Trip Reports - Maldives Liveaboards

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2002 - 2010
Boat Trip Datesort ascending Itinerary  
Sea Spirit SS491 27 Dec 2015 to 3 Jan 2016 Central Atolls (7 days)
Guest Transfer
Three guests stayed on from Christmas trip. Other guests arrived from internationl flights and transferred to Sea Spirit. We set up kit, had lunch, and went for a check dive.
Dive 1
BLACK TIP REEF SHARKS of varying sizes, a round ribbontail ray, 3x leaf fish, pair of elegant squat lobsters in a featherstar, a large spiny lobster, a small yellow spotted box pufferfish, turtle plus lots of different groupers including whit spotted and camouflage
Day 1
One of the three leaf fish we found on the check dive from MV Sea Spirit, Maldives
Dive 1
SO MANY FISH! And so many varieties. Schools of black and white snappers, bluestrip snappr, bannerfish, soldierfish, large group of oriental sweetlips, silver swetlips then lovely overhangs with small seafans and blue soft coral. Barracudas, giant trevallies and tunas off the reef
Dive 2
A curious manta came past a few times looking for a cleaning station. There were white tips sleeping on the slope and a large schol of bluestripe snappers plus goldspot emperors just inside the channel corner. We loved the orange anemones plus porcelain crab pairs in carpet anemones and turtle
Dive 3
A lovely school of LONGFIN BATFISH playing around on top of the reef kept us entertained but we also saw white tip sharks scooting round, crown squirrelfish in schools along the reef top, plus pyramid and longnose butterflyfish and one-spine surgeonfish. A manta came to investigate just as divers startd their safety stops
Day 2
Curious manta passing by guests on MV Sea Spirit, Maldives
Dive 1
Ocean facing deep thila where we saw a giant barracuda (REALLY giant!) a shortfin mobula ray, large Napoleon and a large yellow grouper (the yellow bits were fading). Along the reef were schools of reef fish and saw eagle rays, white tip sharks and found a short-headed shrimp in an anemone
Dive 2
Opposing currents with the shallow current out and a deep cold in-current below 20m. Close to the corner were coral blocks and then ledges full of glassfish plus groupers, morays and many bannerfish and elongate surgeonfish. The reef slope had excellent hard coral growth and a variety of reef fish
Ocean Crossing
Ocean crossing to South Male atoll
Dive 3
Channel corner with A GREAT SHARK SHOW WITH WHITE TIP SHARKS DANCING IN THE CURRENT PLUS AN EAGLE RAYS AND A HOVERING ROUND RIBBONTAIL RAY. The water was cold and clear below 20m. Mackerel scads were rubbing themselves against the sharks and all the fish were very excited. We had a brisk drift into the channel. We saw honeycomb moraysand several smoke angelfish (unusual!).
Day 3
Freeswimming honeycomb moray from MV Sea Spirit, Maldives
Dive 1
Surprise out-current in channel so dived ocean reef. Dramatic overhangs cut into a near-vertical reef down past 35m and were hungs with large seafans and lots of different soft corals, acabaria etc. In shallower pink soft coral lined ledges we saw schools of bluestripe snappers, yellowback fusiliers, baby clown triggerfish, collared butterflyfish, spearing mantis shrimps etc. White tip sharks cruised the drop off and an eagle ray soared above us
Dive 2
Ocean facing reef and a drift into the channel. Thee were lots of white tip sharks on the corner plus a large school of big-eye jacks and dense schools of fusiliers being chased by dogtooth tunas. We found three leaf fish in various colours, 3 spiny lobsters together plus some singles and just enjoyed the lovely fish and corals along this interesting reefscape
Dive 3
Dramatic shark dive with white tips and grey sharks on the corner and some of the larger grey sharks soaring above our heads. A large school of black and white snappers hung in the channel. We saw 2 + 2 eagle rays, tunas, fusiliers and giants trevallies rushing around etc. We had a good drift and saw all the rudderfish at the washing machine but today it was a controlled drift
Night Dive
Great critter night dive when we saw Maldives and black sponge snails, a baby lobster, various crabs, hingebeak shrimps, a tapestry shrimp, a freeswimming undulate moray, a fimbriated and a little moray plus several large hunting giant morays
Day 4
Dense schools of fish in the Maldives from MV Sea Spirit
Dive 1
Current point of this ocean-facing thila was busy with many black and white snappers, barracudas and big eye jacks plus GREY SHARKS and white tip sharks riding the current eddy. We saw a SPOT FIN SHARK (rare!). There was a really fast current into the atoll so most divers bailed out and ascended on SMBs
Dive 2
Critter site: we found several blue and a couple of black ribbon eels, a yellow leaf fish, spearing mantis shrimps, Amboin shrimps, scorpionfish of varying sizes, a stonefish, Chromodoris geometrica nudi and lots of lionfish in-hiding
Dive 3
There were rivers of lined and neon fusiliers along the reef and schools of reef fish amongst the coral blocks on the inner sandy slope. We found another spearing mantis shrimp, a juvenile oriental sweetlips, a yellow margin moray with a Lysmata shrimp busy cleaning it, 3x sponge snails together and an Aplysia parvula nudibranch
We toasted the New Year in every hour! Happy New Year everybody!
Day 5
Diver meets shark on MV Sea Spirit, Maldives
Dive 1
There were lots of snappers and jacks on the channel front and an eagle ray up high in the current on the corner. The grey sharks were a little off the reef, so not so easy to see. A large blue Napoleon cruised up and down checking out who was there and we saw several honecomb morys having an early brush-up at cleaning stations. Despite the small current on the corner we had a very fast and whirly drift into the channel and the washing machine was in fast spin cycle whizzing divers and fish around. Rollercoaster!
Dive 2
Reef with lots of colourful overhangs and swim-throughs with every kind of sponge, ascidian, featherstar, black coral, seafan etc. There were lots of areas of glassfish with red groupers and large lionfish out hunting. We saw a very spotted eagle ray, a group of marauding bluefin jacks, a cometfish etc.
Dive 3
Reef and wreck site with a huge Mappa puffer on the wreck. There wee many nooks and crannies filled with Durban dancing shrimps plus glassfish and Bruuni and Lysmata shrimps. Some impressive soft corals clung to the hull. We found several peacock mantis shrimp, Schultz pipefish, lionfish, spong snauls, nudis, and loved the colourful wall decoated with white acabaria
Day 6
Schools of large black and white snappers on channel front from MV Sea Spirit, Maldives
Dive 1
Blustery weather sent us back to the wreck where we spent longer this time around as we were on Nitrox. The area around the propeller has lovely Nepthia soft coral growth and there were several big eye emperors and Dussomier's surgeonfish nearby. We found mantis shrimps and pipefish again, lots of Bruuni cleaner shrimps and "nudibranch of the week": a pretty Chrodoris tritos lifting its mantle up and down like a frilly skirt
Daytime Excursion
We travelled back to Male. After lunch some guests made a visit to the capital for sightseeing and an ice-cream
Day 7
Beautiful coral clad overhangs and ledges from MV Sea Spirit, Maldives
Guest Transfer
Guests were transferred to the airport for international flights and seaplane transfers to resorts
Day 8
SChool of entertaining long fin batfish. The divers' friends from MV Sea Spirit
 
Guest Transfer
Three guests stayed on from Christmas trip. Other guests arrived from internationl flights and transferred to Sea Spirit. We set up kit, had lunch, and went for a check dive.
Dive 1
BLACK TIP REEF SHARKS of varying sizes, a round ribbontail ray, 3x leaf fish, pair of elegant squat lobsters in a featherstar, a large spiny lobster, a small yellow spotted box pufferfish, turtle plus lots of different groupers including whit spotted and camouflage
Day 1
One of the three leaf fish we found on the check dive from MV Sea Spirit, Maldives
Dive 1
SO MANY FISH! And so many varieties. Schools of black and white snappers, bluestrip snappr, bannerfish, soldierfish, large group of oriental sweetlips, silver swetlips then lovely overhangs with small seafans and blue soft coral. Barracudas, giant trevallies and tunas off the reef
Dive 2
A curious manta came past a few times looking for a cleaning station. There were white tips sleeping on the slope and a large schol of bluestripe snappers plus goldspot emperors just inside the channel corner. We loved the orange anemones plus porcelain crab pairs in carpet anemones and turtle
Dive 3
A lovely school of LONGFIN BATFISH playing around on top of the reef kept us entertained but we also saw white tip sharks scooting round, crown squirrelfish in schools along the reef top, plus pyramid and longnose butterflyfish and one-spine surgeonfish. A manta came to investigate just as divers startd their safety stops
Day 2
Curious manta passing by guests on MV Sea Spirit, Maldives
Dive 1
Ocean facing deep thila where we saw a giant barracuda (REALLY giant!) a shortfin mobula ray, large Napoleon and a large yellow grouper (the yellow bits were fading). Along the reef were schools of reef fish and saw eagle rays, white tip sharks and found a short-headed shrimp in an anemone
Dive 2
Opposing currents with the shallow current out and a deep cold in-current below 20m. Close to the corner were coral blocks and then ledges full of glassfish plus groupers, morays and many bannerfish and elongate surgeonfish. The reef slope had excellent hard coral growth and a variety of reef fish
Ocean Crossing
Ocean crossing to South Male atoll
Dive 3
Channel corner with A GREAT SHARK SHOW WITH WHITE TIP SHARKS DANCING IN THE CURRENT PLUS AN EAGLE RAYS AND A HOVERING ROUND RIBBONTAIL RAY. The water was cold and clear below 20m. Mackerel scads were rubbing themselves against the sharks and all the fish were very excited. We had a brisk drift into the channel. We saw honeycomb moraysand several smoke angelfish (unusual!).
Day 3
Freeswimming honeycomb moray from MV Sea Spirit, Maldives
Dive 1
Surprise out-current in channel so dived ocean reef. Dramatic overhangs cut into a near-vertical reef down past 35m and were hungs with large seafans and lots of different soft corals, acabaria etc. In shallower pink soft coral lined ledges we saw schools of bluestripe snappers, yellowback fusiliers, baby clown triggerfish, collared butterflyfish, spearing mantis shrimps etc. White tip sharks cruised the drop off and an eagle ray soared above us
Dive 2
Ocean facing reef and a drift into the channel. Thee were lots of white tip sharks on the corner plus a large school of big-eye jacks and dense schools of fusiliers being chased by dogtooth tunas. We found three leaf fish in various colours, 3 spiny lobsters together plus some singles and just enjoyed the lovely fish and corals along this interesting reefscape
Dive 3
Dramatic shark dive with white tips and grey sharks on the corner and some of the larger grey sharks soaring above our heads. A large school of black and white snappers hung in the channel. We saw 2 + 2 eagle rays, tunas, fusiliers and giants trevallies rushing around etc. We had a good drift and saw all the rudderfish at the washing machine but today it was a controlled drift
Night Dive
Great critter night dive when we saw Maldives and black sponge snails, a baby lobster, various crabs, hingebeak shrimps, a tapestry shrimp, a freeswimming undulate moray, a fimbriated and a little moray plus several large hunting giant morays
Day 4
Dense schools of fish in the Maldives from MV Sea Spirit
Dive 1
Current point of this ocean-facing thila was busy with many black and white snappers, barracudas and big eye jacks plus GREY SHARKS and white tip sharks riding the current eddy. We saw a SPOT FIN SHARK (rare!). There was a really fast current into the atoll so most divers bailed out and ascended on SMBs
Dive 2
Critter site: we found several blue and a couple of black ribbon eels, a yellow leaf fish, spearing mantis shrimps, Amboin shrimps, scorpionfish of varying sizes, a stonefish, Chromodoris geometrica nudi and lots of lionfish in-hiding
Dive 3
There were rivers of lined and neon fusiliers along the reef and schools of reef fish amongst the coral blocks on the inner sandy slope. We found another spearing mantis shrimp, a juvenile oriental sweetlips, a yellow margin moray with a Lysmata shrimp busy cleaning it, 3x sponge snails together and an Aplysia parvula nudibranch
We toasted the New Year in every hour! Happy New Year everybody!
Day 5
Diver meets shark on MV Sea Spirit, Maldives
Dive 1
There were lots of snappers and jacks on the channel front and an eagle ray up high in the current on the corner. The grey sharks were a little off the reef, so not so easy to see. A large blue Napoleon cruised up and down checking out who was there and we saw several honecomb morys having an early brush-up at cleaning stations. Despite the small current on the corner we had a very fast and whirly drift into the channel and the washing machine was in fast spin cycle whizzing divers and fish around. Rollercoaster!
Dive 2
Reef with lots of colourful overhangs and swim-throughs with every kind of sponge, ascidian, featherstar, black coral, seafan etc. There were lots of areas of glassfish with red groupers and large lionfish out hunting. We saw a very spotted eagle ray, a group of marauding bluefin jacks, a cometfish etc.
Dive 3
Reef and wreck site with a huge Mappa puffer on the wreck. There wee many nooks and crannies filled with Durban dancing shrimps plus glassfish and Bruuni and Lysmata shrimps. Some impressive soft corals clung to the hull. We found several peacock mantis shrimp, Schultz pipefish, lionfish, spong snauls, nudis, and loved the colourful wall decoated with white acabaria
Day 6
Schools of large black and white snappers on channel front from MV Sea Spirit, Maldives
Dive 1
Blustery weather sent us back to the wreck where we spent longer this time around as we were on Nitrox. The area around the propeller has lovely Nepthia soft coral growth and there were several big eye emperors and Dussomier's surgeonfish nearby. We found mantis shrimps and pipefish again, lots of Bruuni cleaner shrimps and "nudibranch of the week": a pretty Chrodoris tritos lifting its mantle up and down like a frilly skirt
Daytime Excursion
We travelled back to Male. After lunch some guests made a visit to the capital for sightseeing and an ice-cream
Day 7
Beautiful coral clad overhangs and ledges from MV Sea Spirit, Maldives
Guest Transfer
Guests were transferred to the airport for international flights and seaplane transfers to resorts
Day 8
SChool of entertaining long fin batfish. The divers' friends from MV Sea Spirit
Sea Spirit SS490 20 Dec 2015 to 27 Dec 2015 Christmas Special (7 day)
Guest Transfer
Guests arrived from various international flights and guest huses and resorts. We made a morning check dive as afternoon arrivals too late for dive
Dive 1
Check dive on nearby famous thila site with lovely schools of fish around coral blocks and canyons: humpback, blue stripe, yellow and black-and-white snappers, plus large groupers, vrmillion rock codsetc. We found Bruuni and banded coral shrimps cleaning pufferfish and clown triggers. A small napoleon cruised past whilst several lionfish were out hunting on the reef slope.
Day 1
Beautiful reef fish seen from MV Sea Spirit, Maldives
Dive 1
An easy drift for this second check dive and we found lots of white tip reef sharks resting on the bottom. We found a pair of porcelain crabs in carpet anemones, a large blue Napoleon, a school of bonitos, a school of oriental sweetlips, peacock mantis shrimps and schools of various species of snappers
Dive 2
A pretty and colourful reef with schooling bannerfish, elongate surgeonfish and lined fusiliers at the current point and glassfish and soldierfish in the overhangs. There were many banded coral shrimps and many blue and green magnificent anemones in the shallows full of Maldives blackfoot clownfish
Ocean Crossing
Ocean crossing to North Ari atoll
Dive 3
Grey sharks of all sizes cruised the deeper blocks and inquisitive white tip sharks slinked past divers whilst lazy ones slept in the sand. A pair of courting golden jacks spent ages at cleaning stations. We also saw three very friendly hawksbill turtles, a juvenile bicolour parrotfish, octopus, pair of yellow trunkfish, schools of rainbow runners and a little eagle ray
Night Dive
AMAZING NIGHT DIVE WITH UP TO FOUR MANTAS! SOME WERE BUSY HOOVERING UP PLANKTON NEAR THE BOTTOM AND PAYING A LOT OF ATTENTION TO DIVERS WHILST OTHERS WERE BUSY SOMERSAUTING UNDER THE BOATS. WHAT A SHOW!!!!
Day 2
Amazing mantas on night dive from MV Sea Spirit, Maldives
Dive 1
An ocean reef corner which was a little quiet outside but the area just inside the channel was busy with schools of humpback snappers, oriental sweetlips, Indian bannerfish, big eye emperors plus a large round ribbontail ray, an eagle ray and lots of white tip sharks at the bottom of the channel. We saw a school of around 40 black spotted pufferfish in all colour varieties from bright yellow to blush/black in a courtship aggregation
Dive 2
FANTASTIC MANTA SHOW WITH AROUND 10 MANTAS VISITING CLEANING STATION AND UP TO 5 SEEN TOGETHER. SOME WERE VERY INQUISITIVE AND CLOSELY CHECKED OUT DIVERS AND SWAM THROUGH THEIR BUBBLES WHILST OTHERS KEPT THEIR DISTANCE. THE MAGNIFICENT SCHOOLS OF BLUESTRIPE SNAPPERS AND YELLOW GOATFISH BLOCKED THE VIEW! We also found baby white tips hiding under the big coral blocks and a pair of shorthead shrimps in a carpet anemone
Dive 3
A strong current so it was hard work on the reef and we ended up drifting to the back for shelter but that was where we found the grey sharks too! There was a pair if large adults plus three mid-sized ones, circling the back current-eddy. We also saw a hovering round ribbontail ray (thought it was a manta?), chevron barracudas, longfin batfish, mantis shrimps etc.
Snorkelling
A different lagoon and another manta show. Some intrepid snorkelers got in to get a closer view of the somersaulting mantas!
Day 3
Another great manta ray show from MV Sea Spirit
Dive 1
Blue and pink soft coral frosted pinnacles and overhangs with lots of buzzing anthias and schools of reef fish plus white tip sharks resting on the bottom. We found a Phyllidia occelata seaslug, a pair of a white and a yellow leaf fish and messed around parting the large school of blue stripe snappers
Dive 2
Another great dive with lots of lovely things seen: Spot the friendly little eagle ray (now completely missing a tail!), a friendly turtle, lots of baby white tips under table corals, a SPOT FIN FROG FISH A. nummifer, Chromodoris geminus nudibranch, schools of big eye crescent tails, batfish etc.
Ocean Crossing
Ocean crossing to Rasdhoo atoll
Dive 3
A beautiful ocean reef with several cruising grey sharks, TWO MANTAS, a white leaf fish,Napoleon, longnose emperos, Pontonides shrimp on a wire coral, school of Moorish idols, Lysmata shrimps guarded by black cheek morays, blueface and two spot angelfish eyc.
Day 4
Closely packed schools of bluestripe snappers, just so mny fish! from Mv Sea Spirit
Dive 1
A second dive at this beautiful site with very different current and conditions. The current point was at the far west point of the reef with several GREY SHARKS cruising about plus a very large school of big eye jacks which meandered around the entire site. Some great macro today: AN ORNATE GHOST PIPEFISH, LARGE SPEARING MANTIS SHRIMP WITH AMBOIN AND PERICLIMINES ENTOURAGE, WHITE LEAF FISH, LYSMATA SHIMPS etc. Batfish and Vlamings surgeonfish followed us around.
Ocean Crossing
Ocean crossing to North Male' atoll
Dive 2
3x MANTAS SWAM PAST nice and slowly taking a close look at the divers! A ZEBRA SHARK WAS TRYING TO SLEEP on the reef slope and we kept disturbing her (oops!) The ocean reef was very dramatic with large coral covered spurs and lots of reef fish and nice overhangs with glassfish and soldierfish plus pyramid butterflyfish and a school of powder blues
Ocean Crossing
Crossing to South Male Atoll
Dive 3
Overhangs with acabaria corals in a variety of colours, sea whips and seafans plus soft corals in shades of yellow and blue. There were several large black saddle coral groupers, we foun a HALIMEDA GHOST PIPEFISH and a cobia without its entourage
Day 5
Sleeping zebra shark seen from MV Sea Spirit, Maldives
Dive 1
Alternative site when preferred site was blown out in very big seas. We saw a very large Napoleon plus a number of smaller ones, several large brown marbled groupers, an eagle ray, dense schools of bannerfish plus schools of Sgt Majors, jacks and some nice overhangs full of glassfish
Dive 2
Great critter dive: we found ribbon eels in blue and black plus an intermediate, several green/yellow leaf fish, feisty black cheek morays guarding Lysmata shrimps, Bruuni and banded coral shrimps, a walking stonefish, another huge blue Napoleon (they seem to be everywhere this week!) and a school of gold finger dart pompanos
Daytime Excursion
Short visit to sandbank for a quick Christmas photoshoot and to get a proper sand experience
Dive 3
AMAZING EAGLE RAY SHOW AS 15 EAGLE RAYS HUNG IN FORMATION PLUS ANOTHER 3 A LITTLE UP-CURRENT AND LOTS OF GREY SHARKS AND WHITE TIPS UNDER THE REEF LIP IN THE COLDER WATER. W e had a fast and whirly dift into the channel with current in all directions. It was exciting to say the least!
Night Dive
Another critter dive, this time enjoying a night dive on a reef wall covered in colourful sponges and ascidians amongst black corals trees ans lots of table corals. We found a pair of Coriocella nigra black sponge snails ( a rare species in the Maldives), many hinge-beak shrimps, hermit crabs, a freeswimming moray out hunting and another at a shrimp cleaning station,freeswimming featherstars, a P. monostichos flatworm etc.
