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Monday, 24 July 2017

Technical Diving on the Zenobia

Saturday, 1 July 2017

Artificial Reefs in Protaras, Cyprus

An Artificial Reef is a man made underwater structure, typically built to promote marine life in areas with a generally featureless bottom in the hope of attracting tourism and enhancing the growth of marine life.

For years, governments around the world, have been purposely sinking outdated or damaged vessels such as ships, cars, tanks, and various other structures i.e nets, concrete blocks, boulders etc.

As part of an ongoing programme to promote dive tourism in Cyprus, the CTO (Cyprus tourist organisation)  and other authorities are purposefully sinking wrecks and artificial reefs which are available for us to dive on.

1.  Nemesis III

The engine blocks and pipes inside the Nemesis III wreck in Protaras, Cyprus
The Nemesis III, in its past life was a bottom trawler ( a fishing boat to you and me) which operated in the Mediterranean and Libyan seas.

It was sunk in 2013. The vessel sits in 24 meters of water just off the Golden Coast, located in Protaras.

Since the boat sank, it has attracted lots of marine life and still continues to grow and develop four years down the line.

It is home to Amberjacks, nudibranchs, Damsels, various types of wrasse, sea bream and Grouper. Rays, Turtles and even Dolphins have been spotted in the vicinity of the wreck!

This is a fantastic wreck to dive, and is definitely one of our favourites here at Scuba Tech.

2. The Liberty 

Diver on the Liberty wreck in Cyprus
The Liberty wreck sits very very close to the Nemesis wreck. This means we can dive both wrecks in one dive depending on how good you are on air, as it takes roughly five minutes to swim between the two.

Like the Nemesis, the Liberty was also purposefully sunk but a few years earlier in 2009.

It is a small Russian Cargo ship and lies in 27 meters of water. The biodiversity on the Liberty has taken slightly longer to develop than the Nemesis, however it really is starting to boom! The wreck is now home to various species such as Anemones, Grouper, Sponges and Nudibranchs to name a few.

3. Artificial Reefs - Golden Coast

The Artificial Reefs in Protaras is the newest structure to promote the growth of fish species and to create a special diving reserve in the area. It comprises of nets, boulders, concrete blocks and piping in order to do so.

Since the reef's formation in 2015, the amount of marine life already in the area is staggering. It is a haven for fish life and hopefully it will continue to grow and develop!

Between each structure, a line has been put in place which makes it very easy to navigate around the site. The Reefs start at 25m and finishes up at 18m. The reefs are very close in proximity to the Nemesis and Liberty wrecks.
The kyrenia wreck in Agia Napa, Cyprus on her sandy bed
4. The Kyrenia - Ayia Napa. 

The Kyrenia is the most recent wreck to be sunk in the Ayia Napa area.

It used to be a motorised patrol boat which, before it sank, used to be equipped with a front mounted machine gun. However this was stripped and cleaned of its guns before the boat went down.

She sits in 24m of water.

5. Lady Thetis and The Costandis 

These two wrecks are located in Limassol, around an hour and a half drive away from Protaras. Nevertheless they are wicked wrecks.

Both lie in a regulated no fishing zone, 200m apart from one another.

The Costandis used to be an old fishing vessel and she sits in 25m of water. This wreck offers a large engine room which is still very much intact and easy to penetrate.

The wreck is home to huge Grouper, shoals of Fish, Amberjack amongst many others.

The Lady Thetis is a retired party boat and was sunk in 2014. She lies in 18m of water.

The boat has three levels offering plenty of exploration, you can even sit at the tables on the upper deck.

Both wrecks are home to lots of marine life and it is still continuing to grow!

What do you think?

Have you dived these artificial reefs that have been sunk by the Cyprus Government to promote scuba diving in the area? What did you think of them?

Do you like the idea of artificial reefs purposefully sunk or do you prefer your wrecks to have gone down naturally?

