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Oyster Diving | PADI Scuba Diving Blog

All the latest news about scuba diving, travel and PADI training courses from Oyster Diving.

Top 10 Tips for Learning to Scuba Dive

Top 10 Tips for Learning to Scuba Dive

 

1.       Learn with a reputable company

Just like when you went to school, there are some good ones and others not so good.  Read reviews and read about their facilities before you decide.

2.       Don’t go for the cheapest!

Like most things in life you get what you pay for. If you opt for the cheapest diving course then the chances are there will be large class sizes, poor facilities and you’ll spend less time in the water.

3.       Get your own mask and snorkel

This is the least expensive and most compact piece of diving equipment. Hire masks tend to leak a lot and it will ruin your dive

4.       Practice, practice, practice

Like most sports you can only continue to improve if you practice.  Once you’ve qualified then don’t leave it too long before you jump back in the water. A good idea is to join a friendly dive club and practice buoyancy control.

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We're Looking for New Members!

We’re Looking for New Members 

 

 

Are you a keen diver? Do you love exploring new diving locations while visiting various countries? Well, you’re in luck because here at Oyster Diving we are looking for new members.  
We are a multi-award winning PADI Scuba Diving School with an unrivalled reputation and an interest in all things diving. We always enjoy meeting like-minded people who share the same passions and interests as we do and we could really do with some fresh faces joining our vibrant team of divers.  

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Should I do the Full Open Water Course in the UK or the Referral?

Should I do the PADI Open Water Referral or Full course?

 

Great news, you’ve decided to join thousands of lucky people and become a qualified scuba diver.  Being a qualified diver means you’ll see amazing things that non-divers never get to witness such as strange species, colourful coral reefs and the feeling of being weightless.

The PADI open water course is your first level of diving qualification and is accepted at over 15,000 dive centres around the world. Once qualified you can dive to a maximum depth of 18m or 12m if you’re under 13.

 

There are 3 parts to the PADI open water course:

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Top 7 Scintillating Shark Facts You Didn’t Know

Sharks, for the most part, get a pretty bad rep due to their terrifying appearance and killer instincts. However, as many are now aware, sharks do not intentionally eat humans, in fact, sharks don’t even like the taste of us because of our salt percentage! 

 

Anyway, enough about bad-mouthing sharks, we’re here today to divulge some of the most startling and interesting shark facts for you. So, without further ado, let’s dive in and take a look at our 7 shark facts! 

 

7. Size Doesn’t Matter 

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The Top 5 Diving Holidays for the Super Rich

Diving holidays are arguably one of the best ways to get away from the mundanity of working life. What better feeling is there then leaving your job to fly to a place of tranquil beauty and scintillating scenery and of course, diving! 

 

Understandably, it is sometimes difficult to pinpoint where to go for your diving holiday, as there are so many incredible places around the world. For this list however, we’re focusing on 5 of the most expensive resorts currently on offer across the globe.  Be warned, this list is not for those on a budget! We have hand-picked only the best hotels, beaches, diving locations and overall experiences from around the world, so that you can see what a truly phenomenal diving holiday really looks like. 

 

So, without further ado, here are the 5 most expensive diving holidays money can buy! 

 

Caribbean Diving

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Scuba Diving Butler Service

Diving Butler Service

As the UK’s premier PADI Scuba Diving and Travel Centre one of our offerings is a dive butler service. We can provide equipment, Instructors, dive guides and equipment to locations around the world.

Our unique knowledge of dive sites around the world is 2nd to none. We have 100’s years of experience amongst the team (yet we are still not that old) and have dived all four corners of the globe.

Previous customers have included Royalty, rock stars, business leaders and sports stars. We work with a number of leading high end specialist travel companies on a consultancy basis as well as providing their customers with expert dive training, equipment sales and consultancy to ensure they go to the best locations for their experience level and marine wish list.

Our Butler service is ideal for those who are safety conscious, would like well-travelled and experienced divemasters and instructors. From setting up your equipment, doing your safety checks, guiding you or even improving your diving skills, our Scuba Butler service is our ultimate package to make the underwater part of your holiday give you confidence, safety and providing fantastic memories of the world’s best dive sites.

If you are interested in having your own Dive Butler then please do not hesitate to call 0800 699 0243 or e-mail This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

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Scuba Diving for Super Yachts

Scuba Diving for Super Yachts

Scuba Diving for Super Yachts

 

There are many dive centres around the world who would like to break in to the Super Yacht market, mainly as they see it as an easy ticket to earn large amounts of money relatively easily.

