The Zenobia wreck sits in 42 meters of water just outside the Port of Larnaca, Cyprus. She has been voted one of the top ten wrecks worldwide and divers from all walks of life can experience her on a variety of different levels. What makes her so access able? The sheer size of this RO-RO ferry means that although she is in relatively deep water, she sank on her port side and the shallowest part of the wreck can be reached after just 17 meters. That means that even entry level divers can enjoy one of the largest underwater vessels in the world, while still providing an arena that even the most seasoned tech diver will tingle over. That is very special.
During my time working as a PADI dive Instructor in Cyprus, I would visit this metal giant weekly and it was an absolute joy to watch people’s reactions as the wreck came into view while descending into the blue. Wide eyes and happy facial features were on every diver, their breathing increasing ever so slightly as their excitement of the upcoming dives slowly reveled themselves with each deepening meter.
Now I am the PADI Regional Manager for Cyprus, my love of this wreck is still at its peak. I have dived her over 100 times and yet my anticipation of the new adventures I will have still makes me wake up before my alarm goes off, ready to take the plunge.
It was no surprise to me when I discovered that the Cyprus Tourism Organization (CTO) had a special Zenobia Week in store for us in June 2014. I was given the opportunity to speak at one of the Zenobia promotional conferences, as I am extremely involved in underwater conservation and a healthy dive market. I learned a lot about the development of artifical reefs in Cyprus, the marine life at the Zenobia and I learned about diving tourism and its prospects. I also met a lot of likeminded people with a common goal in mind – to make Cyprus a diving destination of excellence. We all know Zenobia is awesome – and this promotional week is planned to run annually by the CTO. Adventure tourism is the most fun kind, in my opinion – so walking around Larnaca seeing all the child artists’ impressions and creations of the Zenobia on the sea front was a beautiful thing to see. The fact that the CTO are actively educating their students in the wonders of the underwater world at such a young age gives me high hopes for the project’s success. To coin an old but true saying “The children are the future”. Nothing is truer than this when it comes to our future generations being able to experience beautiful marine environments as we do.