Sculpture parks are opening the ocean up for a different kind of art lover: scuba divers. The trend of underwater museums has reached the shores of France, with plans to open not one but three aquatic museums this fall.Continue reading
In 2018, a typhoon destroyed nearly 80% of the corals in Hoi Ha Wan bay off Hong Kong’s Sai Kung peninsula. The strongest-known storm the city has ever experienced left behind broken coral skeletons and few surviving species. It will most likely take decades for the corals to regrow to their former state, but efforts are made to help them become self-sustaining.Continue reading
Fabien Cousteau, an oceanographic researcher and grandson of renowned conservationist and innovator Jacques Cousteau, recently announced his ambitious project called Proteus, after the shape-shifting Greek god whom Homer calls the “Old Man of the Sea.” The state-of-the-art research lab is expected to give rise to scientific breakthroughs not only in the field of ocean conservation but also in areas such as sustainable energy, medical and drug development, genetics, and food cultivation.Continue reading
Can humans creatively influence climate change? With coral reefs in decline due to climate change, ocean acidification, pollution, run-off, development, overfishing, and disease, it’s our duty to find effective solutions to these pressing issues. Socio-ecological artist Colleen Flanigan has come up with a unique way to raise the general population’s awareness about environmental matters.Continue reading
An international, multidisciplinary team of marine scientists has identified 30 new species of marine invertebrates in the Galapagos waters, the archipelago’s national park authorities recently announced. This discovery includes eleven species of sponges, ten of bamboo corals, four of squat lobsters, three of octocorals, one of giant cup coral, and one of brittle starfish. The exploration also unveiled a series of underwater communities such as coral gardens, cold-water coral colonies, and crystal sponge gardens.Continue reading
Have you ever considered that the sunscreen you wear may negatively impact coral reefs and wildlife? Not all sunscreens are made the same, but the vast majority do contain harmful UV-blocking chemicals that researchers have deemed harmful to aquatic life. Let’s dive into what reef-safe sunscreen means and what ingredients you should steer clear of to protect the environment.Continue reading
The Museum of Underwater Art (MOUA) finally opened on August 2 after months of delay caused by the COVID-19 pandemic. Australia’s first underwater museum is located on the ocean floor of the Great Barrier Reef Marine Park’s John Brewer Reef, about two hours off the coast of Townsville. Two installations are currently open to visitors: Coral Greenhouse and Ocean Siren.Continue reading
Great news for European divers: starting Monday, August 3, an underwater archaeological museum located near the islet of Peristera, in the Aegean Sea, will be open to recreational scuba divers.
Dubbed “the Parthenon of shipwrecks,” this unique dive site contains the wreck of a 5th century BC vessel that carried a cargo of hundreds of amphorae of wine. The wine most likely came from Peparithos (today’s Skopelos) and Mendi (ancient city of Halkidiki), two areas renowned for their quality wine. It is believed that the large merchant ship, probably Athenian, may have sunk due to bad weather around 425 BC.
The wreck lies in 21-28 meters (69-92 feet) of water with over 3,000 amphorae scattered all over the area. The amphorae had been used by the ancient Greeks to transport wine. A local fisherman from the nearby Alonissos Island discovered the ancient containers in 1985. Much to everyone’s surprise, most of them are still well-preserved.
“The amphorae are revealing the form of the ancient ship. This has been a big ship”, says Pari Kalamara, director of the Ephorate of Underwater Antiquities.
The impressive number of amphorae, the excellent condition of the shipwreck, and the rich waters located within the protected area of the National Marine Park Alonissos, in the Northern Sporades, make the ancient shipwreck of Peristera a wonderful destination for experienced scuba divers.
Peristera Island’s underwater archeological museum will be open until October 2. Diving is possible through tours from licensed dive operators. But both divers and non-divers can learn more about Peristera and its wreck by taking the virtual reality tour offered by the information center in the main town of Alonissos.
As part of the local authorities’ plan to create an attractive diving park for traveling scuba divers, several other underwater archaeological sites in various parts of Greece are set to open this year.
Image Source: AP Photo/Elena Becatoros
Most of us dive almost exclusively in marine environments, but there are plenty of divers living in landlocked countries where freshwater diving is the only option. Some may even prefer diving in freshwater. We thought we’d look into the differences between saltwater and freshwater diving to see just how much each factor impacts our dives.Continue reading
The seafloor is a treasure trove of cultural heritage. From pirate towns to ancient villages that go back to the Neolithic period, we are taking a journey through the most fascinating underwater archaeological sites on Earth. A few of them you can even dive!Continue reading