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Scuba diving in Malta and Gozo- any recomendations?

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Scuba diving in Malta and Gozo- any recomendations?

Hello

We have done a bit of scuba in the past (got PADI open water and have about 50 dives, so not really loads) but some people have said that Malta is really good for diving.

We could go there in April 2009 and I would be interested in anybody's experiences/ details of reputable dive schools etc. We could go on a package trip from the uk, or try to go on an accomodation and diving package ( and just buy the flights to Malta)

Can anyone offer opinions or suggestions- many thnaks!

Sandhurst Berks
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1. Re: Scuba diving in Malta and Gozo- any recomendations?

How long's a piece of string?

Malta and Gozo are probably only second to the Red Sea resorts this side of the pond or equator.

My recommendation is to look at a B&B or self catering option. The other thing is rather than have all of you diving pre-determined have something in mind then shop around once there. There are about 75 dive operations in Malta and Gozo but remember they all have one thing in mind.. get the tourist bucks in. (PADI = Put Another Dollar In:-))

I have lots of operators in mind where you can go and just dive. It really depends on which type of diving experience you want from your trip. The only big glitch I see for you is that most of Maltas dives are classed as "deep" so despite your experience as an Open Water Diver you are still stuck at about 15mtrs. I think that you should seriously consider going for an Advanced Open Water deal that will open up most of the islands for you without obviously the tech stuff. The key for this course is that most of the stuff you do is dive with study as a background unlike the OWD which seems to be just study. The difference here is I only recommend it and there are still other dives to keep you in your experience range.

Whatever you decide feel free to give us a shout and I'll try to help.

You can also shop around yourself by looking at: http://www.dogsbreathdivers.com/

This site is totally independent and gives operators site references where you can also look and pick for yourself.

uk
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2. Re: Scuba diving in Malta and Gozo- any recomendations?

Hi Scubapro 1957

many thanks for your reply, that's great. We are going to be completing our acdvanced open water this summer in Margarita so we should be able to do the deeper dives provided all goes well.

Regarding malta and Gozo, is there a significant difference in the diving on the north or south of the island?

Also, in your experience, would October or Feb be a better time to visit. I think will will arrange our own flights from London ((we live in Poole) and arrange our accommodation ourself.

I would be grateful if you can help with these questions,

with appreciation

nic

Sandhurst Berks
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3. Re: Scuba diving in Malta and Gozo- any recomendations?

Hi, there's no real significance in quality between the North and South although there are seemingly more "common" dive sites in the North with good easy access to even more sites in Gozo and Comino. Malta however, is nonetheless a small island which does allow divers to move to the lee on the windier days so always still have places to dive with the minimum adjustment.

As for choices of month to go I would definitely say October is better as the sea is still nice and warm. Expect 25-30mtrs vis in October. You only get better vis in April/May in the colder water when there are less thermoclines.

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4. Re: Scuba diving in Malta and Gozo- any recomendations?

I did my PADI in Malta two years ago, with an instructor called Antonio Anastasi who was very good, and reasonably priced.

The dive school is called AquaWorld, and they're on the seafront in/near Sliema.

West Yorkshire
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5. Re: Scuba diving in Malta and Gozo- any recomendations?

Have been diving Malta for more than 20 years now and would agree with most of what Scubapro says although I am not quite as cynical regarding the diving schools. They are all well regulated in my experience but of course are only as good as their worst Instructor and they are not charitable institutions. You say you are doing the AOW which will entitle you to hire your own gear and dive independently which is what I now always do. Not only is it much cheaper but you get to do what you want to do at your own pace and as the majority of the recreational diving is shore diving all you need to hire is a car/jeep which is relatively cheap on Malta. I am a budget diver and base myself at Palm Court Hotel, Qawra and always book a couple of holidays ahead whilst I am there.

I spend two separate months each year Mar/April and Nov/Dec time on the Island and have a number of local buddies but if you ever need someone to dive with at those times drop me a line. Also if you wish I will send you a copy of 'The Bear Necessities' Scuba Slideshow which is a talking slideshow of underwater shots mainly on Malta although some back in the UK :-

eric.clarke@ntlworld.com

Fiona you were indeed fortunate to dive with Antonio who is certainly one of the best Scuba Instructors on the Island - sadly his enterprise folded and he is now back working for Maltaqua at St Pauls Bay but he still has his sense of humour.

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6. Re: Scuba diving in Malta and Gozo- any recomendations?

This is really useful stuff! I am thinking of going to Malta too. What thickness wetsuit would you recommend for diving in March/early April?

Thanks!

Sandhurst Berks
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7. Re: Scuba diving in Malta and Gozo- any recomendations?

5mm at least.

Many do use semis or drys. I sometimes dive in a 3mm but tend to use most of my air entering the water!

It is warmer in the sea so far this year which is hot by comparison to home but as soon as your body has climatised to the few extra degrees air temp in Malta it'll feel cold enough once you get in.

Vis is likely to be good too.

England
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8. Re: Scuba diving in Malta and Gozo- any recomendations?

Thanks ScubaPro

My main experience of diving has been in St Lucia. 12 resort dives, Padi Open Water and then around 25 dives since qualifying so I am definitely spoilt! I might look at Malta and Gozo for September when the water is a bit warmer. I note that Tony Backhurst and ScubaClass in Surrey offer dive trips there so will look into that.

Happy Diving!

SLE

Sandhurst Berks
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9. Re: Scuba diving in Malta and Gozo- any recomendations?

Tony Backhurst trips are good but I think moreso for the likes of liveaboards and exotic type trips.

It is very easy to pick and choose local Maltese operators rather than have a fixed itinerary. This also gives you the option to do the dives you want rather than the package.

September is a good time as the main dive locations aren't so busy which makes easier parking while still enjoying good weather and temperatures.

If you are interested in a DIY holiday you don't need to leave it all to chance. Look at dogsbreathdivers website for a variety that you can look up on prior to your visit.

As said before and AOW certificate is really beneficial for Maltese waters and you'll find it as easy going to achieve as you would in St Lucia.

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10. Re: Scuba diving in Malta and Gozo- any recomendations?

As Scubapro says the water temp is up this year and reported at 16C - I dive back in the UK and coldest I tackle is around 8C in my drysuit.

My 7mm semi lives on the Island in a garage in Zebbug and I will be using that in March/April. A lot depends on how long you will be in the water and what you will be doing. We normally dive for at least an hour and if I am taking photos I am beginning to get cold even with the 7mm on. The only time I use my 5mm wetsuit is in November when the temperature is around 20C.