The Solomon Islands – A Truly Excellent Adventure
Blog written by Tom Wells | Edited by Jenny Song Wells
Foreword – Thank You
One of the many great things about being married to my wife is our shared love of adventure, the natural world and in particular our love of diving. In the time we have made the ocean our second home we’ve been privy to experiencing new world’s above and below the oceans in places neither of us would have ever
have dreamt to see before learning to dive.
For this I, we are eternally grateful to Abyss Scuba Diving, Sydney. Thank you Peter, Rachel, Carl and the greater Abyss team for introducing us to new and wondrous forms of life both of the aquatic and human..ish kind.
Thank you Kelli and Sam of Bilikiki Cruises for providing such a fantastic prize for my wife to win and to which I devote the rest of this blog to.
Luck Was On Our Side
In November 2013, at the Abyss Christmas Party my wife won a 7-day trip to the Solomon Islands with Bilikiki Cruises. Needless to say she was delighted and as her husband felt it my duty to pay for an extra fare so both she and I could share this adventure together.
When Lands and Waters Intersect
Having read up on the underwater caves of the Solomon Islands I thought I knew what to expect before we dived. I’d done the theory but the practice was so, so much better.
Through each cave we’d effortlessly drift and glide as if magnetically drawn toward natural light; each revealing something totally unique and new. From Bat Caves to tropical jungle canopies to lakes so still they reflect suns rays like giant mirrors made for massive, massive heads…but let’s not talk heads in a place once known for its head-hunting prowess.
Word-To-The-Wise. If you’re a good photographer, have the right light from above and a willing muse these caves are great places to get ‘the shot’. I tried but failed to achieve my vision but hopefully you get the picture.
Armies So Great They Blot Out The Sun
Never have I seen to many predators in one place at one time. Like armies primed for war Barracudas, Jacks and sharks ghost patiently in the roaring current waiting for something to give. So great their numbers they blot out the sun.
The Devils Highway Does Not Disappoint
Some times in diving as in life you just gotta roll with it and if you want to see Manta’s never has the saying been more relevant. The Devils Highway, a mask ripping current takes you where it wants you to go. Fortunately this is exactly where you need to be as large numbers of mantas cruise only meters above to aerate their massive bodies again and again and again and again and again – you get the picture.
Small Is Good
So where’s the small stuff, I hear you say? Well it’s definitely out there and for the more trained of macro eyes, the critter numbers are known to be impressive, diverse and significant to this place.
No Two Dives Are The Same
For every rip roaring current with predator and schooling fish there’s a polar opposite dive experience to do. From calm, crystal clear waters of remote island bays, to underwater mountains with deep and sudden drop
off to muck, wreck and coral cay; the types of dive available on the Bilikiki are immense.
Jenny and I did every dive available, day and night. Even when repeating environments more than once life beneath us continually seemed to morph and change with time and day.
Go See, Do The Solomon’s For Yourself
If you’re looking for tiny macro critters or large pelagic fish this is the trip for you. As I sit on my sofa, back to reality with the TV blurting away I know we’ll return to the Bilikiki, to explore more of what the Solomon’s has to offer and hope, in some little way, this blog may entice you to do the same.
Abyss offers two options for Diving the Solomons with Bilikki.
1. Our escorted trip specific for Abyss Divers
2. Join one of the Regular Bilikiki dive tours.