Unsurprisingly to those who are already involved in the super yacht industry then this isn’t the case. Like all people the wealthy like to get value for money, which means that they can afford to be demanding, be particular, be time sensitive and easy to deal with. This often means many hours of work, last minute changes, turning things around at a moment’s notice and flexibility. This goes against the philosophy of many of the worlds dive centre owners.

Many dive centres also only know about their own region and market. So would a dive centre in the Netherlands know that in the Caribbean you probably need a totally different type of diving compressor to accommodate the high humidity, would a dive centre in parts of the Caribbean and Asia know how to regularly test purity, cylinders and service regulators?

At Oyster Diving we believe we offer a complete solution for manufacturers and owners of Super Yachts. Our services include equipment installation from high end compressors, Nitrox and technical diving abilities, scuba equipment, underwater scooters, servicing, air testing, cylinder testing, training yacht crew to dive, training owners and their guests to dive, providing safety divers, vetting local dive centres and scoping out new dive locations.

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Top 10 BCD's for Scuba Diving

Top 10 BCD's for Scuba Diving

Top 10 BCD’s for Scuba Diving

 

Owning your own BCD (buoyancy control device) is normally one of the last pieces of scuba diving equipment that divers choose to purchase. In my opinion owning your own BCD shouldn’t be overlooked.

It can make your dive much more comfortable than an ill-fitting hire BCD and the familiarity you can gain makes it much safer. For example instinctively knowing where the dump valves are, how long to press the inflate/deflate button, how to drop the integrated weight pockets and where the releases are.

Through diving many different types of scuba BCD’s and feedback from our team of professional instructors we have complied our list of top 10 recreational BCD’s for 2017:

1.       Aqua Lung Axiom i3

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Blue Voyager Maldives Review

Blue Voyager Maldives Review - July 2017

 

This is the first time I've visited Blue Voyager since the owner Blueotwo relocated it from the Red Sea to the Maldives.

 

There it was considered to be one of the finest liveaboards available. Since its arrival in the Maldives Blueotwo have administered a complete refurbishment. Not only has it been given a more Maldivian feel but there is even more room for the 26 passengers to enjoy.

 

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Review of Galapagos Master

I have been diving on various liveaboards around the for over 15 years. My liveaboard diving holiday destinations include the Red Sea, Maldives,  Djibouti, Sudan, Cayman Islands and Australia. I have been on over 20 different boats with varying levels of comfort. 

 

The Galapagos Master is a large steel hull ship. It is stable in the water and has plenty of space to accommodate the 16 guests and 11 crew.

 

All of the diving is done by Zodiac. They are in good condition and are more spacious then others I have been on. They also have a ladder so you don't need to do a seal like entry after each dive.

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Tips and Advice for liveaboard scuba diving holidays to the Galapagos

If you're not pushed for time then a one day stop over in Guayaquil allows you to lose some of the jet lag before you reach the Galapagos

 

Take one or two warm tops such as a hoodie or sweatshirt as the evenings and after dives can be a bit breezy

 

What to wear underwater? Most of our group either had a 7mm or a two piece wetsuit. You could bring a dry suit but the faff of getting in/out of it up to 4 times per day and the threat of tearing a seal means that it probably isn't worth it. We were there in July and the thick wetsuit option was fine. Several of the group had Bare 7mm Reactive wetsuits and these proved easy to put on and take off and lived up to their reputation as the worlds warmest wetsuit. A hood is useful and gloves are fine but can restrict you taking photos. 

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Oyster Diving heads to the Galapagos for scuba holiday of a lifetime

Oyster Diving heads to the Galapagos for scuba holiday of a lifetime

Oyster Diving heads to the Galapagos for scuba holiday of a lifetime

10-19th July 2017

 

The dirty dozen divers met at Heathrow for a few hours in the business lounge where we made full use of their facilities including the free bar and buffet. We boarded our Avianca flight to Guayaquil in Ecuador via Bogota. Not the best airline I've been on but certainly not the worst. 

 

We arrived in Ecuador at 10am in the morning having had various amounts of sleep on the plane and made the short transfer to the Macaw Hostel, which to be honest is more of a simple boutique hotel rather than a dodgy hostel as the name suggests. The owners and staff were really friendly, helpful and made us feel really welcome. The owner gave some of the group a talk on making chocolate followed by a tasting which was gratefully received. The rooms were clean and the aircon worked a treat to counter the tropical heat, we all agreed that we'd rather stay here than at the Hilton around the corner.

