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Dive Review of Yap Divers/Manta Ray Bay Hotel in
Micronesia/Yap

Yap Divers/Manta Ray Bay Hotel, Apr, 2009,

by David Dornbusch, CA, USA (Sr. Reviewer Sr. Reviewer 10 reports with 1 Helpful vote). Report 4784.

Reporter and Travel

Dive Experience 251-500 dives
Where else diving Galapagos, Red Sea, Fiji, Sipidan, Great Barrier Reef, Cozumel, Roatan, Belize, Turks & Caicos, Tahiti, British Virgins, Puerto Rico, Bahamas
Closest Airport Getting There

Dive Conditions

Weather sunny, dry Seas calm
Water Temp 84 to 85 Fahrenheit Wetsuit Thickness 3
Water Visibility 30 to 60 Feet

Dive Policy

Dive own profile yes
Enforced diving restrictions No special restrictions
Liveaboard? no Nitrox Available? N/A

What I Saw

Sharks Lots Mantas Squadrons
Dolphins None Whale Sharks None
Turtles > 2 Whales > 2
Corals 4 stars Tropical Fish 4 stars
Small Critters 5 stars Large Fish 5 stars
Large Pelagics 5 stars

Underwater Photography 1 (worst) - 5 (best):

Subject Matter N/A Boat Facilities N/A
Overall rating for UWP's N/A Shore Facilities N/A
UW Photo Comments [None]

Ratings and Overall Comments 1 (worst) - 5 (best):

Accommodations 5 stars Food 4 stars
Service and Attitude 5 stars Environmental Sensitivity 5 stars
Dive Operation 5 stars Shore Diving N/A
Snorkeling N/A
Value for $$ 5 stars
Beginners 3 stars
Advanced 5 stars
Comments Wonderful 4 days of diving. We went for the manta rays and weren't disappointed. Saw two manta rays with wing spans of 8' and 14' that cruised near us for most of our first dive, then two and one more on two subsequent dives. On our first sighting, both mantas cruised within a few feet. On our second sighting, two drifted within a foot of our heads then slid to the side to check us out, again from only a couple of feet away. From the reports of other divers, we could have seen mantas on almost every dive, but we spent our other two days at sites where mantas weren't expected. The corals near the manta cleaning stations aren't plentiful or particularly healthy, but walls and reefs to the south had abundant and spectacular corals and fish. A school of pilot whales tracked our dive boat, and dozens showed off, "standing" on their heads with their tales in the air. We saw aligator fish, mantis shrimp, octopi, white tips, lion fish, puffers of many sizes, spawning tital triggers who we sometimes had trouble avoiding, and large schools of reef fish.

The spectacular conclusion was an evening dive about 5 minutes from the dock, to watch mating mandarin fish. We settled near two coral labyrinths, with many mandarins, mine having about a dozen. Just after sunset, the males started chasing the females, and coaxed a few into spawning only a couple of feet from our eyes. A few swam right up to our lights and our masks, so close I had to draw back to focus on them. I splayed my fingers upright trying to copy the coral formation, and one male settled into my hand. Brought our own lights, but make sure you can rent them if you don't. The mandarin fish dive is not to be missed. But, the night dive wasn't anything special.

We always had a boat exclusively for our group of 5, and our dive master was terrific, not only letting us dive as we liked, but pointing out the difficult-to-see, like a number of motionless octopi. Excellent equipment, very well maintained. Most dive sites are within 20 minutes of the dock.

The Manta Ray Bay Hotel/Yap Divers is a great combined operation, with an especially fine setup for diving, extremely capable and eager-to-please staff. Large lockers and hangers (inside and out), large rinse tanks - everything a diver might want, and all within a few steps of the dock, restaurant, pool and rooms. Excellent all-you-want breakfasts (eggs to order), and fine lunches and dinners. Efficient airport pick-up and drop-off. No beach or resort reef, but never missed either.

For dinners, we thought the food was about the same at the Manta Ray and Traders Ridge. Both very good.

Almost no bugs, not by the water, not inland, not even at sundown.
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Note: The information here was reported by the author above, but has NOT been reviewed nor edited by Undercurrent prior to posting on our website. Please report any major problems by writing to us and referencing the report number above.

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