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The best diving in Europe

When you think of Europe, diving is not the first thing that probably comes to mind. Most people associate Europe with majestic landscapes, historical architecture, and charming small villages. However, this small continent also surprises with a fantastic seascape and underwater beauty. From sunken battleships and exciting shark encounters to floating between two continents, Europe is very diverse and offers world-class diving for every interest and ability.

This lake dive descends to 30m deep along a sloping shore. There is a platform at 8m, great for training. In the shallows, there are remains of an old jeep about 10min to the right and a huge boulder at 30m.

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The subsoil of this popular bathing lake consists of gravel, which offers good visibility even during heavy bathing. On weekends there are usually plenty of divers on site. Those who can may prefer to dive during the week when it is less crowded.

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Capernwray (Jackdaw Quarry)

Capernwray is the North-West’s inland dive site frequented by many divers and schools. Tends to open at weekends and from thursdays in the winter and on wednesdays through to evening in the summer.

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The house reef at Mihuric offers a variety of life and geological formations in different levels up to 35m. Several boats, a statue, and a buoyancy control park offer perfect conditions for familiarization dives and all kinds of training.

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Just about 15 kilometers south of the airport sits this marine protected area where you can dive all year round because it is protected by the Trade Winds.

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Almeida Carvalho (Wreck)

Hydrographic Vessel Almeida CarvalhoWeight - 1320 tonsLenght - 64mBreadth-12mSunked on 21-September-2013Max depth- 30mCurrent - None to moderate

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Carall Bernat

Depth 4-45 meters. One of the most visited dives of the Medes Islands for its diversity and quantity of fauna, we will start the descent at the anchor buoy located on the south face of the Carall.

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Blue Hole is the most famous dive site in Gozo with spectacular underwater landscapes and amazing light effects. Look for the remains of the Azure Window (“Azure Alps“), the cavern, and a fun chimney and swim-throughs.

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Welcome to the most famous site in the Guadeloupe National Park and its Cousteau Reserve. Under the boat a real coral garden of all colors awaits you. At 12m, a statue of Commander Cousteau was placed on the sand at the end of the 2000s.

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On her maiden voyage the Zeonbia ferry sunk near the Larnaca port in 1980. She sits at 42m on her side and starts at 17m. At 172m long it is a two dive wreck. As she lays 1.5km from shore this is a boat dive. The sea conditions are usually quite calm.

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Discover the world’s most fascinating aquatic life

Aquatic life under our oceans, lakes, rivers, and streams is amazing! From microscopic zooplankton to the largest animal on earth, the blue whale, underwater life comes in all possible shapes and sizes. With 71% of the earth being covered with water, it is no wonder we are so fascinated with what lies beneath the surface. In fact, scientists estimate that there are nearly 1 million different species of aquatic animals. Freshwater ecosystems are home mainly to fish, invertebrates, and reptiles, whereas the ocean contains a wide array of marine life including fish, mollusks, crustaceans, reptiles, sharks, and marine mammals like whales, dolphins, seals, and manatees.

The carp originated as an ornamental and aquaculture fish in China but has spread as an invasive species worldwide. In fact, the common species has now spread to inhabit all continents in the world except Antarctica. Ironically enough, native wild populations in Asia are actually considered vulnerable to extinction yet are highly destructive and abundant in waters in other parts of the world where it’s not supposed to be found.

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One of the more beautiful types of freshwater fish, trout is the common name for a large number of different freshwater species closely related to salmon. They live exclusively in freshwater lakes and rivers and come in a wide variety of colors that change based on their environment, making them masters at camouflage. Preferring cool, clear streams and lakes, they can be found in waters averaging 10-16 degrees C (50-60 degrees F) so if you want to go diving with trout you better bring a thick wetsuit.

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When you google the word ‘salmon’ you won’t find a bunch of data on the species itself, but hundreds of delicious recipes as it is one of the most desired fish for eating around the world. It is the common name for any species of fish in the Salmonidae family, most of which occur naturally in North American waters, 5 in the Pacific Northwest and one in the Atlantic. Two occur only in Asia, the masu and amago, but they have been introduced into non-native environments in other parts of the world such as the Great Lakes of North America and the Patagonia of South America.

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Sea lions are pinnipeds that are easily recognizable by their external ear flaps, cute, pointy nose, long, puffed up chest, and their ability to walk on all fours. Some of the more popular sea lion species are the California sea lion and the Steller sea lion. These fast, agile swimmers can reach up to 30 knots underwater and are very curious about the world around them. In fact, sea lions are not afraid of scuba divers in the least and have been known to buzz right around a group of divers, blow bubbles at them, and even chewing on their snorkels and fins.

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Despite their protruding teeth, menacing grin, and aggressive predatory status, barracuda are actually completely passive towards divers and snorkelers, although passing by a large adult can still be intimidating to the most experienced scuba diver. They are found in tropical and temperate oceans throughout the world, preferring to cruise over coral reefs, seagrass beds, and near the surface of the water, never venturing very deep; therefore, they are commonly sighted while scuba diving.

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Most wrasses species have extraordinary, bright coloration. With over 600 different species, wrasses are as varied in size as they are in their brilliant color. They are identifiable by their elongated bodies, protruding canine teeth, and thick lips. It is fantastic to dive with wrasses and watch them swimming around coral reefs firsthand. These lively fish make coral reefs even more colorful.

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The puffer fish is named after its ability to inflate itself like a ball in danger or stress. They pump water into a sac-like enlargement of their stomach, causing them to deform into a ball. This change in volume makes it almost impossible for predatory fish to swallow the puffer fish and it can even suffocate them. If this stress reaction is caused willfully by divers, puffer fish can sometimes inadvertently suck in breathing gas from divers, which leads to them being buoyant and floating helplessly on the surface. This usually ends fatally for the animal. They are rarely eaten by predatory fish, but dolphins have been observed to get intoxicated on these animals by chewing lightly on them, which causes the puffer fish to release small doses of the strong neurotoxin tetrodotoxin. This poison is fatal to humans and no antidote is known; ironically, however, in Japan puffer fish is considered a delicacy called fugu. However, people’s curiosity about this questionable delicacy leads to accidents every year.

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Who doesn’t dream of diving with dolphins? Not shy and very playful, they are as curious about us as we are about them. What would be better while diving than playing with dolphins? These toothed whales are highly intelligent animals with a personality all their own, often living together in large pods. They exhibit many human traits such as mourning the dead of their conspecifics, learning from one another, trying to impress their females with gifts, joy, playfulness, empathy, etc.

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Check out incredible moments water enthusiasts like you experience every day with SSI

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