From May 21st till May 25th the world championship underwater photography will be held in the Netherlands. Let's take a closer look at the dive sites where the photographers will be competing for that winning photo. Probably most if not all the names of these dives sites will be impossible to pronounce, unless your Dutch off course ;) There are 10 different dives sites in total spread over three locations.
The dive sites are all in Zeeland and are spread along the Grevelingen Lake, Oosterschelde and Veerse lake. Especially the Oosterschelde will have it's challenges as it is connected with the North Sea and has very strong tidal currents. Each dive site links to the offical website and offers detailed information about the dive site. Would be a waste to type that all over again ;) Below I've grouped the dive sites per location and what's the difference between them.
The 'Grevelingen lake'
The Lake Grevelingen was created when the area was closed off by a dam in 1971. The lake has a total surface area of 11,000 hectares of water. The elimination of the tide created an area ideal for (starting) scuba divers. The dam has several inlets which still keep the lake connected with the North Sea, which means the lake is still salt water and has loads of marine life. The following dive sites are within the Oosterschelde:
The only site I haven't dived yet is Preekhil, which is on my to do list for upcoming summer. The other sites are favorites of mine within lake Grevelingen. I've dived multiple times on these sites and they are known for the abundant marine life present.
It is an important shipping route to the Port of Antwerp, Belgium. Therefore, unlike the other sea arms, it is not closed by a dam as part of the Delta Works. Instead, the dykes around it have been heightened and reinforced. Because of this the dive sites below have very strong tidal currents which adds to the difficulty level of the championship.
I'm only familiar with the first two sites off which Zeelandbrug is the most known. Because of the tidal currents you only have certain times when you can dive these locations. As I don't live near the sea this makes it usually difficult planning a dive on these sites.
The Veerse Lake
This is a lagoon and was separated from the North Sea in 1961 by the Delta Works. The dive site Polredijk is the only site chosen here. I've never dived in this lagoon.