December 5, 2016 - December 16, 2016
With plans for our international travel to come to a close soon, we both decided we had to do another trip on the Samambaia. This time we decided to try for a trip thru the Banda Sea. This post has a ton of photos, so we've separated them into different categories below.
Upon arrival, we were greeted by some familiar faces. The crew of the Samambaia are part of the reason we've returned yet again. Also exploring areas completely off the beaten path really gets you truly off the grid. And now that Allie has taken a true interest in diving, spending time in the underwater world is a must before it's gone.
The first gallery below are views from being on board the boat (sunrises, sunsets, etc.).
This next gallery is a collection of underwater landscape shots that hopefully give you a bigger picture feel for what it's like underwater.
In preparation for this trip, we invested in an underwater housing for our Sony a6300. Previously, our attraction for the big stuff in the ocean has always been the focus. However, this trip really grew both of our amazement and interest in the macro stuff. We also gained a higher appreciation of coral being living organisms. This next gallery is macro shots of different types of coral and hopefully showing the variation that exists in coral and the homes they create for other organisms.
Some of the coolest things underwater are the smallest. In the gallery below are shrimp and crabs, some of the smaller than your fingernail. Seeing these creatures in the wild is just unreal and amazing. In some of the photos you may not even be able to find the shrimp or crab unless it's pointed out to you. Nature is simply amazing.
The gallery below is different types of nudibranchs (short name nudi). These little guys are little soft bodied sea slugs and come in all different colors and decorations on their backs. They don't do a whole lot, but they're very pretty.
Pipe fish and sea horses are some of the coolest looking organisms underwater. They don't do a whole lot, but they're beautiful.
Scorpion fish are commonly disguised with their surroundings and sometimes don't pop out to you until you're extremely close to them. The camouflage is seriously amazing, but best not touch these guys because they are poisonous.
The gallery below is of miscellaneous creatures we saw on this trip; everything from little box fish, eels, cuttlefish, a few rare mandarin fish, frogfish, sea stars, among others. So many creatures and so little time.
And last but definitely not least, a gallery of the people who made this trip what it was. Samambaia's incredible crew as well as some of the guests. Ambrogio and Mario from Italy, our diving buddies, didn't speak much English and would yell at us in Italian (mostly Mario), but we got along just fine with them and continue to exchange emails with them long after this trip. The kind of old guys you meet and hope that you can be as cool as they are when you're their age.