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Regaldive voyages into Palau

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As a result of increasingly high demand for liveaboards, UK based diving holiday specialist Regaldive has expanded its collection with the addition of the S/Y Palau Siren. Allowing divers to make the most of the world-class diving on offer in Palau, the boat offers three itineraries, each of which include the unique chance to snorkel in Jellyfish Lake – as featured by the winner of the 2013 Guardian’s Readers’ travel photograph competition. What’s more, to celebrate the exciting new launch, Regaldive has discounted one of the first departures by a huge £338 per person*.

The seven night Palau Islands itinerary, which is currently discounted by £338*, offers the opportunity to explore some of the finest diving in Palau. Undertaking up to 22 dives including four night dives, customers will discover a wide range of sites including the Ulong Channel – a drift dive and one of the best dives in Palau; Blue Corner – home to steep sheer walls and fierce currents; Iro Maru wreck – a Japanese oil supply ship which was sunk during World War II, and Shark City – the name of which speaks for itself. The 4th June 2014 departure has been discounted in celebration of the launch and now costs from just £1,995 per person, to include full board boat accommodation, most drinks, three to four boat dives per day, air/nitrox tanks and weights. Flights are not included but can be arranged through Regaldive.

The 10 night Palau Islands itinerary allows a more in-depth exploration of the sites visited in the seven night itinerary. Divers will have the opportunity to take up to 33 dives including five night dives. Costing from £3,208 per person, the liveaboard includes full board boat accommodation, most drinks, three to four boat dives per day, air/nitrox tanks and weights. Flights are not included but can be arranged through Regaldive.

Alternately, for divers who want to combine the best of the Philippines and Palau, the 13 night Philippines and Palau Combo itinerary does just that. Dividing their time between the S/Y Palau Siren and the S/Y Philippine Siren, divers will log up to 42 dives, including seven night dives, wreck dives and drift dives. Liveaboard highlights include Pescador Island where divers can swim amongst schools of sardines, thresher sharks and giant frogfish, and Blue Corner – one of Palau’s most famous dive sites. Costing from £3,565 per person, the liveaboard includes full board boat accommodation, most drinks, three to four boat dives per day, air/nitrox tanks and weights. Flights are not included but can be arranged through Regaldive.

The new S/Y Palau Siren offers spacious accommodation for 16 guests. The boat benefits from en-suite double and twin cabins, a comfortable indoor lounge, cocktail bar, outdoor dining area with ever changing views and an uncovered sun deck. Divers making the most of their time above the water can also make the most of the yacht boutique, massage service and kayaks available for customer use, offering plenty to keep them entertained round the clock.

Andreas Elia, Managing Director of Regaldive, commented “We’re very excited to be welcoming the S/Y Palau Siren to our already popular collection of liveaboards. It’s no surprise that liveaboards are in such high demand – with so many fantastic dive sites located far off the shore and so many dedicated divers eager to explore them, liveaboards make for a very popular option with our customers”.

He continued, “Over the next few months we are looking forward to expanding our liveaboard collection even further with the addition of the Fiji and Truk Siren. The details are still under wraps, but watch this space – more information will be coming shortly!”

For further information or to book visit www.regaldive.co.uk or call +44 (0)1353 659 999.

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Euro-Divers opens to guests at Alila Kothaifaru Maldives

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In celebration of Euro-Divers’ 50 Years of Diving with Friends in the Maldives, the team have opened a new PADI 5 Star Dive Center at Alila Kothaifaru Maldives.

Alila Kothaifaru Maldives retreat lies at the northern edge of the Maldives in the tranquil Raa Atoll, reached via a panoramic 45-minute seaplane voyage from Male. The island has 80 all-pool-villas, 36 of which are over water with a private pool for your enjoyment and 44 beachfront villas designed seamlessly to immerse guests in the natural surroundings. In support of sustainable tourism, Alila hotels adopt Earth Check operating standards, integrating their environments’ natural, physical, and cultural elements.

Raa Atoll is well-known for the excellent scuba diving it offers. The underwater landscape of Raa Atoll is characterized by a high number of thilas scattered inside the lagoons. These underwater coral mountains are magnets for marine life including huge schools of tropical reef fish, a generous splash of colour, iconic bucket-list-must-see marine creatures including sharks, mantas (appearing during the entire year), turtles, and uncrowded dive sites—a perfect diver’s heaven for beginners and experienced divers. We offer a full range of PADI courses for different levels. From November till March, the Manta cleaning station is located 15 minutes away by boat.

