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Top Ten dive sites in the Netherlands for beginner scuba divers

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Scuba diving in the Netherlands. For some a nightmare, and for others a lifelong passion. Not many people know that the Netherlands offers the most beautiful dive sites of Northern Europe. During scuba diving season people come from Belgium, Germany and even France for scuba diving holidays to Holland. However the Netherlands is also known for it’s treacherous waters, and not all dive sites are accessible to every diver. So where are the best dive sites for beginner scuba divers to explore in Holland?

The Netherlands offers both salt and fresh water scuba diving locations. In this article I’m focusing on the salt water dives sites, as they are usually the reason why scuba divers visit my country. The Netherlands has much to offer, even for beginner scuba divers. Some of my friends always talk about learning to scuba dive in Egypt or the Caribbean. I always urge them to start scuba diving here in the Netherlands. If you can dive here, you can definitely scuba dive in clear blue waters!

Scuba diving in the Netherlands can be dangerous. We have treacherous waters with strong tidal currents, cold temperatures and low visibility. An important rule for me: “Scuba dive to your level of expertise”. Meaning if you have 10 dives in your logbook, you just can’t scuba dive a location with strong tidal currents. Be careful.

Luckily the Netherlands has lake Grevelingen. Lake Grevelingen was created when the area was closed off by a dam in 1971. The lake has a total surface area of 11,000 hectares of water. The elimination of the tide created an area ideal for (beginner) scuba divers. The dam has several inlets which still keep the lake connected with the North Sea, which means the lake is still salt water and has loads of marine life.

Most of the dives sites can be found on the southern coast of lake Grevelingen, between Bruinisse and around Brouwershaven. Below is an overview of the top 10 dive sites for beginner scuba divers. I have dived these sites and I can recommend them all. Off course there are many more dive sites to to explore in the Netherlands, but below is a great central starting point:

1. Het Koepeltje

Has a great reef wall which you can dive alongside.

2. Le Serpent

The wreck itself is for more experienced scuba divers. However the two little wrecks, reef balls and platform are definitely worth checking out and are accessible for beginner divers.

3. Scharendijke

Just right of Le Serpent you can find a small bay area in which you can scuba dive.

4. De Muur

Take a ladder with you, you’ll need it to climb the wall. The dive site isn’t easy to reach, which means not many divers go here. Loads of smaller marine life (especially snails).

5. Den Osse Nieuwe Kerkweg

This is one of my favourite locations with artificial reef balls which hold a score of different marine life.

6. Den Osse Haven

It will take some time swimming out, but then you have a drop-off you can follow down. On your way back it’s scuba diving at a depth of 2 to 3 meters, but smaller marine life is abundant here.

7. Kijkuitpolder

Easy dive site with not that many divers.

8. Bommenede

This one is a bit more dangerous as you’re scuba diving below a sea lane. Remember not to make a direct ascend here!

9. Dreischor Frans Kokrif

Also one of my favourite dive sites. Easy to enter the water, and whether you go left or right there is always an abundance of marine life.

10. Dreischor Gemaal

Somewhat more difficult to enter the water, but definitely worth it! When reaching the Gemaal you can expect a beautiful view.

The dive sites above are not just for beginner scuba divers; they are just as interesting for experienced divers too. I still do most of my scuba diving at these locations. If you want to know what to expect scuba diving here, check out some of my Dutch diving adventures in this video:
[youtube id=”fqKfm4UcvB0″ width=”100%” height=”400px”]

Sebastiaan van Aard has been scuba diving since the summer of 2009, when he travelled to Dahab in Egypt and gained his PADI Open Water and Advanced Open Water certifications. He was immediately hooked by the wondrous world below the waves. Since then he has become a PADI Rescue Diver and is currently considering making the next step to Divemaster. Scuba diving is more than just a hobby to Sebastiaan; it’s become his passion – a passion he loves to share with others around him. Sebastiaan wanted to share his adventures and his views on scuba diving with the rest of the World, so in 2013 he started his own blog, ‘My Scubadiving Stories’. To read more from Sebastiaan, visit www.myscubadivingstories.com.

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Mares & SSI launch new promotion

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SSI expands financial support to SSI Members worldwide. 

2020 has been an unusual and challenging year for the entire world, especially the diving and travel industry!  To weather the crisis, SSI immediately jumped into action to help Training Centers and Professionals around the world.  

In response to COVID-19, SSI launched the No Water, No Problem Campaign, put Final Exams online, and held hundreds of Webinars to train Professionals on how to use distance learning to teach the dry Specialties online. The FREE SCIENCE OF DIVING promotion resulted in SSI Training Centers worldwide register over 50,000 FREE DIGITAL KITS, funding more than $3.5 MILLION IN RETAIL VALUE. Additionally, SSI introduced an aggressive DOUBLE PRO REWARDS incentive to help SSI Professionals compensate 2020 Renewal Fees and reduce those for 2021. Currently, the WE WANT YOU Crossover promotion aims to fill the industry need for instructors and strengthen the entire SSI Professional community.

Now, in conjunction with Mares, SSI is launching the GO DIVING – PROTECT YOURSELF. OWN EQUIPMENT Promotion, which includes a FREE SSI EQUIPMENT TECHNIQUES DIGITAL KIT. This new campaign strives to motivate divers worldwide to go diving and buy equipment. Look for more information on this next retail support campaign within the next few days.

“These are just a few examples of how we have supported and are continuing to support our Training Centers, Professionals, and divers worldwide. To provide even more economic security and help in business recovery, WE WILL NOT INCREASE PRICES FOR 2021. While travel was restricted and some key resort areas completely locked down, SSI mainly focused on supporting domestic markets with retail-driven incentives. Now, in this next re-opening phase, we need to shift gear and assist resort markets that have no local diving community and are 100% dependent on the traveling diver. Therefore, SSI will grant certain special conditions and delayed payment options to specific resort markets which have been locked down for longer than six months or suffered from closed borders,” stated Guido Waetzig, SSI CEO.

Guido Waetzig, SSI CEO, explains further, “To financially support these needed investments which directly benefit SSI Members and to protect the health of our valuable members and staff, we will forego all 2021 Trade Shows over the next 12 months. Despite international uncertainty, every time we experience one of these events, the entire SSI Network emerges stronger and more resilient. Be assured, SSI is your trustful partner within the Diving Industry!”

For more information about SSI visit their website by clicking here.

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Photo Gallery: Shark Diving in The Bahamas

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In our Gallery feature, we let the photos tell the story… Each Gallery showcases a selection of outstanding images on a chosen theme, taken by our Underwater Photography Editor Nick and Deputy Editor Caroline of Frogfish Photography. This time they look at Shark Diving in The Bahamas.


The Bahamas offers some of the very finest shark diving experiences in the world. The islands have protected sharks in their waters creating one of the first Shark Sanctuaries in the world. Several species of shark can be seen and photographed, with each island offering a different type of shark diving, making this destination the perfect place for a multi-island, multi-shark trip of a lifetime.

Great Hammerhead Shark diving in Bimini

Bull Sharks in Bimini

Tiger Shark off Grand Bahama

Oceanic Whitetip Shark off Cat Island

Nurse Shark off Abaco

Caribbean Reef Sharks off New Providence

Lemon Sharks off Grand Bahama

For more images from The Bahamas and around the world, visit the Frogfish Photography website by clicking here.

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