One of my favourite PADI courses to teach has got to be the advanced open water course, this is for many reasons but the main reason I love teaching it is because I get a chance to take my students on possibly their most exciting dive since their first ever dive. The Night dive!
As the sun starts to set we set off for the dive site, we get to the boat, set up our kit and have a dive briefing. Everyone who has never been on a night dive before seems a little bit on edge, not scared, but excited. As the sun starts to dip below the horizon we all get into our kits, do our buddy checks (remembering torches of course) and jump into the water. As we are jumping in with some natural light available we can look down onto the site and it already looks different, apart from being much darker you see lots of different fish down there.
I have two favourite night diving spots, one being the famous “White Rock”. Students come here for an exciting treat of great barracuda hunting by our torch light, rays swimming around looking for food, Cuttlefish floating in a ghostly manner over the sand and recently lots of sightings of sleeping turtles. The other spot I love for night dives is Hin Wong Bay, which we take the taxi over to the other side of the island for a shore dive. The great things about this site, it’s far away and most dive schools don’t go there at night because of its distance by boat, but with the taxi only 15 minutes away, which means we have the dive site all to ourselves! Also its maximum depth is around 10 meters which means nice long dives. Things we get to see here are a little different to White Rock also. We get to see lots of different crab species hiding in and around the rocks and corals. We almost always see the camouflage scorpion fish sat on the sand, Loads of rays hunting over the sand and if you look very hard you might even see an octopus! There are other great sites too but these two are my favourite and I usually try hard to get my students out to one of these sites. All around the island we are always in for a treat with the phosphorescent algae that glows with every movement you make leaving trails of stars behind your fins! Either one we go to everybody always has a great time and loads of things to talk about when we get back to the shop!