibilities on
Yesterday I went to see "The Shallows" because I wanted to see how Hollywood has yet again demonized an endangered species. In reality, we pose a far greater danger to sharks than they do to us. For every human killed by a shark, humans kill approximately 2 million sharks. This movie is responsible for perpetuating the false belief that sharks should be hunted and not helped. The truth is that shark attacks on humans are incredibly rare, but sharks are now critically endangered due to human activities.... A fact far more chilling than any shark-themed horror movie.
Since Bermuda was first colonized by the survivors of the Sea
Venture in 1609, its fringing reefs have maintained their reputation as
notoriously treacherous over the centuries, claiming hundreds of vessels that
attempted to navigate Bermuda’s waters. These shipwrecks have shaped the
history of the island and what was once a boat captain’s nightmare is now a
wreck diver’s dream destination.
Bermuda consists of 21 square miles of land encompassed by 500
square miles of coral reef, which may explain why there are over 350 shipwrecks
surrounding the island. Bermuda is hailed as the ‘shipwreck capital of the
world’ for the range of wrecks available to divers. These vary in historical
significance, aged between 10 to 500 years old, and include an array of types
of vessel; from paddle steamers to tug boats. The shipwrecks lie dotted around
the perimeter of the island, nearly all of which sunk on shallow reefs (between
30ft-65ft in depth), making them accessible for divers of all abilities and
allowing maximum dive time for exploration. Dive operators on the south shore
have access to a number of wrecks within a 5-10 minute boat journey out, which
all have their own interesting history behind them.
Celestewas a civil war
blockade runner and paddle wheel steamer which sank in 1864 with only one
casualty. Today, she sits in 55ft of water and is one of the only vessels of
her kind to have both paddle wheels still intact which make an excellent site
for photography and a particularly popularwreck
with divers. Teddy Tucker is a revered Bermudian legend who discovered,
researched and charted most of the shipwrecks in Bermuda as well as recovering
treasure and providing information of great historical importance. However,
there are estimated to be a number of missing wrecks still waiting to be found
and TheRoanoke, a
contemporary of theMari
Celeste, has attracted recent attention from hopeful treasure hunters. A
long-lost American Civil War blockade runner, it was commandeered by the
Confederate Navy and burned and sunk off the coast from St. George’s in 1864
and has yet to be discovered. The area of Five Fathom Hole is where divers
expect to find the wreck and groups of divers plan annual trips to the site to
see what they can uncover. In 2013 one group found 11 anchors and a further 6
anchors, glass bottles and plates in 2014.
Off the north-west coast of Bermuda is theConstellation,a four-masted schooner built in
1918. She wrecked on the reef in 1942 carrying a 2,000 ton cargo en-route from
New York to Venezuela. It was in fact this wreck which provided the inspiration
for Peter Benchley’s storyThe
Deep, as amongst her cargo theConstellationcarried thousands of drug ampuls and
many broken glass vials and bottles which can still be found by divers today in
only 30ft of water. Within only 50 yards of theConstellationis another wreck, theMontana, which sunk in 1863.
Sheis an English paddle wheel
steamer and civil war blockade runner which is often referred to as theNolaas she was given multiple names to
elude American spies. She lies in 33ft of water, 8 miles north-west of Dockyard.
Surrounding the wrecks in Bermuda are thriving coral reefs and
interesting rock formations which offer arches and swim-throughs for divers to
explore. For the more intrepid individuals there are some intriguing cavern
systems with some narrow tunnels to discover. However, there are also some
wider, more open passages for less experienced divers. Most dive operators on
the island offer a wreck and reef 2-tank dive for certified divers every
morning during peak season. During the last 30 years wreck diving has become
increasingly popular, so much so that more wrecks have been created for divers
In 1984 theKingset the trend for a new kind of
shipwreck in Bermuda, one which was intentionally sunk. TheKingis an old Navy tug boat, built in 1941
and was the first vessel to be scuttled in Bermuda. At 55ft long she lies
intact in 62ft of water, a short ride out from East Whale Bay. Purposefully
sinking theKingfor diving proved such a success that
it encouraged other vessels such as theHermesand theForcefulto be scuttled as well. TheForcefulis also an old tug boat which was
intentionally sunk in 2008, just 50 yards away from theKing, creating a site where two
wrecks can be explored on one dive. At 75ft long, she has an open hull which
provides safe and easy penetration and there are many ways she can be
explored: divers can even stand inside the pilot house. Also in 1984, TheHermes, originally a 175ft U.S.
Navy buoy tender built in 1943, was purposefully sunk for diving and now lies
in 65ft of water. She has been made safe for wreck penetration diving, and
remains intact, upright and very photogenic.
Fuelling the Bermuda Triangle myth; it is not just shipwrecks
that can be found in the waters around Bermuda, but also aircraft. In 1962, a
U.S. B-29 Bomber plane took off from Bermuda and went down over the sea due to
a fuel problem. Fortunately the pilot and crew all successfully bailed out from
the plane before she crashed into the water so there were no casualties. Now
known as theAirplanewreck she lies in only 33ft of water
and many parts of the plane, such as the propeller still remain intact for
divers to explore.
