Diving in the Perhentian Islands

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Perhentian Besar, Malaysia

Diving in the Perhentian Islands Perhentian Besar Reviews

alexchan alexchan
122 reviews
Variable diving and variable dive operators Aug 12, 2012
We did two days of diving while staying on Perhentian Besar. The two days are the perfect illustration that one's choice of dive operators and dive sites can make or break one's experience of diving at a destination.

On DAY 1, we did two dives with Alu Alu Divers:

- Our first dive at the Sugar Wreck had only 5m of visibility. We could hardly see the ship; only the bit that was immediately in front of us. We were told to expect certain barracudas and also to look into the Captain's bridge for red snappers. We couldn't even make out the bridge! We couldn't see any sign of fish due to he poor visibility either. Apparently the visibility was quite good as far as this site goes and it gets worse much worse. Why bother! All of us agreed this was a shit site.

- The second dive was at Tanjung Tukas Laut. Visbility was much better but the sea life and coral there was unexciting. The most interesting stuff we saw was Parrot fish and Clown fish; that's a pretty sad situation! I thought this sight was poor while others thought it was average. Talking to other dive masters later, they all reckoned it is a boring site with not much interesting sea life. Why on earth were we taken there?

In the evening, I enquired with the dive master as to the dive spots for tomorrow. He told me the names and I asked "Are they good sites?" He replied "They're all good here." I replied "How do you explain this morning then." He said that this morning was good by most people's standards. I admit I have been quite spoilt with Sipadan, Bunaken and Weh in my short time diving.

I didn't think the British dive master was particularly vigilant. I didn't see him look back very often like all dive masters do, to make sure the group was still there. I had to swim up to him to report my tank levels as he didn't turn back to ask. In general, there wasn't very much attention in general and if I had been a less experienced diver I would probably be rather nervous. The two dive masters appear quite overworked with four dives a day and the last few days have been particularly busy with large Singaporean groups.

By the way, don't just avoid a particular dive centre because I didn't have a good experience. Dive masters come and go, and in larger centres they may not all be alike.

On DAY 2 we did two dives again, with Arwana Perhentian Dive Centre.

Initially we were booked with Alu Alu Divers. The morning began with dark clouds and white caps in the sea. We delayed our 0900 start till 1000 and pushed off then. After collecting extra dive tanks from a nearby resort (because power at our place was interrupted last night interrupting refilling), the boat wouldn't restart. It made some piston noises. The dive was cancelled.

We hunted around to see who else could take us. The Arwana Perhentian Dive Centre had two afternoon trips.

- The first dive was at Terumbu Tiga (also called T3 or Tiger Rock). This was a rocky outcrop which underwater had many swim throughs and canyon-like passages. I liked swimming through the narrow "canyons" and seeing things on the wall. The gaps and holes which we swam through were cool too as it was good practice for buoyancy control. While we saw blue spotted ribbon tail ray and porcupine fish. Despite not being overladen with sea life, the site was very interesting.

- The second dive was at D'Lagoon off Perhentian Kecil. Hopping into the water, it felt like an aquarium with lots of small fish. Visibility was good (by most people's standard) at 10m but I thought it was average. We spent a lot of time going through the most beautiful coral garden I've ever seen. We hovered over the coral then negotiated our way between the narrow parts that we could. As it was a shallow dive, our dive master happily continued the dive to a total of 77 minutes. I saw porcupine fish, a blue spotted ribbon tail ray, Jenkins ray, yellow tail barracudas (not big), file fish, potato grouper and cleaner shrimps in addition to the usual parrot and clown fishes.

I thought the dive master at Arwana was a lot more vigilant and I felt more comfortable. He also took time to point out marine life that is of interest. It is a blessing in disguise that our Alu Alu dive boat broke down, forcing us to change dive operators.
All dressed up but nowhere to go d…
Kim looking trim in his wetsuit.
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wawan89 wawan89
3 reviews
Famous Malaysia diving spot Oct 22, 2012
A nature of Perhentian Island is the main attractive. Every year, thousands of tourist flocked to the island. Many from Europe and United States.The outdoor such as jungle tracking, snorkeling, diving and fishing have become the major activities. These activities had derived Perhentian Island's economy as the best Island for vacation in Malaysia. The island also equipped with the telecommunication services. You can get hook up to the internet and communicate with your friends via the wireless telephone. The service charge is average. If you have the GSM hand phone, you should have no problem
1 / 1 TravBuddies found this review helpful/trustworthy

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