Join the chat and let us know

Sunday, 11 June 2017

Why do I dive a Twinset?

I first tried a twinset in my first year at Scuba Tech when I was a Divemaster Trainee. 

I did a discover twinset dive with my instructor, Peter Crane. I went on to complete my PADI Tec 40 and 45 in the last couple of years, both courses were conducted with a twinset. Since then I haven’t looked back!

Diver using DSMB while in twinset configuration

A twinset is two scuba tanks manifolded together, with an isolator in the middle of the two valves.
The misconception with twinsets is that they are only reserved for technical diving and exploration. This is wrong; anybody can use a twinset with the right training, whether you are recreationally or technically minded in diving.

The two main reasons for using a twinset are...

One, redundancy – having that extra peace of mind and security underwater as you have two tanks instead of one.

Two, to extend your bottom time. Having two tanks is a great way of increasing your gas supply.

My twinset, without a doubt, is my favourite way to dive. 

I love the balance underwater and the stability of two tanks on your back instead of one. When weighted correctly, this is a very comfortable way of diving as well as a simple, streamlined set-up. 

However, they are very heavy, and do take some getting used to at first.

Furthermore, I want to be self sufficient underwater, I know I will never dive solo and that I will always have a buddy there to help me. However, if it ever comes down to a situation when my gas supply is compromised, I want to be able to have control and to be able to rectify the issue.
Diving a twinset can help me do this, as I can manipulate the valves and breathe off independent regulators.

This is what is known as a shut down – a way to close the valves in order to save your back gas in the event of an emergency.

Image may contain: one or more people and outdoorIf you do not know how to work the twinset properly and be able to perform these skills and drills, the twinset will only give you false security. It is so important to learn how to dive a twinset properly in order to receive the benefits!

Once you make the decision to dive a twinset, you know you are committed to diving as it is an expensive investment; you now need two of everything! 

I feel it is an excellent transition in my diving career as I grow as a diver as well as a professional. It may be expensive in the short term but it is worth it in the long run! 

A twinset brings comfort, control and flexibility in your diving whether you are in the shallows one day, or conducting a tech dive another. 

Sunday, 4 June 2017

Zenobia- Technical Diving and Grouper

The Zenobia wreck in Cyprus is one of the best wrecks to dive in the world.

Sank in 1980, she is coming close to 37 years underwater, lying at a depth of 42m to the seabed.

This video is from Easter when we did a Technical Dive with Norbert. Unfortunately, our camera lady was diving recreationally but it did mean we got some great shots of the grouper that play around the outside.

Friday, 26 May 2017

Try Scuba Diving in Cyprus - How to guide

diver with instructor for first try dive in cyprus

We all had to start somewhere with our Scuba Diving adventures and for many people, the biggest difficulty is knowing where to begin.

How can you Try Scuba Diving for the very first time?

The first step when scuba diving is to make sure you are fit and healthy. Now, this doesn't mean that you have to be able to run marathons but there are certain health conditions that would require you to see a doctor before you can take part in scuba diving. You can access a copy of the Medical Questionnaire for diving here.

Secondly, you need to find a reputable Diving Instructor or Dive Centre that will take you and do the experience properly. You can find them through friend recommendations and online reviews.

At Scuba Tech, we are all qualified PADI diving instructors and we do not operate in big groups, so your diving experience will be a maximum of 2 students to each instructor in the water. This guarantees you will have the full attention of the instructor at all times throughout the dive and you can feel safe in the knowledge that your safety and enjoyment is paramount.

What does the Try Dive involve?

The Discover Scuba Dive is a three part experience where someone with absolutely no prior experience or qualifications can see the underwater world first hand.

diving instructor teaching student diving in classroom
Part one will teach you the basic concepts of scuba diving; how our bodies deal with going underwater and how to look after ourselves down there. We also discuss the equipment that we will use and the various controls and also how to communicate with the instructor, since you will not be able to talk down there.

