UN­EX­PECTED ASIA

Asian Diver (English) - - Editor’s Note -

By var­i­ous con­trib­u­tors

Asia’s top dive des­ti­na­tions can still sur­prise and de­light. Jump into un­ex­pected “worlds within worlds” in this re­veal­ing ex­pose

TO­POG­RA­PHY CANYONS

A dra­matic set of three canyons on the north­east side of Puerto Galera, right at the tip of the Is­land, on the Verde Is­land pas­sage. This dive site is like “Snakes and Lad­ders” for divers – the canyons are 20 to 28 me­tres deep, and staged one af­ter the other, from the shal­lower to the deeper. Jump in and swim over the top of the first canyon, then through a nar­row drop down and rise up again.

Be­ing lo­cated on the pas­sage ex­poses this site to strong cur­rents, which means it is rich in nu­tri­ents, and draws in schools of fish, like giant treval­lies, sweet­lips and snap­pers.

Lo­cated an hour’s boat ride from Puerto Galera, Verde Is­land of­fers great to­pog­ra­phy div­ing in one of the Philip­pines’ most di­verse marine en­vi­ron­ments.

PIN­NA­CLES

“If Yosemite Na­tional Park were a reef, it would look like this,” said the editor of Un­der­cur­rent mag­a­zine. “Pin­na­cles” dive site takes its name from the rocky pin­na­cles that rise from over 100 me­tres deep to kiss the sur­face on the east side of Verde Is­land. Hard and soft corals have grown all over the rocks, shap­ing a ver­ti­cal reef with mas­sive gor­gonian fans and sponges. But­ter­fly­fish, ju­ve­nile an­gelfish, schools of the small, dark red tooth trig­ger fish, sea snakes, frog­fish and some large pelagic schools can be eas­ily spot­ted here.

BE­LOW Dra­matic to­pog­ra­phy wreathed in pro­fuse life – Puerto Galera div­ing will sur­prise and de­light

NAV­I­GA­TOR

Puerto Galera is ac­ces­si­ble by ferry via the pub­lic port in Batan­gas, 110 km south from Manila. Sev­eral re­sorts like At­lantis of­fer pri­vate trans­porta­tion from Manila for its guests, which short­ens trip time by half.

At­lantis Re­sort on Sa­bang Beach of­fers hill­side Flint­stone-like ac­com­mo­da­tion in an all-in­clu­sive dive va­ca­tion for­mat, with ex­cel­lent meals at Toko’s restau­rant and up to five boat dives a day. Small dive groups, cli­mate con­trolled cam­era room, and new boats. Go to

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