Cuba Trip Report, January 2015
In January 2015 we headed to Cuba to dive Jardines de la Reina (in English – Gardens of the Queen), a remote reef and mangrove system famed for its Shark and Crocodile encounters! First stop on this trip was Havana, where after a quick night’s rest we were picked up for the 10-12 hours journey by land and sea to Jardines de la Reina. Only 500 divers a year are currently permitted to dive Jardines de la Reina and this limited exposure keeps the reefs pristine and sea life abundant.
Our home for the next week would be Avalon II Liveaboard. Avalon II is the flagship vessel of Avalon Fleet, launched in April 2014 she is an impressive yacht, with plenty of space for all guests, a superfast dive tender and onboard Nitrox compressor. From our liveaboard we would have ready access to all of Jardines best dive sites plus we would be close to the mangroves, home to Cuba’s famous American Crocodiles! Each day we would make 3 dives and on some days we would have special surface intervals, either to snorkel with the Crocodiles or visit the beach to see some Cuba’s land creatures, such as Hutia (a very cute rodent), Hermit Crabs and Iguanas.
The dives in Jardines de la Reina were action packed from start to finish, with amazing encounters with large Caribbean Reef Sharks on the reefs and schooling Silky Sharks close to the surface. These sharks provided endless highlights on the trip! Also down on the reefs we found Nurse Sharks, Great Barracuda, large Southern Stingrays, Eagle Ray, Hawksbill Turtles, free-swimming Green Moray Eels, Goliath Grouper, Tarpon, Horse-eye Jacks, Garden Eels, French Angelfish, Triggerfish, Lionfish and colourful reef fish such as Grunt and Snapper. On our last dive as we watched the schooling Silkies at the surface a juvenile Great Hammerhead approached us only to be well and truly chased off by the large adult Silky Sharks! And whilst the Sharks were certainly the stars of our Cuba trip a special mention of course has to go to the American Crocodiles, locally named as Nino Zero, Nino 1 and Nino 2. Nino Zero is the original Crocodile that was photographed in Jardines de la Reina’s mangroves but he is now a little large and so it was Nino 1 or 2 that we photographed and as Nino Zero approached we exited the water – quickly!
With our diving finished we celebrated with Mojitos and Cuban Rum and headed back to Havana for a couple of days photographing this historic city – a great way to end an amazing dive trip to Cuba!
On January 14th 2015, the best of Israel’s surfers gathered for a surfing contest in Sokolov Beach – NAHARIYA at perfect conditions. this video shows the highlights of the competition along with free surf of those who enjoyed the best surfing conditions ever seen in Israel.
Film & Edit: Noam Eshel
Water footage: Jacob Madar
Additional footage: Uri Richter (RLP)
Cover photo by: Amit Schestowitz
Music: Acollective – Happiest of All Memorial Days
1st place – Jonathan Klein. Photo: Israel Surfing Association/Doron Koresh Photography
2nd Place – 2014 Israel Surfing Champion Aviv Vaknin. Photo: Israel Surfing Association/Doron Koresh Photography
A man dressed as Santa Klaus rides a wave with a stand up paddle on November 18, 2014 in Varazze, near Genoa, as the bad weather created good surfing conditions in the Mediterranean. Female Santa SUPs in Hawaii and the tropical Sandman not Snowman
Source: AOL.COM AFP PHOTO / OLIVIER MORIN & TUMBLR
What was supposed to be just a simple picture turned out to be an epic shot.
According to Rod McGuirk of The Associated Press, amateur photographer Steph Bellamy used her smartphone to take a picture of mothers and their children paddling at an Australian surfing competition. That's when a surprise visitor demanded its 15 minutes of fame.
Out of nowhere, a shark pulled off the perfect photobomb by jumping out of the water at the exact moment Bellamy was taking the picture. Talk about perfect timing.
Bellamy showed the picture to organizers, which prompted them to clear the area. After about 15 minutes, the competition resumed.
Nearby surfer Lee Winkler said, "It was having a bit of fun. It just jumped up and had a spin, then jumped up and had another spin, then went away."
Silly little shark.
Source: AP Sports
To some, scuba diving may seem like a pipe dream adventure, but thereâs no reason why it canât be a reality. Here are reasons why you should jump into the deep sea and act on your drive to dive.
7 Reasons You Need To Try Diving
By Scuba Diver Life
To some, scuba diving may seem like a pipe dream adventure, but there's no reason why it can't be a reality. Here are reasons why you should jump into the deep sea and act on your drive to dive.
Source: The Scuba DIving Daily By: Nadia Aly