This is just a short briefing but is highly important to make sure you enjoy yourselves.

Part two comes after you have been kitted out with the properly fitted diving equipment and we head down to the local dive site, Green Bay.

During Part 2, you will be in a confined water area of the Bay with swimming pool like conditions. 

Here you get used to breathing underwater and the feeling of weightlessness that you have when scuba diving. You will also practice a number of diving skills that you may or may not need during your dive such as; taking out and replacing the regulator (what you breathe from) and clearing water out of the mask.

beginner diver practices equalising ears in the blue sea

Part three is the actual diving part when you move into Open Water and get to really see what scuba diving is all about.

Your instructor will take you out to Fish Rock to see all the fish that gather in this area. The SeaBream, Damsel Fish and Wrasse will gather around to look at this strange bubble blowing creature in their midst and you will be amazed at the array of colours surrounding you.

fish surround diver as he looks at underwater statues on first dive
If you are comfortable, your instructor may then take you deeper to a maximum of 9 metres, where you will find our very own "Atlantis Statues". These are great for playing and posing on and if you have opted to have our Divemaster come with you to take photos, these provide an amazing photo opportunity.

The depth increase is very gradual and there is always a bottom underneath you, so you only go as deep as you are comfortable going. Your instructor will be there at every step of the way to hold your hand (literally, if needed) and make sure your experience is amazing.


I feel I should warn you though, bubble blowing is addictive and once you start, it is difficult to stop.

Saying that, Scuba Diving is a hobby that you can enjoy for a whole lifetime with so many places to see and so many different branches available. You can dive wrecks or reefs. You may enjoy Underwater Photography or making Underwater Movies.

Diving has something to offer everyone but the first step is to give it a try. Now you know the steps, it is as easy as 1,2,3.

Safe Diving everyone!!

Sunday, 14 May 2017


In my first season at Scuba Tech as a Divemaster trainee, I watched my instructor, complete his Tech 1 course with GUE. For those of you that haven’t heard of GUE, it is a diving organisation, and it stands for Global Underwater Explorers. GUE trains its divers to the highest standards in proficiency underwater, and allows divers to be the best they possibly can be under expert instruction. 

Image may contain: 2 people, people standing, ocean and outdoorThis is what I saw two years ago, when Rich Walker (Technical Director of GUE and instructor) came to Cyprus. Watching the Tech 1 candidates complete skills and drills whilst completely motionless in the water was something I aspired to be able to do. 

To have that level of control and skill would be awesome. So naturally the first step for me is GUE fundamentals otherwise known as fundies, which provides the foundation for all other courses such as the caving or technical programmes within GUE.

I want to become the best possible diver I can be, in order to be the best instructor I can be. Working as a Divemaster already, this is perhaps my biggest reason for signing up for fundies. I can then apply what I learn to the everyday, when I am in the water with customers. 

Furthermore it also is a new challenge for me.  I never want to stop learning and I want to keep trying new experiences. This will then (hopefully) maximise my competence and confidence underwater.

Image may contain: swimming and outdoorThe course itself, is spread over four days, and has a mixture of classroom and in water practice. It focuses on the fundamental skills of diving including trim and buoyancy, rescue skills, gas management, equipment configuration, decompression theory and nitrox.

Unlike some other courses, GUE fundamentals has various outcomes – Fail, provisional pass, recreational pass, or a technical pass - the highest pass rating. 

The course is programmed to help those advance their basic skills, and to provide divers that have trained with other organisations such as PADI, TDI and BSAC with a gateway into GUE training. 

It is aimed at all levels of diver, for example, I have been diving for 7 years this year, I am a Divemaster and also a tech diver, yet I could be on the course with someone who has just started diving. 

It is designed to “cultivate the essentials skills required by all irrespective of level or environment” It looks at your dive skills and improves them to a much higher level whilst also having lots of fun!

Image may contain: one or more people and outdoor

                                                                  Bring on October!