We celebrated Christmas with a special dinner and Thilak baked a chocolate Yule log for dessert
Day 6
Christmas day visit to sandbank from MV Sea Spirit
Dive 1
Blue water on the ocean wall and good visibility at the stat of the dive at this dramatic ocean reef site. There were schools of fusiliers plus snappers and mackerels on the outside reef. A school of 100's bonitos swept past a few tims and two grey sharks cruised the reef edge. The coral blocks on the reef slope were very colourful and full of reef fish and colourful nepthia soft corals. A large school of elongate surgeonfish swam up and down and we had a lovely friendly turtle pose for photographers just before we ascended
Dive 2
Wreck and reef site with Durban, Lysmata and Bruuni shrimps plus Schultz pipefish and peacock mantis shrimps on the wreck. There were lovely areas of white acabaria coral on the reef wall and we found a Chromodoris tritos nudi, lots of groupers, clownfish, damsels and just about every kind of fish and coral so just a lovely final dive
Daytime Excursion
We travelled back to North Male, arriving near Male city after lunch. Some divers visited the city for sightseeing and a visit to Seagull for an icecream
Day 7
Beautiful soft corals from MV Sea Spirit, Maldives
Guests departed Sea Spirit and transferred to the airport for onward flights and connections
Day 8
Hawksbill turtle from MV Sea Spirit, Maldives
 
Guest Transfer
Guests arrived from various international flights and guest huses and resorts. We made a morning check dive as afternoon arrivals too late for dive
Dive 1
Check dive on nearby famous thila site with lovely schools of fish around coral blocks and canyons: humpback, blue stripe, yellow and black-and-white snappers, plus large groupers, vrmillion rock codsetc. We found Bruuni and banded coral shrimps cleaning pufferfish and clown triggers. A small napoleon cruised past whilst several lionfish were out hunting on the reef slope.
Day 1
Beautiful reef fish seen from MV Sea Spirit, Maldives
Dive 1
An easy drift for this second check dive and we found lots of white tip reef sharks resting on the bottom. We found a pair of porcelain crabs in carpet anemones, a large blue Napoleon, a school of bonitos, a school of oriental sweetlips, peacock mantis shrimps and schools of various species of snappers
Dive 2
A pretty and colourful reef with schooling bannerfish, elongate surgeonfish and lined fusiliers at the current point and glassfish and soldierfish in the overhangs. There were many banded coral shrimps and many blue and green magnificent anemones in the shallows full of Maldives blackfoot clownfish
Ocean Crossing
Ocean crossing to North Ari atoll
Dive 3
Grey sharks of all sizes cruised the deeper blocks and inquisitive white tip sharks slinked past divers whilst lazy ones slept in the sand. A pair of courting golden jacks spent ages at cleaning stations. We also saw three very friendly hawksbill turtles, a juvenile bicolour parrotfish, octopus, pair of yellow trunkfish, schools of rainbow runners and a little eagle ray
Night Dive
AMAZING NIGHT DIVE WITH UP TO FOUR MANTAS! SOME WERE BUSY HOOVERING UP PLANKTON NEAR THE BOTTOM AND PAYING A LOT OF ATTENTION TO DIVERS WHILST OTHERS WERE BUSY SOMERSAUTING UNDER THE BOATS. WHAT A SHOW!!!!
Day 2
Amazing mantas on night dive from MV Sea Spirit, Maldives
Dive 1
An ocean reef corner which was a little quiet outside but the area just inside the channel was busy with schools of humpback snappers, oriental sweetlips, Indian bannerfish, big eye emperors plus a large round ribbontail ray, an eagle ray and lots of white tip sharks at the bottom of the channel. We saw a school of around 40 black spotted pufferfish in all colour varieties from bright yellow to blush/black in a courtship aggregation
Dive 2
FANTASTIC MANTA SHOW WITH AROUND 10 MANTAS VISITING CLEANING STATION AND UP TO 5 SEEN TOGETHER. SOME WERE VERY INQUISITIVE AND CLOSELY CHECKED OUT DIVERS AND SWAM THROUGH THEIR BUBBLES WHILST OTHERS KEPT THEIR DISTANCE. THE MAGNIFICENT SCHOOLS OF BLUESTRIPE SNAPPERS AND YELLOW GOATFISH BLOCKED THE VIEW! We also found baby white tips hiding under the big coral blocks and a pair of shorthead shrimps in a carpet anemone
Dive 3
A strong current so it was hard work on the reef and we ended up drifting to the back for shelter but that was where we found the grey sharks too! There was a pair if large adults plus three mid-sized ones, circling the back current-eddy. We also saw a hovering round ribbontail ray (thought it was a manta?), chevron barracudas, longfin batfish, mantis shrimps etc.
Snorkelling
A different lagoon and another manta show. Some intrepid snorkelers got in to get a closer view of the somersaulting mantas!
Day 3
Another great manta ray show from MV Sea Spirit
Dive 1
Blue and pink soft coral frosted pinnacles and overhangs with lots of buzzing anthias and schools of reef fish plus white tip sharks resting on the bottom. We found a Phyllidia occelata seaslug, a pair of a white and a yellow leaf fish and messed around parting the large school of blue stripe snappers
Dive 2
Another great dive with lots of lovely things seen: Spot the friendly little eagle ray (now completely missing a tail!), a friendly turtle, lots of baby white tips under table corals, a SPOT FIN FROG FISH A. nummifer, Chromodoris geminus nudibranch, schools of big eye crescent tails, batfish etc.
Ocean Crossing
Ocean crossing to Rasdhoo atoll
Dive 3
A beautiful ocean reef with several cruising grey sharks, TWO MANTAS, a white leaf fish,Napoleon, longnose emperos, Pontonides shrimp on a wire coral, school of Moorish idols, Lysmata shrimps guarded by black cheek morays, blueface and two spot angelfish eyc.
Day 4
Closely packed schools of bluestripe snappers, just so mny fish! from Mv Sea Spirit
Dive 1
A second dive at this beautiful site with very different current and conditions. The current point was at the far west point of the reef with several GREY SHARKS cruising about plus a very large school of big eye jacks which meandered around the entire site. Some great macro today: AN ORNATE GHOST PIPEFISH, LARGE SPEARING MANTIS SHRIMP WITH AMBOIN AND PERICLIMINES ENTOURAGE, WHITE LEAF FISH, LYSMATA SHIMPS etc. Batfish and Vlamings surgeonfish followed us around.
Ocean Crossing
Ocean crossing to North Male' atoll
Dive 2
3x MANTAS SWAM PAST nice and slowly taking a close look at the divers! A ZEBRA SHARK WAS TRYING TO SLEEP on the reef slope and we kept disturbing her (oops!) The ocean reef was very dramatic with large coral covered spurs and lots of reef fish and nice overhangs with glassfish and soldierfish plus pyramid butterflyfish and a school of powder blues
Ocean Crossing
Crossing to South Male Atoll
Dive 3
Overhangs with acabaria corals in a variety of colours, sea whips and seafans plus soft corals in shades of yellow and blue. There were several large black saddle coral groupers, we foun a HALIMEDA GHOST PIPEFISH and a cobia without its entourage
Day 5
Sleeping zebra shark seen from MV Sea Spirit, Maldives
Dive 1
Alternative site when preferred site was blown out in very big seas. We saw a very large Napoleon plus a number of smaller ones, several large brown marbled groupers, an eagle ray, dense schools of bannerfish plus schools of Sgt Majors, jacks and some nice overhangs full of glassfish
Dive 2
Great critter dive: we found ribbon eels in blue and black plus an intermediate, several green/yellow leaf fish, feisty black cheek morays guarding Lysmata shrimps, Bruuni and banded coral shrimps, a walking stonefish, another huge blue Napoleon (they seem to be everywhere this week!) and a school of gold finger dart pompanos
Daytime Excursion
Short visit to sandbank for a quick Christmas photoshoot and to get a proper sand experience
Dive 3
AMAZING EAGLE RAY SHOW AS 15 EAGLE RAYS HUNG IN FORMATION PLUS ANOTHER 3 A LITTLE UP-CURRENT AND LOTS OF GREY SHARKS AND WHITE TIPS UNDER THE REEF LIP IN THE COLDER WATER. W e had a fast and whirly dift into the channel with current in all directions. It was exciting to say the least!
Night Dive
Another critter dive, this time enjoying a night dive on a reef wall covered in colourful sponges and ascidians amongst black corals trees ans lots of table corals. We found a pair of Coriocella nigra black sponge snails ( a rare species in the Maldives), many hinge-beak shrimps, hermit crabs, a freeswimming moray out hunting and another at a shrimp cleaning station,freeswimming featherstars, a P. monostichos flatworm etc.
We celebrated Christmas with a special dinner and Thilak baked a chocolate Yule log for dessert
Day 6
Christmas day visit to sandbank from MV Sea Spirit
Dive 1
Blue water on the ocean wall and good visibility at the stat of the dive at this dramatic ocean reef site. There were schools of fusiliers plus snappers and mackerels on the outside reef. A school of 100's bonitos swept past a few tims and two grey sharks cruised the reef edge. The coral blocks on the reef slope were very colourful and full of reef fish and colourful nepthia soft corals. A large school of elongate surgeonfish swam up and down and we had a lovely friendly turtle pose for photographers just before we ascended
Dive 2
Wreck and reef site with Durban, Lysmata and Bruuni shrimps plus Schultz pipefish and peacock mantis shrimps on the wreck. There were lovely areas of white acabaria coral on the reef wall and we found a Chromodoris tritos nudi, lots of groupers, clownfish, damsels and just about every kind of fish and coral so just a lovely final dive
Daytime Excursion
We travelled back to North Male, arriving near Male city after lunch. Some divers visited the city for sightseeing and a visit to Seagull for an icecream
Day 7
Beautiful soft corals from MV Sea Spirit, Maldives
Guests departed Sea Spirit and transferred to the airport for onward flights and connections
Day 8
Hawksbill turtle from MV Sea Spirit, Maldives
Sea Spirit SS488 29 Nov 2015 to 11 Dec 2015 Central Atolls & Beyond (12 day)
Guest Transfer
Guests arrived from early Emirates flights and transferred to Sea Spirit. We travelled to South Male' atoll and had lunch and then made a check dive
Dive 1
Wreck with nearby shallow giri-reef. There were Lysmata, Bruuni and Durban shrimps behind the wheel house plus a pair of entwined Schultz pipefish.On the bow we found a cheeky peaock mantis shrimp. The walls of the reef were covered in white lacy acabaria coral with camouflage groupers, magnificent anemones with blackfoot clownfish, Maldives sponge snails and lots of different reef fish
Day 1
Oriental sweetlips, a favourite of divers on MV Sea Spirit, Maldives
Dive 1
In-current at large ocean-facing thila with schools of red snappers and big eye jacks plus GREY SHARKS AND EAGLE RAYS. Large schools if Forster's barracudas difted in and out of sight. We drifted slowly along the ledges with pink soft corals and seafans and sighted a glorious flatworm, turtles, oriental and silver sweetlips etc.
Dive 2
A brisk current on the ocean reef with several sleeping white tip sharks down in the sand. This site is regarded for the macro opportunities and we found blue and black ribbon eels, a green leaf fish, spearing mantis shrimps, plus chevron barracudas and lots of oceanic triggers nesting inside the channel
Ocean Crossing
Ocean crossing to Felidhoo atoll
Dive 3
There were lots of GREY SHARKS on the channel front and of all sizes ranging from 60 cm right up to 150cm adults. There were schools of fusiliers and mackerels with large dogtooth tunas chasing the schools around. WE enjoyed a long drift over the sand dunes to shallow patch reef before we ascended
Dive 6
EXCITING NIGHT DIVE WITH MANY HUNGRY NURSE SHARKS PLUS PINK WHIP RAYS, ROUND RIBBONTAIL RAYS, BLACK TIP REEF SHARKS AND MANY BLUEFIN AND GIANT TREVELLY CHASING AFTER SWARMS OF SILVERSIDES WHICH KEPT BUZZING THROUGH
Day 2
One of several grey sharks sighted today on MV Sea Spirit, Maldives
Dive 1
Wide channel separated by several deep thila where we saw EAGLE RAYS AND GREY SHARKS circling around on the front. The sharks were of all sizes and it was nice to see so many juveniles. A school of Forster's barracudas drifted in and out of sight: they just disappear in a couple of metres difference in distance! The tunas were out chasing the mackerels again. We ascended shallow onto a wall with lots of red and black and white snappers, spiny lobsters, gold spot emperors etc.
Dive 2
A HAMMERHEAD SHARK AND A WAHOO WERE SIGHTED ON THE WALL then white tip sharks and many snappers on the corner. Along the channel front were larg blocks covered in soft coral and full of sweetlips and various snappers. We then drifted along a wall covered in golden yellow and orange soft coral and looked into letter-box overhangs. Some of the larger overhangs were full of soldierfish. The shallow reef was in excellent condition with a wide variety of corals and reef fish
Dive 3
There were spinner dolphins in the lagoon as we set off for the dive and shortly after we descended we heard the whistles and clicks and some divers were lucky enough to see the large pod of dolphins swim past! This site is a marvellous vertical wall with many overhangs full of sea whips, soft corls, seafans etc. There were several Napoleons including one very large blue male, black jacks, bluefin jacks, leaf fish, mantis shrimps, elegant squat lobsters in self-coloured featherstars an eagle ray, collared butterflyfish, an unidentified species of flatworm and Don found his own leaf fish!
Day 3
Beautiful fish-filled table corals from MV Sea Spirit, Maldives
Dive 1
This morning we enjoyed the beautiful YELLOW SOFT CORAL CAVES and slowly investigated all the overhangs along the front of the channel. We found 4 leaf fish and longnose hawkfish in the black coral trees. A few grey sharks, white tips and an Eagle ray cruised past and there were lots of big eye jacks and bluefin jacks out hunting. The reef top is covered in corals and anemones and just so many fish!
Dive 2
A dramatic ocean reef corner with overhangs and terraces cascading down the reef with blue soft corals nd lovely white seafans. There were 6 Napoleon wrasses out and about including two large males and some nosey females. We found a pair of white leaf fish (there seem to be a lot around) and had to mind out for black sheek morays guarding Lysmata and Bruuni shrmps busy cleaning reef fish. The shallow reef had a variety of large coral structures and there seemed to be parrotfish spawning or making courtship dances. There were dozen of green Captain parrotfish, bicolors, bulletheads and roundheads
Ocean Crossing
Ocean crossing to Vattaru. The weather started to deteriorate and was getting windy
Dive 3
Sea conditions were bordeline to make a dive. We tried to dive inside the channel where we saw large harlequin sweetlips and green anemons plus blueface angelfish etc. but then the current started running out to the ocean where it was extremely rough so we had to abandon the dive to make a safe ascent
Evening Activity
The crew tried fish off the back of Sea Spirit but a cheeky blacktip shark bit the catch off the line before it could be landed!
Day 4
Beautiful yellow soft coral caves from MV Sea Spirit, Maldives
Dive 1
The wind had gone northerly making the ocean facing reef more sheltered so we were able to dive despite the very windy conditions. It was rather stirred up limiting underwater visibility but the caves were pretty and there were several unusual species of soft corals seen. We drifted eastward and saw several eagle rays and Napoleons, and in the reef we found Amboin shrimps, boxer shrimps, a glorious flatworm etc.
Ocean Crossing
Ocean crossing back to Feldhoo
Dive 2
A pretty shallow thila with steep walls with Menella seafans and black coral trees with colourful sponges and penguin oysters. Some of the large blue finger structures had micro gobies balancing on the branches. The shallow patch reef was full of small reef fish being chased by giant trevallies and bluefin jacks plus bannerfish and fusiliers off the reef. So many anthias, plus lovely anemones and a friendly turtle
Dive 3
A dramatic ocean reef and channel front with fusiliers and mackerels being chased by large dogtooth tunas. The coral blocks on the corner were full of reef fish. We drifted into the channel and found several Chromodoris tritos nudis and sighted A GIANT SPOTTED EAGLE RAY WITH A 2m+ wingspan!
We saw a sea snake, several jellyfish and many juvenile fish behind Sea Spirit at anchorage
White leaf fish at Rakeedhoo from MV Sea Spirit, Maldives
Dive 1
There was a small out-current in the channel and all the action was on the corner: soldierfish, fusiliers, humpback snappers all over the block plus a whit leaf fish balancing on blue finger sponge. Along the reef we saw eagle rays, many pyramid butterflyfish, one-spine surgeonfish, spiny lobsters and enjoyed the beautiful coral in the shallows
Dive 2
LOTS OF GREY SHARKS ON THE CHANNEL FRONT WITH SOME STANDING ON THEIR TAILS TO BE CLEANED PLUS A LARGE BLUE NAPOLEON. A large flounder flumped along the channel front. The reef wall was full of cleaner shrimps and morays including a honeycomb and several yellow margins. There was another white leafie
Dive 3
A GOOD SHARK SHOW ON THE CHANNEL FRONT WITH MANY GREY REEF SHAKS OF ALL SIZES AND UP TO 12 AT A TIME, PLUS WHITE TIPS AND TUNAS AND A LARGE WHIRLING SCHOOL OF BIG EYE JACKS. We found lovely shrimps and reef fish as the sharks continued their cruising
Crew went fishing behind Sea Spirit and attracted several pink whip rays
Day 6
More beautiful soft coral caves from MV Sea Spirit, Maldives
Ocean Crossing
Ocean crossing to South Ari atoll
Dive 1
So many fish! Schools of elongate surgeonfish and yellowback fusiliers greeted our descent then longfin batfish, lined fusiliers and dense schools of mackerels formed carpets of fish high in the water column. Closer to the reef were black and white snappers,oriental and silver sweetlips. We found several scorpionfish of different sizes
Dive 2
A MAGNIFICENT SQUADRON OF SHORTFIN MOBULA RAYS WERE THE HIGHLIGHT OF THIS DIVE. WE ALSO SAW 2 AND 1 LATER. On the reef top were schools of crescent tail big eyes and yelllow goatfish and goldspot emperors amongst the good hard corals. Also 2-spot angelfish, octopus, blotched porcupinefish etc
Dive 3
Late afternoon dive but so overcast it felt like a dusk dive! We found large mappa puffer, multibar pipefish, champagne and purple leaf fish, Semon's anemone and loved the large group of oriental sweetlips
Daytime Excursion
Tracy and Bob visited the local island village as they were unable to dive today. They were very unlucky with the weather today as it remained overcast for most of the day so we couldn't really look for whale sharks :(
Day 7
Guest Transfer
Two guests departed via a domestic flight back to Male to catch their intrnational flight back to Europe
Dive 1
Two big morays under the wreck plus a spearing mantis shrimp. There were two stonefish and one was jumping around! We found rock cods and red groupers hunting glassfish and juvenile cardinals, a scribbled filefish eating a crown jellyfish and several crown of thorn starfish
Snorkelling
A WHALE SHARK WAS SPOTTED AND SOME DIVERS GOT IN TO SNORKEL THEN ANOTHER WAS SEEN EVEN CLOSER TO SEA SPIRIT SO THE REST OF THE SNORKELLERS WENT WITH THAT ONE. WE SPENT THE NEXT 40 MINUTES BEING DROPPED IN FRONT OF FAIRLY FAST-SWIMMING WHALE SHARKS. EVENTUALLY IT DESCENDED SO WE RETIRED!
Dive 2
We made a dive nearby and whilst watching white tip sharks and feathertail rays on the bottom had a WHALE SHARK SWIM THROUGH THE GROUP AND THEN SWIM SHALLOW!!!! Further along the reef were lovely schools of humpback and bluestripe snappers and yellow goatfish plus tiny scorpionfish and a pair of porcelain crabs
Dive 3
Not so lucky as to also see mantas today but we did see lots of white tip sharks and even a grey, hawksbill turtles and loved the Indian bannerfish
Day 8
Whale shark seen this trip whilst diving from MV Sea Spirit, Maldives
Dive 1
Grey sharks and a mixed school of Forster's and chevron barracudas were sighted around the current point of this large shallow thila. The northern reef has beautiful overhangs full of pink and orange soft corals plus Menella seafans with a myriad of reef fish. The top is now covered in a variety of large corals with lots more reef fish, so just a lovely dive!
Dive 2
WE HAD A LOVELY MANTA SHOW WITH UP TO FOUR, BUT MAINLY TWO VERY FRIENDLY AND CURIOUS MANTAS WHO WERE CLOSELY CHECKING OUT DIVERS AND SWIMMING THROUGH EXHALED BUBBLE STREAMS. There were also many white tip and grey sharks plus eagle days and really dense schools of bluestripe snappers and yellow goatfish engulfing the divers. On the reeftop blocks we found a few baby white tip sharks!
