Learn to dive in Ithica, Greece
Description of Learn to dive in Ithica, Greece
This trip can be tailor made throughout the year to suit your requirements
As the pioneers of responsible tourism, we've screened this (and every) holiday so that you can travel knowing it will help support the places and people that you visit, and the planet. Read how below.
PlanetThe area where Ithaca is located is the home of a group of Mediterranean Monk Seals. This species of seal is highly endangered and there are only 200 to 300 individuals in the world. More than half of these are in Greece. The seals face many different threats coming from tourism, pollution and fishing nets. Our divers regularly volunteer their services and equipment to different conservation organisations that are monitoring and studying the seals. For example, some activities might entail changing cameras in caves which are only accessible through underwater tunnels.
Additionally, the divers clean the sea floor from plastics and rubbish on an on-going basis. In 2018 they carried out the clean up of one of the most important anchoring bays in the island. They also lead remote beach clean ups for which they use the centre's rib. There is a collection box at base camp for people wanting to make donations towards beach clean-ups.
Additionally, the centre participates on a volunteer basis on the island's Tourist Board. This is an important forum to bring up issues that are key to ensuring a sustainable future for the island. For example, the issue of drinkable water and the use of plastic bottles has been highlighted and the local government is now lobbying to get funding to address this problem.
PeopleThe centre works closely with the coastguards on a volunteer basis during emergency situations that require search & rescue. They provide local knowledge above and below water, fast boats and the personal skills of the people who work there.
As the island is small, there are not many people that have the knowledge, skills and experience that our divers can bring. Therefore, they are key in delivering an emergency service. They do not only contribute to rescue efforts in Ithaca but also when help is required in some of the neighbouring islands.
Our trips are organised in conjunction with local businesses. We work with a range of businesses to support the economy of the island:
- We use family hotels that accommodate a small number of guests
- Cooperate with the outdoor companies and use their transfers and guides. We also have a started a training program for young people who want to become kayak guides working closely with the centre. Our first graduate got his qualifications in early November 2018. We aim to keep the program rolling with the support of centre. Therefore, next summer you might meet new trainees paddling with us.
- We shop local for all our needs. Most of our vegetables, we get from the local farmer that brings his truck to the main square most days. When we find it, we use olive oil produced in the island and local olives too.
- We have a close relationship with the water taxi, and we hire their services to plan day trips and also pick up large groups from the port of the neighbouring island.
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