A large stretch of Greece’s underwater remains undiscovered and unexplored, an effect of the government’s restriction on undersea activities. The Greek government issued stern regulations that severely limit the areas where scuba diving can be done. This is a move to protect ancient architecture and artifacts which had not been retrieved from under the sea. Scuba diving in Greece, therefore, until recently, remained an unpopular sport despite the natural wonders Greek oceans contain. Thankfully, the restrictions had been somewhat loosened and divers are granted access to more dive sites. As a result, scuba diving is now gaining popularity.
Scuba diving can be done in Attica, Crete, Ionian, Mykonos, Kalimnos, Rhodes, Corfu, Lefkada, Paxi, Zakynthos, Kavala, Achaia, Argolid, Messinia and Magnesia – actually almost everywhere since the restrictions have been eased. The most popular sites are at the Ionian, Mikonos and Rhode Islands. The government, however, has maintained some of its regulations, such as allowing scuba diving in Attica and Rhodes Islands only for educational purposes.
Scuba diving centers and resorts abound in Greece and diving courses and trips are offered to beginners and experienced divers alike. There are courses specifically for beginners, where first-time divers spend approximately an hour in the pool to ensure that they are comfortable underwater. The divers are then guided by PADI instructors to their first dive in the sea. Those who have been enthralled by their diving experience and who have more money to spare can continue their course to the next level. Upon finishing it, they will obtain a certificate in diving. That is why this course can last from 1 to 5 days and can cost from 40 GBP to 550 GBP depending on the duration of the course and the group size. Usually, a larger group may be given discounts.
There are also recreational scuba dives for beginners, advanced and experienced divers which last for at most a couple of days. Usually, groups are divided according to the level of diving experience. Beginners are usually limited to a depth of 14 m, whereas experienced divers may even go beyond 50 m. Prices for these recreational dives range from 40 GBP to 160 GBP per person.
Another very fascinating underwater experience which could appeal even to experienced divers is a diving photography course, which is now offered by some dive centers. This is usually a one-week course, which covers not only the basics of scuba diving but teaches an appreciation for the marine life, as well. Divers are trained to identify the species they’re most likely going to meet. Likewise, they’re taught how to interact with animals so as not to frighten them. Since this course is rather intensive compared to traditional drive courses, it is more costly at 600 GBP – 700 GBP per person. This fee includes the one-week stay aboard the yacht, diving equipment and breakfast but excludes airfare.
Whatever your level of diving skills is and the diving experience you want to undergo, you are sure to find a scuba diving course in Greece that fits you. One thing is sure, most of these courses have an eco focus. Therefore, instructors are careful not to upset the underwater ecosystem and teach divers to do the same. Divers are exposed to the beauty of nature under the ocean so as to instill in them an appreciation for the world beneath the ocean’s surface as well as a sense of responsibility in protecting aquatic life.
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