Dive 3
A great site to see hawksbill turtles and we found at least four today. There are many black coral trees and they seemed to be full of Psmanthe shrimps plus juvenile fish. Also spotteds: comet fish, a peacock mantis shrimp, rock cods being cleaned by Bruuni shrimps and schooling bannerfish being harssed by giant trevallies
Evening Activity
Some divers visited the nearby local island
Day 8
Dive 1
Beautiful little thila with deep canyons and tall coral blocks smothered in seafans and pink soft corals with schools of oriental sweetlips, soldierfish and other reeaf fish around the blocks and grey sharks off the reef. We loved the Clarke's anemonefish in the bubble anemone
Dive 2
There were HUGE schools of bluestripe snappers all over the reef and southern slopes with lots of grey sharks in the depths and a couple of larger ones with remora entourages meandering around the current point. Off the reef we saw chevron barracudas and many batfish. We found a furry hermit crab, a small friendly turtle a giant grouper and a lovely pair of camouflage groupers
Dive 3
A REALLY GOOD SHARK SHOW WITH GREYS AND WHITE TIP SHARKS ALL ALONG THE CURRENT POINT ALONG THE SHALLOW EDGE OF THE REEF AND THE 18M BLOCK AND ANOTHER 8 SMALL GREY SHARKS WITH SOME BIGGER COUSINS OVER THE 30M BLOCK. THERE WERE TWO FUNNY TURTLES MUNCHING AWAY AT SPONGES PLUS GIANT TREVALLIES ANF LARGE BLUEFINS HARASSING THE FUSILIERS
Night Dive
SUPERB NIGHT DIVE WITH FOUR MANTA GETTING SO CLOSE WE WERE BEING BUMPED AND WE HAD OUR TOURCHES AND CAMERAS BUMPED OUT OF OUR HANDS!
Day 10
So many fish! Huge schools of bluestripe snappers from MV Sea Spirit, Maldives
Dive 1
Yet more grey sharks cruising the depth, again with remora entourages plus white tips sleeping in the sand and baby ones resting under table corals on the top of the reef. Some white tip sharks were chasing eachother in what apearred to be mating beahviour! There seemed to be a lot of Maldives sponge snails around and one was really motoring (as much as they can motor!). We also found a lovely hunting octopus
Ocean Crossing
Ocean crossing to Rasdhoo atoll
Dive 2
Super grey sharks show with loads of grey sharks plus white tips and even some eagle rays swimming around at the current point! Other eagle rays were cruising along the wall and a huge school of big eye jacks meandered up and down. There were also large schools of sleek, Dussomiers and elongate surgeons. It was just incredibly fishy!!!!
Dive 3
More current this time and sharks and eagle rays were waiting for us at the spur again. We also found a pair of leaf fish and a huge toothy tuna swam past eyeing us up (he was much bigger than us!). We had another shark show just inside the channel as several grey sharks and a barracuda rode the current over a ridge. Wow!!!
Day 11
Dive 1
ANOTHER AMAZING DIVE AT THIS FAVOURITE SITE OF OURS. A MANTA RAY WAS SIGHTED DOWN THE REEF AND HUGE SCHOOLS OF BIG EYE JACKS FORMED FIGURES OF 8 AND CIRCLES ALONG THE REEF EDGE. THERE WERE SEVERAL EAGLE RAYS OVER THE SAND AND SOME LUCKY DIVERS FOUND A ZEBRA SHARK SLEEPING ON THE BOTTOM
Daytime Excursion
Soon after breakfast some divers visited the nearby local island of Rasdhoo to shop. We then made the return ocean crossing back to Male' atoll and others visited the capital island for shopping and sightseeing during the afternoon
Day 12
Beautiful spotted eagle rays sighted from MV Sea Spirit, Maldives
Guest Transfer
Guests were transferred to the airport for their return flights to Dubai and onwards to Europe
Day 13
Divers enjoying the schools of fish from MV Sea Spirit
 
Guest Transfer
Guests arrived from early Emirates flights and transferred to Sea Spirit. We travelled to South Male' atoll and had lunch and then made a check dive
Dive 1
Wreck with nearby shallow giri-reef. There were Lysmata, Bruuni and Durban shrimps behind the wheel house plus a pair of entwined Schultz pipefish.On the bow we found a cheeky peaock mantis shrimp. The walls of the reef were covered in white lacy acabaria coral with camouflage groupers, magnificent anemones with blackfoot clownfish, Maldives sponge snails and lots of different reef fish
Day 1
Oriental sweetlips, a favourite of divers on MV Sea Spirit, Maldives
Dive 1
In-current at large ocean-facing thila with schools of red snappers and big eye jacks plus GREY SHARKS AND EAGLE RAYS. Large schools if Forster's barracudas difted in and out of sight. We drifted slowly along the ledges with pink soft corals and seafans and sighted a glorious flatworm, turtles, oriental and silver sweetlips etc.
Dive 2
A brisk current on the ocean reef with several sleeping white tip sharks down in the sand. This site is regarded for the macro opportunities and we found blue and black ribbon eels, a green leaf fish, spearing mantis shrimps, plus chevron barracudas and lots of oceanic triggers nesting inside the channel
Ocean Crossing
Ocean crossing to Felidhoo atoll
Dive 3
There were lots of GREY SHARKS on the channel front and of all sizes ranging from 60 cm right up to 150cm adults. There were schools of fusiliers and mackerels with large dogtooth tunas chasing the schools around. WE enjoyed a long drift over the sand dunes to shallow patch reef before we ascended
Dive 6
EXCITING NIGHT DIVE WITH MANY HUNGRY NURSE SHARKS PLUS PINK WHIP RAYS, ROUND RIBBONTAIL RAYS, BLACK TIP REEF SHARKS AND MANY BLUEFIN AND GIANT TREVELLY CHASING AFTER SWARMS OF SILVERSIDES WHICH KEPT BUZZING THROUGH
Day 2
One of several grey sharks sighted today on MV Sea Spirit, Maldives
Dive 1
Wide channel separated by several deep thila where we saw EAGLE RAYS AND GREY SHARKS circling around on the front. The sharks were of all sizes and it was nice to see so many juveniles. A school of Forster's barracudas drifted in and out of sight: they just disappear in a couple of metres difference in distance! The tunas were out chasing the mackerels again. We ascended shallow onto a wall with lots of red and black and white snappers, spiny lobsters, gold spot emperors etc.
Dive 2
A HAMMERHEAD SHARK AND A WAHOO WERE SIGHTED ON THE WALL then white tip sharks and many snappers on the corner. Along the channel front were larg blocks covered in soft coral and full of sweetlips and various snappers. We then drifted along a wall covered in golden yellow and orange soft coral and looked into letter-box overhangs. Some of the larger overhangs were full of soldierfish. The shallow reef was in excellent condition with a wide variety of corals and reef fish
Dive 3
There were spinner dolphins in the lagoon as we set off for the dive and shortly after we descended we heard the whistles and clicks and some divers were lucky enough to see the large pod of dolphins swim past! This site is a marvellous vertical wall with many overhangs full of sea whips, soft corls, seafans etc. There were several Napoleons including one very large blue male, black jacks, bluefin jacks, leaf fish, mantis shrimps, elegant squat lobsters in self-coloured featherstars an eagle ray, collared butterflyfish, an unidentified species of flatworm and Don found his own leaf fish!
Day 3
Beautiful fish-filled table corals from MV Sea Spirit, Maldives
Dive 1
This morning we enjoyed the beautiful YELLOW SOFT CORAL CAVES and slowly investigated all the overhangs along the front of the channel. We found 4 leaf fish and longnose hawkfish in the black coral trees. A few grey sharks, white tips and an Eagle ray cruised past and there were lots of big eye jacks and bluefin jacks out hunting. The reef top is covered in corals and anemones and just so many fish!
Dive 2
A dramatic ocean reef corner with overhangs and terraces cascading down the reef with blue soft corals nd lovely white seafans. There were 6 Napoleon wrasses out and about including two large males and some nosey females. We found a pair of white leaf fish (there seem to be a lot around) and had to mind out for black sheek morays guarding Lysmata and Bruuni shrmps busy cleaning reef fish. The shallow reef had a variety of large coral structures and there seemed to be parrotfish spawning or making courtship dances. There were dozen of green Captain parrotfish, bicolors, bulletheads and roundheads
Ocean Crossing
Ocean crossing to Vattaru. The weather started to deteriorate and was getting windy
Dive 3
Sea conditions were bordeline to make a dive. We tried to dive inside the channel where we saw large harlequin sweetlips and green anemons plus blueface angelfish etc. but then the current started running out to the ocean where it was extremely rough so we had to abandon the dive to make a safe ascent
Evening Activity
The crew tried fish off the back of Sea Spirit but a cheeky blacktip shark bit the catch off the line before it could be landed!
Day 4
Beautiful yellow soft coral caves from MV Sea Spirit, Maldives
Dive 1
The wind had gone northerly making the ocean facing reef more sheltered so we were able to dive despite the very windy conditions. It was rather stirred up limiting underwater visibility but the caves were pretty and there were several unusual species of soft corals seen. We drifted eastward and saw several eagle rays and Napoleons, and in the reef we found Amboin shrimps, boxer shrimps, a glorious flatworm etc.
Ocean Crossing
Ocean crossing back to Feldhoo
Dive 2
A pretty shallow thila with steep walls with Menella seafans and black coral trees with colourful sponges and penguin oysters. Some of the large blue finger structures had micro gobies balancing on the branches. The shallow patch reef was full of small reef fish being chased by giant trevallies and bluefin jacks plus bannerfish and fusiliers off the reef. So many anthias, plus lovely anemones and a friendly turtle
Dive 3
A dramatic ocean reef and channel front with fusiliers and mackerels being chased by large dogtooth tunas. The coral blocks on the corner were full of reef fish. We drifted into the channel and found several Chromodoris tritos nudis and sighted A GIANT SPOTTED EAGLE RAY WITH A 2m+ wingspan!
We saw a sea snake, several jellyfish and many juvenile fish behind Sea Spirit at anchorage
White leaf fish at Rakeedhoo from MV Sea Spirit, Maldives
Dive 1
There was a small out-current in the channel and all the action was on the corner: soldierfish, fusiliers, humpback snappers all over the block plus a whit leaf fish balancing on blue finger sponge. Along the reef we saw eagle rays, many pyramid butterflyfish, one-spine surgeonfish, spiny lobsters and enjoyed the beautiful coral in the shallows
Dive 2
LOTS OF GREY SHARKS ON THE CHANNEL FRONT WITH SOME STANDING ON THEIR TAILS TO BE CLEANED PLUS A LARGE BLUE NAPOLEON. A large flounder flumped along the channel front. The reef wall was full of cleaner shrimps and morays including a honeycomb and several yellow margins. There was another white leafie
Dive 3
A GOOD SHARK SHOW ON THE CHANNEL FRONT WITH MANY GREY REEF SHAKS OF ALL SIZES AND UP TO 12 AT A TIME, PLUS WHITE TIPS AND TUNAS AND A LARGE WHIRLING SCHOOL OF BIG EYE JACKS. We found lovely shrimps and reef fish as the sharks continued their cruising
Crew went fishing behind Sea Spirit and attracted several pink whip rays
Day 6
More beautiful soft coral caves from MV Sea Spirit, Maldives
Ocean Crossing
Ocean crossing to South Ari atoll
Dive 1
So many fish! Schools of elongate surgeonfish and yellowback fusiliers greeted our descent then longfin batfish, lined fusiliers and dense schools of mackerels formed carpets of fish high in the water column. Closer to the reef were black and white snappers,oriental and silver sweetlips. We found several scorpionfish of different sizes
Dive 2
A MAGNIFICENT SQUADRON OF SHORTFIN MOBULA RAYS WERE THE HIGHLIGHT OF THIS DIVE. WE ALSO SAW 2 AND 1 LATER. On the reef top were schools of crescent tail big eyes and yelllow goatfish and goldspot emperors amongst the good hard corals. Also 2-spot angelfish, octopus, blotched porcupinefish etc
Dive 3
Late afternoon dive but so overcast it felt like a dusk dive! We found large mappa puffer, multibar pipefish, champagne and purple leaf fish, Semon's anemone and loved the large group of oriental sweetlips
Daytime Excursion
Tracy and Bob visited the local island village as they were unable to dive today. They were very unlucky with the weather today as it remained overcast for most of the day so we couldn't really look for whale sharks :(
Day 7
Guest Transfer
Two guests departed via a domestic flight back to Male to catch their intrnational flight back to Europe
Dive 1
Two big morays under the wreck plus a spearing mantis shrimp. There were two stonefish and one was jumping around! We found rock cods and red groupers hunting glassfish and juvenile cardinals, a scribbled filefish eating a crown jellyfish and several crown of thorn starfish
Snorkelling
A WHALE SHARK WAS SPOTTED AND SOME DIVERS GOT IN TO SNORKEL THEN ANOTHER WAS SEEN EVEN CLOSER TO SEA SPIRIT SO THE REST OF THE SNORKELLERS WENT WITH THAT ONE. WE SPENT THE NEXT 40 MINUTES BEING DROPPED IN FRONT OF FAIRLY FAST-SWIMMING WHALE SHARKS. EVENTUALLY IT DESCENDED SO WE RETIRED!
Dive 2
We made a dive nearby and whilst watching white tip sharks and feathertail rays on the bottom had a WHALE SHARK SWIM THROUGH THE GROUP AND THEN SWIM SHALLOW!!!! Further along the reef were lovely schools of humpback and bluestripe snappers and yellow goatfish plus tiny scorpionfish and a pair of porcelain crabs
Dive 3
Not so lucky as to also see mantas today but we did see lots of white tip sharks and even a grey, hawksbill turtles and loved the Indian bannerfish
Day 8
Whale shark seen this trip whilst diving from MV Sea Spirit, Maldives
Dive 1
Grey sharks and a mixed school of Forster's and chevron barracudas were sighted around the current point of this large shallow thila. The northern reef has beautiful overhangs full of pink and orange soft corals plus Menella seafans with a myriad of reef fish. The top is now covered in a variety of large corals with lots more reef fish, so just a lovely dive!
Dive 2
WE HAD A LOVELY MANTA SHOW WITH UP TO FOUR, BUT MAINLY TWO VERY FRIENDLY AND CURIOUS MANTAS WHO WERE CLOSELY CHECKING OUT DIVERS AND SWIMMING THROUGH EXHALED BUBBLE STREAMS. There were also many white tip and grey sharks plus eagle days and really dense schools of bluestripe snappers and yellow goatfish engulfing the divers. On the reeftop blocks we found a few baby white tip sharks!
Dive 3
A great site to see hawksbill turtles and we found at least four today. There are many black coral trees and they seemed to be full of Psmanthe shrimps plus juvenile fish. Also spotteds: comet fish, a peacock mantis shrimp, rock cods being cleaned by Bruuni shrimps and schooling bannerfish being harssed by giant trevallies
Evening Activity
Some divers visited the nearby local island
Day 8
Dive 1
Beautiful little thila with deep canyons and tall coral blocks smothered in seafans and pink soft corals with schools of oriental sweetlips, soldierfish and other reeaf fish around the blocks and grey sharks off the reef. We loved the Clarke's anemonefish in the bubble anemone
Dive 2
There were HUGE schools of bluestripe snappers all over the reef and southern slopes with lots of grey sharks in the depths and a couple of larger ones with remora entourages meandering around the current point. Off the reef we saw chevron barracudas and many batfish. We found a furry hermit crab, a small friendly turtle a giant grouper and a lovely pair of camouflage groupers
Dive 3
A REALLY GOOD SHARK SHOW WITH GREYS AND WHITE TIP SHARKS ALL ALONG THE CURRENT POINT ALONG THE SHALLOW EDGE OF THE REEF AND THE 18M BLOCK AND ANOTHER 8 SMALL GREY SHARKS WITH SOME BIGGER COUSINS OVER THE 30M BLOCK. THERE WERE TWO FUNNY TURTLES MUNCHING AWAY AT SPONGES PLUS GIANT TREVALLIES ANF LARGE BLUEFINS HARASSING THE FUSILIERS
Night Dive
SUPERB NIGHT DIVE WITH FOUR MANTA GETTING SO CLOSE WE WERE BEING BUMPED AND WE HAD OUR TOURCHES AND CAMERAS BUMPED OUT OF OUR HANDS!
Day 10
So many fish! Huge schools of bluestripe snappers from MV Sea Spirit, Maldives
Dive 1
Yet more grey sharks cruising the depth, again with remora entourages plus white tips sleeping in the sand and baby ones resting under table corals on the top of the reef. Some white tip sharks were chasing eachother in what apearred to be mating beahviour! There seemed to be a lot of Maldives sponge snails around and one was really motoring (as much as they can motor!). We also found a lovely hunting octopus
Ocean Crossing
Ocean crossing to Rasdhoo atoll
Dive 2
Super grey sharks show with loads of grey sharks plus white tips and even some eagle rays swimming around at the current point! Other eagle rays were cruising along the wall and a huge school of big eye jacks meandered up and down. There were also large schools of sleek, Dussomiers and elongate surgeons. It was just incredibly fishy!!!!
Dive 3
More current this time and sharks and eagle rays were waiting for us at the spur again. We also found a pair of leaf fish and a huge toothy tuna swam past eyeing us up (he was much bigger than us!). We had another shark show just inside the channel as several grey sharks and a barracuda rode the current over a ridge. Wow!!!
Day 11
Dive 1
ANOTHER AMAZING DIVE AT THIS FAVOURITE SITE OF OURS. A MANTA RAY WAS SIGHTED DOWN THE REEF AND HUGE SCHOOLS OF BIG EYE JACKS FORMED FIGURES OF 8 AND CIRCLES ALONG THE REEF EDGE. THERE WERE SEVERAL EAGLE RAYS OVER THE SAND AND SOME LUCKY DIVERS FOUND A ZEBRA SHARK SLEEPING ON THE BOTTOM
Daytime Excursion
Soon after breakfast some divers visited the nearby local island of Rasdhoo to shop. We then made the return ocean crossing back to Male' atoll and others visited the capital island for shopping and sightseeing during the afternoon
Day 12
Beautiful spotted eagle rays sighted from MV Sea Spirit, Maldives
Guest Transfer
Guests were transferred to the airport for their return flights to Dubai and onwards to Europe
Day 13
Divers enjoying the schools of fish from MV Sea Spirit
Sea Spirit SS487 18 Nov 2015 to 27 Nov 2015 Central Atolls & Beyond (9 day)
Guest Transfer
Guests arrived from early Emirates flight and transferred to Sea Spirit. We set up dive kit and travelled a little north into North Male' atoll to make the check dive
Dive 1
Easy drift on ocean reef with lots of white tip sheaks buzzing around the reef slope or resting on the sand. Dogtooth tunas chased schools of fusiliers and mackerels in the water column and schools of oriental and harlequin sweetlips plus blue stripe snappers clung to the reef slope. On shallow coral blocks were large blue magnificent anemones with families of blackfoot clownfish
Day 1
Blue stripe snappers over porites corals a common sight from MV Sea Spirit,Maldives
Dive 1
Stunning blue, yellow, pink and orange soft coral on reef slopes and overhangs creating an amazing reefscape of colour with schools of black and white snappers, big eye jacks, silver sweetlips etc. in canyons and at current points. There was a pregnant eagle ray sighted on the top plus scholls of large chevron barracudas and a large blue Napoleon.
Dive 2
A FEW MANTAS PASSED BY AND ONE STOPPED TO BE CLEANED JUST AS WE WERE PLANNING TO ASCEND! We enjoyed the schools of sweetlips and snappers along the reef and there still seemed to be lots of white tip sharks despite the small current, also Dussomiers surgeonfish and porcelain crabs in carpet anemones
Ocean Crossing
Ocean crossing to South Male' atoll
Dive 3
Great critter dive on wreck with Lysmata, Bruuni, banded and Durban shrimps on the wreck plus a Chromodoris glenei nudi and several Maldives sponge snails. A hawsbill turtle met us as she was leaving the wreck and then was seen several times on the reef. There were beautiful white acabaria lined overhangs and ledges and lots of reef fish including baby chromis and humbugs amongst the sponges, featherstars and coral formations
Day 2
A beautiful manta ray sighted from MV Sea Spirit, Maldives
Dive 1
FIVE EAGLE RAYS IN FORMATION ON THE CURRENT POINT ALONG WITH LARGE SCHOOLS OF BLACK AND WHITE SNAPPERS AND BIG EYE JACKS. LOTS OF GREY SHARKS CRUISED AROUND ON THE REEF TOP plus the reef was smothered in sumptuous pink and orange soft coral and buzzing with anthias and so many different reef fish. On top we saw silver and oriental sweetlips plus collared butterflyfish and a large school of Forster's barracudas
Daytime Excursion
Short visit to sandbank. Some made the swim over and Mandy made her first snorkel ever!
Dive 2
Ocean corner with interesting macro including several blue and black ribbon eels, a green leaf fish, Bruuni and Lysmata cleaning shrimps guarded by feisty blackcheek morays, larg lionfish waiting to pounc on small fish passing and many colourful orange and Evans' anthias
Ocean Crossing
Ocean crossing to Felidhoo atoll
Dive 3
A Grey shark show on the front of the channel with 6-8 small grey sharks cruising around on the channel front and dogtooth tunas scterring schools of fusliers. We made a drift into the channel and found a honeycomb moray, schools of bluestripe snappers and goldspot emperors etc.
