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Dive Apo Island
September 3, 2010  |  Dive Sites  | 
About Apo Island
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  • House Reef or “Balay”
  • Apo Island Beach Resort’s own little dive spot. It’s a beach entry right off the front of the resort. Huge boulders encrusted with carpet sponges, white sand bottom interspersed with coral bommies. Lion fish, shrimp fish, trumpet fish, numerous reef tropicals. If the anchovies are running near the buoy, there are usually a pair of yellow Trevally lurking about. The sandy bottom has bubbles seeping out to the surface. On a night dive you can see sole, cuttlefish, octopus and shrimps and crab.
    Average depth: 10 – 15m
    Travel Time from the Resort: 0 mins

  • Chapel Point
  • The first dive for most guests if the South western monsoon is not blowing as this is a sheltered site with minimum current. The buoy is at 10m but there is also a shallow buoy at 5m nearer the shore. Around the buoy there are huge coral bommies, garden eels and lots of cone shells along the white sand bottom. At the lip of the wall, which starts at 12m and bottoms out at around 30m, there are lots of purple and yellow Anthias and Basslets as well as very curious midnight snapper, on the face of the wall look for Nudibranchs and Flat Worms. Be sure to look away from the wall out into the blue and towards the surface during your dive as lucky guests have spotted Manta’s, an Eagle Ray, a whale shark and even a Hammerhead on occasion, usually early morning. There is a shallow cave at 24m where there is usually a Blue Ribbon Eel, Scorpion fish, and yellow or grey Frogfish. The wall turns into a gradual slope after the cave and this part is a veritable coral garden with hard and soft coral gardens covering the whole slope. Best chance to see Hawksbill turtles here.
    Average depth: 20 – 25m
    Travel Time from the Resort: 3 min

  • Katipanan
  • A continuation of the slope at Chapel point, this site is also a good spot to look for turtles. The shallow area of this site has meandering white sand channels among the hard and soft coral and many times the turtles rest on the bottom here under an outcrop or just on the sand. There is a chance to see Black Frogfish, Sole, Cowries, Sail fin Blennies with shrimp and Nudibranchs and Flat Worms also at this site.
    Average depth: 7 – 15m
    Travel Time from the Resort: 5 min

  • Rock Point West
  • The Southern Tip of the island this site is usually dove together with Rock Point East. There is a soft Coral garden on this side with the chance to see turtles, Batfish, fusiliers, Surgeon fish and Triton Triggerfish. Please be careful with the Triton Triggerfish during egg laying season as they can be very aggressive (August – October).
    Average depth: 10 – 20m
    Travel Time from the Resort: 6 – 7 min

  • Rock Point East
  • The Eastern side of this site is characterized by a steep slope with lots and lots of fish. Schools of Banner fish, Pyramid Butterfly fish, Blue Triggerfish, Blue and Yellow dash Fusiliers and all sorts of reef tropicals. At the top of the slope there is a plateau bordered on one side by the rocks that jut out of the water at the tip of the island. The rocks are covered with carpet sponges and along this plateau there are hard and soft corals in many vibrant colors and hues. There are also snapper to be seen here as well as Rock Cod and Grouper. Look away into the blue also as Hammerhead and Thresher sharks have also been seen here. There is also a chance to see turtles and Bumphead Parrotfish and napoleon Wrasse. Currents can be very unpredictable at this site with directions changing in the middle of the dive. An experienced guide is a necessity here.
    Average depth: 15 – 25m
    Travel Time from the Resort: 8 min

  • Marine Sanctuary
  • This dive site is a strictly no take zone for fishermen. It has been identified as the breeding area for fish on the island and is protected by rangers and the townsfolk alike. The coral cover here is amazing with hard coral bommies the size of houses. There is a wall that starts at 10m and bottoms out at 30m. Along the wall there are overhangs with black coral bushes, sponges and anemones. In the shallows you can see giant clams and an area called “Clown Fish City” 5 large coral heads that have been colonized by thousand of Tomato Anemone fish and their anemones. Turtles are seen here quite often and sometimes a large solitary Trevally will go swimming by in the shallows. There are schools of yellow snapper, Brassy Drummers, and silver jacks in the shallows towards the South.
    Average depth: 5 – 24m
    Travel Time from the Resort: 8 min

