Turn left out of Gatwick and keep going

Diving worldwide

Something like four fifths of the planets surface is water and that's without Stoney Cove so it's not surprising that scuba diving is as popular as it is. Now we don't claim to have dived all that water but we'd like to think that we'll give it a bit of a go. The trouble is, with so many fantastic diving locations to choose from, it's sometimes difficult to decide.I guess the first thing to consider is what sort of diving do you want to do? Are you looking for wreck diving, coral reefs, weird fish, big stuff or a combination of all of them? Do you just want to go diving and nothing else or do you want a bit of sunbathing and sightseeing as well on your holiday? It's a tough life isn't it?! Most of the worlds tropical oceans are ideal for coral reefs but some places are a bit more specialised than others. Australias Great Barrier Reef would be an obvious first choice for coral but it's a very long way to go and with the Red Sea with its own spectacular coral just five hours away, why travel that far? (See our Red Sea Dive Guide page)

Maldives The tropical islands of the Maldives with their pristine white sands and picture postcard vistas are just a direct 12 hour flight away and these offer a truly fabulous 'away from it all' holiday on your own little bit of paradise. Turtles, Manta Rays, Whale Sharks and Eagle Rays are frequent visitors to this part of the world and it's true to say that we've been lucky enough to have dived with them on every club trip we've been on. White tip Reef Sharks and their bigger cousins the Grey Reef Sharks are frequently seen up close and personal so the choice of thrilling dives is endless.  We usually organise a weeks liveaboard followed by seven days on an island during our frequent trips, so that way you get the best of both worlds. You can dive yourself to death on week one and then just chill out on week two. Of course, you can dive yourself to death on both weeks if you want to; it�s your holiday!
Indonesia is another favourite destination for Dive Odyssea and with over 7,000 islands to choose from, it will be a while before we run out of places to visit. Some of the world�s really weird fish live here such as pygmy sea horses, flamboyant cuttlefish and hairy frogfish. If you know where to look, you'll be both well rewarded and amazed in equal measures. It's a fact that on some individual reefs, there are more fish species to be found than in the whole of the Caribbean Sea. Incredible ! Monado in North Sulewesi is a favourite spot for this experience and with tropical rain forests, white water rafting, picturesque villages and visits to active volcanoes thrown into the mix, it�s a great trip.

Bali in Indonesia conjures up a taste of the exotic in most peoples minds and frankly, it doesn't disappoint. The coral reefs at the north of the island are some of the most spectacular in the world and it�s possible to spend a whole diving career here without getting dived out. During our last club trip here, we had 10 Manta Rays circling us for over an hour. The only reason this awesome experience ended was because we were running out of air. Throw some WWII wrecks into the mix and you've got the makings of a fabulous trip. The island scenery is absolutely spectacular in its own right and with miles of empty beaches and some great underwater vistas, why are you still here?!

Pondok Sari

The Caribbean is another popular diving destination although each area tends to offer a particular type of diving rather than a myriad of options. But with tropical warm waters and a laid back atmosphere, it's easy to see why the areas so popular. The Mexican Riviera might be a better option though if it's variety you're after in the Caribbean. It has the second longest coral reef in the world after Australia and Whale sharks are regular visitors during parts of the season. Nurse sharks are a permanent feature of the region and these very gentle creatures will just lie on the sand watching you watching them as you swim by. For the adrenalin junkies out there, the December to February period brings in the Bull sharks and it�s not uncommon to encounter these up close on just about every dive you do. We know; we did it!

Apart from the diving, there are the ancient Mayan ruins at Chitchen Itza & Tulum to explore or else you can shop till you drop if that's what floats your boat.

If it's serious adrenalin pumping action you want, how about South Africa? The East Coast near Durban is the place for really big shark encounters. Aliwal Shoals & Protea Banks are the two best known sites for this and if you're in to thrill filled diving, fill ya boots! Three metre long Sand Tiger sharks congregate here and they will circle you within touching distance as you sit on the sandy bottom watching them lazily cruise by. Guitar sharks, Epaulette sharks and Shy sharks are also commonly seen but if it's major adrenalin you�re after, the type that comes in brown lumps, how about being approached by a 5m Tiger shark?!!!

Most years, but by no means every year, the Great Sardine Run occurs off this coast during the month of June. Millions upon millions of Sardines travel up the coast and are predated on by hundreds of dolphins, sharks, whales and just about every sea bird known to man. It is one of natures most awesome sights.


Hawksbill Turtle

You want more? OK. Head south of Cape Town to Gansbaai and the nice people there will take you out to the Cape Fur seal breeding colony at Dyer Island. This is where all the wildlife film crews head to when they want scary film of Great White sharks. Those nice people will put you in the water with them! Yes of course it's in a bloody cage; what do you think we are, stupid! To be within touching distance of 5 meters of one of natures top predators is absolutely tremendous.

Dive Odyssea has been there, seen it, done it, got the T shirt and the photo�s.

Too much excitement? Not enough clean underwear? Lets go wreck diving instead. Not surprisingly, you can do this at home (see the UK Diving page) but that's not the only place around the world. Chuk Lagoon in Micronesia, formally known as Truk Lagoon is one of the worlds two premier wreck diving sites. Following the destruction of Japans merchant fleet during Operation Hailstone in WWII, something like 70 ships were consigned to the sea bed at various very divable depths. They are still there along with arms, ammunition, tanks, planes and all their other war materiel. Scapa Flow in the Scottish Orkney Islands is the other premier site and a lot more accessible. Here you can dive on the remnants of the Imperial German Navy from the Great War.

This is just a taster of diving destinations on offer around the world and here at Dive Odyssea, we�ve been lucky enough to have visited a good number of them over the years. In some cases we've visited more than once. The world is a big place but with overseas travel and dive travel in particular becoming more accessible, it's getting smaller all the time. The Philippines is the destination for 2010 so thats another tick in the box and another completely new diving experience under our belts. That's the beauty of diving as a club; you get to go places and see things that you may never get to experience if you travel alone. What's more, you get to do it with people that love doing the same thing as you do.

There's a lot to do out there; lets do it together!