Night Dive
EXCITING NIGHT DIVE WITH LOTS OF HUNGRY NURSE SHARKS PLUS PINK WHIP RAYS, ROUND RIBBONTAIL RAYS, BLACK TIP SHARKS AND JACKS BECOMING VERY EXCITED
Day 3
Eagle rays in formation from MV Sea Spirit, Maldives
Dive 1
Soft coral hung caves and blocks in shades of pale pink and orange with white deep water seafans. There were lots of white tip sharks buzzing around the plateau, several Napoleons, and Mappa and porcupine puffers seen on the reef slope. We found a large Phyllidia slug and had a MANTA RAY swim past
Ocean Crossing
Ocean crossing to Ari atoll
Dive 2
Millions of blue stripe snappers meandered around large overhangs and canyons lined with large seafans in all colours with large brown marbled groupers peering our of improbably small holes. There were also schools of humpback snappers, schooling bannerfish, a yellow grouper, a starry puffer and a grey shark
Dive 3
Easy drift on an ocean reef with schools of big eye crescent-tails, a large blue crown jellyfish, 2x eagle rays and lots of ref fish along the table and finger corals on the reef slope full of pyramid butterflyfish and scissortail chromis
Day 4
Divers exploring sea fan filled overhangs from MV Sea Spirit, Maldives
Dive 1
A NURSE SHARK WAS SLEEPING UNDR THE WRECK and nearby a STONEFISH half-buried in the sand, a spearing mantis shrimp and a Notodoris gardinieri nudi. On the deck we found a further THREE STONEFISH and a BLACK FROGFISH plus a Chromodiris glenei nudi. Lovely lionfish and glassfish etc.
Snorkelling
EVENTUALLY! A SUCCESSFUL SNORKEL WITH A WHALE SHARK SWIMMING QUICKLY OVER THE REEF SHALLOWS SO WE WERE WORKING HARD TO KEEP UP WITH IT!!!!
Dive 2
WE DESCENDED JUST IN TIME TO MEET THE WHALE SHARK SWIMMING TOWARDS US AND THEN SWAM ALONGSIDE HIM FOR A FEW MINUTES. AN AWESOME EXPERIENCE! We also saw turtles and sleeping white tip sharks
Dive 3
2 +2 MANTAS! OUR LUCK CONTINUES. They were all a little shy but it was lovely to see them and we recognised Vicki manta. There were lovely schools of Indian bannerfish, and crown squirrelfish plus pink anemones, white mouthed morays etc.
Sundowners to celebrate a great day's diving!
Day 5
Whale shark whilst we were diving! From MV Sea Spirit, Maldives
Dive 1
Beautiful pink and orange soft corals plus large sea fans and sea whips with schools of blue stripe snappers, Indian and schooling bannerfish sheltering from the brisk current. There were lots of WHITE TIP SHARKS riding the current, an eagle ray and several turtles
Dive 2
A CURIOUS YOUNG MANTA WAS AT THE CLEANING STATION AS WE DESCENDED BUT SWAM OFF AND RETURNED LATER TO GIVE US A LITTLE SHOW. THERE WERE LOTS OF GREY SHARKS BUZZING AROUND THE SAND SLOPE PLUS A SCHOOL OF BIG EYE JACKS. The reef slope was smothered with schools of mixed blue stripe snappers and yellow goatfish, humpback and red snappers, oriental sweetlips etc.
Dive 3
Pretty thila with deep blocks covered in unusual pink sponge formations and many large black coral trees with spinoise featherstars. There were many bright purple magnificent anemones and colourful rock cods on the shallow ridge plus circular and longfin batfish
We were visited by Barti, Travolta and an unidentified manta several times whilst we were at our overnight anchorage in a shallow lagoon
Day 6
Whale tails! Sighted from MV Sea Spirit, Maldives
Dive 1
Long thila with many blue soft coral frosted overhangs and pinnacles. We saw eagle rays, white tip and grey sharks, a giant barracuda, schools of red snappers and two large schools of bluestripe snappers at the far east point iof the thila
Dive 2
Easy drift along channel with many white tip sharks sleeping in the sand, a sleeping round ribbontail ray, harlequin and silver sweetlips, large black saddled coral groupers, eagle rays x3, bluefaced angelfish etc.
Dive 3
Lots of grey sharks at the current point plus white tip sharks and a small silvertip shark, a small eagle ray with a long tail swept past and made us feel rather inadequate. Giant trevallies were intimidating all the smaller fish and had the schooling bannerfish pinned to the 18m block. We found three turtles one of which was having a good scrath under a rock to remov barnacles on his shell
Night Dive
FANTASTIC NIGHT DIVE WITH FOUR HUNGRY MANTA RAYS FEEDING AT THE BACK OF SEA SPIRIT. IT WAS A VERY CLOSE-UP EXPERIENCE.
Day 7
Mantas seen feeding during night dive from MV Sea Spirit, Maldives
Dive 1
A nice shark show as 8 female grey sharks cruised the current point. W also saw eagle rays and tunas off the curent point and then schools of big-eye crescent tails and gold spot emperors as we drifted around the thila. We also found camouflage groupers, a pink scorpionfish, Thysanozoan nigropapillosum flatworm and a peacock mantis shrimp
Ocean Crossing
Ocean crossing to Rasdhoo atoll
Dive 2
WE DESCENDED CLOSE TO A LARGE SCHOOL OF EAGLE RAYS AND SWAM WITH THEM FOR A WHILE AND THEN STOPPED TO WATCH THE SHOW AS 10 GREY REEF SHARKS CIRCLED AT THE SPUR. What a show. We also saw a large meandering school of big eye jacks, spearing mantis shrimps, longnose emperors and enjoyd the reef smothered in reef fish over the corals.
Daytime Excursion
Sandbank visit for non-divers to swim and enjoy the beautiful white sand beach
Dive 3
Huge dogtooth tunas were patrolling the reef with grey sharks and white tip sharks whizzing along the drop off. There were many longfin batfish and schools of big eye jacks, many different groupers and emperors out hunting, a large and a small Napoleon and an eagle ray foraging in the sand
Amazing full moon rising through the pink-and-blue-lit clouds of a colourful sunset
Day 8
Grey sharks show from MV Sea Spirit, Maldives
Dive 1
Lovely final dive wit GREY SHARKS circling at the current point and a huge school of big eye jacks hanging over the depths. Napoleons and large groupers cruised around the reef crest. We just stopped to watch the show for 20 minutes. We drifted along the reef wall spying grey sharks and white tips plus many batfish along the way. Vlamings surgeonfish played in our bubbles. There were so many reef fish up in the shallows. A lovely dive to end on.
Daytime Excursion
Visit to Rasdhoo local island for a little shopping and sightseeing before travel back towards Male
Ocean Crossing
Ocean crossing back to Male atoll with lunch on the way. The afternoon was spent at leisure as divers did not want to visit Male' city
Day 9
School of big jacks from MV Sea Spirit, Maldives
Guest Transfer
Guests transferred to airport for international flights back to UK or onward to Sri Lanka for continuing adventures. Two guest transferred to a local guest house for the weekend.
Day 10
Dense school of blue stripe snappers from MV Sea Spirit, Malvives
 
Guest Transfer
Guests arrived from early Emirates flight and transferred to Sea Spirit. We set up dive kit and travelled a little north into North Male' atoll to make the check dive
Dive 1
Easy drift on ocean reef with lots of white tip sheaks buzzing around the reef slope or resting on the sand. Dogtooth tunas chased schools of fusiliers and mackerels in the water column and schools of oriental and harlequin sweetlips plus blue stripe snappers clung to the reef slope. On shallow coral blocks were large blue magnificent anemones with families of blackfoot clownfish
Day 1
Blue stripe snappers over porites corals a common sight from MV Sea Spirit,Maldives
Dive 1
Stunning blue, yellow, pink and orange soft coral on reef slopes and overhangs creating an amazing reefscape of colour with schools of black and white snappers, big eye jacks, silver sweetlips etc. in canyons and at current points. There was a pregnant eagle ray sighted on the top plus scholls of large chevron barracudas and a large blue Napoleon.
Dive 2
A FEW MANTAS PASSED BY AND ONE STOPPED TO BE CLEANED JUST AS WE WERE PLANNING TO ASCEND! We enjoyed the schools of sweetlips and snappers along the reef and there still seemed to be lots of white tip sharks despite the small current, also Dussomiers surgeonfish and porcelain crabs in carpet anemones
Ocean Crossing
Ocean crossing to South Male' atoll
Dive 3
Great critter dive on wreck with Lysmata, Bruuni, banded and Durban shrimps on the wreck plus a Chromodoris glenei nudi and several Maldives sponge snails. A hawsbill turtle met us as she was leaving the wreck and then was seen several times on the reef. There were beautiful white acabaria lined overhangs and ledges and lots of reef fish including baby chromis and humbugs amongst the sponges, featherstars and coral formations
Day 2
A beautiful manta ray sighted from MV Sea Spirit, Maldives
Dive 1
FIVE EAGLE RAYS IN FORMATION ON THE CURRENT POINT ALONG WITH LARGE SCHOOLS OF BLACK AND WHITE SNAPPERS AND BIG EYE JACKS. LOTS OF GREY SHARKS CRUISED AROUND ON THE REEF TOP plus the reef was smothered in sumptuous pink and orange soft coral and buzzing with anthias and so many different reef fish. On top we saw silver and oriental sweetlips plus collared butterflyfish and a large school of Forster's barracudas
Daytime Excursion
Short visit to sandbank. Some made the swim over and Mandy made her first snorkel ever!
Dive 2
Ocean corner with interesting macro including several blue and black ribbon eels, a green leaf fish, Bruuni and Lysmata cleaning shrimps guarded by feisty blackcheek morays, larg lionfish waiting to pounc on small fish passing and many colourful orange and Evans' anthias
Ocean Crossing
Ocean crossing to Felidhoo atoll
Dive 3
A Grey shark show on the front of the channel with 6-8 small grey sharks cruising around on the channel front and dogtooth tunas scterring schools of fusliers. We made a drift into the channel and found a honeycomb moray, schools of bluestripe snappers and goldspot emperors etc.
Night Dive
EXCITING NIGHT DIVE WITH LOTS OF HUNGRY NURSE SHARKS PLUS PINK WHIP RAYS, ROUND RIBBONTAIL RAYS, BLACK TIP SHARKS AND JACKS BECOMING VERY EXCITED
Day 3
Eagle rays in formation from MV Sea Spirit, Maldives
Dive 1
Soft coral hung caves and blocks in shades of pale pink and orange with white deep water seafans. There were lots of white tip sharks buzzing around the plateau, several Napoleons, and Mappa and porcupine puffers seen on the reef slope. We found a large Phyllidia slug and had a MANTA RAY swim past
Ocean Crossing
Ocean crossing to Ari atoll
Dive 2
Millions of blue stripe snappers meandered around large overhangs and canyons lined with large seafans in all colours with large brown marbled groupers peering our of improbably small holes. There were also schools of humpback snappers, schooling bannerfish, a yellow grouper, a starry puffer and a grey shark
Dive 3
Easy drift on an ocean reef with schools of big eye crescent-tails, a large blue crown jellyfish, 2x eagle rays and lots of ref fish along the table and finger corals on the reef slope full of pyramid butterflyfish and scissortail chromis
Day 4
Divers exploring sea fan filled overhangs from MV Sea Spirit, Maldives
Dive 1
A NURSE SHARK WAS SLEEPING UNDR THE WRECK and nearby a STONEFISH half-buried in the sand, a spearing mantis shrimp and a Notodoris gardinieri nudi. On the deck we found a further THREE STONEFISH and a BLACK FROGFISH plus a Chromodiris glenei nudi. Lovely lionfish and glassfish etc.
Snorkelling
EVENTUALLY! A SUCCESSFUL SNORKEL WITH A WHALE SHARK SWIMMING QUICKLY OVER THE REEF SHALLOWS SO WE WERE WORKING HARD TO KEEP UP WITH IT!!!!
Dive 2
WE DESCENDED JUST IN TIME TO MEET THE WHALE SHARK SWIMMING TOWARDS US AND THEN SWAM ALONGSIDE HIM FOR A FEW MINUTES. AN AWESOME EXPERIENCE! We also saw turtles and sleeping white tip sharks
Dive 3
2 +2 MANTAS! OUR LUCK CONTINUES. They were all a little shy but it was lovely to see them and we recognised Vicki manta. There were lovely schools of Indian bannerfish, and crown squirrelfish plus pink anemones, white mouthed morays etc.
Sundowners to celebrate a great day's diving!
Day 5
Whale shark whilst we were diving! From MV Sea Spirit, Maldives
Dive 1
Beautiful pink and orange soft corals plus large sea fans and sea whips with schools of blue stripe snappers, Indian and schooling bannerfish sheltering from the brisk current. There were lots of WHITE TIP SHARKS riding the current, an eagle ray and several turtles
Dive 2
A CURIOUS YOUNG MANTA WAS AT THE CLEANING STATION AS WE DESCENDED BUT SWAM OFF AND RETURNED LATER TO GIVE US A LITTLE SHOW. THERE WERE LOTS OF GREY SHARKS BUZZING AROUND THE SAND SLOPE PLUS A SCHOOL OF BIG EYE JACKS. The reef slope was smothered with schools of mixed blue stripe snappers and yellow goatfish, humpback and red snappers, oriental sweetlips etc.
Dive 3
Pretty thila with deep blocks covered in unusual pink sponge formations and many large black coral trees with spinoise featherstars. There were many bright purple magnificent anemones and colourful rock cods on the shallow ridge plus circular and longfin batfish
We were visited by Barti, Travolta and an unidentified manta several times whilst we were at our overnight anchorage in a shallow lagoon
Day 6
Whale tails! Sighted from MV Sea Spirit, Maldives
Dive 1
Long thila with many blue soft coral frosted overhangs and pinnacles. We saw eagle rays, white tip and grey sharks, a giant barracuda, schools of red snappers and two large schools of bluestripe snappers at the far east point iof the thila
Dive 2
Easy drift along channel with many white tip sharks sleeping in the sand, a sleeping round ribbontail ray, harlequin and silver sweetlips, large black saddled coral groupers, eagle rays x3, bluefaced angelfish etc.
Dive 3
Lots of grey sharks at the current point plus white tip sharks and a small silvertip shark, a small eagle ray with a long tail swept past and made us feel rather inadequate. Giant trevallies were intimidating all the smaller fish and had the schooling bannerfish pinned to the 18m block. We found three turtles one of which was having a good scrath under a rock to remov barnacles on his shell
Night Dive
FANTASTIC NIGHT DIVE WITH FOUR HUNGRY MANTA RAYS FEEDING AT THE BACK OF SEA SPIRIT. IT WAS A VERY CLOSE-UP EXPERIENCE.
Day 7
Mantas seen feeding during night dive from MV Sea Spirit, Maldives
Dive 1
A nice shark show as 8 female grey sharks cruised the current point. W also saw eagle rays and tunas off the curent point and then schools of big-eye crescent tails and gold spot emperors as we drifted around the thila. We also found camouflage groupers, a pink scorpionfish, Thysanozoan nigropapillosum flatworm and a peacock mantis shrimp
Ocean Crossing
Ocean crossing to Rasdhoo atoll
Dive 2
WE DESCENDED CLOSE TO A LARGE SCHOOL OF EAGLE RAYS AND SWAM WITH THEM FOR A WHILE AND THEN STOPPED TO WATCH THE SHOW AS 10 GREY REEF SHARKS CIRCLED AT THE SPUR. What a show. We also saw a large meandering school of big eye jacks, spearing mantis shrimps, longnose emperors and enjoyd the reef smothered in reef fish over the corals.
Daytime Excursion
Sandbank visit for non-divers to swim and enjoy the beautiful white sand beach
Dive 3
Huge dogtooth tunas were patrolling the reef with grey sharks and white tip sharks whizzing along the drop off. There were many longfin batfish and schools of big eye jacks, many different groupers and emperors out hunting, a large and a small Napoleon and an eagle ray foraging in the sand
Amazing full moon rising through the pink-and-blue-lit clouds of a colourful sunset
Day 8
Grey sharks show from MV Sea Spirit, Maldives
Dive 1
Lovely final dive wit GREY SHARKS circling at the current point and a huge school of big eye jacks hanging over the depths. Napoleons and large groupers cruised around the reef crest. We just stopped to watch the show for 20 minutes. We drifted along the reef wall spying grey sharks and white tips plus many batfish along the way. Vlamings surgeonfish played in our bubbles. There were so many reef fish up in the shallows. A lovely dive to end on.
Daytime Excursion
Visit to Rasdhoo local island for a little shopping and sightseeing before travel back towards Male
Ocean Crossing
Ocean crossing back to Male atoll with lunch on the way. The afternoon was spent at leisure as divers did not want to visit Male' city
Day 9
School of big jacks from MV Sea Spirit, Maldives
Guest Transfer
Guests transferred to airport for international flights back to UK or onward to Sri Lanka for continuing adventures. Two guest transferred to a local guest house for the weekend.
Day 10
Dense school of blue stripe snappers from MV Sea Spirit, Malvives
Sea Spirit SS486 8 Nov 2015 to 17 Nov 2015 Central Atolls & Beyond (9 day)
Guest Transfer
All divers arrived from Emirates flight which was delayed due to another plane breakdown so everyone was extra tired. They transferred to Sea Spirit, we had lunch and then travelled a little north and set up kit for the check dive
Dive 1
Easy drift with current strengthening to corner. There were rivers of neon fusiliers in the water column being cahsed by dogtooth tunas and lots of WHITE TIP SHARKS along the reef, buzzing around in the current. Coral blocks on the reef slope were full of reef fish including harlequin and oriental sweetlips, clown triggerfish, two-spot angelfish and many groupers. A great hammerhead was sighted down on the reef slope at an angle of 45 degrees being cleaned!
Day 1
Beautiful corals and sponges seen from MV Sea Spirit, Maldives
Dive 1
Beautiful PINK, ORANGE, BLUE and YELLOW SOFT CORAL covered overhangs and terraces. The coral being particularly vibrant as puffed up in the current. A school of black and white snappers hung off the reef and a couple of Napoleon wrasse swam past. Also green turtles, lovely green anemones, lots of small groupers
Dive 2
The mantas were being rather elusive and all we managed was a quick glimpse of one at the cleaning stations and a swim past later in the dive. We just enjoyed the beautiful reef slope smpthered in small corals plus blue finger sponges, many different featherstars and everything smothered in orange anthias with spotted rock cods, a spiny lobster, a pair of giant morays sharing a hole and pyramid butterflyfish along the reef
Dive 3
A fast drift from the ocean corner into the channel passing by colourful coral blocks and then through large overhangs hung with small purple seafans, Juncella sea whips and many larger Menella seafans and other multicoloured soft corals with blue and yellow schleronepthia hanging from the ceiling of the overhangs. We saw porcupine and mappa pufferfish a Pseudoceros bedfordi flatworm, octopus etc.
Day 2
Feathertail ray! One of several seen this trip on MV Sea Spirit
Dive 1
Another attempt to find mantas but unlucky again. The seasons are cahnging and the mantas must be on the move! Instead we made a nice drift through the overhangs and towards the ocean corner. We saw several white tip sharks, a spotted eagle ray, spearing and peacock mantis shrimps, rainbow runners and a friendly little hawsbill turtle
Dive 2
An easy drift sighting lots of white tip sharks and an enormous blue Napoleon wrasse who was with us at the start and end of the dive but todays stars were TWO LARGE MANTA RAYS WHO STOPPED TO BE CLEANED AND THEN HOVERED OVER OUR BUBBLE STREAMS plus a third one who passed by a couple f times but was more nervous. We also saw honeycomb morays, two hawksbill turtles and schools of oriental sweetlips
Guest Transfer
Ocean crossing to South Male' atoll
Dive 3
Great little wreck covered in hard and soft corals and black coral trees occupied by juvenile fish and several longnose hawkfish! At the back of the wheelhouse were several shrimp cleaning stations manned by Lysmata, Bruuni and banded coral shrimps whilst lots of Durban dancing shrimps peered out of crevices. The west facing wall of the main reef is covered in lacy white acabaria coral with many scorpionfish, soldierfish, groupers, fire and dart gobies and reef fish of every sort
Day 3
Lovely manta show from MV Sea Spirit Maldives
Dive 1
Current too strong for the thila so we dived the ocean reef fronting two channels. There were lots of fusiliers whooshing about in the mixed up waters and white tip sharks cruising the drop off whilst a large ribbontail ray slept in a deeper overhang. The reef slope was spotted with colourful nepthia-covered coral blocks full of ref fish and we found a yeelow-green leaf fish amongst the anthias, small surgeonfish, earmuff blennies etc on the blocks. Also apair of short-finned mobula rays, sleek surgeonfish changing colours, honeycomb morays and a few turtles
Dive 2
Great macro dive site where we found several blue and black ribbon eels, several spearing mantis shrimps peering out of their burrows, large cleanfin lionfish in ambush poses, a green leaf fish, several scorpionfish and everywhere we saw cleaner shrimps we found feisty black cheek morays guarding nearby crevices. We also saw an eagle ray and several Napoleons
Dive 3
Beautiful ocean-facing wall with many honeycomb morays in patches of reef full of colourful corals and featherstars hiding anthias and all types of reef fish. As we approached the corner the current increased and there was a distinct frission with giant trevallies and tunas chasing fusiliers and then schools of snappers and bluefin jacks. We flew over the corner past a hovering eagle ray and past (literally!) millions of convict tangs spawning on the reef top, like something on National Geographic!
Night Dive
Super night dive where we enjoyed a colourful wall encrusted with yellow cup corals and many black coral trees full of small critters. We found a pair of spotted snake eels, Flabellina exoptata nudibranch, Saron shrmps hermit and arrowhead crabs, an undulate moray, many small squat lobsters on the colourful sponges, trapezia crabs, sleeping reef fish etc etc.
