South Africa diving - overview?

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CAPTAIN SINBAD

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I am glad someone started this thread as I also have a few questions of my own. There are some knowledgeable folks responding so if someone could give this information that would be great.

1. Is the best time to dive South Africa also the best time to dive Mozambique? They both seem to be great dive destinations individually.

2. If you were booking to dive SA first and Mozambique second, which airport should you be flying out of from Mozambique? The tours I have seen, bring you back to SA just to fly you out. Would it not be cheaper to book these two destination by yourself and schedule a return from Mozambique?
 

tridacna

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Just the way we like it !

I must say that I wish there were better dive boats in SA. I’ve been diving for 41 years (I’m 58 now) and still do about 100 dives a year. The thought of being dragged onto a rubber duck is not that appealing any more. I’ve gotten used to ladders especially in choppy seas and I think that the diving model in SA limits diving to the young and brave. It’s a pity because the diving is so glorious there but the tiny numbers of divers could never justify a real dive boat. I doubt whether I’ll dive again there on future trips. It’s just too much work.

And just in case anyone is wondering, Mozambique has spectacular diving but same MO regarding entries/exits. Oftentimes worse.
 

jfe

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I am glad someone started this thread as I also have a few questions of my own. There are some knowledgeable folks responding so if someone could give this information that would be great.

1. Is the best time to dive South Africa also the best time to dive Mozambique? They both seem to be great dive destinations individually.

2. If you were booking to dive SA first and Mozambique second, which airport should you be flying out of from Mozambique? The tours I have seen, bring you back to SA just to fly you out. Would it not be cheaper to book these two destination by yourself and schedule a return from Mozambique?
Mozambique is much warmer and more humid than S.A. Summer can get uncomfortable if you are not used to the heat and humidity, IMO winter diving is better suited in Moz than in S.A.
Traveling to, and in Moz is and always have been an issue. Mozambique does not have a very good infrastructure and they on a high tide with corruption etc., especially further up north where some of the very best beaches and diving locations are e.g. Inhambane, Vilankulos and Beira district. Unfortunately you have to charter through S.A by plane to get there and be very sure the lodge you booked with receive you at the local airfield. I'm not too sure about all the international airports in Moz, but there are only about 2 or 3, one being in Maputo, the capital but you will have to get a local connection up north, I've never flown domestic there. You can travel by road, we used to but you have a lot of risk that you do not really want as a tourist. Best advice for Mozambique IMO is to arrange everything through the lodge direct, not even a 3rd party travel agent.
 

Umuntu

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I must say that I wish there were better dive boats in SA. I’ve been diving for 41 years (I’m 58 now) and still do about 100 dives a year. The thought of being dragged onto a rubber duck is not that appealing any more. I’ve gotten used to ladders especially in choppy seas and I think that the diving model in SA limits diving to the young and brave. It’s a pity because the diving is so glorious there but the tiny numbers of divers could never justify a real dive boat. I doubt whether I’ll dive again there on future trips. It’s just too much work.

The absence of small harbours near the diving locations in that part of South Africa and big surf, make smaller boats that can be beach launched necessary.
 

Umuntu

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1. Is the best time to dive South Africa also the best time to dive Mozambique? They both seem to be great dive destinations individually.

I agree with @jfe. Avoid peak summer in Moz. I would suggest the same for that part of SA. Otherwise it's warm enough all year. Look at the predicted dates for the sardine run. It brings with it the bigger sea predators.

2. If you were booking to dive SA first and Mozambique second, which airport should you be flying out of from Mozambique? The tours I have seen, bring you back to SA just to fly you out. Would it not be cheaper to book these two destination by yourself and schedule a return from Mozambique?

Maputo is the main airport. I'm aware of only LAM and TAP doing direct flights to Europe. All other airlines stop either in Joburg or elsewhere in Africa.

Other small airports near Moz coast are Inhambane, Vilanculos and Pemba. LAM and some smaller SA airlines have semi-scheduled flights to these. Not inexpensive flights.

.
 

tridacna

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The absence of small harbours near the diving locations in that part of South Africa and big surf, make smaller boats that can be beach launched necessary.

"That part of South Africa".

OK. Please tell me which dive outfit in SA uses custom dive boats and not rubber duckies?
 

Umuntu

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"That part of South Africa".

OK. Please tell me which dive outfit in SA uses custom dive boats and not rubber duckies?

Custom dive boats … what a luxury !

Even the places that do river or harbour launches use RIBs.

Maybe it's just technique …
(Judging by the accent, I could swear that lady is South African)

But seriously, it's not just South Africa. If you wanted to dive almost everywhere in Europe or Iceland, you would be in a rubber duckie.
.
 
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tridacna

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Custom dive boats … what a luxury !

Even the places that do river or harbour launches use RIBs.

Maybe it's just technique …
(Judging by the accent, I could swear that lady is South African)

But seriously, it's not just South Africa. If you wanted to dive almost everywhere in Europe or Iceland, you would be in a rubber duckie.
.

Videographer is 100% South African from either Sandton or Linksfield :wink:
 
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Wingy

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She has a great technique - add the tuomotos etc to list of RIB diving spots.

Bill - I don't mean to alarm you if you plan to add Moz - but - plague season this year may not be looking too flash lol - Travellers warned Black Death could spread on flights

Seriously, I'm only poking fun Bill...your likelihood of getting a good dose of the old Black Death is incredibly small - unless you plan on dossing down in local cheap "hotels".
 
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