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The World’s 7 Most Unique Diving Locations

Here at Oyster Diving, we love discovering new dive locations. Diving in serene waters full of various fish and colourful corals never gets old. But sometimes, we like to discover diving locations that are a little further off the beaten track (so to speak). That’s why, we have decided to explore some of the most unique diving locations in the world. This article lists some of our favourites for you to explore! Read on to find out more.

Bonne Terre Mine, Missouri

Hidden in Missouri, Bonne Terre Mine is one of the most popular diving adventures in America and it’s easy to see why. Underwater pillars, archways and ceilings stretch for miles in all directions, mapping out this stunning submerged mine.

This stunning diving location originated in 1961 when nearly 100 years of mining ceased. The world’s largest lead mine was all mined out, the pumps were turned off and the water trickled in to fill the void. Fully submerged, this mine has year-round 100ft visibility and is one of the most unique diving locations in the world.

Silfra Fissure – Iceland

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The Mystery of the Bermuda Triangle


Here at Oyster Diving, we are just as fascinated as everyone else with the mystery of the Bermuda Triangle. This strange region, that lies in the North Atlantic Ocean, is often referred to as the Devil’s Triangle. The Triangle has been the presumed cause of dozens of mind-boggling disappearances of ships and planes.

The earliest suggestion of unusual disappearances in the Bermuda Triangle appeared in a September 17, 1950 article published in The Miami Herald by Edward Van Winkle Jones. From that moment on, lives continued being lost in the area, with ships and planes going down and mysteriously disappearing forever. The disappearances have been attributed to various things, including paranormal activity and extra-terrestrial beings.

Let’s look at some of the most common explanations for these mysterious disappearances.

Paranormal Explanations

Many people have assumed that the Bermuda Triangle is explained by numerous paranormal events. Some think that paranormal explanation is that technology from the mythical lost continent of Atlantis had been leftover and was somehow connected to the Atlantis story.

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The World’s 7 Most Unique Diving Locations

Here at Oyster Diving, we love discovering new dive locations. Diving in serene waters full of various fish and colourful corals never gets old. But sometimes, we like to discover diving locations that are a little further off the beaten track (so to speak). That’s why, we have decided to explore some of the most unique diving locations in the world. This article lists some of our favourites for you to explore! Read on to find out more.

Bonne Terre Mine, Missouri

Hidden in Missouri, Bonne Terre Mine is one of the most popular diving adventures in America and it’s easy to see why. Underwater pillars, archways and ceilings stretch for miles in all directions, mapping out this stunning submerged mine.

This stunning diving location originated in 1961 when nearly 100 years of mining ceased. The world’s largest lead mine was all mined out, the pumps were turned off and the water trickled in to fill the void. Fully submerged, this mine has year-round 100ft visibility and is one of the most unique diving locations in the world.

Silfra Fissure – Iceland

Have you ever thought about swimming between two continents? Well, that’s exactly what you can do at the Silfra Fissure in Iceland’s Thingvellir National Park. The National Park has been declared a UNESCO World Heritage Site for its geological uniqueness.

The unique landscape of the Silfra Fissure is caused by continental drift which causes the two continents to separate by a couple of centimetres a year. This diving location is also renowned for its crystal-clear waters, unlike anywhere else, that are the result of freezing glacier water which is filtered through lava fields for years before ending up in the lake. As a result, the lake has an abundance of fish species but they don’t usually venture far into the Silfra fissure. For a unique diving location, this is as good as it gets!

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The 7 Best Beginner Diving Areas in the World

Many people come to Oyster Diving seeking adventure and deep sea exploration. However, as of late, more and more people have approached us seeking lessons before they go off on their summer holidays, and one of the most common questions they ask after completing their course is, 'what are the best diving areas for beginners?'

This got me thinking about the best areas I could direct them to, as I could only name a few places off the top of my head, I thought I'd do some research into some of the best places around the world for diving beginners!

This takes into account, warm, clear water and a very low and if possible, non-existent current.

So, I've done some research and decided on my 7 best beginner diving areas!

 

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Diving Treasures: The 7 Biggest Finds

Diving Treasures: The 7 Biggest Finds

Diving discoveries and buried treasure are sure ways to get someone’s ears to perk up out of curiosity. Treasure hunting is always fun, regardless of what age you are, and some people make a living out of doing so. Some people spend most, if not all of their time hunting down treasure, and commonly find that they end up finding nothing but old boots or scrap metal. However, others who are simply having fun with a metal detector have dug up artefacts worth millions of pounds. I guess it’s both blind luck and knowing where to look!

