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Dive Review of Atlantis Dive Resorts in
Philippines/Puerto Galera / Dumaguete

Atlantis Dive Resorts, Nov, 2005,

by Lucius "Bud" Foster, MN, USA . Report 2969.

Reporter and Travel

Dive Experience 251-500 dives
Where else diving California, Hawaii, Lake Superior MN, Jamaica, Bahamas, S. Florida & Keys, Cozumel Mexico, Anguilla, Palau, Roatan Honduras, Saba, and Turks & Caicos.
Closest Airport Getting There

Dive Conditions

Weather sunny, dry Seas choppy
Water Temp 76 to 80 Fahrenheit Wetsuit Thickness 0
Water Visibility 30 to 60 Feet

Dive Policy

Dive own profile yes
Enforced diving restrictions Stay with a dive buddy and in a group normally no more then 6 per dive master and everybody starts up to safty stop when the first diver in the group gets to 750 psi.
Liveaboard? no Nitrox Available? N/A

What I Saw

Sharks Lots Mantas 1 or 2
Dolphins None Whale Sharks None
Turtles > 2 Whales None
Corals 5 stars Tropical Fish 5 stars
Small Critters 5 stars Large Fish 2 stars
Large Pelagics 2 stars

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

Subject Matter 5 stars Boat Facilities 2 stars
Overall rating for UWP's 4 stars Shore Facilities 4 stars
UW Photo Comments At both Puerto Galera and Dumaguete the Bangka boats had really no place for cameras except between your feet while going to the dive site and no fresh water to rinse them, however, most dive sites were within 5 min. so when you were done you were right back at Atlantis resorts where they have a big fresh water tank to rinse your camera equipment and a excellent indoor designated camera room to work on your camera with computers hooked up for e-mail etc.

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

Accommodations 5 stars Food 5 stars
Service and Attitude 5 stars Environmental Sensitivity N/A
Dive Operation 4 stars Shore Diving 4 stars
Snorkeling N/A
Value for $$ N/A
Beginners 5 stars
Advanced 4 stars
Comments Before I left all I heard from people was. Are you sure it is a safe place to go? Did you know that Americans were kidnapped from a dive resort by Philippine terrorist? and so on and so on. Let me just say this, I have traveled all over the place my whole life surfing and diving, I have realized by traveling that I am safer out of the USA then in it. I tell people this and they look at me like I am crazy. Truth is Americans are more likly to me murdered and kidnapped in the USA then most places we travel to for diving. I believe most people are fundamentally good and a smile is the same in every language. I arrived in Manila and the Atlantis people had a person waiting for me right after I got out of customs. He took me right to a van that took me for a 2 hour ride to a large Bangkas with outriggers that took me to Puerto Galera. When we pulled up to the dock the general manager was waiting for me to walk me to the resort and he had his workers haul all my bags and camera equipment to my room. I was giving a free lunch and a cold drink while they got my stuff sent to my room. When I was done the GM gave me the tour and explaned how everything worked. Puerto Galera is south of Manila on the island of Mindoro. It is a small ocean town tucked into a bay right on the beach with a sidewalk that goes from one end of the bay on the beach to the other. There are many small dive resorts, bars with loud music, resturants, little shops selling tourist stuff and what seemed like alot of young women all with a huge grin on their face, I could not tell if they were hookers or just really happy to see a white man. It is a little beach party town were I spent my first 10 dive days. The diving was very good and exceptional for the macro lense and divers who enjoy the small stuff. On my first dive at Sabang Wreck I saw tons of crinoids all over the small ship, three different types of lion fish, a huge black frop fish, school of Bat Fish, Sturgeon Fish, Ghost Pipefish, Mantis Shrimp, six different species of Clown Fish, Scorpion Fish, a large sea horse in the grass, and these cool little fish that swarmed the bottom of the sand in a school that looked like little Cat Fish. The only large stuff in the area were at a dive site called "Sharks Cove" were the white tip sharks always seemed to be tucked under a ledge taking a nap. During my 7 days we took a special trip to Verde Island were the visability was up to 60' and the diving was full of all the small stuff you could imagine and what seemed like curtains and curtains of small school fish. I left Puerto Galera with many great photos, mostly macro and I really enjoyed the resort. The food was great, the pool was clean, my room was really cute with stucco walls and bright colored interior design and I don't think I spent any more money then it would cost to take a trip from the USA to the Caribbean. Then the Atlantis people sent me on my way back to Manila in the same fasion that they got me here and put me on a plane bound for my next adventure to the south, were I spent my next 7 days of diving at their Atlantis resort in Dumaguete on the island of Negro about 150 miles north of Mindano. Now Dumaguete is very quite on a private beach surrounded by beautiful palms, and while looking back at the resort from the Bangkas on the water you see in the distant a mountain that slopes up starting at the beach to a huge dormaint volcano that sits looking down on you. The food was excellent and prepaired like a work of art. I did not expect to eat as good as I did while in Dumaguete. The room was on par with there other resort, very clean comfortable and cozy and the staff at both locations was top notch. I just could not get over how inexpensive it was for the food, room and service I was getting. The diving in Dumaguete was top notch muck diving and like Puerto Galera there was not enough time to stop and see everything that was alive and florishing. The resort shore dive was one of the best I have been to (besides Wakatobi Indonesia) and it is just a bunch of tires put in to make a reef that has become the home to so many critters. Also, I were givin the opportunity to take the special trip to Apo Island were you can dive and see just how great the reef for money is working with the island people. The reef had more varieties of coral that I have not seen in one place. It looks like it did thousand of years ago, I'm sure. Atlantis Dive Resorts are a must, 5 stars. (www.atlantishotels.com)
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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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