The Philippine Siren welcomed on board 16 happy and smiling guests from 6 different countries for this New Year’s liveaboard dive trip in the Southern Visayas. Just before we wanted to set off for our first destination: Talisay Tree. The beautiful wall with Gorgonians and soft corals were a nice habitat for the usual suspects: tomato anemonefish, false clown anemonefish – and many other kinds of anemonefish, common lionfish, schooling fusiliers, red tooth triggerfish, rabbit fish, trevally, trumpetfish, anthias, dogface pufferfish, blackstriped angelfish, three spot angelfish and a huge zebra moray and ringed pipefish. It was not a bad dive at all for a check dive!
The Philippine Siren crew welcomed on board a new group of divers all ready for their 13 night liveboard dive trip between the Tubbataha Reef and Southern Visayas. Many of them were repeat guests, so soon everybody felt at home! We went through the boat, cabin, safety, and general dive procedures briefings, and got on our way to the Tubbataha Reefs National Park.
The Philippine Siren welcomed on board a brand new group of divers all ready for their liveaboard diving holidays in the Tubbataha Reef! The first dive day started at Jessie Beazley Reef. We did two lovely dives along the dramatic walls and over the shallow plateaus. We spotted numerous grey reef sharks and loads of whitetip reef sharks. The amount of fish just off the wall was again unbelievable. Everybody got a taste of Tubbataha’s beauty and was eager to have another bite of it. Next on the schedule was Malayan Wreck. The wreck itself sits on top of the shallow plateau and with the absence corals or big fish isn’t the main attraction of the site. That would be the nearby corner where the currents come together from different directions resulting in an upwelling of nutrients attraction loads of fish. And with that the dogtooth tunas, giant trevallies, grey reef sharks and white sharks. The nervous darting around of the fish really works well for our guests. It’s hard not to get excited yourself too when you see so much life around you. All in all, we drew the conclusion that it had been a great first day of diving!
This was going to be a special trip for the Philippine Siren because a group of many marine life researchers and people working in or on the Ocean were going to dive Tubbataha with us! We chatted with the group leaders and made some plans for what looked to be a very nice week with extra activities such as presentations, a barbeque at the ranger station and talktails… talks with cocktails. After the formalities and getting clearance from the coast guard we set off on the eleven to twelve hour boat ride to the Tubbataha Reefs National Park.
It was another searing hot Pilipino summer day in Puerto Princesa when our new guests arrived on the S/Y Philippine Siren. They were welcomed with a nice tropical drink and a refreshing cold towel and they all got comfortable for a day of briefings, setting up gear, doing paperwork and getting to know each other’s names.
A group of Spanish divers came on board the S/Y Philippine Siren for a trip in the Tubbataha Reefs National Park. It was a chartered trip of Ultima Frontera who wanted to explore some waters beyond its borders. We as a crew were up for it because the minute they came on board it was clear that this was going to be a fun and great week, with all the laughter that was heard and all the happy faces that could be seen.
The check dive at Malayan Wreck was nice, but we went there for the second dive also and the second time around it was really impressive. We spotted a scalloped hammerhead and thirty seconds after that we saw a tiger shark. Further on in the dive there was a nice pack of whitetip reef sharks, roaming the reef wall. Our third dive of the day was Gorgonian Channel. It was a very pretty dive on the reef to edge with lots of big schools of small fish darting around. At Amos Rock, the current took us along the reef wall with lots of fish action and frantic swimming around of everything with a tail. We spotted two marbled stingrays, one of which was a huge one. To close the sale on this dive we encountered a large school of bigeye trevallies. We concluded that it was a great day diving.
The Philippine Siren welcome on board a nice mixture of people from all over the world, with (at least) one thing in common: they were all eager to dive Tubbataha.
The Philippine Siren liveaboard was once again ready to dive Tubbataha with a brand new group of divers! First stop, Malayan Wreck. We jumped in and did our check dive. And straight away one of the groups spotted a nurse shark hanging around. Not bad for the first few minutes of the first dive. The nurse shark was followed by lots of his distant relatives, the whitetip reef sharks and the grey reef sharks. We spotted them everywhere. After the second dive and yet again another nice lunch we visited the Park Ranger Station and got a tour around by the very friendly rangers. Two more dives along the south walls of the North Atoll brought us lots of sharks and dramatic views on overhangs with massive gorgonians and sea fans. We were lucky with the visibility that was u to 30 meters at places.
The Philippine Siren was ready for another great liveaboard adventure diving in Tubbataha! First in the list, Wall Street and Gorgonian Channel! We encountered a massive school of bumphead parrotfish and plenty of whitetip reef sharks sailing in the current. After a sturdy lunch we visited the Park Ranger Station – and bought some t-shirts. The third and fourth dives were also on the south walls of the North Atoll and we bumped into some pretty cool photo opportunities with enormous sea fans, reef sharks, marbled stingrays and a zillion colorful anthias.