... the marine life on Tenerife's south coast

I'm not proud of it, but in January I tried to cop out of the underwater experience. I sent my brother Pablo to dive on our behalf and tell us about his experience with Diving Atlantis. As he's spent half his life in the sea (although he'd never tried scuba diving), I thought it would be perfect... Surprisingly, he wasn't able to dive. The instructor tried two or three times to talk to him to calm him down though, which he appreciated. So then it was our turn...

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Tenerife Travel Secret

If you’re at all afraid or jittery, the instructor will try to distract you from that. Physically, anyone can dive. However, on rare occasions, people have a psychological barrier against diving. In such cases, the activity is brought to an end.

General Features of the experience with Diving Atlantis

When we arrived at the premises of Diving Atlantis, we filled in a document where we had to evaluate our physical qualities to be able to enter the water... All answers have to be positive. They subsequently gave us wetsuits and boots in the right size. It’s not the most flattering outfit in the world, but it will help you cope with the cold water.

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Tenerife Travel Secret

You’ll feel the water on your skin because the suit is damp, not dry. Because the water is around 20°, you will inevitably get cold (body temperature: 36°).

Vesko told us all the important stuff we had to know before getting in the water. You need lots of equipment: a device to control buoyancy under the water (like a life jacket that can be inflated or deflated and lets you rise up if you open the air flow), and the valve and automatic ventilator, as well as an additional ventilator in case anyone needs oxygen (even though it’s a very safe sport, you always go as a group).

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To enter the water, you have to breathe calmly and deeply (not hold your breath). The water pressure is high and pushes in on you when you have gas in your lungs. You have to counteract that pressure by holding your nose and being aware of your ears popping. When diving, you have to drift and move your arms as little as possible to avoid touching things. You just breathe calmly and deeply through your mouth. It will be fine once you get used to it, because the instructor handles everything. If water gets in your mouth, just blow through the tube and it will come out. If you need air fast, release the air in your lungs and then take air in. You’ll be fine.

Tenerife Travel Secret

You can even eat or drink and it won’t mix with the water. That’s because the pressure of the deep sea prevents it from mixing with salt water.

Our Diving Experience with Diving Atlantis Tenerife

We put on our equipment and heard some general information to gain confidence. Then we headed to the beach and slowly entered the water. The moment when your head goes under the water is pivotal. That’s what mainly determines whether your experience starts well or not. It’s more of an inner struggle than any real risk when diving. There is air and people are accompanying you, so there’s no reason why the activity would go wrong.

Dives usually last between 20 and 40 minutes. We dived for 40 minutes. In that time we saw colourful fish, three rays, a tapaculo that changed colour with its eyes facing upwards, and an angel shark. The latter are at risk of extinction, so you have to be really careful and not bother them. You can sometimes see turtles, but that’s very rare. By contrast, there’s a family of rays you’re almost certain to see because they live near the Los Cristianos port.

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Tenerife Travel Secret

It’s forbidden to dive with whales and dolphins (mammals in general) in Spain. It can also be dangerous because they are very protective of their territory and their offspring.

The two Diving Atlantis instructors (Vesko and Patryk) were telling us what we had to do via hand signals. There was a moment when I started to feel quite cold. Vesko realized and asked if I was ok. If you’re chilly, you can ask for an extra layer before getting into the water.

Tenerife Travel Secret

A thumbs-up means to come up for air, if something’s going wrong. That could be water in your mask, or you haven’t compensated properly and you have a problem with your ears. If you’re cold, you should move (or not) your fins with hip movements and straight legs. Kneel with your legs wide apart.

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Final Comments from the Authors of our Experience with Diving Atlantis Tenerife

So there I was, with my best ‘prepared’ poker face for my first underwater experience... They say those who have snorkelled will probably find it easy, but that wasn’t the case for me. I haven’t practised much and when I have it’s gone badly... 😊 At least that meant Fábio could do the activity with me in the end. That really helped me feel calmer, because I didn’t feel so much pressure. I knew that if I wasn’t able to, he could do it.

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This kind of activity pushes you to the limit (without going crazy). It improves your self-esteem and makes you stronger. I totally recommend diving with Diving Atlantis in Tenerife for three reasons. Firstly, their instructors are very professional. Secondly, you can see lots of fauna at the location they choose for your introduction to diving. Finally, they also use very good, professional equipment.

Tenerife Travel Secret

Last thing to note: if you’re going to catch a plane, you can dive up to 18 hours beforehand. If you’ve dived, you shouldn’t climb the Teide, for example, for at least 4 hours.