Holiday Reference: TRP 37024

Holiday information

  • 4 star hotel within walking distance of historic centre
  • Great sea views from hotel and some rooms
  • Plenty of on site facilities and amenities
  • Dive centre on site
  • Average Water Temp: 18-25C
  • Average Air Temp: 20-28C
  • Average Visability: 25m+
  • Good for: Blue sharks and mobula, alongside schooling fish. Plus caverns, overhangs, macro life (nudis)
  • Suitable for beginners: Beginners and intermediate photographers
  • Take incredible shots of the Azores Blue Sharks with photo pro Martyn Guess PLUS stunning caverns and macro inhabitants to shoot. Including whale watching and Pico volcano, this is a photo tour with a difference in an off the path destination that is as varied as it is exciting.

Resort Details

Faial island is arguably the most beautiful of the Azores islands, separated from Pico island by a narrow strait. It's a stunning island, and popular for the almost guaranteed whale and dolphin encounters. But look beneath the waves and you find a ...

Faial island is arguably the most beautiful of the Azores islands, separated from Pico island by a narrow strait. It's a stunning island, and popular for the almost guaranteed whale and dolphin encounters. But look beneath the waves and you find a new exciting world. Faial has great reefs and walls for divers, but it's the blue sharks that attract most people here. Shallow encounters in blue water... what's not to like!

The 4 star hotel Faial resort is within walking distance of the island's historic centre. It's beautifully laid out around gardens and courtyards, with the added benefit of having the Haliotis dive centre on site. There are 131 rooms spread over 2 executive suites, 4 junior suites, 21 executive rooms and 104 standard rooms. The majority are standard rooms, with twin or double beds, en suite, air con, free wifi, satellite TV and mini bar. If you want more space to relax in, why not upgrade? The larger rooms are extremely good value and usually have sea views - please request at the time of booking.

The restaurant has enviable views over the city and marina of Horta. Faial island was made for exploring. After your diving is done, make sure to spend some time on the island itself, if nothing else to take in the vistas. A day trip to Pico island is ideal for the day before your flight, when your diving is done. But if you prefer a more leisurely pace, the hotel has many facilities on site. There is an indoor and outdoor pool, Jacuzzi, sauna, gym and even a Turkish bath!

Want to know more about Hotel Faial Resort?

Hotel Faial Resort contains all the detailed information you need, pictures, videos, reviews, and other practical information. Or call one of our diving holiday experts on 0800 072 8221 or +44(0)1483 411590.

Workshop Details

Photograph Azores Blue Sharks with photo pro Martyn Guess PLUS stunning caverns and macro inhabitants. Including whale watching and Pico volcano, this is a photo tour with a difference in an off the path destination that is as varied as it is exciting. ...

Azores Blue Sharks with Martyn Description

The Azores are not yet on the radar for many a British photographer, but for those in the know, they are the ideal place for Autumn diving. Martyn Guess will be hosting an exclusive photo workshop in 2018 on the best island for divers - Faial. Be quick: there are only 8 spots available on this dedicated tour.

Goals of the trip
This is a varied photo workshop with a range of subjects - both above and below the surface! From the smallest macro nudis and crabs to the large 2m+ blue sharks, there is something here for every photographer. Martyn will be giving presentations throughout the workshop, as well as opportunity for 1:1 work on any aspect of the photography covered.

Scuba Travel loyalty discounts can be applied to this workshop.

Blue sharks

This workshop has been timed carefully for the blue sharks. The water is at its warmest, and the marine life plentiful. Here in the deep water between the volcanic islands the blue sharks feast on rich tuna. With the help of a controlled feeding system, the blue sharks come to visit boats, and are encountered under the boat in only 2-5m. These are typically larger than their Cornish counterparts and to be in the water with them on scuba is thrilling. The contrast with the sunshine filtering through the water and the bright blue surface of the sharks is photographic perfection.

Photographers will be split into groups with no more than 4 divers in the water at any one time. Each group will cycle round to ensure everyone has a chance to take shots without excessive bubbles or divers disturbing the action. Divers must maintain contact with a shot line at all times as you will be in blue water. Martyn will be on hand with a host of tips as to manage the photographic opportunities, dealing with the surface conditions and shark exposure. You can use strobes or not, but we ask that you have gloves and a hood.

Previous experience shows us that afternoon sessions have had the best encounters. The dive centre build on their years of diving with blues to attract them. Some sharks have been tagged by the local conservation teams, and this data is fed back to the dive centres. Local operators work together for the best sightings. However, we cannot guarantee sharks and it may take time in a session before they put in an appearance.

There will be at least 3 separate sorties out to the blue shark sites during the trip.

