Diving in the Philippines is happy to share with our readers a guest blog by Bobby Jones who lives in a suburb in North Atlanta and is a financial consultant when he is not in the water diving
somewhere. He holds a PADI Rescue Diver certification and is currently completing his Divemaster certification. He hopes to one day share his love of diving with newcomers to the sport of diving.
Every dive is a different dive.
Do you have a hobby you enjoy? Horseback riding, bicycling, maybe kayaking? My hobby is scuba diving. I have always been interested in diving but, living in north Georgia, I really never had the opportunity to investigate diving. My friends never showed any interest in diving. Hey. We were all car guys! But, a project with Ford Motor Company in Detroit changed my life.
While working in Detroit I became acquainted with Rich Synowiec, owner of Divers Incorporated in Ann Arbor, Michigan. I spent some time in his shop, asking questions and learning about the sport. Rich, his dad and his staff were very patient with me. Never pushy, they always had the time to answer my questions and show me examples. In addition, Divers Incorporated also coordinated the scuba training for local and state police and sheriff departments so that really convinced me I was in the right place.
Several weeks went by and I noticed on his bulletin board an Open Water National Geographic class was to start the next week. This really interested me because the more I read and learned the more I became interested. So, I decided to take the plunge, literally, and take the class.
I don’t know if you are familiar with Detroit Michigan but these guys and girls are passionate about their diving. Detroit is home to “hard water” and many of these folks dive almost year around. Considering most lakes freeze with several inches of ice during the winter, this practice is impressive to say the least.
My confined dives were in the swimming pool of the local high school. My class started in November so there was a nice layer of snow on the ground. But the water inside was a cozy 78 degrees. David McCagg was my instructor. I was impressed with his focus on safety and his desire to ensure my understanding of the equipment. “After all”, Dave would say, “your scuba equipment is a life support system. You must understand how it works to dive safely.”
After completing my class assignments and confined water skills, I was ready to go for my open water dives. Rich was leading a diving expedition to Bonaire that May and suggested I complete my open water classes there. Since the lakes in Detroit didn’t even consider warming up until mid May, I convinced my wife that we “had to go.”
Typically, my wife and I try to take a trip together every year around our anniversary and this trip to Bonaire was perfect. After an unusually pleasant flight, we arrived in Bonaire. With an airport that was slightly bigger than our back yard we easily transitioned through customs and were on our way to the resort.
After a basic checkout assessment by the resort staff I set off with Rich and his wife Jill to complete my skills and open water dives. I could not believe the beauty of the resort reef! It was unbelievable. I was completely stunned by the beauty of the different varieties of Parrotfish, Squirrelfish, Basslet, Wrasse and Sergeant Majors. I had poured over scuba diving magazines and the pictures but nothing prepared me for the beauty I saw.
When we returned and discussed the dive, people in our group laughed and told me that was only the resort reef. Wait until this afternoons dive. Well, I was hooked. It has been an amazing 5 years since I began diving. Even though we return to Bonaire, every dive is different. To be diving and come across an ancient anchor lodged in the coral or to see the red tentacle of an octopus exploring out of his hiding place. Or to come upon a sunken ship and to be able to patiently watch the aquatic life that calls the ship home. Each dive is amazing. Simply amazing.
And that is why I am planning a trip to the Philippines and diving with Aqua Ventura divers in Dauin. The atolls and islands in the Philippines hold some of the world’s best diving. In fact, the Philippines are ranked No.2 on my bucket list of places to dive before I shuffle off into that great ocean on the other side.
Just the beautiful islands, the landscape and the history of the Philippines are cause for a trip or two. With over 7000 islands to explore one certainly will not get bored! And the geography varies from island to island. Some have beautiful white sandy beaches while others have darker sand for you to soak the rays up with. But, when you consider the vast amount of underwater territory and the aquatic life that is there for the exploring, scuba diving the Philippines is an absolute must. Every dive is a different dive!
Visit Rich Synowiec at Divers Incorporated at www.diversinc.com . Stop in and tell Rich hi!
Thanks for the great article, hope you can visit us soon buddy. We have some really fantastic resorts for you to sip a cold drink at and think about your next dive adventure the following day. Diving in the Philippines doesn’t get any better then this.
Ronald E Coselman
Aqua Ventura Diving center