Day 4
Beautiful spotted eagle ray seen from Mv Sea Spirit, Maldives
Dive 1
Fast drift inside channel sighting 6-7 GREY SHARKS CIRCLING AROUND CLEANING STATION and including two very large greys and a few white tip sharks too. We drifted through colourful overhangs with orange seafans,soft corals and buzzing with anthias and many soldierfish and emperors sheltering in the caves. The ocean reef was in techicolour in clear water with colourful coral blocks full of reef fish and soft corals
Ocean Crossing
Ocean crossing to Felidhoo (Vaavu) atoll
Dive 2
Brisk drift past deep overhangs on ocean-facing wall. The shallows were smothered in schools of lined and neon fusiliers, pyramid butterflyfish plus scissortail chromis and Evans anthias above staghorn and table corals
Dive 3
Shark Corner! There were several GREY SHARKS CRUISING AROUND THE CHANNEL FRONT plus a gold leaf fish, honeycomb moray, dogtooth and skipjack tunas, schools of blue stripe snappers and gold spot emperors, a juvenile bicolor parrotfish etc.
We had to make for a sheltered anchorage as a big weather system came in and blew up the sea
Day 5
Blackfoot anemonefish in magnificent anemone from MV Sea Spirit, Maldives
Dive 1
A brisk current channel drift but in reduced visibility after last nights storm. There was a school of Forster's barracudas and a couple of grey sharks cruising around. The northern wall has areas of good coral growth with many different reef fish plus a Pseudoceros bedfordi flatworm and a spiny lobster
Dive 2
An out-current drift but there were WHITE TIP AND GREY SHARKS on the front of the channel at cleaning stations plus an enormous school of BIG EYE JACKS in the middle of the channel whooshing around. On the reef wall were many shrimp claening stations with Lysmata, banded and Bruuni shrimps all offerring manicure services but watch out for the black cheek morays!
Dive 3
AN EXCITING CHANNEL CROSSING WHERE WE WATCHED LOTS OF GREY SHARKS TAKING PART IN RAIDS ON THE SCHOOLS OF FUSILIERS AND MACKERELS ON THE CHANNEL FRONT ALONG WITH GIANT TREVALLIES, BIG EYE JACKS AND DOGTOOTH TUNAS! The reef wall was full of reef fish and the corals in the shallows were amazing
Night Dive
WILD NIGHT DIVE WITH 40+ LARGE NURSE SHARKS AND PINK WHIP RAYS AND JENKINS RAYS, ROUND RIBBONRAIL RAYS PLUS MANY BLUEFIN JACKS AND GIANT TREVALLIES EXCITED BY ALL THE BAITFISH PRESENT. A few black tip reef sharks zoomed around in the shallow. We didn't know where to look!
Day 6
Just how many nurse sharks? From Mv Sea Spirit, Maldives
Dive 1
Two resting round ribbontail rays (one making a strange mound as it slept) a fearhertail ray, a cruising grey shark and several white tip sharks were sighted adjacent to the beautiful and brightly coloured soft coral hung overhangs and caves on this long thila. We found a yellow leaf fish amongst dense glassfish in a coral block in the shallows.
Ocean Crossing
Ocean crossing to Ari atoll
Dive 2
GREY SHARKS cruising edge of reef and large schools of fusiliers and mackerels being chased by dogtooth tunas. Schools of longfin batfish and schooling bannerfish hung at the current point. The slope on the south pleatea was smothered in bluestripe snappers forming a yellow carpet at around 30m. A GIANT GUITARFISH swam past. A mixed school of chevron and Forster's barracudas was seen off the reef
Dive 3
Grey sharks of all sizes seen at the current point including some really tiny newborns, plus a small spotted eagle ray. Golden jacks, rainbow runners, longnose hawkfish in black coral trees, octopus, turtle, dracula goby and shrimp etc.
Night Dive
Beautiful night dive with several super-friendly mantas as they fed on plankton attracted by the lights at the back of Sea Spirit. Up to 5 different animals seen, So close, so fun!!
Day 7
Lots of grey sharks seen today from MV Sea Spirit, Maldives
Dive 1
Lovely grey reef sharks cruising the edge of the reef plus schools of big-eye crescent-tails, goldspot emperors and longfin batfish. WE found an octopus out foraging, baby white tip sharks hiding under table corals, two ugly larg stonefish :( and lots of beautiful blue anemones with families of blackfoot clownfish
Dive 2
We looked in the nearby lagoons but all we found was a solitary manta so moved on. This was a very fast drift into a channel, flying past lots of white tip sharks resting on the bottom and three ribbontail rays resting on ledges or in overhangs. There were black saddle groupers, harlequin sweetlips and orangspine surgeons along the reef but the dive was quite an experience. We drifted nearly 1 nautical mile!
Ocean Crossing
Ocean crossing to Rasdhoo atoll
Dive 3
GREY SHARKS AND WHITE TIP SHARKS WERE WHIZZING AROUND THE SPUR AND SEVERAL SPOTTED EAGLE RAYS HUNG JUST OFF THE REEF. A large school of big eye jacks meandered around the top of the thila, which was smothered in all kinds of reef fish and lots of Carberry anthias. A large blue Napoleon was being cleaned over some coral blocks. We drifted over a ridge where lots of large red snappers and another grey shark were riding the current and flew into the channel. Fabulous!
Day 8
Beautiful manta seen during our night dive from MV Sea Spirit
Dive 1
Final dive revisiting yesterday afternoon's exciting ocean site. We dropped directly onto the thila and enjoyed a shark show at the western ridge. Again, there were many big eye jacks meandering around and several spotted eagle rays along the reef. Close to the main reef we had another shark show, plus a giant barracuda, a hawksbill turtle, Napoleon wrasse and ended up in the shallows amongst the corals filled with reef fish, pyramid butterflyfish, more eagle rays and a black tip shark! Wow!!!!
Daytime Excursion
Visit to sandbank for a photo shoot
Ocean Crossing
We travelled back to Male' arriving mid-afternoon
Day 9
Idyllic beach on sandbank for guests on Sea Spirit, Maldives
Guest Transfer
Guests were transferred to airport for onward travel to Sri Lanka and part two of their adventure
Day 10
Beautiful schools of fish. So evocative of the Maldives. From MV Sea Spirit
 
Guest Transfer
All divers arrived from Emirates flight which was delayed due to another plane breakdown so everyone was extra tired. They transferred to Sea Spirit, we had lunch and then travelled a little north and set up kit for the check dive
Dive 1
Easy drift with current strengthening to corner. There were rivers of neon fusiliers in the water column being cahsed by dogtooth tunas and lots of WHITE TIP SHARKS along the reef, buzzing around in the current. Coral blocks on the reef slope were full of reef fish including harlequin and oriental sweetlips, clown triggerfish, two-spot angelfish and many groupers. A great hammerhead was sighted down on the reef slope at an angle of 45 degrees being cleaned!
Day 1
Beautiful corals and sponges seen from MV Sea Spirit, Maldives
Dive 1
Beautiful PINK, ORANGE, BLUE and YELLOW SOFT CORAL covered overhangs and terraces. The coral being particularly vibrant as puffed up in the current. A school of black and white snappers hung off the reef and a couple of Napoleon wrasse swam past. Also green turtles, lovely green anemones, lots of small groupers
Dive 2
The mantas were being rather elusive and all we managed was a quick glimpse of one at the cleaning stations and a swim past later in the dive. We just enjoyed the beautiful reef slope smpthered in small corals plus blue finger sponges, many different featherstars and everything smothered in orange anthias with spotted rock cods, a spiny lobster, a pair of giant morays sharing a hole and pyramid butterflyfish along the reef
Dive 3
A fast drift from the ocean corner into the channel passing by colourful coral blocks and then through large overhangs hung with small purple seafans, Juncella sea whips and many larger Menella seafans and other multicoloured soft corals with blue and yellow schleronepthia hanging from the ceiling of the overhangs. We saw porcupine and mappa pufferfish a Pseudoceros bedfordi flatworm, octopus etc.
Day 2
Feathertail ray! One of several seen this trip on MV Sea Spirit
Dive 1
Another attempt to find mantas but unlucky again. The seasons are cahnging and the mantas must be on the move! Instead we made a nice drift through the overhangs and towards the ocean corner. We saw several white tip sharks, a spotted eagle ray, spearing and peacock mantis shrimps, rainbow runners and a friendly little hawsbill turtle
Dive 2
An easy drift sighting lots of white tip sharks and an enormous blue Napoleon wrasse who was with us at the start and end of the dive but todays stars were TWO LARGE MANTA RAYS WHO STOPPED TO BE CLEANED AND THEN HOVERED OVER OUR BUBBLE STREAMS plus a third one who passed by a couple f times but was more nervous. We also saw honeycomb morays, two hawksbill turtles and schools of oriental sweetlips
Guest Transfer
Ocean crossing to South Male' atoll
Dive 3
Great little wreck covered in hard and soft corals and black coral trees occupied by juvenile fish and several longnose hawkfish! At the back of the wheelhouse were several shrimp cleaning stations manned by Lysmata, Bruuni and banded coral shrimps whilst lots of Durban dancing shrimps peered out of crevices. The west facing wall of the main reef is covered in lacy white acabaria coral with many scorpionfish, soldierfish, groupers, fire and dart gobies and reef fish of every sort
Day 3
Lovely manta show from MV Sea Spirit Maldives
Dive 1
Current too strong for the thila so we dived the ocean reef fronting two channels. There were lots of fusiliers whooshing about in the mixed up waters and white tip sharks cruising the drop off whilst a large ribbontail ray slept in a deeper overhang. The reef slope was spotted with colourful nepthia-covered coral blocks full of ref fish and we found a yeelow-green leaf fish amongst the anthias, small surgeonfish, earmuff blennies etc on the blocks. Also apair of short-finned mobula rays, sleek surgeonfish changing colours, honeycomb morays and a few turtles
Dive 2
Great macro dive site where we found several blue and black ribbon eels, several spearing mantis shrimps peering out of their burrows, large cleanfin lionfish in ambush poses, a green leaf fish, several scorpionfish and everywhere we saw cleaner shrimps we found feisty black cheek morays guarding nearby crevices. We also saw an eagle ray and several Napoleons
Dive 3
Beautiful ocean-facing wall with many honeycomb morays in patches of reef full of colourful corals and featherstars hiding anthias and all types of reef fish. As we approached the corner the current increased and there was a distinct frission with giant trevallies and tunas chasing fusiliers and then schools of snappers and bluefin jacks. We flew over the corner past a hovering eagle ray and past (literally!) millions of convict tangs spawning on the reef top, like something on National Geographic!
Night Dive
Super night dive where we enjoyed a colourful wall encrusted with yellow cup corals and many black coral trees full of small critters. We found a pair of spotted snake eels, Flabellina exoptata nudibranch, Saron shrmps hermit and arrowhead crabs, an undulate moray, many small squat lobsters on the colourful sponges, trapezia crabs, sleeping reef fish etc etc.
Day 4
Beautiful spotted eagle ray seen from Mv Sea Spirit, Maldives
Dive 1
Fast drift inside channel sighting 6-7 GREY SHARKS CIRCLING AROUND CLEANING STATION and including two very large greys and a few white tip sharks too. We drifted through colourful overhangs with orange seafans,soft corals and buzzing with anthias and many soldierfish and emperors sheltering in the caves. The ocean reef was in techicolour in clear water with colourful coral blocks full of reef fish and soft corals
Ocean Crossing
Ocean crossing to Felidhoo (Vaavu) atoll
Dive 2
Brisk drift past deep overhangs on ocean-facing wall. The shallows were smothered in schools of lined and neon fusiliers, pyramid butterflyfish plus scissortail chromis and Evans anthias above staghorn and table corals
Dive 3
Shark Corner! There were several GREY SHARKS CRUISING AROUND THE CHANNEL FRONT plus a gold leaf fish, honeycomb moray, dogtooth and skipjack tunas, schools of blue stripe snappers and gold spot emperors, a juvenile bicolor parrotfish etc.
We had to make for a sheltered anchorage as a big weather system came in and blew up the sea
Day 5
Blackfoot anemonefish in magnificent anemone from MV Sea Spirit, Maldives
Dive 1
A brisk current channel drift but in reduced visibility after last nights storm. There was a school of Forster's barracudas and a couple of grey sharks cruising around. The northern wall has areas of good coral growth with many different reef fish plus a Pseudoceros bedfordi flatworm and a spiny lobster
Dive 2
An out-current drift but there were WHITE TIP AND GREY SHARKS on the front of the channel at cleaning stations plus an enormous school of BIG EYE JACKS in the middle of the channel whooshing around. On the reef wall were many shrimp claening stations with Lysmata, banded and Bruuni shrimps all offerring manicure services but watch out for the black cheek morays!
Dive 3
AN EXCITING CHANNEL CROSSING WHERE WE WATCHED LOTS OF GREY SHARKS TAKING PART IN RAIDS ON THE SCHOOLS OF FUSILIERS AND MACKERELS ON THE CHANNEL FRONT ALONG WITH GIANT TREVALLIES, BIG EYE JACKS AND DOGTOOTH TUNAS! The reef wall was full of reef fish and the corals in the shallows were amazing
Night Dive
WILD NIGHT DIVE WITH 40+ LARGE NURSE SHARKS AND PINK WHIP RAYS AND JENKINS RAYS, ROUND RIBBONRAIL RAYS PLUS MANY BLUEFIN JACKS AND GIANT TREVALLIES EXCITED BY ALL THE BAITFISH PRESENT. A few black tip reef sharks zoomed around in the shallow. We didn't know where to look!
Day 6
Just how many nurse sharks? From Mv Sea Spirit, Maldives
Dive 1
Two resting round ribbontail rays (one making a strange mound as it slept) a fearhertail ray, a cruising grey shark and several white tip sharks were sighted adjacent to the beautiful and brightly coloured soft coral hung overhangs and caves on this long thila. We found a yellow leaf fish amongst dense glassfish in a coral block in the shallows.
Ocean Crossing
Ocean crossing to Ari atoll
Dive 2
GREY SHARKS cruising edge of reef and large schools of fusiliers and mackerels being chased by dogtooth tunas. Schools of longfin batfish and schooling bannerfish hung at the current point. The slope on the south pleatea was smothered in bluestripe snappers forming a yellow carpet at around 30m. A GIANT GUITARFISH swam past. A mixed school of chevron and Forster's barracudas was seen off the reef
Dive 3
Grey sharks of all sizes seen at the current point including some really tiny newborns, plus a small spotted eagle ray. Golden jacks, rainbow runners, longnose hawkfish in black coral trees, octopus, turtle, dracula goby and shrimp etc.
Night Dive
Beautiful night dive with several super-friendly mantas as they fed on plankton attracted by the lights at the back of Sea Spirit. Up to 5 different animals seen, So close, so fun!!
Day 7
Lots of grey sharks seen today from MV Sea Spirit, Maldives
Dive 1
Lovely grey reef sharks cruising the edge of the reef plus schools of big-eye crescent-tails, goldspot emperors and longfin batfish. WE found an octopus out foraging, baby white tip sharks hiding under table corals, two ugly larg stonefish :( and lots of beautiful blue anemones with families of blackfoot clownfish
Dive 2
We looked in the nearby lagoons but all we found was a solitary manta so moved on. This was a very fast drift into a channel, flying past lots of white tip sharks resting on the bottom and three ribbontail rays resting on ledges or in overhangs. There were black saddle groupers, harlequin sweetlips and orangspine surgeons along the reef but the dive was quite an experience. We drifted nearly 1 nautical mile!
Ocean Crossing
Ocean crossing to Rasdhoo atoll
Dive 3
GREY SHARKS AND WHITE TIP SHARKS WERE WHIZZING AROUND THE SPUR AND SEVERAL SPOTTED EAGLE RAYS HUNG JUST OFF THE REEF. A large school of big eye jacks meandered around the top of the thila, which was smothered in all kinds of reef fish and lots of Carberry anthias. A large blue Napoleon was being cleaned over some coral blocks. We drifted over a ridge where lots of large red snappers and another grey shark were riding the current and flew into the channel. Fabulous!
Day 8
Beautiful manta seen during our night dive from MV Sea Spirit
Dive 1
Final dive revisiting yesterday afternoon's exciting ocean site. We dropped directly onto the thila and enjoyed a shark show at the western ridge. Again, there were many big eye jacks meandering around and several spotted eagle rays along the reef. Close to the main reef we had another shark show, plus a giant barracuda, a hawksbill turtle, Napoleon wrasse and ended up in the shallows amongst the corals filled with reef fish, pyramid butterflyfish, more eagle rays and a black tip shark! Wow!!!!
Daytime Excursion
Visit to sandbank for a photo shoot
Ocean Crossing
We travelled back to Male' arriving mid-afternoon
Day 9
Idyllic beach on sandbank for guests on Sea Spirit, Maldives
Guest Transfer
Guests were transferred to airport for onward travel to Sri Lanka and part two of their adventure
Day 10
Beautiful schools of fish. So evocative of the Maldives. From MV Sea Spirit
Sea Spirit SS485 1 Nov 2015 to 8 Nov 2015 Central Atolls (7 days)
Guest Transfer
Group arrived to Male' international airport and transferred to Sea Spirit. The divers set up their kit and relaxed before lunch.
Dive 1
Check dive. An easy drift on an ocean reef. We saw honeycomb, giant and yellow margin morays, a white tip shark, green turtles, saw longnose butterflyfish, bicolour parrotfish, trapezia crabs and white spotted groupers. A MANTA AND A MOBULA PASSED BY
Day 1
Group of oriental sweetlips from MV Sea Spirit, Maldives
Dive 1
We saw an EAGLE RAY as we descended and then saw lot of white tip reef sharks as we drifted along the reef, plus oriental and harlequin sweetlips and schools of blue stripe snappers and soldierfish hovering over coral blocks. Off the reef large dogtooth tunas were chasing fusiliers and we also saw another eagle ray, a green turtle, a devil scorpionfish and loved the striking colour of the blue anemones
Dive 2
TWO LOVELY MANTAS, NANCY AND NEMO, PUT ON A WONDERFUL SHOW FOR US WHICH HAD US ALL ENTRACED. We also saw white tip reef sharks, tunas, porcelain crabs catching pankton sat in carpet anemones and just so many different varieties of reef fish
Ocean Crossing
Ocean crossing to South Male' atoll
Dive 3
Lovely wreck with many black coral trees and multicoloured nepthia and schleronepthia soft corals along the hull. The area behind the wheelhouse was full of glassfish and we found many Lysmata and Bruuni cleaner shrimps happy to give us manicures! We also found Durban shrimps, Schultz and reef pipefish, white acabaria lined overhangs, scorpionfish and reef fish of all types. Very pretty.
Day 2
Nany and Nemo mantas put on a display for MV Sea Spirit, Maldives
Dive 1
Great critter dive! Blue and black ribbon eels, 2x green leaf fish, several spearing mantis shrimps, a large stonefish and even a pufferfish sat on a ribbon eel (!) Two eagle rays were seen off the reef and a nosey white tips kept cruising about checking out the divers. The whole reef crest was smothered in orange anthias.
Ocean crossing to South Ari atoll
Dive 2
There were no mantas today despite our patience. We saw many pink bar gobies with their stripey Randall's pistol shrimp housekeepers, fields of garden eels, Phyllidia slugs and feisty jewelled damselfish snapping at divers who got too close to their gardens.
Dive 3
TURTLE TOWN at this shallow thila with at least 5 friendly and photogenic hawksbill turtles, lovely blue magnifica anemones, a stonefish, black coral trees full of cardinalfish and Psmanthe shrimps, penguin and zig-zag oysters etc. the reef top was full of fish and very colourful. Our non-divers enjoyed a snorkel in the shallows
Day 3
Photogenic turtle from MV Sea Spirit, Maldives
Dive 1
A colourful wreck with many longfin batfish and bluefin jacks at the bow plus glassfish and juvenile cardinals all over the deck. We found a large stonefish, several large clearfin lionfish and a Chromodoris glenei nudibranch on the wreck and then swm over to the island reef where we found a large crown jellyfish being eaten by saddleback butterflyfish. The reef slope was smothered in blue-green and scissortail chromic. Very pretty.
Dive 2
Ocean reef site with slope down to sand where were saw several white tip sharks sleeping on the bottom. Schools of bluestripe and jumpback snapers plus yellow goatfish meandered between coral blocks on the slope and we also found a scorpionfish, a tiny oriental sweetlips thrashing around and many unicorn fish in the shallows
Snorkelling
No luck with the hunt for whale sharks today but we managed to briefly snorkel with THREE MANTAS FEEDING IN A SHALLOW LAGOON. A pod of spinner dolphins were also resting in the shallows nearby
Dive 3
FISHORAMA THILA!!! THE REEF WAS SMOTHERED IN SCHOOLS OF BLUESTRIPE SNAPPERS AND HUMPBACK SNAPPERS WITH HUNDREDS OF LARGE PINK SEAFANS LINING THE DEEPER SLOPES OF THE REEF. The shallower walls of the overhangs and canyons were covered with small green seafans, brightly coloured featherstars and multi coloured soft corals. WE saw two large brown marbled groupers disappear into a very small overhang. The reef top wa covered in pink anemones and blackfoot clownfish and bubbles filtered through from the overhangs through the top of the reef giving a jacuzzi effect
Night Dive
Easy night dive around shallow coral block in sheltered lagoon. Divers found a large hermit crab, a swimming but unidentified red nudibranch (maybe a glorious flatworm), a moray out hunting and many shrimps and corals with their polyps open and feeding
Day 4
Colourful large lionfish on the wreck, dived from MV Sea Spirit
Dive 1
A beautiful seafan and soft coral covered small thila with deep canyons. There were lots of bannerfish and pyramid butterflyfish at the current point and a large grey shark cruised around just off the reef. We found a white leaf fish and then a large round ribbontail ray resting whilst it was being cleaned. A few white tips cruised the reef edge and many different anemones decorated the top.
