Following the success of the inaugural Utila Dive Festival on August 2012, the dive operators of Utila in the Bay Islands of Honduras are organizing the 2nd Utila Dive Festival, promoting Utila as a destination for scuba diving activities and training as well as the islands lifestyle and culture.
What is Utila Dive Festival?
Utila Dive Festival is an exciting week-long event highlighting the tiny diving Mecca island of Utila, both above and below the water. A week of diving, dancing, dining and discovering on a tropical island whose heart beats SCUBA day in and day out.
It’s focused on building an atmosphere that will both educate and foster the enjoyment of sharing underwater experiences and also highlight what Utila has to offer as a vacation destination.
It’s designed not only to attract a wide range of visitors but also to benefit the entire community of the island.
A little taste of Utila
Utila is one of the three Bay Islands of Honduras located just south of Belize. Traditionally a beginners diving paradise, Utila has progressed over the years offering specialty training courses, tech diving, reef ecology and professional training packages. In recent years, many dive resorts and the Utila Aggressor have influenced Utila’s overall breadth, offering fun diving experiences mixed with casual Caribbean getaways. The myriad of Mom and Pop-shops, restaurants, crazy little seaside bars, topside activities and nature excursions round up the island as a fun happening place to spend a dive or water adventure vacation.
Our best assets are being part of the largest reef in the Western Hemisphere (Mesoamerican Barrier Reef) that surrounds the islands, the Caribbean sea life that makes its home in our waters and the elusive Whale Shark, the world’s largest fish that has been seen here all year round.
Who is part Utila Dive Fest?
The Utila Dive Operators involved in the activities and promotion of the festival are:
Altons Dive Centre – PADI 5 star resort
Bay Islands College of Diving/Utila Lodge – PADI Career Development Center
Captain Morgans Dive Centre – PADI dive resort
Coral View Resort – PADI 5 star IDC center
Deep Blue Divers – PADI 5 star IDC center
Ecomarine – PADI dive resort
Laguna Beach resort – PADI dive resort
Parrots Dive Center – PADI 5 star center
Underwater Vision – PADI dive resort
Utila Dive Centre/Mango Inn resort – PADI Career Development Center
Utopia Village/U-dive resort – PADI dive resort
Current Sponsors & Prizes
Utila Dive Festival is being co-sponsored and marketed with support from PADI Americas headquarters, and is to be an annual calendar event on the island, promoting the sport of scuba diving, and Utila as a unique destination.
Sponsors from 2012 included the equipment manufacturers Scubapro, Aqualung, Sealife, DiveRite, Intova, sports cameras GoPro. As well as media support from Scubaboard (online community of 230,000 members), ScubaDiverLife (online community of 500,000 members) and SportDiver magazine, the dive industries most distributed print magazine, and locally the Bay Islands Voice.
Already many of the big sponsors like PADI, GoPro cameras, Scubapro, DiveRite, SportDiver, ScubaBoard and ScubaDiver life are confirmed for the 2013 event. So far our sponsors have committed over $7000 in retail value of prizes that include:
– Liquivision dive computer and T-shirts
– 2 Sealife DC 1400 cameras, 2 Reefmaster external wide angle lens, Mini II camera
– Aqualung regulator, BCD, Micromask, impulse 3 flex
– 6 Scuba pro 6 Mask & Snorkel Set, 1 MK25/S600 for grand price.
– Cressi Sub MC5 compact regulator, Traveling BDC, Big eye evo crystal mask, delta snorkels, from plus
– 2 GoPro Hero II cameras
Save the date!
This second consecutive year for Utila dive Festival will be held though June 22nd to 28th of 2013.
The dates are earlier in 2013 to co-incide with the school break up year, and a busier period for the region which will help the viral marketing/word of mouth efforts to promote the island for the upcoming summer season and also the festival event for future years.
Activities for the week
There will be specialized diving activities held throughout the week including:
– Photography competition
– Advanced buoyancy workshops
– Reef ecology and whale shark talks
– Tec and sidemount try dives including closed circuit rebreathers
– Daily themed scuba dives
– Treasure hunt
At the surface there will be parties, social events, “Taste of Utila” Caribbean island style food fair and prize giveaways that will draw a crowd and very special opening and closing beach parties.
Many of the dive operators have week specials to coincide with the Utila Dive Festival and more information can be found here http://utiladivefestival.com/special-offers/.
Whether people wish to travel as a single diver or come with friends and family, this will be the perfect week of diving with social events below and above the water to partake in.
A scuba divers nirvana!
Visit www.utiladivefestival.com to learn more about this great event!