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

Atlantis Dive Resorts/Atlantis, Dec, 2010,

by Pec Indman, CA, US (Sr. Reviewer Sr. Reviewer 9 reports). Report 5899.

Reporter and Travel

Dive Experience 251-500 dives
Where else diving Cozumel, Fiji, Hawaii, Florida, Roatan, Dumaguete (Philippines)
Closest Airport Getting There

Dive Conditions

Weather windy, rainy Seas calm
Water Temp 82 to 84 Fahrenheit Wetsuit Thickness 5
Water Visibility 30 to 60 Feet

Dive Policy

Dive own profile no
Enforced diving restrictions general depth limits set, for example, max depth between 40-60 ft. Let DM know when you got to 750 PSI.
Liveaboard? no Nitrox Available? yes

What I Saw

Sharks None Mantas None
Dolphins None Whale Sharks None
Turtles 1 or Whales None
Corals 5 stars Tropical Fish 5 stars
Small Critters 5 stars Large Fish 2 stars
Large Pelagics N/A

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

Subject Matter 5 stars Boat Facilities N/A
Overall rating for UWP's 5 stars Shore Facilities 5 stars
UW Photo Comments There is a special dry room for cameras at the resort. This room contains the only 110v outlets at the resort, and compressed air for drying housings. The room is locked after 10pm, but everyone felt very comfortable leaving expensive camera rigs and laptops in the room during the day. Computers are also available in this room for image downloads or internet connection. There were cubbies to store laptops, camera gear, etc.

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

Accommodations 5 stars Food 5 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 5 stars
Advanced 5 stars
Comments We booked this trip with the very helpful assistance and advice of Ultimate Dive Travel. Flying from San Francisco in the evening, we arrived in Manila at 6 am. We were greeted at the baggage claim by Tess, who helped us load up a cart and led us to the waiting van. The van was driven by Norberto ("Bean") a very skillful driver who carefully wove the way through city and country. It took about 2 or 2 1/2 hours. We made a quick pit stop on the way. The ferry was waiting for us, and we were the only passengers. The boat was smooth, and the views were interesting. Once we docked, our luggage was carried to the resort, and we walked a very short way to the resort. We checked in, and were given a welcome massage (I was too excited to sit though it) and cold drink. A tour of the resort, and we were checked into our room. In the rooms, only 220v is available. Internet connection speed was slow in the rooms but adequate down in the dining or photo rooms.

The resort is beautiful. It is multi-level, brick pathways, with topical plants. The resort is spotless, as are the rooms. Our room was comfortable and cozy, we had a double and a single bed, a TV. There is no phone (we didn't need one). It may be helpful to bring an alarm clock- or, we used a cell phone alarm. You can see pictures on the Atlantis website. Once into our room, we went back down and get registered for diving. We were met by some of the dive masters, who assigned cubbies in the gear room a large area to hang our wetsuits, etc. We signed up for the afternoon dives. Then a delicious lunch, and our diving adventure began. Within a few hours after arriving we were greeted by name. The people who work at Atlantis were some of the friendliest and happiest people I've encountered. They were attentive to every detail and did everything to make this a remarkable trip.

Food is always important. I would say this was some of the best food I've ever had anywhere. Lots of choices- off a large breakfast menu my favorite was banana pancakes with a scrambled egg. My husband enjoyed the omelets. They also made coffee drinks and incredible hot chocolate. Lunch and dinner included 3 courses, with choices of fresh fish, chicken, beef and pork. Don't miss the amazing desserts. Watching the guys in the kitchen was like watching Iron Chef.
The kitchen manager and his incredible staff (who also always greeted us by name) were incredibly attentive and sweet. Food was too plentiful! My husband and I would each get soup or salad, and split an order. That was often still more than we could eat (I always saved room for dessert!)

Diving- in 8 1/2 days I got in 33 dives (my husband did 32). Dives are scheduled at 9 (kitchen is open for breakfast early), 11, and after lunch at 2 and 4. You can also do a mandarin dusk dive or a night dive at 6. You tell them when you want to dive, and you are assigned to a boat. There is great flexibility! you can change your mind (you might decide to get a massage or nap instead). DM's were all patient with us photographers and my husband did video. They always made we saw everything before moving on. These guys all had amazing eyes. They knew exactly where to find the pygmy seahorse on a 5 foot tall and wide fan coral. We spent time mostly with DM's Henry, Norm and Chris. They are fun, funny, caring and helpful, and they know fish and critters. Every night there was a 15 min talk and powerpoint about seahorses, octopi, or fish and critters. Have questions about photography? John, the underwater pro was the jolliest fellow we've ever met- alway a smile and a joke. We dove with Nitrox. Everyday we would check and record our tanks.

The dive sites were all about 3-5 minutes from the resort. Currents were always reviewed and evaluated. Most were no to low current dives. One dive at Verde Island was aborted due to wild currents. The two at the coral garden there were beautiful. Food was brought from the resort, and we had a lovely picnic there.

Regrets? Have cash to leave a tip for the staff. We felt bad that to use our credit card would have incurred an extra 15% charge. There wasn't a person on the staff who didn't deserve a wonderful tip (I mean even the groundskeeper was a friendly guy!)

If possible I would choose a time of year with more sunny weather and better viz.
Don't depend on getting good food at the Manila airport.
I would stay longer!
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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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