Dive 2
Large jacks, schools of fusiliers and many bannerfish made the current point very busy. We saw chevron and Forster's barracudas deep on the drop off but the reef was special for the millions of blue stripe snappers smothering the southern plateau and the very tame hawksbill turtles which lined up for a photo shoot
Dive 3
Golden and barred jack buzzed around the deep coral blocks covered in black coral trees and glassfish. A group of FOUR GREYSHARKS buzzed around and then we sighted a juvenile SILVERTIP SHARK plus several resting white tip sharks. We found some very cheeky turtles on the top who literally pushed us out of the way! Also octopus, Bedford's flatworm, bubble anemones with Clarke's anemonefish
Night Dive
AMAZING DIVE WITH UP TO FOUR MANTAS ZOOMING PAST AND FEDING AND LSO PLAYING I OUR BUBBLES. THEY WERE SO CLOSE!! Just the best dive!!!
Day 5
Blue Stripe snappers at the Fish Head from MV Sea Spirit, Maldives
Dive 1
GOOD GREY SHARK SHOW with 3+1 cruising around in he deeper water and two along the reef edge giving us an easy show to watch. There were several baby white tip sharks hiding under table corals plus large ones joining in the shark parade. We found a large green Phyllidia slug, many beautiful pink and blue anemones and two octopus which entertained us by pulling shapes and hugging the anemones!
Ocean Crossing
Ocean crossing to Rasdhoo atoll
Dive 2
ANOTHER GREAT SHARK SHOW WITH LOTS OF SHARKS CRUISING AROUND THE SPUR AND SEVERAL MORE ALONG THE REEF EDGE. THOUSANDS OF BIG-EYE JACKS WHIRLED AROUND UP TO THE SHALLOWS AND THEN BACK DOWN TO THE DEPTHS. Also long nose emperors, a starry dragonet, a huge Napoleon, large lunar-tailed rock cod, and then, just as we were about to ascend, A SQUADRON OF 10 EAGLE RAYS IN FORMATION ALONG THE RIDGE
Daytime Excursion
Non-divers visited the sandbank
Dive 3
Experimental dive on ocean reef forming a series of thilas along the drop. We saw a PORCUPINE RAY, BLACK TIP REEF SHARK, lots of white tip sharks, a round ribbontail ray, a school of 30 longfin batfish and a large green turtle along with two giant sweetlips on a shallow thila inside the channel. Worth the look!
Day 6
Squadron of eagle rays sighted today from MV Sea Spirit, Maldives
Dive 1
Final dive on the beautiful and dramatic ocean reef. The grey sharks and white tips were cruising the drop off and some were being harassed by big-eye jacks and rainbown runners. A school of longfin batfish suddenly swam out of the depths, later we saw them huddled together on the reef being cleaned. We found the large spearing mantis shrimps in their nests and glassfish smothering groupers in overhangs. A baby white tip shark was STILL resting in the same hole as yesterday. WE ended the dive up in the shallows amongst the rivers of lined and neon fusiliers, butterflyfish and chromis. Stunning!
Ocean Crossing
Ocean crossing back towards Male' ariving around lunch time
Daytime Excursion
Afternoon visit to Male' for sightseeing and shopping and a visit to Seagull ice-cream café
Day 7
grey shark cruising the drop off from MV Sea Spirit,Maldives
Guest Transfer
The group transferred back to the airport for their onward travel to Angaga Resort and their second week of adventures
Day 8
Aquatic Element Dive Club on Sea Spirit. What a wonderful Maldives adventure we enjoyed together
 
Guest Transfer
Group arrived to Male' international airport and transferred to Sea Spirit. The divers set up their kit and relaxed before lunch.
Dive 1
Check dive. An easy drift on an ocean reef. We saw honeycomb, giant and yellow margin morays, a white tip shark, green turtles, saw longnose butterflyfish, bicolour parrotfish, trapezia crabs and white spotted groupers. A MANTA AND A MOBULA PASSED BY
Day 1
Group of oriental sweetlips from MV Sea Spirit, Maldives
Dive 1
We saw an EAGLE RAY as we descended and then saw lot of white tip reef sharks as we drifted along the reef, plus oriental and harlequin sweetlips and schools of blue stripe snappers and soldierfish hovering over coral blocks. Off the reef large dogtooth tunas were chasing fusiliers and we also saw another eagle ray, a green turtle, a devil scorpionfish and loved the striking colour of the blue anemones
Dive 2
TWO LOVELY MANTAS, NANCY AND NEMO, PUT ON A WONDERFUL SHOW FOR US WHICH HAD US ALL ENTRACED. We also saw white tip reef sharks, tunas, porcelain crabs catching pankton sat in carpet anemones and just so many different varieties of reef fish
Ocean Crossing
Ocean crossing to South Male' atoll
Dive 3
Lovely wreck with many black coral trees and multicoloured nepthia and schleronepthia soft corals along the hull. The area behind the wheelhouse was full of glassfish and we found many Lysmata and Bruuni cleaner shrimps happy to give us manicures! We also found Durban shrimps, Schultz and reef pipefish, white acabaria lined overhangs, scorpionfish and reef fish of all types. Very pretty.
Day 2
Nany and Nemo mantas put on a display for MV Sea Spirit, Maldives
Dive 1
Great critter dive! Blue and black ribbon eels, 2x green leaf fish, several spearing mantis shrimps, a large stonefish and even a pufferfish sat on a ribbon eel (!) Two eagle rays were seen off the reef and a nosey white tips kept cruising about checking out the divers. The whole reef crest was smothered in orange anthias.
Ocean crossing to South Ari atoll
Dive 2
There were no mantas today despite our patience. We saw many pink bar gobies with their stripey Randall's pistol shrimp housekeepers, fields of garden eels, Phyllidia slugs and feisty jewelled damselfish snapping at divers who got too close to their gardens.
Dive 3
TURTLE TOWN at this shallow thila with at least 5 friendly and photogenic hawksbill turtles, lovely blue magnifica anemones, a stonefish, black coral trees full of cardinalfish and Psmanthe shrimps, penguin and zig-zag oysters etc. the reef top was full of fish and very colourful. Our non-divers enjoyed a snorkel in the shallows
Day 3
Photogenic turtle from MV Sea Spirit, Maldives
Dive 1
A colourful wreck with many longfin batfish and bluefin jacks at the bow plus glassfish and juvenile cardinals all over the deck. We found a large stonefish, several large clearfin lionfish and a Chromodoris glenei nudibranch on the wreck and then swm over to the island reef where we found a large crown jellyfish being eaten by saddleback butterflyfish. The reef slope was smothered in blue-green and scissortail chromic. Very pretty.
Dive 2
Ocean reef site with slope down to sand where were saw several white tip sharks sleeping on the bottom. Schools of bluestripe and jumpback snapers plus yellow goatfish meandered between coral blocks on the slope and we also found a scorpionfish, a tiny oriental sweetlips thrashing around and many unicorn fish in the shallows
Snorkelling
No luck with the hunt for whale sharks today but we managed to briefly snorkel with THREE MANTAS FEEDING IN A SHALLOW LAGOON. A pod of spinner dolphins were also resting in the shallows nearby
Dive 3
FISHORAMA THILA!!! THE REEF WAS SMOTHERED IN SCHOOLS OF BLUESTRIPE SNAPPERS AND HUMPBACK SNAPPERS WITH HUNDREDS OF LARGE PINK SEAFANS LINING THE DEEPER SLOPES OF THE REEF. The shallower walls of the overhangs and canyons were covered with small green seafans, brightly coloured featherstars and multi coloured soft corals. WE saw two large brown marbled groupers disappear into a very small overhang. The reef top wa covered in pink anemones and blackfoot clownfish and bubbles filtered through from the overhangs through the top of the reef giving a jacuzzi effect
Night Dive
Easy night dive around shallow coral block in sheltered lagoon. Divers found a large hermit crab, a swimming but unidentified red nudibranch (maybe a glorious flatworm), a moray out hunting and many shrimps and corals with their polyps open and feeding
Day 4
Colourful large lionfish on the wreck, dived from MV Sea Spirit
Dive 1
A beautiful seafan and soft coral covered small thila with deep canyons. There were lots of bannerfish and pyramid butterflyfish at the current point and a large grey shark cruised around just off the reef. We found a white leaf fish and then a large round ribbontail ray resting whilst it was being cleaned. A few white tips cruised the reef edge and many different anemones decorated the top.
Dive 2
Large jacks, schools of fusiliers and many bannerfish made the current point very busy. We saw chevron and Forster's barracudas deep on the drop off but the reef was special for the millions of blue stripe snappers smothering the southern plateau and the very tame hawksbill turtles which lined up for a photo shoot
Dive 3
Golden and barred jack buzzed around the deep coral blocks covered in black coral trees and glassfish. A group of FOUR GREYSHARKS buzzed around and then we sighted a juvenile SILVERTIP SHARK plus several resting white tip sharks. We found some very cheeky turtles on the top who literally pushed us out of the way! Also octopus, Bedford's flatworm, bubble anemones with Clarke's anemonefish
Night Dive
AMAZING DIVE WITH UP TO FOUR MANTAS ZOOMING PAST AND FEDING AND LSO PLAYING I OUR BUBBLES. THEY WERE SO CLOSE!! Just the best dive!!!
Day 5
Blue Stripe snappers at the Fish Head from MV Sea Spirit, Maldives
Dive 1
GOOD GREY SHARK SHOW with 3+1 cruising around in he deeper water and two along the reef edge giving us an easy show to watch. There were several baby white tip sharks hiding under table corals plus large ones joining in the shark parade. We found a large green Phyllidia slug, many beautiful pink and blue anemones and two octopus which entertained us by pulling shapes and hugging the anemones!
Ocean Crossing
Ocean crossing to Rasdhoo atoll
Dive 2
ANOTHER GREAT SHARK SHOW WITH LOTS OF SHARKS CRUISING AROUND THE SPUR AND SEVERAL MORE ALONG THE REEF EDGE. THOUSANDS OF BIG-EYE JACKS WHIRLED AROUND UP TO THE SHALLOWS AND THEN BACK DOWN TO THE DEPTHS. Also long nose emperors, a starry dragonet, a huge Napoleon, large lunar-tailed rock cod, and then, just as we were about to ascend, A SQUADRON OF 10 EAGLE RAYS IN FORMATION ALONG THE RIDGE
Daytime Excursion
Non-divers visited the sandbank
Dive 3
Experimental dive on ocean reef forming a series of thilas along the drop. We saw a PORCUPINE RAY, BLACK TIP REEF SHARK, lots of white tip sharks, a round ribbontail ray, a school of 30 longfin batfish and a large green turtle along with two giant sweetlips on a shallow thila inside the channel. Worth the look!
Day 6
Squadron of eagle rays sighted today from MV Sea Spirit, Maldives
Dive 1
Final dive on the beautiful and dramatic ocean reef. The grey sharks and white tips were cruising the drop off and some were being harassed by big-eye jacks and rainbown runners. A school of longfin batfish suddenly swam out of the depths, later we saw them huddled together on the reef being cleaned. We found the large spearing mantis shrimps in their nests and glassfish smothering groupers in overhangs. A baby white tip shark was STILL resting in the same hole as yesterday. WE ended the dive up in the shallows amongst the rivers of lined and neon fusiliers, butterflyfish and chromis. Stunning!
Ocean Crossing
Ocean crossing back towards Male' ariving around lunch time
Daytime Excursion
Afternoon visit to Male' for sightseeing and shopping and a visit to Seagull ice-cream café
Day 7
grey shark cruising the drop off from MV Sea Spirit,Maldives
Guest Transfer
The group transferred back to the airport for their onward travel to Angaga Resort and their second week of adventures
Day 8
Aquatic Element Dive Club on Sea Spirit. What a wonderful Maldives adventure we enjoyed together
Sea Spirit SS484 25 Oct 2015 to 1 Nov 2015 Central Atolls (7 days)
Guest Transfer
Guests arrived from international flights and local guest houses and were transferred to Sea Spirit. We made a check dive after lunch.
Dive 1
Easy drift to settle everyone in. We saw several large morays of different species, large blue magnificent anemones with families of blackfoot clownfish, schools of pyramid butterflyfish, pairs of Indian bannerfish, a smallscale scorpionfish and many red-spotted trapezia crabs inside the finger corals
Day 1
Double the fun! Pair of honeycomb morays from MV Sea Spirit
Dive 1
No mantas this morning, probably because we saw a GREAT HAMMERHEAD SHARK! We found lots of nice macro items instead, including pinkbar gobies with their yellow/red striped symbiotic pistol shrimps, garden seels, an unidentified Armina sp. nudi, a juvenile reindeer rockmover wrasse and a juvenile razor wrasse, blueface angelfish, lionfish etc.
Dive 2
THERE WERE 4+ MANTA RAYS BEING CLEANED ALONG THE REEF EDGE AND ONE WAS QUITE CURIOUS AND FRIENDLY TO DIVERS. We also found a devil stonefish, a box puffer, a large Mappa puffer and enjoyed a lovely drift through overhangs with pink seafans and enjoyed the millions of orange anthias buzzing over the coral blocks with soft corals and blue finger sponges
Dive 3
A reverse direction easy drift over the coral blocks buzzing with anthias and past rivers of fusiliers being chased by dogtooth tunas. We drifted through the upper ledges of the overhangs lined with blue and yellow puffy soft corals and pink and orange acabaria. We saw clown triggerfish, small Napoleons, a starry puffer and all the corals were buzzing with blue damsels, humbus, Indian dascyllus etc. Lovely!!
Day 2
Beautiful manta on the second dive from MV Sea Spirit, Maldives
Dive 1
Another brisk drift and a couple of MANTA RAYS PASSED BY. There were schools of oriental sweetlips and collared butterflyfish on the corner amongst the large blocks, a spotted trunkfish and wrassed and angelfish of many species
Dive 2
Two eagle rays, white tips and two green turtles plus a pair of green leaf fish and a black ribbon eel along this ocean reef. This site is also famous for the different schools of fish including two spot snappers, bluestripe snappers (lots!), red snappers, rudderfish, sweetlips and even longfin batfish
Dive 3
SO MANY PINK WHIP RAYS BUZZING AROUND!! ALSO FEATHERTAIL RAY, MANGROVE WHIPRAY, ROUND RIBBONTAIL RAY, LARGE HONEYCOMB AND GIANT MORAYS SHARING HOLES WITH UNDULATE, FIMBIATED AND EVEN WHITE EYE MORAYS. Busy busy.
Day 3
Pink whipray parade seen from MV Sea Spirit, Maldives
Dive 1
SEVERAL FRIENDLY MANTAS WHO PUT ON QUITE A SHOW THIS MORNING WITH SEVERAL MALES TOGETHER AT ONE POINT AND ONE WHICH JUMPED OUT OF THE WATER IN FRONT OF US! Also brownmarbled groupers, white tip sharks, a mangrove whipray feeding, and a shortfin mobula ray.
Ocean Crossing
Ocean crossing to South Male' atoll
Dive 2
Great little wreck with lots of shrimp cleaning stations with Lysmata, Bruuni and banded coral shrimps waiting for fish to clean. Along the edges of doors ands were many Durban dancing shrimps and we found peacock mantis shrimps, large clearfin lionfish, Schultz pipefish etc. On the maion reef we found Chromodoris tritos nudis, scorpionfish, many clownfish (some being very photogenic!) and enjoyed the acabaria lined overhangs and walls
Dive 3
An exciting corner to channel div with grey sharks and white tip sharks plus eagle rays and dense schools of fusiliers chased by tunas and lots of jacks. The tunas chased the fusiliers straight at us and they exploded onto the reef!! There were nice honeycomb morays, many different shrimps and soft coral covered blocks. The drift into the channel was fast and bumpy and even the fish were getting all mixed up in the washing machine!
Night Dive
A night critter dive: hermit crabs, squat lobsters, stonefish, open yellow cup corals, spotted snake eel, Coriocella nigra sponge snail, Flabellina exoptata nudibranch, sleeping clownfish and just so many featherstars of different types
Day 4
One of this morning's frindly mantas ffrom MV Sea Spirit
Dive 1
Dramatic ocean facing thila with big steps down to ocean front with many fish including schools of rainbow runners, chevron and Forster's barracudas and GREY SHARKS cruising around. One school of larger chevron barracudas has two juvenile grey sharks mixed in. Along the edge of the thila we saw white tip sharks and Napoleon wrsses and enjoyed the colourful coral and fish filled ledges. We finished the dive on the top of the thila amingst large schools of collared butterflyfish and silver and oriental sweetlips.
Ocean Crossing
Ocean crossing to Felidhoo atoll
Dive 2
Brisk drift from channel to ocean wall smothered in orange and Evans' anthias with many shrimp cleaning stations populated by Lysmata, Bruuni and banded shrimps and some divers received a manicure so long as they were attentive of the feisty blackcheek moray hiding behind the shrimps! We also saw grey sharks and even a couple of mantas! The reff slope and top are beautiful: really healthy growing table and boulder corals
Dive 3
GREY SHARK AND WHITE TIP SHARK SHOW ON CHANNEL FRONT. A few dogtooth tunas were chasing schools of fusiliers and mackerels around too. We found an octopus and a gold leaf fish whist we waited. We had a nice drift into the channel and ended up drifting over sand dunes where the razor wrasses hid in the sand
Night Dive
AMAZING NIGHT DIVE WITH MANY LARGE NURSE SHARKS AND SEVERAL BLACKTIP REEF SHARKS PLUS PINK WHIP RAYS, ROUND RIBBONTAIL RAYS, Jenkins whip rays and even a porcupine ray tonight. The jacks and trevallies were busy chasing baitfish and everything was excited!!!!
Day 5
Grey reef sharks and many snappers on the current point, MV Sea Spirit, Maldives
Dive 1
Out current in a complicated channel so started with a drift along a shallow channel where we saw a huge mappa pufferfish and an emperor orangefin swimming around with a large starfish in its mouth. There was a large school of Forster's barracudas which we swam into a couple of times, a very large sleeping round ribbontail ray and a couple of large grey reef shark. We ended up on the ocean reef where we saw a shortfin mobula, many shrimps, morays, reef fish of all sorts and a pair of HALIMEDA GHOST PIPEFISH
Dive 2
Blue water and a brisk current but lovely to watch white tip sharks and large red snappers riding the current and then a fast drift through overhangs hung with pale pink soft corals and white deepwater seafans. We found a couple of turtles down current and a lovely coral garden in the shallows
Ocean Crossing
Ocean crossing to South Male' atoll
Dive 3
Critter dive. We found several blue ribbon eels including a pair peering out of the same hole, black (juvenile) ribbon eels, Lysmata nad Bruuni shrimps, several large spearing mantis shrimps in their burrows, smallscale scorpuionfish, octopus etc, and enjoyed a pretty reef buzzing with anthias
Evening Activity
Ashore to isolated sandbank for sundowners. The sunset was magnificent tonight
Day 6
Anthias buzzing above beautiful corals in the Maldives from MV Sea Spirit
Dive 1
GREAT LAST DIVE WITH LOTS OF GREY SHARKS CRUISING THE OCEAN DROP OFF, MANY SNAPPERS AND JACKS, A GROUP PG JUVENILE GREY SHARKS, A MIXED SCHOOL OF FORSTERS AND CHEVRON BARRACUDAS, BEAUTIFUL SOFT CORALS ON THE OVERHANGS AND MILLIONS OF ANTHIAS PLUS ANGELFISH, BUTTERFLYFISH, SCHOOLS OF SURGEONS AND TWO SLEEPING GREEN TURTLES. JUST STUNNING!
Daytime Excursion
Travel back towards Male', arriving around lunch time. Afternoon visit to Male' cancelled due to rain so guests just relaxed. The sun came out later.
Day 7
Enjoying sundowners on the sandbank from MV Sea Spirit
Guest Transfer
All guests to airport for international flights or onward travel to resorts
Day 8
Magnificent Maldives sunset from the sandbank, MV Sea Spirit
 
Guest Transfer
Guests arrived from international flights and local guest houses and were transferred to Sea Spirit. We made a check dive after lunch.
Dive 1
Easy drift to settle everyone in. We saw several large morays of different species, large blue magnificent anemones with families of blackfoot clownfish, schools of pyramid butterflyfish, pairs of Indian bannerfish, a smallscale scorpionfish and many red-spotted trapezia crabs inside the finger corals
Day 1
Double the fun! Pair of honeycomb morays from MV Sea Spirit
Dive 1
No mantas this morning, probably because we saw a GREAT HAMMERHEAD SHARK! We found lots of nice macro items instead, including pinkbar gobies with their yellow/red striped symbiotic pistol shrimps, garden seels, an unidentified Armina sp. nudi, a juvenile reindeer rockmover wrasse and a juvenile razor wrasse, blueface angelfish, lionfish etc.
