Shark swimming in Okinawa waters

Shark swimming in Okinawa waters

It’s winter time and dive season is still going strong in Okinawa. As the weather chills the gentle giants of the deep come to visit Okinawa and it’s the perfect time of year to dive with these amazing creatures. Reef Encounters runs both whale watching and snorkelling tours with the humpback whales as they cruise through the waters of the East China Sea to mate and give birth to a new generation of giants. This is truly one of the most awe inspiring sights you will ever witness either above or below the water.

The cool waters also bring in the schooling hammerheads to Yonaguni and swimming with schools of huge sharks numbering in the hundreds is truly not an event to be missed. This migration only happens once a year so if it’s something you want to see, don’t waste any time! The cooler waters also bring some of the larger critters in close to the islands so many new and interesting sights can be seen this time of year. Remember as the water chills that appropriate thermal protection must be worn, a 5mm suit and a hooded vest make diving the cool waters of winter comfortable for all but the most temperature adverse. If you are a die hard member of the warm water club a dry suit makes winter diving even more attractive.

This time of year is also a great time to step up to the next level of diving. Rescue classes, Intro to Tech and Tech One are just some of the classes available weekly at Reef Encounters to increase your knowledge and skill level. Also for those looking at becoming an instructor now is the perfect time to get started on your professional certs so that you will be able to teach classes as the weather warms up again in the spring. Reef Encounters will be starting it’s instructor training programs monthly all winter for those interested.

Remember with the cooler weather dive sites are less crowded and there are plenty of new critters to find. Northern swell can make many of the sites that we normally dive a bit more challenging so pay attention to weather and wave conditions when heading out to dive.