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Top Dive Sites of the World Hardcover – 1 Jun 2003
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Fully revised and updated, this award-winning book vividly portrays the full spectrum of the diving experience. Its authors share the adrenaline rush of observing great white sharks in a feeding frenzy, the fascination of exploring a coral-encrusted wreck, the exhilaration of finding yourself enveloped by the 'wings' of a school of manta rays, and the enchantment of snorkelling over exquisitely coloured coral reefs. Aimed at divers, photographers and all those lured by the hidden wonders of the seas, this magnificently illustrated book transverses the globe, focusing on 75 world-class dive sites in waters as diverse as the icy Northern Atlantic and the tropical seas of the Pacific. The locations range from remote unspoilt offshore reefs accessible from live-aboard cruisers to well-frequented sites with popular resorts. The informative text describes the main features of each site, the quality and uniqueness of its marine life and notable attractions on land, as well as covering practicalities such as underwater visibility and site accessibility.
About the Author
Consultant Jack Jackson is an advanced BS-AC diver who ran a sport diving operation and a diving boat in the Sudanese Red Sea for 12 years. He has written numerous articles and books on diving, including titles on Malaysia & Singapore, Philippines, Aruba, Bonaire & Curacao for New Holland's Globetrotter Dive Guide series. Top Dives Sites of the World features contributions from leading dive writers including Jack Jackson, Lawson Wood, Guy Buckles, Nick Hanna, Paul Naylor, Wade Doak, Fred Dembny, Jurgen Warnecke and Friedrich Naglschmid. Over 300 worldclass images were selected from the work of prize-winning photographers such as Lawson Wood, Mark Strickland, Jack Jackson, Patrick Wagner, Geoff Spiby, Peter Pinnock, Linda Pitkin, Danja Kohler, Kelvin Aitken, Rebecca Saunders and others, including the files of international photographic agencies.
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This book is divided into 7 general areas of the World in the following order; Caribbean, Atlantic, Mediterranean, Red Sea, Indian Ocean, Indo-Pacific and Pacific. Just as soon as we enter the Caribbean, however, we find one of the world's most outstanding diving destinations is not included at all. Not only is Belize (home of the world's second largest Barrier Reef ‘and’ the Great Blue Hole) not even mentioned, the country itself does not even appear on the map! The Atlantic Ocean is reduced to Scapa Flow and the Canary Islands which, to all serious divers, is akin to reducing the complete works of Jacques Cousteau to one sheet of A4 in large print! The Mediterranean is confined to Sardinia - with that most excellent diving destination Malta also excluded from the map.
Whereas the Red Sea does (very predictably!) includes mention of the Thistlegorm (and whole books have been written about that particular wreck!) details are far too sparse. Sadly, the Rosalie Moller, which many experienced divers regard as a far better wreck, is another which is overlooked – although, by now, we have begun to get used to such disappointments.
Little purpose is served in continuing to stress what is missing from the remainder of the book except to say too many of the world's acknowledged “Top” dive sites and destinations are excluded and all divers who study the content will begin to challenge that title. Perhaps “My favourite dives from around the World” would have been more honest.
In addition the text which is included reduces each subject to such bare bones a qualified anthropologist would be hard-pressed to determine the species. As an example, the section on Scapa Flow reveals nothing whatsoever about any specific shipwreck - and those wrecks are the ONLY reason why divers go there! Instead we find a very brief overview - just as we find a very brief everything else.
In summary, therefore, a good book for those who like to look at pretty pictures but a work devoid of serious research and lacking vital information.