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Dive Review of Peter's Dive Resort in
Philippines/Southern Leyte

Peter's Dive Resort, Jan, 2009,

by Jennifer Widom, CA, USA (Sr. Reviewer Sr. Reviewer 10 reports with 2 Helpful votes). Report 4602.

Reporter and Travel

Dive Experience 501-1000 dives
Where else diving worldwide
Closest Airport Getting There

Dive Conditions

Weather rainy Seas choppy
Water Temp 80 to 81 Fahrenheit Wetsuit Thickness 1
Water Visibility 50 to 100 Feet

Dive Policy

Dive own profile ?
Enforced diving restrictions reasonable freedom
Liveaboard? no Nitrox Available? N/A

What I Saw

Sharks None Mantas None
Dolphins None Whale Sharks > 2
Turtles > 2 Whales None
Corals 5 stars Tropical Fish 4 stars
Small Critters 4 stars Large Fish 2 stars
Large Pelagics 1 stars

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

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

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

Accommodations 3 stars Food 3 stars
Service and Attitude 3 stars Environmental Sensitivity 4 stars
Dive Operation 4 stars Shore Diving 3 stars
Snorkeling N/A
Value for $$ 5 stars
Beginners 3 stars
Advanced 4 stars
Comments (same review submitted to tripadvisor)

We stayed at Peter's for New Year's week 2009. We're a family of four, all divers. We had a great time and recommend Peter's highly.

We paid only $65/night to stay in the family house. It's a beautiful, spacious, modern place -- a separate bedroom with king-size bed, and two pairs of single beds in a big area that also includes a living room (couches, coffee table, television) and a full kitchen that we didn't make much use of. The house would sleep six comfortably.

The resort is laid out in a relatively compact area along a pebbly beach. In addition to the house there seems to be a wide variety of accommodations, from free-standing cottages to rooms adjacent to the restaurant, dive operation, and swimming pool area. Other family guests reported enjoying what's called the condo. The web site advertised a pool table, darts, and internet, but all of those were gone in favor of an expanded restaurant area. There's a swimming pool, but otherwise at Peter's there's not much to do besides dive and relax with other guests, which suited us fine.

The dive operation was extremely well organized and run. Dive sites range from 1 minute away to about 45 minutes away. Usually there's a two-tank morning dive possibly to the further-away sites, a one-tank afternoon dive to a nearby site, and a night shore dive either at the town pier (a not-to-be-missed superb muck dive experience) or at the house reef. Boat dives were $24/each although we got a 10% bulk discount. The gear area is excellent and the procedures well-tuned. Our one slight complaint about the diving logistics was that the size of the groups per dive guide were highly variable. Sometimes we had two guides for just our family (despite other divers on the boat), other times 8 divers with one guide. The guides are somewhat flexible about divers separating from the group though, presumably after evaluating competence.

The diving was varied and generally excellent. The Napantao Wall across Sogod Bay has to be one of the most pristine anywhere, with excellent soft and hard corals and hordes of small fish. The closer-in sites were also very good with plenty of interesting creatures. We saw quite a few more fish in general than at Cabilao (the other place we dove in the Phiippines), and a number of turtles, but no significant pelagics except the real stars: the whale sharks.

Whale shark trips (ours was $72/each minus the 10% bulk discount) are run every few days, at least in the season (November-May?). The boat ride is about 1.5 hours and it can take any amount of time to find the sharks, if they're found at all. The trip is organized so that up to three dives are filled in when whale sharks aren't found or if the encounter is brief. We did one dive before the sharks were found, then had four magical experiences swimming with two of them. Only snorkeling is allowed but that didn't bother us. We planned to do the next scheduled whale shark trip a few days later but it was cancelled due to rough weather.

Peter himself was at the resort the first 2-3 days we were there, then he left for Cebu. The resort atmosphere might be a little more exciting when he's around shmoozing with guests, but the staff -- especially the dive staff -- were personable and helpful.

The restaurant menu is medium-sized but often major ingredients (shrimp, squid) were not available. On the other hand, we eventually discovered some items not on the menu that were available (mango shakes, french fries), so it's worth asking. The breakfasts were hearty and good. In general the food was fine but not especially memorable.

We didn't spend much time on land outside of the resort. Some other guests went into the town (less than a mile away) for variety or internet, but they didn't report anything too exciting. It's probably possible to arrange tours to nearby islands or some of the more interesting sites on Leyte.

Overall, Peter's offers a well-run dive experience with good accomodations, very good day-to-day diving, plus the possibility of whale sharks and the interesting pier night dive. It's hard to ask for a lot more. We've only been to one other dive resort in the Philippines (Polaris on Cabilao; see our separate review) so we can't compare extensively, but we are well-traveled divers and we certainly recommend Southern Leyte and Peter's.
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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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