Learn scuba diving in Greece
Description of Learn scuba diving in 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. Their main threat is human holiday activities and fishing, specially 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.
Our divers, together with others from the island, clean the sea floor from plastics and rubbish on an on-going basis and in 2018 they carried out the clean of one of the most important and visited harbours 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 supporting the emergency services. They do not only contribute to rescue efforts in Ithaca but also when help is required in some of the neighbouring islands.
Our trips also contribute to the economy of the island. We use local guides, including the local historian who does a beautiful discovery walk of Ithaca's Homeric past, we eat in small local restaurants, we shop from the village bakery and greengrocer, we use the taxi drivers in the village and of course, we stay in locally run family hotels. The island has resisted large scale developments which always threatens its wilder areas. A company behind a new development proposal continues in its efforts to obtain permission to build a large self-contained complex which the islanders feel would change the character of their island and have repeatedly refused permission. So it is very important that we support everyone and distribute our purchases across the island's businesses. That way most islanders share on the benefits that low impact tourism can bring and keep their island as they like it.
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