September 2016 EXPLORING THE GREAT BARRIER REEF
Located off the coast of Queensland in north eastern Australia, the Great Barrier Reef is the largest living thing on Earth, it is even visible from outer space! The 2,300km-long ecosystem comprises thousands of reefs and hundreds of islands made of over 600 types of hard and soft coral. The area is home to countless species of colourful fish, molluscs and starfish, plus turtles, dolphins and even sharks!
We knew the best way to explore this amazing wonder of the world was to hop on a boat and go diving… so off we went out to sea! As I sat on the upper deck of our beautiful boat absorbing the warm rays of sunshine, I admired the glittering turquoise ocean all around us!
A quick briefing, and an underwater sign language lesson so that we would be able to communicate during the dive– we were ready to hit the water! I barely contained my excitement! The crew helped us get ready making sure we had enough oxygen, de-mister on our masks and triple checked we understood how to use the equipment!
We then jumped in and after a few safety check we swam down… and down… and down until we were 10 metres under and I felt like a fish!There were so many colourful species all around us I barely knew where to look, we saw fish in every shape, size and colour. We swam over clams and watched their reaction (they close up), touched the coral that was permitted (our instructor pointed them out) and we were even lucky enough to see turtles!
Genuinely it was one of the best experiences of my entire life! If you’re feeling a little nervous about the breathing just remember to stay calm and it will be so much easier! Don’t be afraid… its well worth it! You can do it! It is most certainly a day I will remember for the rest of my life! What an amazing experience!button