Dive 2
THERE WERE 4+ MANTA RAYS BEING CLEANED ALONG THE REEF EDGE AND ONE WAS QUITE CURIOUS AND FRIENDLY TO DIVERS. We also found a devil stonefish, a box puffer, a large Mappa puffer and enjoyed a lovely drift through overhangs with pink seafans and enjoyed the millions of orange anthias buzzing over the coral blocks with soft corals and blue finger sponges
Dive 3
A reverse direction easy drift over the coral blocks buzzing with anthias and past rivers of fusiliers being chased by dogtooth tunas. We drifted through the upper ledges of the overhangs lined with blue and yellow puffy soft corals and pink and orange acabaria. We saw clown triggerfish, small Napoleons, a starry puffer and all the corals were buzzing with blue damsels, humbus, Indian dascyllus etc. Lovely!!
Day 2
Beautiful manta on the second dive from MV Sea Spirit, Maldives
Dive 1
Another brisk drift and a couple of MANTA RAYS PASSED BY. There were schools of oriental sweetlips and collared butterflyfish on the corner amongst the large blocks, a spotted trunkfish and wrassed and angelfish of many species
Dive 2
Two eagle rays, white tips and two green turtles plus a pair of green leaf fish and a black ribbon eel along this ocean reef. This site is also famous for the different schools of fish including two spot snappers, bluestripe snappers (lots!), red snappers, rudderfish, sweetlips and even longfin batfish
Dive 3
SO MANY PINK WHIP RAYS BUZZING AROUND!! ALSO FEATHERTAIL RAY, MANGROVE WHIPRAY, ROUND RIBBONTAIL RAY, LARGE HONEYCOMB AND GIANT MORAYS SHARING HOLES WITH UNDULATE, FIMBIATED AND EVEN WHITE EYE MORAYS. Busy busy.
Day 3
Pink whipray parade seen from MV Sea Spirit, Maldives
Dive 1
SEVERAL FRIENDLY MANTAS WHO PUT ON QUITE A SHOW THIS MORNING WITH SEVERAL MALES TOGETHER AT ONE POINT AND ONE WHICH JUMPED OUT OF THE WATER IN FRONT OF US! Also brownmarbled groupers, white tip sharks, a mangrove whipray feeding, and a shortfin mobula ray.
Ocean Crossing
Ocean crossing to South Male' atoll
Dive 2
Great little wreck with lots of shrimp cleaning stations with Lysmata, Bruuni and banded coral shrimps waiting for fish to clean. Along the edges of doors ands were many Durban dancing shrimps and we found peacock mantis shrimps, large clearfin lionfish, Schultz pipefish etc. On the maion reef we found Chromodoris tritos nudis, scorpionfish, many clownfish (some being very photogenic!) and enjoyed the acabaria lined overhangs and walls
Dive 3
An exciting corner to channel div with grey sharks and white tip sharks plus eagle rays and dense schools of fusiliers chased by tunas and lots of jacks. The tunas chased the fusiliers straight at us and they exploded onto the reef!! There were nice honeycomb morays, many different shrimps and soft coral covered blocks. The drift into the channel was fast and bumpy and even the fish were getting all mixed up in the washing machine!
Night Dive
A night critter dive: hermit crabs, squat lobsters, stonefish, open yellow cup corals, spotted snake eel, Coriocella nigra sponge snail, Flabellina exoptata nudibranch, sleeping clownfish and just so many featherstars of different types
Day 4
One of this morning's frindly mantas ffrom MV Sea Spirit
Dive 1
Dramatic ocean facing thila with big steps down to ocean front with many fish including schools of rainbow runners, chevron and Forster's barracudas and GREY SHARKS cruising around. One school of larger chevron barracudas has two juvenile grey sharks mixed in. Along the edge of the thila we saw white tip sharks and Napoleon wrsses and enjoyed the colourful coral and fish filled ledges. We finished the dive on the top of the thila amingst large schools of collared butterflyfish and silver and oriental sweetlips.
Ocean Crossing
Ocean crossing to Felidhoo atoll
Dive 2
Brisk drift from channel to ocean wall smothered in orange and Evans' anthias with many shrimp cleaning stations populated by Lysmata, Bruuni and banded shrimps and some divers received a manicure so long as they were attentive of the feisty blackcheek moray hiding behind the shrimps! We also saw grey sharks and even a couple of mantas! The reff slope and top are beautiful: really healthy growing table and boulder corals
Dive 3
GREY SHARK AND WHITE TIP SHARK SHOW ON CHANNEL FRONT. A few dogtooth tunas were chasing schools of fusiliers and mackerels around too. We found an octopus and a gold leaf fish whist we waited. We had a nice drift into the channel and ended up drifting over sand dunes where the razor wrasses hid in the sand
Night Dive
AMAZING NIGHT DIVE WITH MANY LARGE NURSE SHARKS AND SEVERAL BLACKTIP REEF SHARKS PLUS PINK WHIP RAYS, ROUND RIBBONTAIL RAYS, Jenkins whip rays and even a porcupine ray tonight. The jacks and trevallies were busy chasing baitfish and everything was excited!!!!
Day 5
Grey reef sharks and many snappers on the current point, MV Sea Spirit, Maldives
Dive 1
Out current in a complicated channel so started with a drift along a shallow channel where we saw a huge mappa pufferfish and an emperor orangefin swimming around with a large starfish in its mouth. There was a large school of Forster's barracudas which we swam into a couple of times, a very large sleeping round ribbontail ray and a couple of large grey reef shark. We ended up on the ocean reef where we saw a shortfin mobula, many shrimps, morays, reef fish of all sorts and a pair of HALIMEDA GHOST PIPEFISH
Dive 2
Blue water and a brisk current but lovely to watch white tip sharks and large red snappers riding the current and then a fast drift through overhangs hung with pale pink soft corals and white deepwater seafans. We found a couple of turtles down current and a lovely coral garden in the shallows
Ocean Crossing
Ocean crossing to South Male' atoll
Dive 3
Critter dive. We found several blue ribbon eels including a pair peering out of the same hole, black (juvenile) ribbon eels, Lysmata nad Bruuni shrimps, several large spearing mantis shrimps in their burrows, smallscale scorpuionfish, octopus etc, and enjoyed a pretty reef buzzing with anthias
Evening Activity
Ashore to isolated sandbank for sundowners. The sunset was magnificent tonight
Day 6
Anthias buzzing above beautiful corals in the Maldives from MV Sea Spirit
Dive 1
GREAT LAST DIVE WITH LOTS OF GREY SHARKS CRUISING THE OCEAN DROP OFF, MANY SNAPPERS AND JACKS, A GROUP PG JUVENILE GREY SHARKS, A MIXED SCHOOL OF FORSTERS AND CHEVRON BARRACUDAS, BEAUTIFUL SOFT CORALS ON THE OVERHANGS AND MILLIONS OF ANTHIAS PLUS ANGELFISH, BUTTERFLYFISH, SCHOOLS OF SURGEONS AND TWO SLEEPING GREEN TURTLES. JUST STUNNING!
Daytime Excursion
Travel back towards Male', arriving around lunch time. Afternoon visit to Male' cancelled due to rain so guests just relaxed. The sun came out later.
Day 7
Enjoying sundowners on the sandbank from MV Sea Spirit
Guest Transfer
All guests to airport for international flights or onward travel to resorts
Day 8
Magnificent Maldives sunset from the sandbank, MV Sea Spirit
Sea Spirit SS483 11 Oct 2015 to 23 Oct 2015 Central Atolls & Beyond (12 day)
Guest Transfer
Guests arrived from international flights and local hotels for transfer via airport to Sea Spirit
Dive 1
An easy drift for our check dive with several white tip reef sharks plus a grey shark and a blacktip reef shark. There were several large Naopleon wrasses and a huge brownmarbled grouper lurking in a shallow coral block. We loved the large schools of oriental sweetlips, and blocks full of bulls-eyes, schooling blue stripe snappers and soldierfish. We found a small trumpetfish pretending to be black coral and a friendly turtle or two
Day 1
Amazing sunset from MV Sea Spirit, Maldives
Dive 1
The spinner dolphins were conducting jumping practice as we approached the dive site and although we did not see any mantas, we had a great macro dive instead! We found a pair of yellow-phase black barred gobies with their pistol shrimp housekeepers plus many pinkbar and Dracula goby pairs, there were large schols of silver sprats being chased by bonitos, a tiny Clarke's anemonefish in a blue anemone, a juvenile oriental sweetlips, an unidentified flatworm and a juvenile razor wrasse etc.
Dive 2
We saw eagle rays and white tips along the drop off and a pair of GREEN LEAF FISH, many Bruuni shrimps and a BLACK RIBBON EEL amongst the coral blocks. On the reef top was a lovely green turtle, a school of 100+ longfin batfish, honeycomb and giant morays and reef fish of all types including collared butterflyfish, Indian bannerfish, crown squirrelfish, smoke angelfish etc. etc.
Dive 3
An experimental dive on a different section of reef where we found extensive long and deep ledges full of beautiful soft corals, seafans, whips, crinoids etc. and in really pristine condition. We found a sleeping round ribontail ray, a carpet of feeding tubeworms, zooanthids, Bruuni shrimp cleaning station, several large Mappa puffers and yellow boxfish in courtship activity (biting eachother!)
Day 2
Fishorama yellowback fusiliers from MV Sea Spirit, Maldives
Dive 1
AMAZING SHOW WITH 18 DIFFERENT MANTAS AS WE WATCHED THEM BEING CLEANED. THEY WERE SWIMMING VERY CLOSE PAAST US AND CHECKING US OUT AND ENJOYING BUBBLE BATHS. TERRIFIC!
Dive 2
THE MANTAS WERE STILL THERE SO WE WENT AGAIN. 9 DIFFERENT ONES THIS TIME (AND ALL NEW COMPARED TO THE EARLY SESSION). We also saw sleeping white tip sharks, an octopus, a scorpionfish and enjoyed all the chromis and humbug damsels bounding around in all the table corals
Dive 3
A corner-channel drift over many coral blocks and into large overhangs covered in pink seafans and with yellow and blue soft coral in the ceilings. There were beautiful anemones, crinoids and sponges in every colour. We found a leaf fish, many different puffers, a tiny yellow boxfish, a few white tip sharks but the corals were the stars this afternoon
Day 3
manta show!!! So many mantas seen today from Mv Sea Spirit Maldives
Dive 1
We had a few mantas pass through but they weren't stopping for long this morning so drifted onto the outer reef and had a lovely show with Arraya the manta right on top of our heads! She loved the bubbles. The coral blocks were full of anthias of all species plus blue finger sponges in wonderful shapes. There was a large school of collared butterflyfish in one of the shallow blocks
Dive 2
Fishorama Thila! Schools of snappers and jacks hng in the water column and there were large schools of oriental sweetlips plus bluestripe and humpback snappers on the reef. We found a baby white tip shark in a block and there were plenty of adults scotting around. WE FOUND A NURSE SHARK in a shallow block but it was very exposed. The spectacular overhangs along the side of the thila were full of large seafans and blue stripe snappers
Dive 3
A very strong current so not a very comfortable dive and even too strong for the sharks as there were only a couple of white tips around. There were also many fusiliers, sweetlips and humpback snappers on the lee of the current.
Day 4
Arraya the beautiful manta came to call! MV Sea Spirit, maldives
Dive 1
A more moderate current and a lovely dive watching a large grey shark cruising up and down and up to 8 EAGLE RAYS plus fusiliers and large tunas and jacks. The coral blocks were full of snappers and butterflyfish but then we found rather too many crown of thorns sea stars on the main reef which had caused a lot of damage
Ocean Crossing
Ocean crossing to Rasdhoo atoll
Dive 2
We saw an EAGLE RAY AS WE DESCENDED and then saw several GREY SHARKS along the steep ocean drop off.. This site is always great for the variety of reef fish which today included, bluefaced and two spot angelfish, humback surgeonfish, a lemon-yellow leaf fish, a stonefish, millions of blue-green chromis and then some BLACK-TIP REEF SHARKS UP IN THE SHALLOWS
Dive 3
Lots of active grey sharks plus a large school of longfin batfish and feisty Vlamings surgeonfish divebombing our bubbles, some VERY large tunas, a pair of eagle rays, Lysmata and banded coral shrimps hiding a blackcheek moray, etc.
Evening Activity
A beautiful sunset this evening so we enjoyed sundowners on top deck
Day 5
Grey sharks cruising past. Mv Sea Spirit, Maldives
Dive 1
We went off the reef looking for big stuff but only found a school of 200 longfin batfish (nice!) and there was little current so the grey sharks were just cruising around. The schools of big-eye jacks kept whirling past. We found several large spearing mantis shrimps, a white and a yellow leaf fish and then an eagle ray on the reef top!
Ocean Crossing
Crossing into North Ari Atoll. We took a look in the northern lagoons but no action so we went diving
Dive 2
Split-group dive. Group A saw lots of white tips, grey sharks over the big coral blocks, a round ribbontail ray and many big eye jacks and then a fast drift through the overhangs and canyons where they saw lobsters, a turtle and an ER Group B had a more sedate drift (in the same channel!) found TWO ZEBRA SHARKS, lots of nestring triggerfish including yellowmargin and blue and enjoyed an extended drift through canyons and overhangs
Dive 3
A small current at this site famous for grey shark sightings so the sharks were a little deep and mainly off the reef. We did see Spot the friendly eagle ray who joined us to get her photograph taken. We found two large red-coloured stonefish, several peacock mantis shrimps, a school of Forster's barracudas, beautiful pink, blue and purple anemones with families of blackfoot clownfish, baby white tip sharks hiding under table corals etc.
Night Dive
Magical night dive with Wiggle, Spookie, Donkeyo, Spinner and Lina mantas as the hungrily fed underneath the boat. Some divers were down for nearly 2 hours
Day 6
Cute Zebra sharks this morning from MV Sea Spirit, Maldives
Dive 1
THERE WAS A BEAUTIFUL LARGE GREY SHARK AT THE CURRENT POINT WITH SEVERAL LARGE REMORAS TRAILING FROM HER PECTORAL FINS LIKE A MEDIEAVAL PRINCESS ' TRAILING SLEEVES. There were three other grey sharks plus many batfish and a HUGE school of blue stripe snappers which smothered the southern plateau of the site. Two hawksbill turtles were fighting over a crown jellyfish. So many pyramid butterflyfish, schooling bannerfish, jacks and fusiliers, 2x Chromodirs glenei etc. etc.
Dive 2
MILLIONS OF YELLOWBACK AND NEON FUSILIERS AT THE CURRENT POINT and later, two nurse sharks on the top coral block with their tails crossed (aah! Sweet). Many overhangs all around the thila with lots of seafans, tubastrea and black coral trees etc. A really colourful site.
Dive 3
WHALESHARK! It was rather deep but we managed to keep up with it for a few minutes. Characteristic from it's bent dorsal fin! We also found a tiny juvenile oriental sweetlips, a green turtle, a pair of porcelain crabs et. The shallows were full of goatfish and rudderfish over pristine table corals with pyramid butterflyfish and the sunlight dappling over the reef. Perfect!
Evening Activity
Some guests made a short excursion ashore to visit a local village and for shopping
Day 7
Hungry mantas behind MV Sea Spirit
Dive 1
FISH EXTRAVAGANZA!!!!!! ONE OF OUR FAVOURITE SITES AND TODAY JUST PERFECT WITH A NICE CURRENT TO KEEP ALL THE BLUESTRIP SNAPPERS IN TIDY SCHOOLS AND TO PUFF UP THE SPLENDID SOFT CORALS. Spectacular! Millions of fusiliers and snapers, black saddle, brown barbled and a yellow fin grouper, every type of fish, seafans, sea whips, Nepthia and schleonepthia soft corals, crinoids, anemones etc.A lovely photgenic mantis shrimp, Amboin shrimps and good old Maldives sponge snails!
Dive 2
We looked hard for a whale shark but when we didn't get lucky, we went for a drift. We DID see lots of sleeping white tip sharks, a group of 4 tiger cowries with eggs, several sleeping hawksbill turtles, a giant spider conch and a large triton shell
Snorkelling
As soon as we sat down for lunch a WHALE SHARK WAS SPOTTED so we went in to snorkel with a cute 5-6m long male shark. Half an hour later a second one was sighted but we lost it before we had a chance to get in 30 minutes later a 3rd one was seen and we got in again! This was probably the same one as the one we saw yesterday afternoon. By the time we came up we all needed a rest!
Dive 3
Another easy drift dive. We saw an eagle ray, turtles, a comet fish, a large octopus and the top reef was really beautiful with magnificent table corals andschools of big eye crescent tails, gold spot emperors and a very large school of blue tangs marauding through the eggs of the Sargent Majors.
Day 8
Whaleshark! 3 seen today from MV Sea Spirit
Dive 1
Wreck site with schools of batfish and surgeonfish at the bow then a BLACK FROGFISH fishing with its lure extended next to two large fluffy stonefish. Lots of other lovely critters including a tiny smallscale scorpionfish, a giant moray posing in a tyre, many coral groupers amongst the glassfish, large lionfish hunting and lurking in quiet corners and an albino bristletooth tang
Ocean Crossing
Ocean crossing to Vaavu atoll (Felidhoo)
Dive 2
Squadron of 24 EAGLE RAYS on the front of the channel amongst millions of fusiliers and some white tip sharks. We then had a gentle drift over fantastic coral formations in a narrow channel and then over a coral garden where we also saw a sleeping feathertail ray
Dive 3
WILD NIGHT DIVE WITH AROUND 40 HUNGRY NURSE SHARKS PLUS SEVERAL BLACK TIP REEF SHARKS, PINK WHIP RAYS, ROUND RIBBONTAIL RAYS AND MANY JACKS AND GIANT TREVALLIES CHASING SCHOOLS OF SILVERSIDES
Nurse shark party behind Sea Spirit as about 20 nurse shark decided to continue their revelries behind the boat!
Day 9
Nurse shark extravaganza from MV Sea Spirit, Maldives
Dive 1
A small current on the channel front so we crossed the front but only a few large Napoleon wrasses and a few grey sharks round today. We saw several crown jellyfish and an eagle ray up in te water column. On the reef we found a black ribbon eel, a leaf fish, honeycomb morays and the whole reef was smothered in orange and Evan's anthias down to 15m with lots of Lysmata cleaner shrimps
Dive 2
Beautiful yellow soft coral hung caves then lots of long overhangs with every type of seafan sponge, crinoid etc. and very colourful. We found several longnose hawkfish in every black coral tree and there were many different species of wrasse and butterflyfish. Wonderful
Dive 3
We dived the ocean wall approaching from the east and finishing shallow on the top of the thila. The overhangs were stacked and full of sea whips and seafans with soldierfish and even jacks inside. We found two elegant squat lobsters in a featherstar, a yellow leaffish, a Chromodiris glenei nudi and many spearing mantis shrimps hiding in their nests
Day 10
Beautiful yellow soft coral caves from MV Sea Spirit, Maldives
Dive 1
On the way to the site a pod of spinner dolphins accompanied the dhoni! THE YELLOW SOFT CORAL CAVES WERE STUNNING TODAY WITH THE CORAL FULLY PLUMPED IN THE LIGHT CURRENT. Tunas and jacks chased fusiliers and mackerels on the wall. We found leaf fish, a Chromodoris tritos nudi, different elegant squat lobsters, and found the school of jacks hanging out in the channel. It was really beautiful today
Dive 2
There are lots of deep overhangs on this dramatic ocean reef. We found octopus and several honeycomb morays, leaf fish, thicklip and Maori wrasses, spiny lobsters, Orzak's flatworm, stonefish and scorpionfish. The reeftop was covered in yellow and purple Evan's anthias
Ocean Crossing
Ocean crossing to South Male' atoll
Dive 3
The ledges and coral blocks were smothered with orange anthias and so many Bruuni, Lysmata and banded coral shrimps busy cleaning fish and hiding blackcheek morays. We also saw several beautiful honeycomb morays, a yellow leaffish, a friendly Napoleon wrasse who was busy hunting on the reef and ignored us watching him.
Night Dive
A great critter night dive. We found a large sleeping starry puffer and several parrotfish, a Phidian nudi, a decorator crab covered in zooanthids, arrowhead crabs, several types of hingebeak shrimps, a spotted snake eel, several undulate morays and an enormous pink stonefish
Day 11
Thousands of blue tangs create a Maldives rush hour from MV Sea Spirit
Dive 1
EN EXCEPTIONAL DIVE TO END ON WITH SCHOOLS OF BLACK AND WHITE SNAPPERS, SILVER SWEETLIPS AND BIG EYE JACKS AT THE CURRENT POINT AND THEN MANY GREY SHARKS OF ALL SIZES ALONG THE REEF INCLUDING SEVERAL LARGE PREGNANT FEMALES AND AROUND 20 JUVENILES TOGETHER. SOME OF THE GROUP FOLLOWED A SQUADRON OF EAGLE RAYS BACK TO THE CURRENT POINT. A REAL WOW DIVE!
We motored back towards Male' getting back in time for lunch. An excursion to Male' was offered during the afternoon but most guests remained onboard and just relaxed.
