Hugycup shoot-out returns in December

A winning shot by Hugycup 2019’s overall winner Luc Rooman
A winning shot by Hugycup 2019’s overall winner Luc Rooman

The Hugycup underwater photo and video shoot-out has been on pause since the start of the Covid pandemic – but the ninth event is now set to take place in Indonesia around the turn of the year. 

The slow-burning live competition returns at the NAD Lembeh Resort in North Sulawesi from 5 December until the end of January 2024, with all guests staying during that two-month period invited to take part.

Also read: Overseas competitors return for Anilao Shootout

“It’s not just a competition,” says its long-time organiser, Belgian marine-wildlife videographer and photographer Danny van Belle. “Those who want to learn a bit more about underwater photography and/or videography will be at the right spot. It’s a place where experiences are shared, and tips and ideas are passed on.”

Photo categories comprise Macro, Fish Portrait, Nudibranch & Seashell, Wide Angle, Portfolio along with Compact Macro, Fish Portrait and Portfolio, while video categories are Edited, Unedited and Action-cam. Individual prizes of diving equipment and holidays range in value up to 5,775 euros in both the Photo and Video competitions.

NAD-Lembeh Resort is a small, family-run dive resort with 10 beach-front rooms and five more expensive sea-view bungalows. Employing 15 full-time dive-guides, it guarantees an unusually generous guide to guest ratio.

“There is one dive-guide per two divers – super-luxurious!” says van Belle, a four-time winner of the Palme d'Or award at the World Festival of Underwater Images in Antibes. “The camera-room is marvellous and you’ll have your own spot and charging station.”

As a price-guide, seven nights at the resort (two sharing) with three daily day-dives costs US $1,601-2,036 (£1,400-1,800) depending on room. Add $120 for nitrox and $100-156 a day for full board. The 60-minute car and boat airport transfers are not included.

A Hugycup Festival and awards ceremony will follow the event next May. More information can be found on the Hugycup site.

Paralenz parts support

Chinese manufacturing company Shenzhen Creative Technology of Guangdong says it might be able to help users of Paralenz Vaquita cameras left unsupported when the brand went into bankruptcy last October.

“We have co-operated with Paralenz for more than eight years and have invested a great deal of time in the products and brand,” says the company, indicating that it had been as shocked as customers at the make's sudden demise. For customers hoping to locate spare parts or accessories for Vaquita Gen 1st and 2nd models, it says that “as the only manufacturer, we will try to help”. Email Jack Song at

Also on Divernet: Underwater Photography Masterclass By Alex MustardBe The Champ! – StrobelessBe The Champ! – PalauBe The Champ! – Schools


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