The team from Alila Kothaifaru Maldives look forward to welcoming you soon.

Find out more at: www.euro-divers.com/alila-kothaifaru-maldives

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Marine Life & Conservation

Blue Marine Foundation launches new partnership with Dutch Caribbean Nature Alliance

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Ocean charity makes initial grant of $90,000 to marine parks on six Dutch Caribbean islands. Award will fund projects including coral protection, and training youth marine rangers.

Ocean conservation charity Blue Marine Foundation has announced it is awarding $90,000 in funding to support marine conservation in the Dutch Caribbean. A range of projects run by protected area management organisations on six islands will each receive a grant of $15,000. The funding is the first step in a longer-term partnership to support the islands and help secure sustainable financing through the Dutch Caribbean Nature Alliance (DCNA) Trust fund.

To improve ocean governance, Blue Marine uses a combination of top-down intervention and bottom-up project delivery to help local communities at the front line of conservation. It will work together with the DCNA to help marine-park organisations protect the unique and threatened biodiversity of the Dutch Caribbean.

The new partnership is an important development in the successful management of marine conservation parks in the Dutch Caribbean. The UK-based charity has established a small-grants fund to provide rapid access to support for critical conservation projects run by marine parks.

The individual projects and their local partners are:

Unique ecosystems on the islands are vulnerable to threats such as feral livestock causing sedimentation on reefs, and invasive species, including lionfish and coral diseases. They are also at risk from overfishing, climate change, coastal development, erosion and the build-up of harmful algae caused by waste water.

The islands of the Dutch Caribbean are also home to important “blue carbon” habitats – ocean ecosystems such as seagrasses, mangroves and other marine plants that suck up and lock away carbon from the earth’s atmosphere. Seagrass is so efficient at this it can capture and store carbon dioxide up to 35 times faster than tropical rainforests.  The management and protection of these blue carbon habitats is vital in the fight against climate change.

Current marine conservation measures in the islands include a 25,390 square km mammal and shark sanctuary- Yarari sanctuary- across the Exclusive Economic Zone of Bonaire, Saba and St Eustatius. All six islands have inshore Marine Protected Areas ranging in size from 10 to 60 sq km.

Blue Marine’s Senior Project Manager Jude Brown commented: “Having recently visited two of the islands, I witnessed first-hand how special this region is. Diving the waters off Saba I saw huge Tarpon swimming amongst shoals of blue tang, and hawksbill turtles feeding on the seagrass beds. I also witnessed the challenges these islands are facing from coral disease to issues with coastal development. It is an exciting opportunity to work in the Dutch Caribbean, bringing expertise and funding from Blue Marine to join with the wealth of knowledge already on the islands, to work together to protect the important marine life arounds these islands.”

Tadzio Bervoets, Director of the DNCA commented: “The Dutch Caribbean consists of the Windward Islands of St. Maarten, Saba, and St. Eustatius and the Leeward Islands of Aruba, Bonaire and Curaçao. The nature of the Dutch Caribbean contains the richest biodiversity in the Kingdom of the Netherlands. The diverse ecosystems are a magnet for tourism and at the same time the most important source of income for residents of the Dutch Caribbean. Nature on the islands is unique and important but it is also fragile. The coming week we will be in The Netherlands to present a Climate Action Plan for the Dutch Caribbean to emphasize the urgent need for a climate smart future for our islands.”


Photo: Coral reefs in the Dutch Caribbean- Photo credit: Naturepics: Y.+T. Kühnast- all rights reserved

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A luxurious dive resort in the heart of Lembeh Strait. Enjoy refined services while exploring the rich waters of Indonesia.

The resort is nestled around an ocean front deck and swimming-pool (with pool-bar) which is the perfect place to enjoy a sundowner cocktail at the end of a busy day of critter-diving.

All accommodation is full board and includes three sumptuous meals a day. Breakfast and lunch are buffet meals and in the evening dining is a la carte.

Book and stay before the end of June and benefit from no single supplements in all room types!

Booking deadline: Subject to availability – book and stay before end of June 2022

Call Diverse Travel on 01473 852002 or email info@diversetravel.co.uk.

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