September 17th 2021

The anticipation of coming to Mozambique to volunteer with Love The Oceans was a mixture of excitement and nervousness around travelling again! After not traveling or even leaving the house much for the last 2 years, the thought of having to travel of a combined time of 35+ hours to make it to the remote idyllic marine conservation site was a lot to mentally handle. However, it was totally worth it. After a quick stop over in Maputo, the 8 hour drive up the coast felt more like a vacation then a chore with the comfort of finally meeting Lisa, the other student on my program, with whom I had been in social media contact with for the last 3 weeks.

The site itself is gorgeous.  Lisa and I were both in awe of the stunning natural beauty we are blessed to be staying in. I’ll vividly remember the first morning, both with a coffee, watching the sun rise in silence for a good half hour.

Learning with LTO is a lot of fun. Lectures are at a good pace with enough time to ask questions and patience of the staff to answer them. With a background in environmental science it’s nice to expand my own knowledge by having specific examples of marine science and the human culture along side it. You do get the occasional distraction when a humpback breaches in the distance and we all transfix on it for a while…but who can really complain about that?!

Having not dived in 8 years, I was thrilled that the dive staff are super patient. Reassuring and relaxed, they helped me break my mental fear of diving, getting me back into the ocean, motivated and incredibly excited.

It was extremely exciting to go on the boat and help map the bay to look for new possible dive sites. Along the way  dolphins decided to join in the hunt along with a turtle! Francesca was so busy trying to catch it all on drone that she missed the dolphin about 2 feet behind her! Technology has its pros and cons..

It’s safe to say, first week has been a blast. Tune in next week for more!

Written by Felix Woolf-May, 2021 September Expedition Participant

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