Week 80: Diving in Sodwana Bay

Week 80: Diving in Sodwana Bay

This week has been really awesome, I stayed in Sodwana Bay doing my Open Water and Advanced Open Water scuba diving qualifications. The open Water course took 4 days, three of which included diving in Sodwana Bay. On one of the days we saw a group of dolphins and went snorkeling with them on our way out to the dive site. The bay has a huge area of coral reef and is home to loads of different types of fish and two types of turtle.

I finished the course on Thursday after scoring 100% in the final exam, while I was heading back to my tent I saw a group of people stood around a tent and overheard them asking if there was anyone around who wasn’t afraid of snakes. I used to have pet snakes so I went over to see what was happening, they told me that a cobra had been found in the tent but they were all too afraid to move it out, so I offered to do it. The snake was covered with a bed sheet and they gave me a long grabber thing but told me that the snake was too big for the grabber to fit around its neck. After a few minutes I had pushed the snake and the sheet into a box and closed the lid, we carried it out to some bushes and released it. The snake was about one and a half, to two meters long and black. They then told me that it wasn’t just a cobra but a Mozambiquan Spitting Cobra. I hadn’t been afraid because I was staying far enough away not to get bitten, but spitting cobras can spit quite far.

The next day I started my Advanced Open Water course, this basically involves five adventure dives, chosen from sixteen different fields. I chose to do a Deep dive, Underwater Navigation, Peak Performance Bouyancy, Naturalist dive and Multilevel dive. The course was great and I saw lots of great fish and actually finished the course with a dive on ‘7 mile reef’, which is one of the top 10 dive sites in the world. During the course I swam with dolphins again and saw two Manta Rays. A really great experience.

Now I am heading to Durban and trying to plan what to do over the next week or so, I think I will be leaving South Africa very soon and heading to Australia. I just need to decide where I want to visit in South Africa, go there, then fly out to Australia to begin my third section of the trip.

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