Oh man, before I start this post I’m just going to let you know this was one of the best days of my life. I woke up in Australia, took a boat ride, the sun was shining, and then I got to go scuba diving on the largest reef system in the world! I saw everything from a small Nemo fish (Clown fish) to reef sharks and stingrays! Here’s how the day played out:
To get to the Reef I obviously had to take a boat, but not just any boat… I go to go on a massive 100-person catamaran decked out with enough snorkeling and scuba gear for 100 people (with spares) but luckily it was spacious and there were only had 35 on the boat. Imagine enough gear to outfit 100 people with masks, snorkels, fins and all the other scuba gear a person needs, that’s a lot of gear! The boat I went on was called “Ten” very original, right? Someone asked where the name came from, and it turned out to be the tenth boat made in that model or something along those lines, I was too focused on the scuba diving.
Now if you recall from the last post, I had just gotten my open water PADI certification 4 days earlier so I was nervous for my first real diving experience. I had all the training I needed and pretty much knew what I was doing. Getting geared up for this dive was different to what I used during training, not drastically different, but I did need one new piece of equipment. I had to put on what’s called a “Stinger suit,” which is a full-body suit including mitten like endings to go over your hands and a hood to go over your head. The design of the suit is to protect you from jellyfish stings. If they can’t touch you, they can’t sting you, or at least in theory. Once all the gear was on it was time to get in the warm 26°C water.
If you’ve never been snorkeling or scuba diving, you are really missing out! There is a completely different world under the water and it gets on perfectly fine without human intervention. The colors you can see underwater will amaze you, they definitely amaze me every time I’ve been snorkeling, and now scuba diving. I’ve seen turtles and various other ocean animals while snorkeling, but getting to go underwater and stay at ~15 meters of depth for just under an hour and be level or deeper than ocean animals is incredible. You get to see them interact with one another and interact with the plants. There is so much life on the reef that I couldn’t focus on just one thing! I was like a kid on Christmas looking at one fish then seeing something else move and following it. Here are a few of the hundreds of pictures taken.
Oh wait, I’ll just put some more here.
Once all the diving and snorkeling was done at three different sites we went to,(Nobody’s, Totem and Advanced Bommie all of which are part of the Agincourt Reef system) I sat up the second level of the boat and looked out at the reef. It seemed to never end! Waves were crashing to my left and to my right the water was turquoise. I just stood in awe looking at the largest reef system in the world. Some people wait their entire life to dive on the great barrier reef and I had the opportunity just 4 days after completing my Open Water. I can’t wait to see what places, animals, and adventures that scuba diving might bring me.
- Scuba diving at the Great Barrier ✓