However, the wrecks do not exclusively define the diving in
Bermuda. There are also beautiful and vibrant coral reefs, full of marine life.
One of the popular reef sites, South West Breaker, is where the opening scenes
of the adaptation of Peter Benchley’s novelThe
Deepwas filmed. This dive
site is absolutely thriving with marine life; lobsters, barracudas, octopi,
green moray eels, grouper, snapper can all be seen here. Average depths on the
other reef sites range between 26-72ft, the visibility between 50-200ft
dependant on the conditions and season. As there no strong currents, little
dangerous marine life and strict government licensing requirements, Bermuda
boasts an exciting opportunity for safe and unique diving.
I see things that most people do not: A different world underwater.
This is my world.
my world is being destroyed. The ocean is dying. I have seen first hand the after
effects of what we have done, how we areruining it. Water is what differentiates our planet
from any other and facilitates life. No ocean, no life. We call this world
planet earth, but seven tenths of the world’ssurface is covered by water and over 80%
of life on earth lives in the ocean. Life on earth evolved from the sea. We
all come from the sea, but we are not all of the sea.
There are those who have never seen these creatures in the wild. They see them in their bank accounts. They profit from the destruction of our oceans.
They take exactlywhat they want with no thought or respect for the impact it will have.
depend on the oceans. They hold 97% of the planet's water, produce more
than half of the oxygen in the atmosphere and absorb the most carbon from
2 billion people rely on the oceans for their primary source of food. Destroying
the ocean is threatening everything that lives in it.
are just one of the species that are in real danger. But ironically, society has taught us that sharks
that are dangerous and you grow up believing it. But when you see the
very thing you were told to fear underwater: it’s absolutely incredible. If
sharks were the evil, deadly man eaters that the media sensationalises them to
be, then I would have probably been eaten years ago.
However, I believe that sharks know we are not
of people swim every year in waters where sharks hunt all the time. If they
wanted to eat us they would, but they don’t.
with sharks I feel vulnerable, clumsy and small. They have an aura of
invincibility, but nothing is as it seems. Sharks are in serious
trouble. Every single second of every single day around 3 sharks are
killed by us. With 90% of the world's shark populations already wiped out,
sharks are being depleted faster than they can reproduce and if an apex
predator is taken out of any ecosystem then eventually it is going to collapse.
Sharks are vitally important; they have shaped life in the ocean for over 400
million years. Sharks kill 5 people each year. We legally execute 2,400
people a year and kill 100 million sharks. Is it really sharks that we should
fear? Don’t fear them. Fear for them.
believe that future generations are going to look back on us asbarbarians, in the same way we now look
back on slave traders.We
are driving species to extinction and the worst part is that we know what
we’re doing and yet we’re still allowing it to happen. I
just hope that by the time people finally see sense, it isn’t too late, the
damage isn’t irreversible and we aren’t faced with the extinction of species.
protect what they love, this is what I love and I’m determined to fight
for it. I want future generations to grow up to be able to experience the
same ocean that I have. But if this carries on, in the next 4 years 30% of
known species of sharks and rays couldbecome extinct. Once they’re gone we’ve lost them
will have to carry that on our conscience; it will be the fault of
mankind. We have caused these problems, now it is our duty to fixthem.
don’t see what goes on in the oceans so it’s easy for them to ignore. They
wanted to save bears, leopards and elephants;mankind was afraid of sharks and
creatures of the deep. However I believe that if others had witnessed what
I have seen in my lifetime from hundreds of hours underwater, I would not seemoutspoken at all.
People constantly aspire to have more; to be wealthier, own
more possessions and get promotions, which is crazy when you think that there is
someone out there who is aspiring to just have what you already do. There are always
those better off and worse off than you. Remember that.
I was lucky to have
been born in a developed first world country, to have; not just education, food
and clean water every day, but also so many opportunities. I'm far from the
wealthiest person I know, but I still have so much, I am extremely fortunate. I
don't know why I was born into these circumstances and not different ones, but
I do know that I definitely won't take it for granted.
I have been that girl; working two jobs, seven days a week
just so I can afford to cover my costs. I was literally working to afford
working. However, unlike many of my peers, I now refuse to work a job I don't
like just to make money, to carry on living a life that I'm unhappy in.
So people should not aspire to materialistic goals. They
should strive to improve themselves in some way; making money doesn't equate to
making yourself better. Travelling changed my life. My mindset used to be all
about money. Although, it wasn't really MY mindset; I was just a product of the
society I was raised in. Aspiring to make money and orientating everything
around that is what is expected from you as a responsible adult, and is just viewed as being the social norm.
I had myself lined up a successful career based on the hard
years spent working to get my degree, but then I boarded a plane to travel the
world working as a dive instructor instead. I defied the stereotypical
expectations people held of me which was the best decision I ever made.
I quickly came to realise that making money was most
certainly not the most important thing in life, not for me anyway. Now I would
gladly live out of a suitcase; sacrificing material possessions for
So, don't waste your life aspiring for things that can only
be measured in materialistic success because, "Life isn't about how many
breaths you take, but the moments that take your breath away."