F.A.Q. – Snorkelers

iStock_000002813700Large General

Q. How long is the journey to the dive site?

The journey to Pserimos Island is just 1 hour.

Q. What else can I do all day?

You can relax on the boat in shaded or unshaded areas. You can snorkel, swim, and sunbathe.

Q. When does the dive boat depart?

Our boat “APOLLON” is situated in Kos Harbour very close to the dolphins roundabout. Our boat is open from 09:00 to check in passengers for our excursion. At 10:00 we request clearance from the Harbour Master and will depart at around 10:15. We arrive back to Kos Harbour at around 17:00.

Q. What do I need to bring with me on the excursion?

A jumper for the beginning and the end of season, sunglasses, sunscreen lotion, a towel, a good pair of comfortable non-slip shoes (flip flops not advised). Extra money for snacks and refreshments and the optional extra facilities such as: snorkeling, T-shirts and Sweatshirts. If you tend to get motion sickness it is recommended that you take motion sickness pills prior to meeting the boat at the pier.

Q. Is lunch included?

No. But we have a fully stocked bar with a variety of sandwiches and snacks and cold drinks for sale at reasonable prices.

Q. I have my own snorkeling equipment, what is the cost to join your boat?

You will pay like a passenger/spectator plus you will be able to use one of our snorkeling wet suits, if you don’t have your own. Cost is just 20 €.

Snorkeling

Q. What is snorkeling?

Snorkeling is swimming on the surface of the water with a face mask, a snorkel (breathing tube) and fins, which allows you to have your face down in the water and still breathe. It is a fun activity with friends and family of all ages, especially in clear water where you can see lots of fish and water creatures.

Q. Do I need to be a good swimmer to go snorkeling?

Of course it is easier to snorkel when you are comfortable in the water, but it’s not required to be a good swimmer. If you feel you’re not a capable swimmer it is recommended to ask us to give you a snorkeling vest. A snorkeling vest can be inflated to provide you with extra buoyancy to help keep you at the surface.

Q. What equipment do I need to go snorkeling?

There are 3 primary pieces of equipment that most snorkelers use. Dive Mask – A face mask (or dive mask) allows you to see underwater while protecting your eyes and keeping your nose out of the water. It’s important that the mask you select has a good fit. If the mask doesn’t fit well, you will experience water leaking into the mask. The best and most comfortable masks have a “silicone skirt”. The skirt is the soft and pliable substance that conforms to fit your face and prevents water from entering the mask. Silicone skirts are also free from Latex, which some people are allergic to.
Snorkel – A snorkel is a hollow curved tube that allows you to breathe while you are face down in the water. While you’re snorkeling and looking down into the water, the end with the mouthpiece is in your mouth and the other end is sticking out of the water so that you can breathe. Fins – Fins provide extra propulsion and allow you to swim like a fish!
Whether you purchase or rent fins, make sure that they are a good fit. If the fins are too tight they may cut off circulation to your feet, and if they are too loose they may easily come off while snorkeling. Make sure they are a snug fit, but you should be able to wiggle your toes at least a little.

Q. How do I make sure my mask fits?

To make sure your mask fits correctly to seal out the water, hold it up to your face lightly. The mask face skirt should make contact with your face all the way around the skirt. Once the mask skirt is touching your skin, inhale gently through your nose. The mask should create a vacuum and seal on your face, not allowing any more air to be inhaled. The mask remains on your face until you stop inhaling, indicating that the mask is a good fit.

Q. My mask is leaking, what do I do?

First, make sure you have a mask that is a good fit for your face, as described in the FAQ previous question. If you feel you have a mask that fits properly then adjust the straps for a comfortable fit but do not over-tighten. Sometimes over tightening can cause a leak and is not as comfortable too. Also, make sure to clear your hair from your face so you get a good seal. If you have a mustache, use sun block or Vaseline on your mustache to help establish a seal.

Q. How do I keep my mask from fogging up?

Try washing the inside of your mask with mild dish soap or toothpaste to remove remaining manufacturing compounds that can make the lens fog up. Just before entering the water rub defog solution inside your mask and rinse it out. It is important to make sure to rinse after using defog as the solution can damage or sting your eyes. If you don’t have any defog solution, saliva works too, but either way rinse after using!

