Friendly potato bass in Mozambique

Newsletter: Mozambique!

Hi all

I am sure most of you are happy that Christmas and New Year parties, expenses and rushing around are now behind you. Often this period is so taxing that a vacation early in the year is required for the purpose of recovery.

Mozambique

Nice visibility on the safety stop in Ponta do Ouro
Nice visibility on the safety stop in Ponta do Ouro

We are going to Ponta do Ouro in southern Mozambique for a five night/eight dive trip leaving on the morning of Tuesday 1 May, diving twice a day from 2 May to 5 May, and returning on Sunday 6 May.

The primary reason for avoiding the school holidays and long weekends in April is the high costs of car rentals, accommodation, flights and diving over these “peak periods”. Another bonus (hopefully) is avoiding the mad rush of divers from Gauteng who flood southern Mozambique and Sodwana on long weekends (since their other diving options are quarries)!

Turtle in Mozambique
Turtle in Mozambique

If you joined one of our trips last year you will know how it works. For this trip, it’ll be similar to a Sodwana trip but with some extra considerations:

  • We leave Cape Town real early on day one and try to all arrive at Durban airport early enough to pick up our rental cars and drive to the border.
  • The border to Mozambique is around 100 kilometres further than Sodwana Bay (about 5 hours drive) but the border post closes at 5pm so there is time pressure.
  • There is a safe lockup place for the rental cars and the dive camp send a vehicle to collect us at the border. The trip from the border to the beach (approximately 15 km) is very sandy and requires a 4×4 or hi rider style vehicle (even 4x4s get stuck sometimes).
  • You will obviously need a valid passport!

Like Sodwana, it’s warm water diving on beautiful coral reefs. The launches are also surf launches, meaning that you help push the rubber duck off the beach into the sea, hop on board, and hold tight as the skipper punches some waves to get you out into the open ocean!

We will do the accommodation and dives booking for the group, but flights and car rental bookings are up to you. If you’re traveling alone, we’ll hook you up with someone(s) to share a car with. We will have different options of accommodation but will aim for small self-catering cabins as opposed to tents (it can be very hot and there are mosquitoes). If you want to keep your costs down or if you have less leave you can join us for part of the time there – Clare and I will do the full trip, but you are welcome to do a four night/six dive or otherwise reduced version.

My favourite moray eel at Ponta do Ouro
My favourite moray eel at Ponta do Ouro

Mozambique is more expensive than Sodwana due partly to the remoteness of the coastal sites in the south. For example, dives on our last trip to Sodwana were R220 including tanks and weights, but in Mozambique it will cost about R380 per dive for the same deal. The other extra costs are more petrol, and border transfers. Accommodation costs are about the same as we had at Coral Divers.

Friendly potato bass in Mozambique
Friendly potato bass in Mozambique

We will limit the group to maximum 12 people as this is the maximum number of divers per group. This will mean we have a boat to ourselves and get to choose the dive sites. I worked and lived there so I have photos and videos of the sites and can assure you the diving is amazing. As before we will meet sometime before the trip to see some photos and videos and make plans.

If such a trip interests you please mail me as it will be on a first come first served basis. I’ll then let you have an idea of costs and more details! If you want to see more of what Mozambique diving is about, check out this playlist of videos on YouTube, as well as the photos in this newsletter.

Blue spotted ray
Blue spotted ray

What have we been up to?

During the few free days Clare had during the festive season I had her running me in and out of hospital (3 times) and despite this Clare managed to successfully completely redo the website as well as move both the website and the blog to a self hosted site that makes it far more user friendly.

Clare and I have spent many hours driving and diving but on the 1st of January instead of having her talk to me in the car she was in my speakers. Clare was interviewed by Cape Talk and 702 on a nature program (in her capacity as a blogger) on talk radio. Made me very proud.

What are we planning

Well, since the 3 January I have been unable to dive due to the untimely demise of some random body part that it appears we have no use for. I have mostly recovered now and am chomping at the bit to get in the water. Doctor’s orders mean that I have to sit out this weekend, however.

Fortunately… this weekend features a howling southeaster on Saturday which will eliminate diving on both sides of the peninsula for all but the most hardy and desperate. Grant is launching in the Atlantic on Sunday – if you want to be on the boat, let me know if you want assistance with arrangements, otherwise speak to the man directly. I will be back to a full diving schedule next weekend – I am sorry to those regular divers who’ve been sorely neglected the last couple of weeks!

Over the next few weeks we have a number of Open Water and a few Advanced students to dive with so hopefully we will be doing a day of shore entries and a day of boat dives every weekend coming up. The water temperature has been as high as 23 degrees in False Bay over the last few weeks and the current 30+ degree day time temperatures around will most likely keep it high. It is also southeaster winds that prevail this time of year so more often than not the Atlantic is the ocean dived.

We are having a theory evening on Wednesday (25 January) forĀ Open Water students – if you haven’t written your exam or learned how to use the dive tables yet, this is for you. Please let me know if you’re attending so Clare can stock up on snacks in preparation.

Training

Rescue training courses are my plan for February. I am going to try and get a group of six for this as it then brings the cost down dramatically, If you are a regular diver then this is a course that has a lot of value, more so to improve your own level of safety and ability to save yourself from a diving incident as well as assisting other divers. It is a lot of fun and includes the Emergency First Response course (you get to practice CPR by pounding the chest of my dummy, who is called Annie) as well as use of oxygen delivery equipment.

Once we have done Rescue we will focus on Wreck, Deep and Nitrox specialties as I am a firm believer that a regular diver should be comfortable with depth, Nitrox use and wreck diving as Cape Town has some stunning wrecks that lie between 30 and 40 metres.

Be good, have fun and get wet –

Tony Lindeque
076 817 1099
www.learntodivetoday.co.za
www.learntodivetoday.co.za/blog/

Diving is addictive!

Published by

Tony

Scuba diver, teacher, gadget man, racing driver, boat skipper, photographer, and collector of stray animals

2 thoughts on “Newsletter: Mozambique!”

  1. Hey guys, Clare- congrats on the radio slots (and well done on the new site)!! Will you be able to email/post links/ sound bites of the interviews for those of us who weren’t listening?
    Tony- glad you are on the mend!
    Awesome news letter, as always. When do you think we can get a rough estimation on the price of the dive trip?
    See you soon

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