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Tuesday, January 14, 2014

Sea TREK at De Palm in Aruba: Take an imaginary tour

Imagine: You walk toward a ladder that descends 20 feet into the depths of the ocean. You have already had a briefing explaining the steps you need to follow. You are going on a Sea TREK helmet dive at De Palm Island, Aruba. The balmy Aruba air barely stirs, and the salty water lightly laps against the dock. As you descend the ladder a Guide places a futuristic Sea TREK helmet on your shoulders. You focus on stepping down the ladder, making sure to follow the hand signals and directions from the briefing.

As soon as you step off the ladder you gasp in awe… You are breathing air under water! Your hair is not even wet! You laugh to yourself as you walk a little down a trail to allow more TREKKERS room to join you on the sea floor.

As you adjust to your fascination with breathing under the water, you begin to notice your surroundings. An octopus lingers near the ladder, his curling tentacles clutching a mossy post of the dock. You watch as his body texture and color change dramatically.

As you turn to share your discovery with the other guests you are overwhelmed with an array of sea life: coral, sea stars, sea urchins, sea anemones, sea feathers, and arrow crabs. There are so many different creatures!

The Guide leads your group onward. You see an eagle ray gracefully glide 5 feet above.

Then you stop at an underwater airplane! The sunken plane has become a thriving home to various corals, sponges, and fish!

Your Sea TREK Guide steps in front of you and squeezes some fish food out of a bottle. Suddenly, you are engulfed in a cloud of colorful fish, darting and racing about you, trying to grab the last piece of food. The beams of sunlight glint off of their opalescent scales making you feel as though you are actually a part of this school of fish.

Eventually you pull yourself away from the smooth, sliding, glitter storm, and find a happy sea turtle swimming along the bottom of the sea. You watch him until he is out of sight.

As you walk farther along the Sea TREK trail, you find yourself at an underwater café! You sit with other TREKKERS on the seats of this sunken café table, and offer a silent toast with a wine bottle as a photo is snapped of this once-in-a-lifetime experience.

You see many more amazing species: parrot fish, porcupine fish, trumpet fish, banded coral shrimp, and even a school of silverside fish.

As you head back toward the ladder you spy a spotted eel, snarling at you from his little cave, and then a rosy, ethereal squid flies through the blue of the sea.

As you exit the water, and the Sea TREK helmet comes off, all you can think is “wow! My friend’s back home are never going to believe me!” Luckily you have the photos and the vivid memories to prove it… and maybe someday you’ll be able to invite them along for an unforgettable TREK in this magical underwater world.

For more information on Sea TREK with De Palm Tours, Aruba, visit:
Images courtesy of De Palm Tours, Aruba