Q. Can I use my mask for scuba diving?

If your mask fits your face well, is comfortable, doesn’t leak and has tempered glass, then yes, you can use your mask for scuba diving. It is recommended that you have a mask with a silicone skirt for comfort. If you have any concerns whether your mask is okay for scuba diving then take it to a scuba shop to seek a professional opinion.

Q. Can I wear contacts while snorkeling?

Yes you can; however be aware that if your mask floods, you may lose your contacts. An alternative to wearing contacts is to purchase a mask with prescription lenses. It’s a simple and relatively inexpensive procedure to install prescription lenses into certain models of snorkeling masks. Prescription lenses and masks that accommodate them are available at Scuba stores.

Q. How do I prevent choking on water in the snorkel?

It is important to learn how to clear water out of your snorkel. If your snorkel top drops below the surface while snorkeling, or if the snorkel fills with water when you dive under, first return to the surface, making sure the top of the snorkel is above the surface of the water, and then exhale sharply to clear the snorkel of water.

When diving under the water with any type of snorkel, as a precaution, it is always good to clear the snorkel when back at the surface by exhaling sharply as described above.

Q. What is the difference between snorkeling and scuba diving?

Scuba diving requires additional equipment such as regulator, a buoyancy compensator and dive tank, etc., and allows you swim and breathe underwater. Snorkeling allows you to breathe with face down while you are on the surface of the water. Scuba diving requires personal training from a scuba instructor and there is a certification process. Snorkeling doesn’t require professional instruction or certification.

Q. Is it OK to use a life jacket when snorkeling?

Rather than using a life jacket it is better to use a snorkeling vest. Snorkeling vests are worn on the front and held in place with straps around the back and chest. You inflate the vest by blowing air into it with your mouth. Even a little air in the vest can make a nervous snorkeler much more confident, and fully inflated vest allows one to rest comfortably at the surface. Snorkeling vests are recommended for people that are not confident swimmers. They are becoming more popular every year at the world’s best snorkeling destinations and aboard many of the major cruise lines.

Q. What is the best way to get in the water from your boat?

You can put on your fins at the platform of the boat and then you can either:

  • Go step by step from the 2 ladders we have on the platform and slowly move into the water.
  • By holding your mask and snorkel, splash into the water from the back of the platform.

 

Q. Can I go underwater with a snorkel to get closer to things I want to see?

If you want to get a closer look at fish or something below you, just take a deep breath and dive down. If you dive down your snorkel will fill up with water. You will not be able to breathe again until you clear your snorkel of water once you have resurfaced. Make sure the top of the snorkel is above the surface of the water and blow out the water by exhaling sharply. This should clear most if not all of the water that has filled the snorkel, and allow you to breathe normally through the snorkel once again. It is very common for experienced snorkelers to dive down, flood their snorkel, and then clear it out with a quick blast of air at the surface.

If you dive down more than just a few feet deep you’ll feel pressure on your ears, which is normal. To equalize the pressure, pinch your nose and blow gently against it. You should feel the pressure equalize in your ears. Do this every few feet, before you feel discomfort. If you can’t equalize your ears, do not descend further. It will hurt, and you can injury your ears. If you can’t equalize, stop, go back up, catch your breath and try again. With some practice, you’ll find you can equalize your ears easily.

You may also feel your mask pressing against your face as you go down. Blow some air through your nose into the mask to equalize the pressure. When you feel the urge to breathe, swim up.

Q. What are the best conditions for snorkeling?

The best times to go snorkeling are on warm sunny days when the waves and wind are minimal (like our bay). It’s best to go snorkeling when the sun is out (every day during the summer) because it increases visibility and brings out the true colors of fish.

Q. How do I take care of my equipment? How should I store it?

When you’re done snorkeling, rinse your gear in fresh water. Let it dry in a cool location well out of the sun before storing it. When storing your equipment don’t pile heavy objects on top of your snorkeling gear. Prolonged weight on top of a mask, snorkel, or fins can warp them. To avoid bent fins, they should lie flat, and not stand on their tips for long periods of time.