Slip on your gog­gles for this un­der­wa­ter ad­ven­ture

Getaway (South Africa) - - CONTENTS - isi­man­gal­

Un­der­wa­ter pho­tog­ra­phy seems best left to the pro­fes­sion­als – but an event in Sod­wana Bay aims to change all that

Dur­ing the iSi­man­gal­iso Sod­wana Bay Shootout (22 – 27 May) you’ll have five days to splash about and shoot what­ever you like, whether snorkelling or div­ing – from clams to cray­fish, dol­phins to starfish. (There’s also a land cat­e­gory for those who pre­fer their hol­i­day pho­tog­ra­phy on dry ground.) At the end of the five days, you sub­mit a port­fo­lio of your best pho­tos to the judges. Even though it’s tra­di­tion­ally been mo­nop­o­lised by pro­fes­sional un­der­wa­ter pho­tog­ra­phers, the lit­tle guys have a shot too in the

novice and in­ter­me­di­ate cat­e­gories. There’s even a prize for the most species of nudi­branchs cap­tured on cam­era. An en­try fee of R300 con­firms you one sub­mis­sion; if at the end of the shootout you’d like to en­ter more im­ages, you pay ex­tra. Thirty per cent of the pro­ceeds go to the Rare & En­dan­gered Species Fund, and this year’s com­pe­ti­tion has around R200 000’s worth of prizes. But five days of spot­ting turtles, look­ing for morays and ex­plor­ing Sod­wana’s 50 kilo­me­tres of reef is re­ally its own re­ward. There’s a range of ac­com­mo­da­tion, in­clud­ing Ezemvelo KZN Wildlife’s log cab­ins and camp­sites, as well as a cou­ple of pri­vate lodges and 14 dive op­er­a­tors in the park.

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