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Dive Review of Atlantis Resorts in
Philippines

Atlantis Resorts, Dec, 2008,

by Mona Cousens, CA, USA (Contributor Contributor 12 reports). Report 4644.

Reporter and Travel

Dive Experience Over 1000 dives
Where else diving PNG, Indonesia, Thailand, Fiji, Solomons, all Caribbean, Galapagos, Mexico, etc.
Closest Airport Getting There

Dive Conditions

Weather sunny, windy, rainy, cloudy, dry Seas calm, choppy, currents, no currents
Water Temp 80 to 82 Fahrenheit Wetsuit Thickness 3
Water Visibility 50 to 150 Feet

Dive Policy

Dive own profile yes
Enforced diving restrictions depth, time
Liveaboard? no Nitrox Available? N/A

What I Saw

Sharks None Mantas None
Dolphins None Whale Sharks None
Turtles None Whales None
Corals 3 stars Tropical Fish 1 stars
Small Critters 5 stars Large Fish N/A
Large Pelagics N/A

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

Subject Matter 4 stars Boat Facilities 2 stars
Overall rating for UWP's 4 stars Shore Facilities N/A
UW Photo Comments [None]

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

Accommodations 3 stars Food 4 stars
Service and Attitude 4 stars Environmental Sensitivity N/A
Dive Operation 3 stars Shore Diving N/A
Snorkeling N/A
Value for $$ 3 stars
Beginners 2 stars
Advanced 4 stars
Comments My husband and I went to Philippines in December 08. We stayed
with Atlantis Resorts Dumaguete and Puerto Galera.
The resort in Dumaguete is nice, secluded and comfortable. They
have four rooms on the water with others in the garden
setting away from the beach. The garden rooms are larger and newer so many people preferred these to the older beachfront rooms.
There is a lovely tropical pool area with lounge chairs.
The food was excellent with 5 different daily entrees to
choose from for lunch and dinner.
The breakfast menu was the same everyday with different items
to choose from. All cooked to order. No buffet here.
The diving is done from basic boats which hold 4-8 divers. When they did have over 8 divers they provided additional guides so
that the groups remained small.
The staff takes your gear out to your boat, you wade out , get on
and away you go. The dive sites are all within a 5-10 minute boat
ride. You come back after every dive.
The water temperature was warmer than they have ever seen it for this
time of year. I took a 5mm which I could not wear. The water was
80-82 degrees!
Mostly we dove muck dives around the resort. Sites like Cars
and Sahara were decent for finding muck critters. The house reef is
available for those who want to do it on their own but was not our
favorite. It is just a bunch of tires which make up the man made
"reef".
The world class dive that everyone talks about at this location is the
Pier. This is an excellent dive but is not always available as it
has to be coordinated with the arrival of working ships
delivering goods to the locals. One dive on the pier will show
you: flamboyant cuttlefish, pair of giant frogfish,
batfish, devilfish, ghost pipefish, etc. You are busy the whole
time . We were thus saddened to hear that the
pier had 5 of the pilings stripped recently and the pier owner has
plans to strip them all.
Our divemaster told us the resort has convinced the pier owner to stop
stripping the pilings for the near future but they may change their
mind at any time. If the pier is lost, I really cant recommend this
destination as a world class dive area.
We also dove Apo Island twice during our stay. This was included
in our dive package. The boat leaves 30 minutes earlier than usual
as the crossing is about 45 minutes. You take a polynisian outrigger,
not the best boat for diving. Hard to get on and off. You stay out
for three dives with lunchtime spent on the boat close to the island
near the little town area. All the ladies will come out and wave the
teeshirts around so you can do some shopping ! I enjoyed my
dives at Apo. It is quite pretty. The reefs were in
good shape but sadly not many fish out there. We saw several
sea snakes, some frog fish and one area called Clownfish City which
was stunning. The dives were mostly drifts.
We then went to Puerto Galera which I did not like at all. The
transfer between the two resorts is 8 hours. Ours was nine as our
flight from Dumaguete to Manila was delayed an hour.
The resort did not offer us a box lunch during the transfer. We had
breakfast in Dumaguete at 6am, left for the airport at 7am. A
one hour flight to Manila, boarded our van in Manila at 11:30 am and
arrived at the resort at 4pm. We were very hungry by then. They
made a stop enroute at Starbucks so we had a piece of coffeecake and
a drink.
The resort literature says it is a 2 to 2.5 hour transfer from
Manila. Not true. When we left the resort on our return it was a 4.5
hour trip back to Manila.

In all fairness, I must say I got sick with a sinus infection and
did not do one dive here so my opinions do not include the diving.
The divers we were with liked the diving here better than Dumuguete
and did see some remarkable things.

For me, I did not care for the town and the busy diving atmosphere.
I could see 10 dive operators from our room above the water as they
are lined up all along the beach. All of these operators dive
the same sites so they can get crowded.
I did'nt like the mass of people everywhere, the beggars, the busy
resort with masses of tourists and the dive board with over 50 names.
Most of all I hated to see the old men with the 16 year old girls.
This was evident everywhere you looked. In the restaurants, bars,
throughout the town (not just in the girlie bars) and in the hotels.
We even had one of these couples in the room next to us. The guy was
60 and she was 16-18. She would sit on his lap at the restaurant at night in our hotel when we were eating. I did learn
this is acceptable in the Philippines to have an openness to pedophilia
and although I feel prostitution should be legal, I do not want to
witness this activity so vividly apparent.
PG is a known area for this type of behavior and I think it should be
helpful to know about this in advance.
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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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