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Dive Review of Yap - Manta Ray Bay Hotel/Same in
Micronesia/Yap and Palau

March, 2005, an Instant Reader Report by Dale Thompson, CA, USA
Report Number 1642
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Reporter and Travel
Dive Experience
501-1000 dives
Where else diving
Southern california, Cayman, Littel Cayman, Cozumel, Belize, Bahamas 
Closest Airport
Getting There


Dive Conditions

calm, choppy  
Water Temp
81   to 82    Fahrenheit  
Wetsuit Thickness
Water Visibility
30   to 70    Feet  
Dive Policy
Dive own profile
Enforced diving restrictions  
Buddy diving, but loosely enforeced underwater, responsible for own profile
using computer.  
Nitrox Available?
What I saw
Whale Sharks
> 2 
Ratings 1 (worst)- 5 (best):
  4 stars
Tropical Fish
4 stars  
Small Critters
  4 stars
Large Fish
3 stars  
Large Pelagics
  4 stars
Underwater Photography  1 (worst)- 5 (best):
Subject Matter
Boat Facilities
Overall rating for UWP's  
Shore Facilities  
Ratings and Overall Comments  1 (worst)- 5 (best):
2 stars
2 stars
Service and Attitude
2 stars
Environmental Sensitivity  
Dive Operation
3 stars  
Shore Diving  
3 stars  

Overall Rating

Value for $$
3 stars   
2 stars    
Like many went there for the mantas and was not disappointed.  During three
days of diving (about the right length of time for Yap) had 3 dives in the
channel frequented by manatas for cleaning stations - and, at this time for
year, for mating.  So even in 30 - 40 foot visibility (tidal surge through
channel) at one time we saw up to 16 mantas either slowly drifting past
cleaning stations or females working up and down the channel with 2-3 males
trailing each.  Other dive of note was twilight dive in shallos of lagoon
for mandarin fish.  This is mating season and they come up out of the coral
heads and spiral free swimming in the water in pairs.  Rest of dives along
reef so-so.  Boats old and not overly well equipped - no tank racks,
benches, or adequate seating.  Don BC and tank while standing or perched on
narrow boat rail, both hazardous when the chop is up as it was for two of
three days, then back roll entry.  Scramble up narrow ladder back on
Manta Ray Bay Hotel has seen better years (indeed it looks like it's seen
better decades - but it's not that old).  Rooms in poor condition, a/c
marginal, lights not working, doors to balcony hard to operate/inop, screen
doors propped to side as an interesting statement in fashion I suppose. 
Hotel and restaurant service friendly, slow, willing, and sometimes (not
often) competent.  May have been poor due to absence of owner during our
stay on business trip off island.
Very disappointed upon arrival on the island to find a much newer, first
class hotel and dive operation - Trader's Ridge Resort - which we had not
been told about by our tour agency - Trip-N-Tour.  Had dinner there and
spoke to the owner who has contracted rates for a only a little more than
the Manta Ray Bay dump.  Strongly recommned others double check this tour
operator's work with web research on available hotels and dive shops before
making payment.  We certainly will, should we use them again.
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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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