Being the largest superyacht for charter gives infinite possibilities of experiences on board. FLYING FOX definitely has many surprises!
Imagine yourself walking into this 136-metre superyacht, going down on the Lower Deck… A vast array of watersport equipment is available for many watersport activities. If you continue your visit, a whole Diving Centre is offered to you. This is where your diving adventure can start!
Today we sat down with the FLYING FOX’s Watersports Manager to discover more about the Dive Centre on board.
INTERVIEW WITH THE WATERSPORTS MANAGER ONBOARD FLYING FOX
Imperial Yachts: Can you tell us more about your background?
Watersports Manager: I was brought up in New Zealand near the ocean where my passion for the underwater world started. The earlier part of my life was spent serving in the New Zealand military where I travelled the islands of the South Pacific as part of UN missions. I was privileged to witness beautiful coral atolls hidden amongst isolated islands and of course dive amazing wrecks in iron bottom sound. I left the military to further discover the underwater world and took employment opportunities in South Pacific Islands, French Polynesia, Dubai, Oman, South Africa and Mozambique. My interests turned towards the maritime industry and overseeing technical deep diving operations, I became a submersible pilot and continued to discover the underwater world to depths of 1000m.
IY: Tell us more about FLYING FOX’s Dive area. Pictures show it looks more equipped than most of the ashore diving places: can you tell us why?
WM: The diving area on FLYING FOX is one of the most advanced in the industry. It can offer basic open circuit scuba diving for beginners to advanced closed circuit decompression dives to 100m deep. FLYING FOX has PADI-certified instructors to ensure perfect conditions during the diving experience.
We have the ability to blend helium, oxygen and air to create the perfect mix for any depth. We offer rebreather diving for beginners and advanced students along with Full Face Mask diving equipped with communications and dive propulsion vehicles to cover long distances.
A professional decompression chamber with three seats is also available for experienced divers.
IY: How would you describe a typical day in the life of a Dive Master onboard FLYING FOX?
WM: A typical day during a trip would consist of an early start to check the weather conditions and currents in whatever location we were based. This would usually consist of a reconnaissance dive to ensure the chosen area offers the correct conditions for the level of divers. After returning to the main vessel we would conduct a brief with the bridge team and prepare the days diving plan. Guests would be met with enthusiasm by our professional team and we would help prepare their equipment and ensure they are comfortable. For experienced divers we would conduct a safety briefing on board and head out to the dive site in one of our well-equipped and comfortable dive tenders. For beginner divers a longer brief will be held explaining the equipment in depth and then we would head out to a very calm dive spot to conduct the dive.
After a short break and reset of equipment we would be ready to conduct afternoon dives and also night dives along with any other watersports’ requests.
IY: Where is your favorite place to dive?
WM: This is a hard question but it would be a tie between Rangiroa in French Polynesia and Sipidan Island in Malaysia.
IY: What is the most unforgettable memory you had while diving on board FLYING FOX?
WM: A night dive in the Maldives in which our dive group startled a sleeping nurse Shark, who was just as surprised to see us. This followed with schools of jacks surrounding our group as electro colored squid passed by.
IY: What are the top locations to dive during a summer charter?
WM: I would say Komodo Indonesia, Fiji South Pacific Islands, Cocos Islands Costa Rica. Last but not least, French Polynesia during the Whale season in August is breathtaking!
Those waters contain such treasures that you cannot find nowhere else.
IY: What itinerary would you recommend to discover the seabed?
WM: If I could pick a diving itinerary that I would like to experience it would start in the poor knight islands in New Zealand in late February, moving North to Fiji in March diving the famous astrolabe reef, bligh water and tiger shark coves, moving east in April towards French Polynesia to discover Society islands and the Tuamotos where the diving is as wild and secluded as you could find, then east towards Galapagos to visit schooling hammerheads and then North towards Socorro Island off the coast of Mexico famous for large marine animals finally moving West to Hawaii to dive her many islands.
IY: What kind of diving/water toys adventure while onboard FLYING FOX would you recommend for thrill seekers?
WM: For divers a night dive, deep dive or drift dive will offer a challenge and a different type of experience. For other watersports enthusiasts the Zapatta Jet pack, Hoverboard and Flyboard offer a great way to fly above the water. Another popular choice is the electric foil board (E-Foil), with a short instructional session most users are up and riding on their first attempt, speeding above the surface of the water. There are very few vessels in the world that have such a choice of water toys. FLYING FOX is definitely part of them!
We also offer lots of other activities such as windsurfing, sailing, kitesurfing, wake surfing, wakeboarding, waterskiing and foiling and for a classic fun activity we have a range of towable inflatables for all ages to enjoy.
IY: What is the best part of your job?
WM: The best part of my job is introducing people to the underwater world. There is so many things undiscovered down there; a hidden world…
Diving gives a feeling of complete disconnection. This is a total immersion for an unforgettable moment!