Great Barrier Reef anyone? Red Sea wrecks?
Having learned to dive with Central Scotland Dive Club, and attained your qualification. You are now ready to use your skills anywhere in the world that takes your fancy.
The diving magazines and holiday brochures are full of fantastic photographs of exotic destinations, just waiting for you to take the plunge in their warm crystal-clear waters and be amazed by the fantastic underwater life and scenery.
You need never worry that the diving in these destinations would be outwith your ability. Having trained in Scottish waters, you are better prepared than most to travel the world and show your “stuff”.
Your SAA and CMAS qualification are recognised worldwide – although some resorts may try to sell you a course. So always make sure, before you travel, that the resort or dive centre you are using have no little “extras” that they might land you with.
The club members have diving experience from the cold waters of Norway to the tropical waters of the Maldives and beyond, so there is plenty of advice available before splashing your cash and heading for the sun.
Here are just a few suggestion of destinations near and far to give you an idea of what to expect:
Spain, France, Italy, the Greek and Balearic Islands have a long, well-established diving industry, and most resorts have one or more dive centres chasing your business. Many are owned and operated by British divers who moved south to cater for the booming dive market. A little searching on the internet will give you an idea of the type of diving available. Whether it is boat diving or from the shore, and what it is likely to cost.
This is the most accessible destination of true tropical diving for British divers. The popular resorts of Hurghada and Sharm El Sheikh at the northern Red Sea have diving to cater for all abilities, from fish-covered tropical reefs, sharks and manta rays – to wreck diving for the more adventurous.
The resorts in Egypt are now at the level required for modern European tourism. Not that many years ago it was pretty basic, but there has been massive investment over recent years, and luxury hotels are springing up everywhere.
The diving in the resorts is mostly from day boats. You are picked-up in the morning from your hotel and transported to the harbour and the boat you will be diving on for the full week. You only have to carry your kit with you the first morning; onboard, you are allocated a crate where you store your gear, and the crew look after it for you for the duration of your dive holiday.
The dive boats depart in the morning and you will be transported to a different area each day, usually with a dive in the morning, lunch onboard and another dive in the afternoon – with the option of a night dive, if that has been arranged.
The other way to dive the Red Sea is on one of the purpose-built liveaboard dive boats; where you stay on the boat for your week's diving and travel to various sites for up to five dives a day. Diving this way gives you the opportunity to visit some of the more outlying sites and escape the sometimes crowded reefs used by the day boats.
Diving Holidays Further Afield...
In recent years, there has been a programme of sinking redundant warships in the Florida Keys to establish artificial reefs for the tourist industry, and to improve the marine environment. You can travel the full length of the keys, stopping over for a couple of days to dive the local sites, before moving on to your next destination.
Maldives and The Seychelles: Paradise above the waves and exploding with life below them.
A chance to dive with some of the most exotic sealife on the planet. Suspended in the blue water with hammerhead sharks swimming in the distance. Hanging in the current as giant manta rays glide over your head at the fish cleaning station. Resorts here are more expensive than the Mediterranian, and the diving can also be a bit pricey, but if you are looking for once-in-a-lifetime destination this could be for you.
The Rest of the World
Well, if it has water the chances are that it will also have diving. There are brochures and websites galore dedicated to custom-made dive holidays. And within the club there are many members who have travelled in search of that special encounter and fulfilled their diving ambitions – why not join us and fulfil your own.