What is your favorite travel destination for u/w photography

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Postby sharkman » Mon May 10, 2010 5:51 pm

What is your favorite travel destination for underwater photography and why?
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Postby scottg » Tue May 11, 2010 2:32 pm

Bali is one of several favorites.

Great culture, good food, macro & wide-angle photo ops, and affordable.

btw, "Sharkman" is Ridlon Kiphart, our beloved travel editor. Be nice to him :)


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Postby tswinner » Tue May 11, 2010 3:08 pm

Wow! I've got a lot of favorite destinations. I think the the Solomon islands are definitely one of my top destinations.
Lots of diversity and culture.

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Postby alaity47 » Tue May 11, 2010 3:39 pm

I'm heading to a few spots in the south pacific this summer, so my answer may change... ;) But at the moment, Hawaii is my favorite. I shoot video, and I find that there's just always lots of interesting stuff going on underwater there.

Not the most photogenic backgrounds for photography, though!

Topside is fantastic as well - I'd pretty much move there tomorrow if I could just talk my husband into it.

Of course, who needs to travel when we've got kelp forests right here? :)
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Postby dugong » Wed May 12, 2010 2:29 am

Hey Todd

just saw that you mentioned the Solomon Islands. I´m going there next month for an extended holiday. Where did you go?
I´ve only just started dabbling in underwater photography, the main reason being that I couldn`t possibly go to a place like the solomons and only take pictures ABOVE the water! That would be a SIN!
I`ll be kayaking that´s why I´m keeping my gear light, went for the Canon S90 underwater, am a Nikon man above water!

cheers
Alex
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Postby critter-hunter » Wed May 12, 2010 4:08 am

Gents:

Solomon Islands is a fantastic dive destination, I spent 2 weeks aboard the Bilikiki and averaged 4 dives per day with an occasional night dive. You can visit dive sites not possible from a land based operation out of Guadalcanal. Giant fish swarms of barracuda and other large species are everywhere because only the local villagers live near these sites. The village chief owns the reef and we had to pay a small fee to dive most locations, no commercial fishing is allowed to insure enough food for the locals.

Flying there is not direct, so plan on Fiji or Brisbane as a good lay over for a couple days to adjust to the time change. If you not dived in Fiji and have the time, add a week and go to Taveuni island. The Somosomo strait and The Great White wall is spectacular.

If your a military history buff, the WWII museum at Guadalcanal is worth the time, not far from the airport. An unusual above water shot are the black children with blonde hair. Don't know that I've ever seen this outside the Solomon islands. I used a Nikon D300 both above and below water. You can see some examples at my website. www.critter-hunter.smugmug.com
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Postby dugong » Wed May 12, 2010 5:39 am

beautiful shots on your site, Mr. Critter!
I'd have loved to use my D300 or D700 underwater in the Solomons but the required housing and strobes would probably sink my kayak. Space is the problem for me as I'll be living off my kayak for a couple of months at least. The Canon S90 was the compromise solution...
I'm hoping for some decent shots as the S90 was a recommendation from an assortment of hardcore underwater photographers!

cheers
Alex
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Postby highdesert » Wed May 12, 2010 8:08 am

Indonesia! Anywhere Indonesia, I love it all. Best people, best food, best UW scenery and critters. Going back in October for Indo trip #4!
... when you finally see what goes on underwater, you realize that you've been missing the whole point of the ocean. Staying on the surface all the time is like going to the circus and staring at the outside of the tent. "
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Postby tswinner » Wed May 12, 2010 9:52 am

Hey Alex,

That sounds like an awesome trip. I've been there a few time always on the Bilikiki.
Like Mr. Critter said lots to see! I think you'll come back with some unique photos from a kayak trip.

Todd
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Postby Kevin Lee » Wed May 12, 2010 10:44 am

Like Todd, it's tough to zero in on any "favorite" dive destination since there are so many. Numerous factors come into play, including cost, travel, dive conditions, dive crew, biodiversity, adventure, service, food and diver's photo interests (mine being opisthobranchs & macro). Certainly, the Antarctic was a highlight due to the "adventure" factor (ref: http://www.uwphotographyguide.com/antarctica-diving). But, in general, I rank Anilao, Philippines at the top of the list for most bang for the buck, ease to reach and critters off the charts.
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