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Dive Review of Sea Explorers Philippines/Pura Vida in
Philippines/Dauin, Negros Occidental

Sea Explorers Philippines/Pura Vida: "Excellent diving, but not all sites for beginners", Apr, 2019,

by Phil Johnston, Bayswater, AU (Sr. Contributor Sr. Contributor 22 reports with 22 Helpful votes). Report 10913 has 1 Helpful vote.

No photos available at this time

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

Accommodations 4 stars Food 4 stars
Service and Attitude 5 stars Environmental Sensitivity 4 stars
Dive Operation 5 stars Shore Diving 4 stars
Snorkeling 1 stars
Value for $$ 4 stars
Beginners 1 stars
Advanced 5 stars
Comments My second visit to Pura Vida resort at Dauin. As previously, Sea Explorers dive operations service was excellent & I was assigned a personal guide, Jan. Jan was an excellent spotter & pointed out many small critters I would not otherwise have seen. Despite having done many muck dives over the years I saw a number of critters I hadn't previously seen, including sand darter fish, whiskered pipefish and a Melibe nudibranch (a truly weird critter). Most muck dives were done in some degree of current, with the drift dive at Mainit being particularly strong (ie almost impossible to swim against). A pointer is almost mandatory at most Dauin sites, as much as a small anchor (in barren sandy areas) during strong currents as anything else. I did the optional day trip to Oslob (at additional cost), where whaleshark sitings are almost 100% guaranteed & I did see 3 (& possibly 4) individuals. Viz is not good at Oslob however & photographers may not get good photo ops of the whalesharks. Didn't see much other large marine life, other than a good number of mature sea turtles.
Dauin is noted primarily for muck diving but the hard coral reef at a site called Dauin South were quite extensive & very healthy.
Pura Vida resort is co-located with Sea Explorers dive shop so makes for easy access to diving for guests. Accommodation & meals (free buffet breakfast) were high quality, & the resort is set in very pleasant garden surroundings. Overall I loved the diving at Dauin, but the currents were much stronger that during my previous visit (possibly because of the full moon?), so I wouldn't recommend this location for very new divers.
Websites Sea Explorers Philippines   Pura Vida

Reporter and Travel

Dive Experience Over 1000 dives
Where else diving Australia, Fiji, Solomon Islands, Papua New Guinea, Malaysia, Indonesia/Bali, Cocos Islands, Mexico (Cozumel & Soccorros) Tonga, Galapagos, Tahiti, Maldives, Mozambique, Bahamas, Red Sea, Roatan, Philippines, Hawaii (Kona, Maui)
Closest Airport Dumaguete City Getting There Direct domestic flights to Dumaguete from Manila & Cebu City, not aware of any direct international flights. Pura Vida resort is a 45-50 minute drive from Dumaguete airport.

Dive Conditions

Weather sunny, windy Seas choppy, currents
Water Temp 27-29°C / 81-84°F Wetsuit Thickness
Water Visibility 15-20 M / 49-66 Ft

Dive Policy

Dive own profile no
Enforced diving restrictions The usual restrictions, no deco dives etc. Most dive sites were < 20 metres so depth limits not really relevant
Liveaboard? no Nitrox Available? yes

What I Saw

Sharks None Mantas None
Dolphins None Whale Sharks > 2
Turtles > 2 Whales None
Corals 3 stars Tropical Fish 3 stars
Small Critters 5 stars Large Fish 2 stars
Large Pelagics 1 stars

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

Subject Matter 5 stars Boat Facilities 4 stars
Overall rating for UWP's 4 stars Shore Facilities 4 stars
UW Photo Comments I'm not an UWP but macro life photographers will love Dauin. Camera rinse set ups on the dive boats were a bit basic, but most dive sites (apart from Oslob) are only short distances from the dive centre, which did have good rinsing facilities.
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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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