Monday, September 26, 2011

Beginner’s Guide to Underwater Photography

The underwater world is full of fascinating creatures, colours and textures that when captured on camera can produce some of the most striking images you are likely to see. Whether you are into scuba diving, snorkelling, swimming or surfing, there is no reason why you can’t share your experiences with admiring friends. Digital cameras make it a whole lot easier to get great images under the waves, so here’s a few tips to help even novice photographers snap some striking photos.

Camera Housing

The right gear
The best news is you don’t have to buy a new camera, or even break to the bank, to get into underwater photography. Waterproof plastic housings are available for a wide range of point-and-shoot cameras that most importantly keep the water out but still allow you to use most of the camera’s functionality, flash included. When choosing housings, make sure it is completely compatible with your camera, is watertight and still allows you to comfortably use it. The price will depend on your camera type and model, but as a guide, housings for Canon cameras can range from $65 to $375. If you really want to get serious there are specialised underwater cameras and you can expect to pay anywhere from a few hundred dollars into the thousands. Whether it’s a housing or camera you buy, make sure you check how much water pressure they can handle, which is usually referred to in terms of depth.

Tuesday, September 20, 2011

Canyoning is a great adventure sport

If you fancy trying something a bit different this year and you're a fan of adventure sports, canyoning could well be a good option.

It's kind of a combination between a water and rock activity and it's one of the most high-adrenaline sports going.

Popular in both the UK and the US – where it's known as canyoneering, the sport takes place in the water, as well as on land. The term can encompass everything from gorge walks or scrambles to river running – it's a fairly wide-ranging name to use for the adventure sport.

Canyoning is always a guide-led activity in the UK, with participants taken down the side of a steep-sided gorge in various different ways. To stay dry, people will definitely need to have mens waterproof jackets and waterproof trousers to hand, as they'll be sliding and swimming down rapids, among other things.

It's a really fast-moving sport, with you having to tackle some difficult chutes and waves and even jump down some waterfalls in some cases!

Definitely not for the faint-hearted, canyoning definitely requires participants to have a high level of health in order to take part. You'll be doing a fair amount of strenuous activity, so you need to be able to trek and ideally swim, although people are given buoyancy aids so non-swimmers are allowed to participate.

A session will usually last around three to five hours, so you'll need to make sure you keep your energy levels up throughout the day. It's deemed to be a full-day activity, due to its intense physical demands, so you should only really plan to do it on the same weekend as other events if you've got enough free time.

You're bound to have plenty of fun on a canyoning trip if you love adventure sports, so what are you waiting for? Get planning now!

Saturday, September 10, 2011

5 Great Cities to Experience from the Water

What is it that makes a great city? Is it the architecture? The people? The size? There are so many elements that go into making a city great, but when a city is set near water, it definitely goes up in people’s esteem. Think of London and the Thames, or Paris and the Seine, or Venice with its canals. Yes, it’s certain that major cities take a lot of personality from the water that surrounds them, and for many, experiencing the city from a boat on the water can be an experience like no other.

Sydney Harbour
Photo: express000

Whether you’re checking out Sydney from the comfort of a Sydney Harbour cruise or gazing back at Monaco City from the deck of a yacht, the water makes an interesting change of pace in terms of perspective. Here, we profile five great cities, best experienced from the water.

Saturday, September 3, 2011

5 Adventure Water Sports to Try Before You Die

Are you the kind of person who doesn’t consider it a holiday unless you’ve back-flipped off something? Skydived? Bungee-Jumped? For an increasing number of travellers, extreme sports are making up a big part of the experience of being abroad. While your travel insurance company might not be too please about you getting up to crazy shenanigans abroad, there are certainly a growing number of companies creating equipment for you to do just that! Here are 5 adventure water-sports that adrenalin-junkies must try!

Kite Boarding
Photo: tibchris

Kite Boarding
Holding onto massive kite (kind of like the type that sits above a paraglide) and strapped into a wakeboard/surfboard, you’ll take surfing to a whole new level as you harness the awesome power of the wind to reach heights you never dreamed possible. The exhilaration and challenge of navigating waves as well as the wind is like a marriage between sailing and surfing. We love it, and we’re sure you will too!