So, today we’ll be looking at some of the most fascinating treasure finds underwater.

Frigate Mercedes – Atlantic Ocean

A sunken ship full of nearly 600,000 gold and silver coins was found at the bottom of the Atlantic Ocean by a private treasure hunting company called Odyssey Marine. A priceless hoard of gold coins and hand-crafted golds chains were found inside the ship, which was called the Frigate Mercedes and became the centre of controversy when Spain claimed ownership over the gold. A legal battle ensued between Spain and Odyssey marine and lasted half a decade before the Spanish government prevailed. In 2015, Spain finally flew their 17-tonnes of priceless coins across the Atlantic.

Israeli Coin Hoard

Amateur divers were exploring an old sunken dock off the coast of Israel when they discovered 2,000 gold coins hidden in the seabed. The centuries old currency was miraculously unharmed by age or water damage! There is no current estimated monitory value of the coins, but they are considered extremely rare and valuable to historians. Even at the time of their minting in 900 A.D, they were considered a royal some of money.

Coin Hoard – Florida

Back in 2015, 60 rare gold artefacts were found in shipwreck in Florida. The ship was sailing from Cuba to Spain in 1715 and was meant to deliver a large payload of gold to the Spanish King Philip the Fifth. Though, it was destroyed in a hurricane off the coast of Florida. Professional scuba divers only had to dive 15ft to find the hoard, which is now valued at over £1 million pounds.

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Cheap Wetsuits: Top 5 Best Reviews

Cheap Wetsuits: Top 5 Best Reviews

Choosing a wetsuit boils down to more than just how it looks, or how cheap or expensive it is. Cheap wetsuits are usually poorly made and don’t stand the test of time, though you don’t want to go off and spend over £400 on a suit that isn’t tailored to your needs.

It can sometimes be a tricky process.

However, that’s why we’re here. At Oyster Diving, we understand the difficulties that come with picking and choosing diving gear. In fact, we’ve reviewed the best diving watches, cameras, the best places to dive in the Red Sea, shark diving the UK and even the most mysterious shipwrecks, because we’re more than just a diving website.

So, below you’ll find our best wetsuit reviews, in no particular order, as we’ve judged them based on what they’ve been specifically made for.

5. Rip Curl

E-Bomb Rip Curl have been on the scene for nearly 50 years now, and are constantly creating fantastic products. While not exactly new, the E-Bomb wetsuit has really stood the test of time, and can stand proud next to its more expensive brother, the Flash Bomb wetsuit.

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Scuba Diving Cornwall: What’s So Good About It?

Many think that the UK isn’t blessed with the most exotic, clear waters for diving exploration, and they would be wrong.

The UK is littered with some fascinating diving locations, just take a look at our article on Where to Suba Dive in 2017 for some solid proof that we do have some amazing dive sites around Britain.

However, that’s not what we’re talking about today, today, we’re looking at arguably the best diving location in the whole of Britain, Cornwall.

Diving in Cornwall?

What makes Cornwall such a sought-after diving location, is that it has depths that will suit anyone.

For the people that enjoy the shallows and simple sea life exploration, to the ones who want to dive-in deep and scout for sunken wrecks, Cornwall is a place that truly has it all.

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6 of The World’s Most Incredible Diving Discoveries

There are myriads of things to explore in the deep blue of the world’s oceans. And yet, some areas are so deep that scientists have yet to fully explore because their equipment simply cannot reach that far. According to the National Ocean Service, we have explored less than five percent of the ocean to date. Here at Oyster Diving, we have a passion for all things diving and underwater exploration. There is so much to explore and, over the years, there have been thousands of treasures and unusual discoveries uncovered by divers. Many discoveries, as we know from our diving experiences, are sea life and colourful creatures which is always wonderful to see but divers have also uncovered some of the most shocking discoveries lurking in the deep. Read on to find out some of the world’s most incredible diving discoveries.

Indian Temples

3. Dwarka Gulf of Cambay India 5 Mind Blowing Underwater Cities

 

Historically, Indians grew up hearing stories about great temples that used to exist in Mahabalipuram. The story was that there used to be seven magnificent temples, so magnificent that the gods became jealous and had six of them swallowed by the sea so that only one remained. Historians and many others simply dismissed the stories as local legend, certain that the one temple on the land was the only of its kind.

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