Why Stop at Open Water ?

 

The next step after being certified as an Open Water Diver with SSI, would be to be an Advanced Adventurer.

 

Sleep, eat, dive and repeat – That was how I spent my weekend for the end of June.

Onboard MV Nautica with Pulau Tioman set as her destination, I was ecstatic for to get my Advanced Adventurer (AA) certificationTogether with me were Tracy and Yan Ni, the other two DMAs who were going to get their Open Water Diver (OWD) certification.

We arrived at Punggol Marina Country Club at 5.30pm and met with the boat crew of MV Nautica. There were 6 of them onboard – Am, Alian, Anwar, Jul, Jung Jung and John. The former three were mainly in charged of dive deck operations such as helping the divers to gear up as quickly as possible and steering the dinghy. Anwar was the engineer for the boats’ engines and Jung Jung was the chef that cooked all the delicious food on board! Captain John made sure that the boat was on her path. Lastly, Robin was the cruise director of MV Nautica. All these individuals made our dive trip an even more enjoyable experience!

After all the customers arrived onboard, the engines roared and the boat gradually drifted away from the jetty.

Photos of us passing by a luxurious cruise, MV Nautica ‘s Sun Deck where we can enjoy the sea breeze between dives and chill under the stars at night and an open air dining area where we have our meals and relax, plus a photo of divers mingling around before we set sail.

Bye Bye Singapore, Hello Malaysia!

We were given a short briefing and introduction about the ship and her crew as well as the available amenities and instructors in charged of us. There is free-flow of coffee, tea, milo and biscuits too! ?

I was paired with my dive buddy, Zhen Yuan, and grouped with Tracy and Yan Ni, under our instructor, Zhihao. We called Zhihao, Scott instead. Scott was a very jovial individual which strongly resonated his burning passion for scuba diving. He always emphasized on our safety and his briefings were clear and easy to understand. The rest of the customers were leisure divers. After the briefing by our individual instructors, we then broke off to head back to our bunks to rest. As the rest of the customers retreat to their rooms, the three of us – Tracy, Yan Ni and me, explored the boat

After a good nights’ rest, I was ready for my adventure. The view that I woke up to was simply beautiful! On Saturday, I did a total of 5 dives, with the last dive as a night dive. The below listed are the dive sites and information on what I did to get certified as an AA diver.
  • Pirate reef
    • Practiced neutral buoyancy by experimenting with different placements of weights (e.g. weights in BCD, nearer to upper body)
  • Chebeh
    • As there was no sandy bottom, and coral reefs filled the dive site, my dive buddy and I did a leisure dive where we followed Scott and we managed to spot a sea turtle.
  • Labas
    • Skill that was taught and practiced was navigation. This was followed by a leisure dive where we swam along reef walls.
  • Sipadan/Sawadee Wreck
    • We did a deep and wreck dive combined. Visibility was not as good compared to the previous dives but I was able to appreciate the beauty of the sunken ships.
  • Renggis
    • For my final dive, I did a night dive. I spotted a cuttlefish, barracuda and a large pufferfish.

For this dive trip, my favorite dive would had to be one where we swam along the coral reef wall where the marine life was in abundance! The next would be the night dive. The night dive begins at sunset, hence it was a really unique experience whereby I got to watch the underwater world come to life right in front of my eyes. Unfortunately, I do not have any underwater images or videos which I would have loved to share with everyone. The food was so so so good! Meals were provided in between dives, buffet style. One of the highlights of the trip was the barbeque dinner that was provided on Saturday night. This was the period of time where I guess most of the divers would overeat. With constant flow of food coming from the kitchen, maybe this was why some divers put on weight overtime if they do live onboards frequently? Haha! It’s definitely worth it – The hassle-free transportation without the need to unload and unload equipment and our well-being taken care of by the amazing crew was wonderful. The divers were all happy and full by the time we did our last dive. Everyone from boat crew to customers were all friendly and encouraging, sharing their experiences and stories with everyone. I would like to thank my instructor, Scott, for being such a positive instructor! I would also like to thank Zhen Yuan for being a great dive buddy as well. It really made my entire trip even more pleasant. I was very lucky to have done my AA course onboard MV Nautica and I count my blessings for that! ?[

Goodbye Malaysia, I will be back!

On to the next adventure,
Lauren

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Monsoon Season – Bidding Goodbye!

With more unpredictable rain falls, November marks the start of our monsoon. Which temporary puts our Tioman trips to a full stop for 2013.

With the companion of our PADI Open Water Course students and Leisure divers, the Amazing Dive Team started with a wet trip. As though to prepare us for our dives on Saturday, the rain on Friday soaked us in our excitement and laughter. The rain persisted for the rest of the evening and only came to a stop just as our boat berthed by Salang Jetty. Allowing us to proceed comfortably toward Salang Beach Resort without much scrambling.

Saturday morning was beautiful, like a wish come true for a last trip to Tioman this year, the sky was blue with patches of clouds sitting on it. We had an average 12 to 15 metres of visibility during the day with sightings of turtles and ended our night dive at Soyak, bidding good bye to the cat shark! (Yes, we saw a cat shark at Soyak!)

The wind was picking up slightly on Sunday morning and we decided our dive site to be on Malang Rock. It was a right decision with at least 5 turtles waiting for us there where we have them filmed below:

Calm Turtle & Excited Divers. (Video credits to Jie Ling)

And some of photos taken during the trip:

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1385554_10151956605457744_522576665_n 1391933_10151956605597744_1311635553_n david relaxing happy leisure divers hocck and ling jian an sharkunderwater is always relax(Photo credits to Jie Ling )

We bid the resort staff and boat crew goodbye with group hugs and much emotions on Sunday noon. Be it the staff, the resort, the food or the dives, we are definitely going to miss it badly this next 5 months!

Starting from this coming week, Amazing Dive will diving in Bintan Island and Southern Riau Islands. With monthly long haul trips to Maldives, Similan Island, Lembeh, Donsol, and many more! Do feel free to leave us a comment to ask for more details for trip destinations!

Xoxo! -The Amazing Dive Team