A Guinness World Record for the longest kiss underwater has been broken by a freediving couple who wanted to “inspire others to fall in love” with the ocean.
he four minutes and six seconds smooch between 40-year-old Beth Neale, from South Africa, and her 33-year-old fiance Miles Cloutier, from Canada, was achieved in the Maldives on February 4.
The previous record of three minutes 24 seconds, which was held by Michele Fucarino and Elisa Lazzaina, was broken after 13 years.
The record-breaking pair met five years ago through their love of ocean conservation, with Ms Neale teaching on this topic, as well as free-diving, and Mr Cloutier volunteering for the programme.
Ms Neale said that she wanted to take on the challenge to “inspire others” to share the couple’s love of all things underwater.
“Through sharing our underwater love story, we hope to inspire others to fall in love with the magic and wonder of the underwater world”, Ms Neale said.
“You protect what you love and the oceans need all the love we can give to safeguard them for future generations to come.”
The duo travelled to the Maldives with their toddler, Neve, for the attempt – and took part in practice sessions in the open sea for three days.
Despite Ms Neale being a four-times freediving champion and Mr Cloutier an experienced free diver, they referred to the attempt as being “incredibly challenging”.
“We had to be completely relaxed and confident, even when our bodies were experiencing something else,” Mr Cloutier said.
At around three minutes, Eminem fan Ms Neale – who has regularly gone viral on Instagram for lip syncing to the rapper underwater – put on his hit Lose Yourself to get through the final minute.
Craig Glenday, editor in chief of Guinness World Records (GWR), said: “Beth and Miles’ incredible underwater feat leaves me breathless.
“What an incredible testament to love – an epic achievement helping to celebrate and protect our beautiful oceans.
“Congratulations to the happy couple – you are both Officially Amazing.”
The pair were given an official GWR certificate by adjudicator Swapnil Dangarikar and cheered on by holidaymakers.