Princess Alice Banks
Princess Alice Banks is one of the best known dive sites in the Azores, located 45nm from Faial island itself. It takes around 3 hours to reach, but what awaits you is a must see! This is a large area, with max depths of 35-40m. This is the place to see big stuff. Divers head here for the chance to play with mobula and passing pelagics. Dolphins, turtles, and whales are all seen here

This workshop includes 1 day at Princess Alice Banks (2 dives).

Reef diving
The reef in the Azores is based on volcanic rock. It is as dramatic under the water as it is land side. Martyn has selected a range of wide angle and macro sites that will not only be photographically rewarding, but also give a good taster of diving in the Azores.

The Azores is the only land fall for miles around, and as such, it is buzzing with bio diversity. Several sites offer the perfect combo of shallow, easy diving with large schools of bream, trigger fish and snapper. Several types of moray are found hiding under rocks. Look even more closely and you can find octopus. There are scorpion fish, groupers and parrot fish. Several species are endemic to this region - there's a particularly cute putter fish to look out for.

The most exciting wide angle sites centred around cavern dives. Huge gaping caverns open out from the reef face to the sea. Massive schools of tiny silver bait fish swirl around the openings. Small eagle rays dark in and out of the cave itself. This is a great chance to work your wide angle skills and lighting techniques. with the contrasting dark and light and a well placed model as your subject.

This workshop includes 3 reef dives.

Land tours
No visit to the Azores is complete without experiencing some of the land life. A morning spent on the whale watching boat has been included. In September, you can expect to see sperm whales and dolphins. A long lens and fast shutter speed is helpful! Your experience is on board a catamaran and includes a full briefing about what to expect.

The Pico Volcano is an impressive sight, and visible from your hotel and the pier front. The clouds around the peak are forever changing and the light around sunrise and sunset is especially spectacular. We have included a tour of Pico island on the final day when no more diving can be done. This is a chance to view the volcano upclose - the hike is accessible and takes around 2-3 hours. Pico is also famous for white wine, and a wine tasting tour wraps up this special final day.

Want to know more about Azores Blue Sharks with Martyn?

Azores Blue Sharks with Martyn contains all the detailed information you need, a full day by day itinerary, pictures, videos, reviews, and other practical information. Or call one of our diving holiday experts on 0800 072 8221 or +44(0)1483 411590.

 


Your holiday details

Take incredible shots of the Azores Blue Sharks with photo pro Martyn Guess PLUS stunning caverns and macro inhabitants to shoot. Including whale watching and Pico volcano, this is a photo tour with a difference in an off the path destination that is as varied as it is exciting. This workshop has been timed for the optimum chances to meet blue sharks in shallow water. There are 3 full dedicated Blue shark trips, as well as 5 dives to hand picked wide angle or macro sites, including a day diving at the famous mobula hang out Princess Alice Banks. There will be a morning spent whale and dolphin watching, and the final desat day will be spent on a tour of Pico island with wine tasting. You have 8 nights accommodation in a standard room at the Hotel do Canal (B&B, 2 people sharing). A picnic box lunch will be provided on diving days. All airport transfers are included in your package. Martyn will be giving presentations throughout the workshop, as well as opportunity for 1:1 work on any aspect of the photography covered. Flights are from Heathrow with TAP via Lisbon. UK passport holders do not need a visa for travel to the Azores.

* prices are subject to change according to availability at the time of booking


 

Your Personal Information


Please DO NOT book any connecting flights, insurance, or additional parts to this holiday as your trip is subject to availability and will NOT be confirmed until you have spoken with our operators. If you have any requests beyond our normal itineraries please note them in the comments and we will discuss these with you when we call to arrange your holiday.

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All holidays that do not include a flight originating from the UK are financially protected by our ABTOT license 5194
The Association of Bonded Travel Organisers Trust Limited (ABTOT) provides financial protection under the Package Travel, Package Holidays and Package Tours Regulations 1992 for Scuba Travel (Tony Backhurst Scuba ltd t/a Scuba Travel), and in the event of their insolvency, protection is provided for the following:
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(2) non-flight packages commencing and returning to a country other than the UK; and
(3) flight inclusive packages that commence outside of the UK and Republic of Ireland, which are sold to customers outside of the UK and Republic of Ireland.
(4) accomodation only bookings.
1, 2, 3 and 4 provides for a refund in the event you have not yet travelled. 1 and 3 provides for repatriation. Please note that bookings made outside the UK and Republic of Ireland are only protected by ABTOT when purchased directly with Scuba Travel (Tony Backhurst Scuba ltd t/a Scuba Travel).