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Dive Review of UW Photography Guide & Bluewater Photo/Crystal Blue Resort in
Philippines/Anilao

UW Photography Guide & Bluewater Photo/Crystal Blue Resort, May, 2012,

by Rene Umberger, HI, US (Reviewer Reviewer 4 reports). Report 6686.

Reporter and Travel

Dive Experience Over 1000 dives
Where else diving Hawaii, Palau, Galapagos, Socorro, Fiji, Komodo, Raja Ampat, Lembeh, No. Sulawesi
Closest Airport Getting There

Dive Conditions

Weather sunny Seas calm
Water Temp 82 to Fahrenheit Wetsuit Thickness 3
Water Visibility 20 to 80 Feet

Dive Policy

Dive own profile yes
Enforced diving restrictions Some guides restricted bottom times - others did not.
Liveaboard? no Nitrox Available? yes

What I Saw

Sharks None Mantas None
Dolphins None Whale Sharks None
Turtles 1 or 2 Whales None
Corals 3 stars Tropical Fish 4 stars
Small Critters 4 stars Large Fish 1 stars
Large Pelagics 1 stars

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

Subject Matter 5 stars Boat Facilities 3 stars
Overall rating for UWP's 4 stars Shore Facilities 5 stars
UW Photo Comments [None]

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

Accommodations 4 stars Food N/A
Service and Attitude N/A Environmental Sensitivity 2 stars
Dive Operation N/A Shore Diving N/A
Snorkeling N/A
Value for $$ 5 stars
Beginners 3 stars
Advanced 4 stars
Comments The value just can't be beat. 4 divers per guide and wildlife everywhere. Of course, you have to get past the plastic floating by and lying on the bottom, but it's no worse than Indonesia's rivers of plastic. We were a group of 8 friends traveling from Hawaii, West coast and mid West. For Hawaii and West coast - it's much easier to get to Manila and then on to Anilao (3 hours by van) than to/from Indonesia. Just 10.5 hour flight from HNL. Our last trip to No. Sulawesi took us 48 hours to get home, door to door. The diving is comparable, and yes, Indo is better, but for the time/$$, we're headed back to Anilao again next year. Hotel staff at Crystal Blue was so friendly, helpful and professional. Food was very good and they had no problem accommodating vegetarian requests. Several in the group came down with digestive problems, but no more than usual for these types of adventures. Mike, Scott and Matt gave very informative photo presentations and everyone learned something. The dive guides are excellent critter finders, but do mishandle the marine life. Most in our group were instructors and divemasters and it was just too much animal wrangling for us, but guides toned it down upon request. Of course, most of the guides and "boatmen" as they're called are former aquarium collectors, so at least they've switched professions to one that doesn't strip mine the reefs. They definitely need moorings, with anchors thrown into the coral regularly. But again, nearly all of us are headed back next year - so that's the bottom line.
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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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