MANDAUE CITY, Cebu – International and local scuba divers and enthusiasts are expected to convene in the municipalities of Zamboanguita and Dauin in Negros Oriental for another big dive scheduled from July 28 to 31, 2022.
And while they enjoy the waters of the two localities, participants are also be encouraged to join the underwater and beach cleanups that will be organized there.
Organized by the Department of Tourism in Central Visayas (DOT-7), the festival is expected to draw hundreds of participants on its second year.
“The festival, developed as part of the DIVE7 program, is generating high interest from various dive communities affected by restrictions imposed as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic. The dive festival was launched last year and has attracted both experienced and beginner divers,” DOT-7 said in a statement.
Last year, the festival was launched in Dauin town.
This year, the festival will kick off on the coastlines of Zamboanguita town and will end in Dauin.
“Participants may take diving lessons from certified instructors of dive shops accredited by the Philippine Commission on Sports Scuba Diving (PCSSD). A list will be available at the event. The mermaiding experience or SCUBA lessons with full face mask will also be available with the first 14 given free of charge,” DOT-7 said.
An underwater photography contest will also be held “to capture the marine kaleidoscope that has flourished over the two-year COVID-19 hiatus,” says DIVE7 Program Head Gloriece Do.
The competition will be open to amateur and professional underwater lensmen. Foreigners are also welcomed to join provided that “the participant is residing in the Philippines at the time of registration.”
The deadline for the submission of photo entries is at 9 a.m. on July 31.
“Various subjects and concepts will be showcased in the competition, including nudibranchs, swimming with the turtles, frogfish, wide seascapes and marinelife behavior, in the open and compact camera categories. Photos of people with purpose, featuring practices that benefit the reef, community or tourism, especially awareness and advocacy actions may also be submitted under their specific competition category,” DOT-7 added.