Namena – Part 2

After spending the first hours snorkeling around the anchorage, on the second day we sailed towards the outer reef where the ‘proper’ dive spots are to be found. We take Jason’s Yacht and tow two dingies in the back. Not far from the northern entrance to the reef we put the SY Bodhran on a mooring and use the dinghies to explore the reef.

A turtle in the anchorageBertel, me and Melaniea little GrouperUnicornfish

The sea is calm and the visibility under water quite good. Sitting in the dinghy we can make out the dive spots and decide to go for a quick one at ‘Grand Central’ while Jason and Melanie are snorkeling with the incoming tide and drift over the reef back towards the yacht.

Hello, Nemo !Top-side of the rock at 'Arkansas'A little white-tip shark at the 'Four Sisters'Oh the beauty. Just imagine: that's all alive and moving. It's just unbelievable !!

The second stop is at ‘Arkansas’ – a lonely coral column extending from -25m up to about -4m. While Bertel and Jason dive circles in the deep I’m free diving and again amazed by the sheer beauty of this site. The soft coral on the top looks like wheat fields (hence the name: Arkansas) and the rock is surrounded by colorful soft & hard coral, lots of ‘unicorn fish’ and numerous other species. We stay for quite some time and are all happy we made the decision to visit Namena.

More little fishes - still at 'Kansas'Flashes of color and form. Tropical coral fish.At the drop-off.Blue in blue.

During the next days we also explore the southern reef and the dive sites called ‘Chimneys’ and ‘Mushrooms’ as well as the ‘Four Sisters’. All of them breathtaking beautiful. Timing is important tough: the sites on the northern side should be visited shortly after high tide, while the ones at the southern side are best visited at low tide. The difference between slack water and out- or incoming tide is huge and the currents can get quite strong. If one got the timing wrong, it’s definately worth waiting in the dinghy for the current to change.

And more little fishMe, freediving.Again at the drop-off.Diving at the 'Mushrooms'

During the final dive at the mushrooms I dropped our camera which neatly sank into a depth of about 25m – which I guess it could survive – but despite wasting a full bottle of air on it, I still couldn’t find it again. So for the time being those will be the last underwater shots. Damn ! The Nikon AW110 was an awesome all-round camera and I’ll definately miss it a lot.

Back at the reef in the anchorageOne of the more beautiful fish. Unfortunately I forgot the name.The circles show the sites we've visited.Weather is changing. Time to go back 'home'.

But good news for everyone who plans to visit Namena during the next months: When we arrived there was only one mooring at the anchorage and one about 0.5nm ESE from the northern channel. There are plans to put as much as five moorings near the island and numerous at the dive sites. That will make visiting those spots a lot easier for cruisers.

Thanks to Jason for many of those awesome photos. Please visit his blog to see more !

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4 Responses to Namena – Part 2

  1. Steven Lough says:

    Absolutely STUNNING pictures David..

  2. Hi David!
    Super Fotos, echt genial! Weisst du zufaellig welche Kamera Jason hat? Wir sind gerade auf der Suche nach einer ordentliche UW-Kamera. Haben uns in NZ so einen Abklatsch der GoPro gekauft, aber die Fotos kannst vergessen…
    Und nachdem jetzt unser Navi-Laptob eingegangen ist und der Backup-Laptop auch spinnt, muessen wir eh ein bissl was bestellen…
    Viel Spass noch in Fiji!
    Christine und Christian

  3. dafdaf says:

    Danke fuer die lobenden Worte ! (Ein paar Fotos sind ja auch von mir.)
    Jason benutzt eine Canon G12 und zusaetzlich das ‘Canon WP-DC34 Underwater Housing’. Beides zusammen ca. 500 Euro. Aber lohnt sich allemal. Die Kamera hat einen deutlich groesseren Bildsensor als normale ‘Kompakt’kameras und das merkt man bei jedem Foto – natuerlich umso mehr noch unter Wasser. Tolles Teil !