28. Jan, 2016

Live aboard or resort?

 Many UW photographers have the opportunity to visit distant diving locations. They  leave their home, spouse, children or dog, determined to  bring home some stunning pictures of the underwater world. There is a choice between a live aboard or a diving resort. The live aboard  is the best choice for visiting  isolated  locations with no diving facilities, restaurants  or whatever. Like Papua New Guinea or the Red Sea. And to get away from crowded tourists towns. If  you have booked  on a  special trip  for UW photographers like a  photo workshop, you will  have the best chances of being dropped at the right places to shoot your subjects of interests. And to  learn more about underwater photography from other good photographers on the boat.  Do not  book on a regular  live-aboard diving trip, because you might miss the best sites.  And  you will not have that individual freedom to move around under water, like with  an ‘only photography’  workshop. If you are prone to sea sickness the live aboard may give you a  hard time, especially if you are bound for rough seas,  or to  cross  the gulfstream between East  Florida and the Bahamas🤒

The only privacy you have on live aboard is in your cabin, mostly a shared twin cabin with two beds or a bunk with curtains. Once arrived at your location, you often will have to load yourself and your camera in a smaller Zodiac to  arrive at the  dive site. And you must be fit enough to wrestle  yourself back in the Zodiac after the dive. Much more convenient is to start your dive directly from the platform of the mothership.  There is also a negative side of being on a live aboard trip. In  our modern world with its booming diving tourism, several larger and smaller boats may be anchored at a favorite diving spot. With their satellite Zodiacs racing over the surface to deliver their packs of divers. Which  means that you risk being decapitated if you are not careful enough. The Red Sea in particular is an area where many boats often gather around  sites as  Elphinstone, the Brothers, Daedalus, Rocky island etc.

In a  resort you will have more privacy. Normally you leave  in the morning to embark on small vessel  with a group of  maximal 12 diver to visit a site  not too far away, and return to the resort for lunch or dinner.  Again, if UW photography is your primary  interest,  be sure that you book for a place that has experience with  UW photographers.  Look for a resort with a friendly and experienced staff that will  take you to your favorite locations, to meet a bunch of nice sharks or  a beautiful reef surrounded by colorful fish, not too far away. Very convenient  for the lazy or more senior Uw photographers!