Michael D

United Kingdom | July 2016

Within 5 mins of touching down at the tiny Ihambane airport, all the anxieties of bringing my children on a marine conservation project in Mozambique had melted away.

It hadn’t been an easy lead up.  We made the decision to get our PADI open water in London before we left.  After a disastrous pool session and two days at a no-visibility gravel pit near Heathrow, my 14 year old daughter decided she hated diving.  No worries, we were assured, it was OK for her to just snorkel. 

Next, friends and colleagues became more incredulous as I first explained where we were going - ‘Is it safe?’, what we were doing - ‘Isn’t diving with sharks dangerous?’ and that to get there we needed to travel with an airline banned from EU airspace - ‘Are you mad?’.  I stuck to my guns, explaining that I’d done my research and we were more likely to drown in a puddle than be eaten by sharks, and the airline, although chaotic, appeared to have a good safety record.  Still, their misgivings did give me many sleepless nights and, when finally setting off for Joburg, we were denied boarding due to the new SA border rules regarding children, I was convinced something was telling me not to go! 

Well, we went anyway and, I can honestly say it was one of the best decisions I’ve ever made.  The experience was awesome, from the people we met, the projects we were involved in and the amazing marine life we were privileged to share. 

While diving and snorkeling, we saw whale sharks, giant mantas, sharks, turtles and stingrays and many other marine creatures.  As part of the project’s community projects we collected rubbish from the beach and played games to teach the local school children about conserving the ocean. 

For me, what made this project really special was the warmth, generosity and enthusiasm of everyone involved. 

As for my daughter, inspired by the amazing dive school, she not only finished the PADI open water but gained her PADI advanced too and is hoping to go back someday to do her dive master. 

Don’t worry about what could go wrong, just do it!

Back to testimonials

Stay Informed

Sign up for our newsletter to receive the latest news.