  • Kan-uran Wall
  • A wall dive with the top of the wall from 5m down to 35m at some points, lots of Nudibranch and flatworms in the shallows. The shallow portion on top of the wall has the most amazing variety of hard coral I have ever see and in pristine condition too! A giant Trevally (more than a meter in length), also patrols the shallows and there are lots of Bannerfish, Fusiliers and Basslets all over the site. At the southern part of this site near the Marine Sanctuary there is a deep coral outcrop at around 30m where a large solitary barracuda usually lurks.
    Average depth: 5 – 30m
    Travel Time from the Resort: 9 min

  • Mamsa Point
  • One of the top sites on the Island. This is a great dive when the currents are ripping. The starting buoy is the buoy at Cogon point just past the rocky outcrop to the North of the little hamlet on shore. The buoy is in about 8m of water and facing out to sea there will be a sandy valley to your left. There is a cleaning station there where Spanish Mackarel can sometimes be seen. The drift is almost always to the South so keep the slope to your right. You will drift through a coral garden at approximately 10m and there are schools of surgeon fish, rainbow runners, and lots of other reef tropicals here. Many times a turtle can also be seen feeding on the sponges. You will come to another sandy sloping valley and there are garden eels, and sometimes scorpion devilfish in the sand. There is also a cleaning station here and this is another chance to see Spanish Mackarel. On the other side of the valley the coral slope starts again and at around 20m there is a small overhang where we usually see large Mangrove Snappers, Midnight Snapper and Grouper hanging around waiting for the current to bring them a meal. Keep an eye on your guide as from here on he will be looking out to the blue, above you, up to the surface and on top of the slope hoping to spot the school of Big eye Trevally that this site is named after. Sometimes you will drift past the last buoy and end up at Kan-uran other times you will end the dive at the last buoy which is a coral garden on top of the slope at 5m with lots of hard and soft corals, trumpetfish, clownfish , long nose wrasse, cleaner stations and all sorts of other critters.
    Average depth: 20m
    Travel Time from the Resort: 9 min

  • Cogon Point
  • This is actually the coral garden that you drift through on your way to Mamsa Pt. but it can be a dive unto itself. If the currents aren’t strong you descend at the buoy and follow the edge of the sandy slope to about 15m. Between the sandy slope and the coral will be a small wall here you will find lots of Snapper, Unicorn Surgeonfish and fusiliers. You then zigzag back and forth over the coral garden and end up back at the buoy you started from.
    Average depth: 15m
    Travel Time from the Resort: 8 min

  • Ulo Point
  • This site is off limits to divers as it is reserved for fishing.

  • Coconut Point
  • Another one of Apo Island’s top sites. This site is only for small groups of advanced divers as the currents here can be strong, and unpredictable. Most of the dive is along a steep wall that turns into a wall towards the end. The wall is interspersed with sandy channels where down currents can occur. There are hard and soft corals on this dive with numerous colored whip corals and myriad hued sponges. It’s like a veritable aquarium on this dive with swirling Bannerfish, Pyramid butterflyfish, different types of fusilier and snapper, rock cod, grouper, turtles, sometimes barracuda, big eye jacks, solitary giant trevallies, bumphead parrotfish, bumhead wrasse, banded seasnakes, sweetlips, filefish, very large striated pufferfish, needlefish, and many many more.
    Average depth: 10 – 25m
    Travel Time from the Resort: 5 min

  • Largahan
  • This is the dive site right next to the resort House Reef. The buoy is set in approximately 10m of water and is surrounded by large coral heads speckled over brown sand. The coral heads are formed in amazing and intricate shapes and amongst them you can find Moray eels, Box fish, and Cleaner Shrimp. The sand in between the coral heads has Snake Eels, Sole, Crocodile Fish, Scorpion Fish and Nudibranchs. The flat area gradually transforms into descending steps towards the South and eventually turns into a steep wall perpendicular to shore. The walls top has lots of reef tropicals and there is a Black Coral bush on the wall itself. There is also an overhang where there is sometimes found a Blue ribbon Eel. The wall is bordered by a white sand slope which erupts into a forest of bubbles(volcanic gas?), at around 8 to 10m. The dive is ended by crossing this forest of bubbles and either ending up at the House Reef and swimming into the resort’s beach, or swimming back to the starting buoy.
    Average depth: 10 – 25m
    Travel Time from the Resort: 3 min

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