Dates: November 1 - 24, 2024
Join us on this absolutely incredible trip of a lifetime where we are humbled to be invited to honor Underwater World's longtime diver and close friend, Feo Pitcairn. Not only will you dive the Ghost Ships of Chuuk Lagoon, experience the Manta Rays as they glide within inches of you in Yap, and marvel at the remarkable carpet of coral that is Palau, you will be part of the dedication of a dive site in Yap in memory of Feo, a true legend in the underwater world.
^This question if from a template and doesn't fit here. Why? Because the diving is the most incredible 3 weeks of diving that you will ever have. It is truly one of the pinnacles of a recreational divers career. "What is the diving like" will never do this justice, but we will try.
In the heart of the Western Pacific Ocean, a trio of destinations deliver some of the most storied dives on the planet. Yap's international claim to fame are the giant manta rays that appear within near clockwork precision, often joined by grey, black and white tip reef sharks. The floor of Chuuk Lagoon is strewn with a Japanese fleet now covered in thick growths of coral, with dim interiors holding relics of a time past. Palau delivers a smorgasbord of underwater adventures, from the swirling sea life drawn by the currents at Blue Corner to the shadowed chambers of Chandelier Cave and the unique freshwater residents of Jellyfish Lake.
The archipelagos of Yap, Palau and Chuuk are surrounded by extensive barrier reefs that create large lagoons. All diving is by boat, with some sites minutes from the dock, and others more than an hour away. Chuuk and Palau are also served by liveaboards. Though each destination has a signature attraction—wrecks, reefs or mantas—all three destinations offer a full range of underwater adventures, some suitable for all divers, others requiring a sense of adventure. Both fish life and coral cover are excellent, and underwater clarity outside the reef can be astounding. Water temperatures range from 82 to 86 degrees year-round.
Currents and fish life often go together at many prime dive sites. In addition to the usual preparations such as carrying a surface marker buoy in case of separation from the group, divers can prepare for moving water by streamlining their equipment, routing hoses close to the body and removing or stowing dangling objects in pockets. If diving wrecks, first brush up on buoyancy skills and non-silting fin kicks. Though waters are bathing suit warm, a skin suit will aid streamlining and provide exposure protection from reefs and wreck surfaces. Nitrox will provide additional bottom time for many of the wrecks of Chuuk.
The waters of Chuuk Lagoon are famous for Japanese war wrecks such as the Fujikawa Maru and Shinkoku Maru, but Palau also has a ghost fleet, including the Amatsu Maru, which is the largest shipwreck in Micronesia. Schooling fish and sharks gather at current-washed sites such as Blue Corner, and the Big Dropoff is considered one of the finest walls dives in the world. Stalagmites decorate the submerged chambers of Chandelier Cave, and endemic jellyfish create a curtain of life in their namesake lake. Yap’s Valley of the Rays offers year-round opportunities to dive with giant manta rays, while sites like Yap Caverns provide chances to explore intricate cuts and chimneys carved into the reef face.
A full-body skin suit for sun and environmental protection. Light for examining wrecks or diving Chandelier Cave. A reef hook for current-washed points such as Blue Corner. Lightweight casual clothing when ashore, and sun protection for long boat rides.
The Blue Lagoon Dive Shop is a full-service dive facility located on the hotel property. A fleet of fast dive boats offer easy access to the famous wrecks in Truk Lagoon with knowledgeable dive guides and personalized service.
Manta Ray Bay Resort & Yap Divers is a small, family-owned, luxury hotel tailored to the needs of divers. The resort offers a range of accommodations, from well-appointed standard rooms to ocean-view suites that pamper with amenities such as king-sized beds, private patios and plunge pools. All rooms include a full complement of expected creature comforts such as air conditioning, in-room refrigerators, TV/DVD and Internet access. Guests can enjoy spa treatments, home-brewed beer and a unique bar/dining experience onboard our 100-plus-year-old Indonesian Schooner moored in front of the resort. Yap Divers is a PADI 5 Star Dive Center and an SSI Silver Diamond resort, offering nitrox, a full complement of rental and replacement gear, and a dedicated service tech. Manta Ray Bay serves just 1,000 divers per year to ensure crowd-free dive sites and VIP service, Yap's resident population of manta rays can be seen year-round.
Here's what to expect and a few tips for packing:
Included on your vacation;