Great Blue Hole ,Belize
The Great Blue Hole is a huge chasm located in the heart of Lighthouse Reef, a small atoll in the Caribbean Sea. It is an underwater karst sinkhole over 300 meters in diameter and 123 meters deep, a spectacular natural formation belonging to the Belize coral reef, a Unesco World Heritage Site.
The almost perfectly circular shape and the characteristic dark blue color of the Great Blue Hole, given the high depth which works in contrast with the shallow waters of the atoll, make this naturalistic site a real attraction for diving enthusiasts. Initial studies on its formation are thanks to the mission of French explorer Jacques Cousteau, who in 1971 aboard the research vessel "Calypso", conducted underwater research, hypothesizing its karst nature. Exploration showed the existence of stalactites that date back to 153,000 years ago, during the repeated glaciations of the Pleistocene era. These are clues that lead us to believe that the cave was shaped during the Ice Age and then later collapsed and was submerged by the waters of the ocean.
The first 30 meters of the depths of the Blue Hole is ideal for admiring beautiful corals and many marine species such as sharks, giant groupers, barracudas and angelfish. But once this threshold is exceeded, the environment becomes inhospitable and all forms of life disappear to give way to a totally oxygen-free habitat, covered with a highly toxic and corrosive layer of hydrogen sulphide. The chasm is about 40 miles from Belize City and its proximity to the coast makes it an absolutely unmissable destination for divers and snorkelers from all over the world. The Great Blue Hole can be reached by rental boat or through one of the many excursion tours organized in the atoll. If you want to enjoy the breathtaking view from above, it is possible to book a group tour aboard a private helicopter.
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