Guest Transfer
One guest transferred to airport for travel back to Europe after dinner
Day 12
Eagle ray show from MV Sea Spirit, Maldives
Guest Transfer
Remaining guests transferred to airport for travel back to USA and Europe
Day 13
Lots of grey sharks seen on our last dive on MV Sea Spirit
 
Guest Transfer
Guests arrived from international flights and local hotels for transfer via airport to Sea Spirit
Dive 1
An easy drift for our check dive with several white tip reef sharks plus a grey shark and a blacktip reef shark. There were several large Naopleon wrasses and a huge brownmarbled grouper lurking in a shallow coral block. We loved the large schools of oriental sweetlips, and blocks full of bulls-eyes, schooling blue stripe snappers and soldierfish. We found a small trumpetfish pretending to be black coral and a friendly turtle or two
Day 1
Amazing sunset from MV Sea Spirit, Maldives
Dive 1
The spinner dolphins were conducting jumping practice as we approached the dive site and although we did not see any mantas, we had a great macro dive instead! We found a pair of yellow-phase black barred gobies with their pistol shrimp housekeepers plus many pinkbar and Dracula goby pairs, there were large schols of silver sprats being chased by bonitos, a tiny Clarke's anemonefish in a blue anemone, a juvenile oriental sweetlips, an unidentified flatworm and a juvenile razor wrasse etc.
Dive 2
We saw eagle rays and white tips along the drop off and a pair of GREEN LEAF FISH, many Bruuni shrimps and a BLACK RIBBON EEL amongst the coral blocks. On the reef top was a lovely green turtle, a school of 100+ longfin batfish, honeycomb and giant morays and reef fish of all types including collared butterflyfish, Indian bannerfish, crown squirrelfish, smoke angelfish etc. etc.
Dive 3
An experimental dive on a different section of reef where we found extensive long and deep ledges full of beautiful soft corals, seafans, whips, crinoids etc. and in really pristine condition. We found a sleeping round ribontail ray, a carpet of feeding tubeworms, zooanthids, Bruuni shrimp cleaning station, several large Mappa puffers and yellow boxfish in courtship activity (biting eachother!)
Day 2
Fishorama yellowback fusiliers from MV Sea Spirit, Maldives
Dive 1
AMAZING SHOW WITH 18 DIFFERENT MANTAS AS WE WATCHED THEM BEING CLEANED. THEY WERE SWIMMING VERY CLOSE PAAST US AND CHECKING US OUT AND ENJOYING BUBBLE BATHS. TERRIFIC!
Dive 2
THE MANTAS WERE STILL THERE SO WE WENT AGAIN. 9 DIFFERENT ONES THIS TIME (AND ALL NEW COMPARED TO THE EARLY SESSION). We also saw sleeping white tip sharks, an octopus, a scorpionfish and enjoyed all the chromis and humbug damsels bounding around in all the table corals
Dive 3
A corner-channel drift over many coral blocks and into large overhangs covered in pink seafans and with yellow and blue soft coral in the ceilings. There were beautiful anemones, crinoids and sponges in every colour. We found a leaf fish, many different puffers, a tiny yellow boxfish, a few white tip sharks but the corals were the stars this afternoon
Day 3
manta show!!! So many mantas seen today from Mv Sea Spirit Maldives
Dive 1
We had a few mantas pass through but they weren't stopping for long this morning so drifted onto the outer reef and had a lovely show with Arraya the manta right on top of our heads! She loved the bubbles. The coral blocks were full of anthias of all species plus blue finger sponges in wonderful shapes. There was a large school of collared butterflyfish in one of the shallow blocks
Dive 2
Fishorama Thila! Schools of snappers and jacks hng in the water column and there were large schools of oriental sweetlips plus bluestripe and humpback snappers on the reef. We found a baby white tip shark in a block and there were plenty of adults scotting around. WE FOUND A NURSE SHARK in a shallow block but it was very exposed. The spectacular overhangs along the side of the thila were full of large seafans and blue stripe snappers
Dive 3
A very strong current so not a very comfortable dive and even too strong for the sharks as there were only a couple of white tips around. There were also many fusiliers, sweetlips and humpback snappers on the lee of the current.
Day 4
Arraya the beautiful manta came to call! MV Sea Spirit, maldives
Dive 1
A more moderate current and a lovely dive watching a large grey shark cruising up and down and up to 8 EAGLE RAYS plus fusiliers and large tunas and jacks. The coral blocks were full of snappers and butterflyfish but then we found rather too many crown of thorns sea stars on the main reef which had caused a lot of damage
Ocean Crossing
Ocean crossing to Rasdhoo atoll
Dive 2
We saw an EAGLE RAY AS WE DESCENDED and then saw several GREY SHARKS along the steep ocean drop off.. This site is always great for the variety of reef fish which today included, bluefaced and two spot angelfish, humback surgeonfish, a lemon-yellow leaf fish, a stonefish, millions of blue-green chromis and then some BLACK-TIP REEF SHARKS UP IN THE SHALLOWS
Dive 3
Lots of active grey sharks plus a large school of longfin batfish and feisty Vlamings surgeonfish divebombing our bubbles, some VERY large tunas, a pair of eagle rays, Lysmata and banded coral shrimps hiding a blackcheek moray, etc.
Evening Activity
A beautiful sunset this evening so we enjoyed sundowners on top deck
Day 5
Grey sharks cruising past. Mv Sea Spirit, Maldives
Dive 1
We went off the reef looking for big stuff but only found a school of 200 longfin batfish (nice!) and there was little current so the grey sharks were just cruising around. The schools of big-eye jacks kept whirling past. We found several large spearing mantis shrimps, a white and a yellow leaf fish and then an eagle ray on the reef top!
Ocean Crossing
Crossing into North Ari Atoll. We took a look in the northern lagoons but no action so we went diving
Dive 2
Split-group dive. Group A saw lots of white tips, grey sharks over the big coral blocks, a round ribbontail ray and many big eye jacks and then a fast drift through the overhangs and canyons where they saw lobsters, a turtle and an ER Group B had a more sedate drift (in the same channel!) found TWO ZEBRA SHARKS, lots of nestring triggerfish including yellowmargin and blue and enjoyed an extended drift through canyons and overhangs
Dive 3
A small current at this site famous for grey shark sightings so the sharks were a little deep and mainly off the reef. We did see Spot the friendly eagle ray who joined us to get her photograph taken. We found two large red-coloured stonefish, several peacock mantis shrimps, a school of Forster's barracudas, beautiful pink, blue and purple anemones with families of blackfoot clownfish, baby white tip sharks hiding under table corals etc.
Night Dive
Magical night dive with Wiggle, Spookie, Donkeyo, Spinner and Lina mantas as the hungrily fed underneath the boat. Some divers were down for nearly 2 hours
Day 6
Cute Zebra sharks this morning from MV Sea Spirit, Maldives
Dive 1
THERE WAS A BEAUTIFUL LARGE GREY SHARK AT THE CURRENT POINT WITH SEVERAL LARGE REMORAS TRAILING FROM HER PECTORAL FINS LIKE A MEDIEAVAL PRINCESS ' TRAILING SLEEVES. There were three other grey sharks plus many batfish and a HUGE school of blue stripe snappers which smothered the southern plateau of the site. Two hawksbill turtles were fighting over a crown jellyfish. So many pyramid butterflyfish, schooling bannerfish, jacks and fusiliers, 2x Chromodirs glenei etc. etc.
Dive 2
MILLIONS OF YELLOWBACK AND NEON FUSILIERS AT THE CURRENT POINT and later, two nurse sharks on the top coral block with their tails crossed (aah! Sweet). Many overhangs all around the thila with lots of seafans, tubastrea and black coral trees etc. A really colourful site.
Dive 3
WHALESHARK! It was rather deep but we managed to keep up with it for a few minutes. Characteristic from it's bent dorsal fin! We also found a tiny juvenile oriental sweetlips, a green turtle, a pair of porcelain crabs et. The shallows were full of goatfish and rudderfish over pristine table corals with pyramid butterflyfish and the sunlight dappling over the reef. Perfect!
Evening Activity
Some guests made a short excursion ashore to visit a local village and for shopping
Day 7
Hungry mantas behind MV Sea Spirit
Dive 1
FISH EXTRAVAGANZA!!!!!! ONE OF OUR FAVOURITE SITES AND TODAY JUST PERFECT WITH A NICE CURRENT TO KEEP ALL THE BLUESTRIP SNAPPERS IN TIDY SCHOOLS AND TO PUFF UP THE SPLENDID SOFT CORALS. Spectacular! Millions of fusiliers and snapers, black saddle, brown barbled and a yellow fin grouper, every type of fish, seafans, sea whips, Nepthia and schleonepthia soft corals, crinoids, anemones etc.A lovely photgenic mantis shrimp, Amboin shrimps and good old Maldives sponge snails!
Dive 2
We looked hard for a whale shark but when we didn't get lucky, we went for a drift. We DID see lots of sleeping white tip sharks, a group of 4 tiger cowries with eggs, several sleeping hawksbill turtles, a giant spider conch and a large triton shell
Snorkelling
As soon as we sat down for lunch a WHALE SHARK WAS SPOTTED so we went in to snorkel with a cute 5-6m long male shark. Half an hour later a second one was sighted but we lost it before we had a chance to get in 30 minutes later a 3rd one was seen and we got in again! This was probably the same one as the one we saw yesterday afternoon. By the time we came up we all needed a rest!
Dive 3
Another easy drift dive. We saw an eagle ray, turtles, a comet fish, a large octopus and the top reef was really beautiful with magnificent table corals andschools of big eye crescent tails, gold spot emperors and a very large school of blue tangs marauding through the eggs of the Sargent Majors.
Day 8
Whaleshark! 3 seen today from MV Sea Spirit
Dive 1
Wreck site with schools of batfish and surgeonfish at the bow then a BLACK FROGFISH fishing with its lure extended next to two large fluffy stonefish. Lots of other lovely critters including a tiny smallscale scorpionfish, a giant moray posing in a tyre, many coral groupers amongst the glassfish, large lionfish hunting and lurking in quiet corners and an albino bristletooth tang
Ocean Crossing
Ocean crossing to Vaavu atoll (Felidhoo)
Dive 2
Squadron of 24 EAGLE RAYS on the front of the channel amongst millions of fusiliers and some white tip sharks. We then had a gentle drift over fantastic coral formations in a narrow channel and then over a coral garden where we also saw a sleeping feathertail ray
Dive 3
WILD NIGHT DIVE WITH AROUND 40 HUNGRY NURSE SHARKS PLUS SEVERAL BLACK TIP REEF SHARKS, PINK WHIP RAYS, ROUND RIBBONTAIL RAYS AND MANY JACKS AND GIANT TREVALLIES CHASING SCHOOLS OF SILVERSIDES
Nurse shark party behind Sea Spirit as about 20 nurse shark decided to continue their revelries behind the boat!
Day 9
Nurse shark extravaganza from MV Sea Spirit, Maldives
Dive 1
A small current on the channel front so we crossed the front but only a few large Napoleon wrasses and a few grey sharks round today. We saw several crown jellyfish and an eagle ray up in te water column. On the reef we found a black ribbon eel, a leaf fish, honeycomb morays and the whole reef was smothered in orange and Evan's anthias down to 15m with lots of Lysmata cleaner shrimps
Dive 2
Beautiful yellow soft coral hung caves then lots of long overhangs with every type of seafan sponge, crinoid etc. and very colourful. We found several longnose hawkfish in every black coral tree and there were many different species of wrasse and butterflyfish. Wonderful
Dive 3
We dived the ocean wall approaching from the east and finishing shallow on the top of the thila. The overhangs were stacked and full of sea whips and seafans with soldierfish and even jacks inside. We found two elegant squat lobsters in a featherstar, a yellow leaffish, a Chromodiris glenei nudi and many spearing mantis shrimps hiding in their nests
Day 10
Beautiful yellow soft coral caves from MV Sea Spirit, Maldives
Dive 1
On the way to the site a pod of spinner dolphins accompanied the dhoni! THE YELLOW SOFT CORAL CAVES WERE STUNNING TODAY WITH THE CORAL FULLY PLUMPED IN THE LIGHT CURRENT. Tunas and jacks chased fusiliers and mackerels on the wall. We found leaf fish, a Chromodoris tritos nudi, different elegant squat lobsters, and found the school of jacks hanging out in the channel. It was really beautiful today
Dive 2
There are lots of deep overhangs on this dramatic ocean reef. We found octopus and several honeycomb morays, leaf fish, thicklip and Maori wrasses, spiny lobsters, Orzak's flatworm, stonefish and scorpionfish. The reeftop was covered in yellow and purple Evan's anthias
Ocean Crossing
Ocean crossing to South Male' atoll
Dive 3
The ledges and coral blocks were smothered with orange anthias and so many Bruuni, Lysmata and banded coral shrimps busy cleaning fish and hiding blackcheek morays. We also saw several beautiful honeycomb morays, a yellow leaffish, a friendly Napoleon wrasse who was busy hunting on the reef and ignored us watching him.
Night Dive
A great critter night dive. We found a large sleeping starry puffer and several parrotfish, a Phidian nudi, a decorator crab covered in zooanthids, arrowhead crabs, several types of hingebeak shrimps, a spotted snake eel, several undulate morays and an enormous pink stonefish
Day 11
Thousands of blue tangs create a Maldives rush hour from MV Sea Spirit
Dive 1
EN EXCEPTIONAL DIVE TO END ON WITH SCHOOLS OF BLACK AND WHITE SNAPPERS, SILVER SWEETLIPS AND BIG EYE JACKS AT THE CURRENT POINT AND THEN MANY GREY SHARKS OF ALL SIZES ALONG THE REEF INCLUDING SEVERAL LARGE PREGNANT FEMALES AND AROUND 20 JUVENILES TOGETHER. SOME OF THE GROUP FOLLOWED A SQUADRON OF EAGLE RAYS BACK TO THE CURRENT POINT. A REAL WOW DIVE!
We motored back towards Male' getting back in time for lunch. An excursion to Male' was offered during the afternoon but most guests remained onboard and just relaxed.
Guest Transfer
One guest transferred to airport for travel back to Europe after dinner
Day 12
Eagle ray show from MV Sea Spirit, Maldives
Guest Transfer
Remaining guests transferred to airport for travel back to USA and Europe
Day 13
Lots of grey sharks seen on our last dive on MV Sea Spirit
Sea Spirit SS482 4 Oct 2015 to 11 Oct 2015 Close Encounters (7 day)
Guest Transfer
Guests arrived from international flights throughout the day. Divers who arrived on morning flights made a check dive.
Dive 1
Easy-drift check dive. We saw several honeycomb morays, a pair of porcelain crabs and a shorthead anemone shrimp in a carpet anemone, a peacock mantis shrimp, many red-spotted trapezia crabs in pocillipora plus several harlequin and oriental sweetlips. Revers of neon and lined fusiliers passed by and bullethead parrotfish crunched their way along the reef.
Day 1
A fimbriated moray, one of the morays commonly seen at today's check dive site from MV Sea Spirit
Dive 1
ONE MANTA (Meri) passed by several times but didn't stay long each time so we kept busy looking for macro items. There was a lovely blue beaded anemone with a tine Clareke's anemonefish, pinkbar and dracula gobies with respective pistol shrimps, garden eels, several lionfish, morays etc.
Dive 2
SUPER MANTA SHOW as we watched mantas almost from the moment we descended and throughout the dive. We saw 7 different animals including Meri manta who seemed happier with some manta company and between them we had a wonderful performance. We also saw a large crown jellyfish, white spotted groupers amongst the coral blocks, porcelain crabs etc.
Dive 3
A lively afternoon dive as we watched DOZENS OF PINK WHIP RAYS zooming around, up and down the reef and past divers. There were also a couple of round ribbontail rays and a single feathertail ray. A huge blue Napoleon wrasse hung out watching proceedings and every nook and crannie was filled with large morays: honeycomb, fimbriated, giant, undulate etc. We also found a red bubble anemone, a juvenile imerial angelfish (blue/black/white whorls) and a juvenile oriental sweetlips.
Day 2
A friendly manta from MV Sea Soirit, Maldives
Dive 1
There were THREE EAGLE RAYS AT THE CURRENT POINT plus many, many fusiliers and tunas plus schools of big-eye jacks and black and white snappers. The current had pufferd up the BLUE, PINK, ORANGE AND YELLOW SOFT CORAL and the entire site looked very colourful. We managed to tour most of the reef and found a large Mappa puffer, various angelfish and all the usual reef fish along the way
Dive 2
Clear blue water as we descended on this west-facing ocean reef. On the corner was a large school of big eye jacks which looped into the depths and closer to the reef were schools of goldspot emperors and blue stripe snappers. The current picked up and we had a brisk drift flying past a good reef where millions of blunthead wrasses were spawning and there were magnificent anemones in various colours. We saw a few white tip sharks riding the current and we were carried all the way to the inner lagoon
Ocean Crossing
Ocean crossing to Rasdhoo
Dive 3
One of our favourite site and lots of great fish action with SEVERAL LARGE GREY SHARKS CRUISING AROUND, A SLEEPING RIBBONTAIL RAY, A PASSING MANTA, A FEATHERTAIL RAY, SEVERAL LARGE DOGTOOTH TUNAS, WHORLING BIG EYE JACKS, several spearing mantis shrimps in their nests, longnose emperors out hunting, Clarke's and blackfoot anemonefish in magnificent anemones and a green leaf fish
Day 3
Beautiful soft corals at this thila site, from MV Sea Spirit, Maldives
Dive 1
A SMALL-EYE STING RAY was a rare sightin on this spectacular ocean reef, also SEVERAL CIRCLING GREY SHARKS, A COCKATOO WASPFISH, white tips sleeping in the sand and under coral blocks, longfin batfish being cleaned, a moray cleaning station with Lysmat, boxer and Bruuni cleaner shrimps, marauding tunas, a friendly turtle who ambled along with us and every single imaginable species of fish, all in a nice easy current!
Ocean Crossing
Crossing into North Ari Atoll, we took a look around the Gangehi region to see if there were mantas or whale sharks feeding but did not get lucky
Dive 2
Clear blue water again and about 20 WHITE TIP SHARKS resting on the bottom of the channel! We also saw a sleeping ZEBRA SHARK, FEATHERTAIL RAY, eagle ray, goldfinger dart pompano, yet more white tips and enjoyed the varied topography of the channel
Dive 3
We saw lots of baby grey sharks over the deep blocks on this thila and yet more sleeping white tips. Large golden jacks and rainbow runners approached the blocks to be cleaned amongst the lovely black coral bushes. Divers found a pair of octopus mating, chevron and Forster's barracudas, hermit crabs and small lysmata shrimps amongst the coral rubble and enjoyed the bank of bubble anemones full of Clarke's anemonefishes of all sizes
Dive 4
There were white tip shark and large morays out huntinp plus packs of aggressive jacks making all the fish nervous and tucking well into the reef. There are lovely overhangs covered in yellow cup coral tubastrea and home to banded coral shrimps, saron shrimps, hinge beaks etc plus a sleeping hawksbill turtle
Night Dive
OUTSTANDING DIVE WITH 5 HUNGRY MANTAS FEEDING AT THE BACK OF SEA SPIRIT. There was a very small, likely baby, manta amongst the group who was so endearing and it looked like she was still learning the ropes and copying the bigger mantas. It was an incredible show.
Day 4
Night manta dive from MV Sea Spirit, Maldives
Dive 1
Classic Maldives Thila with great swathes of blue stripe snappers along the south plateau and a large grey shark cruising around. Later there were FOUR GREY SHARKS hunting and/or fighting with some giant trevallies which made for quite a show! We also found schools of chevron and Forster's barracudas, schools of longfin batfish, many HAWKSBILL TURTLES feeding on the top and lots of bannerfish and anthias bouncing in the current
Dive 2
A pretty thila with many black coral trees with penguin oysters, blue finger sponges and creepy gut like sea cucumbers. Shallower were large coral blocks decorated with colourful featherstars with large lionfish, ear-muff blennies, a very friendly turtle, a peacock mantis shrimp and lots of reef fish plus bluefin jack and giant trevallies chasing around above the reef
Dive 3
This was a large thila on the front of a channel with overhangs dropping down to 40+m. There were schools of black and white snappers and big eye jacks on the front. We drifted into the channel past several shallower overhangs with lots of schools of oriental sweelips. Inside were large coral blocks, some filled with glassfish. We found porcelain crabs in an anemone, a green leaf fish, a pale pink scorpionfish etc.
Day 5
Clarke's anemonefish peering out from anemone from MV Sea Spirit
Dive 1
Beautiful small thila with large blocks and canyons smothered in seafans and seawhips with schools of colourful reef fish nestled amongst them. We saw a grey reef shark and really giant barracuda, a white leaf fish, a round ribbontail ray and EN ELECTRIC TORPEDO RAY. We swam to the large thila to find some shallower reef and found a nurse shark in a coral block on the top!
Ocean Crossing
Ocean crossing to South Male' atoll
Dive 2
A great macro dive and today we found lots of ribbon eels, both black and blue ones and intermediate ones which looked purple! We also found scorpionfish, many Maldives cleaner shrimps, Lysmata shrimps (and had to take care about the nasty blackcheek morays lurking in the reef) plus banded boxer and Lysmata shrimps. We also saw a couple of Napoleons, an octopus and had the current reverse completely by the end!
Dive 3
An ocean facing reef with small overhangs and lots of coral blocks full of anthias and a variety of morays. We found a pair of multibar pipefish in one hole. A MANTA swam past and we had several large tunas cruising around. There was a really fat puffer in the corner overhangs plus many lovely orange seafans, a pair of mating yellow trunkfish and lots of pretty reef fish
Day 6
Hawksbill turtle allowing a close portrait photo from MV Sea Spirit, Maldives
Dive 1
A brisk drift through overhangs and past coral blocks buzzing with anthias and hung with lovely pastel coloured spiky nepthia soft corals. There were lots of colourful soft coral covered blocks on the outside where we found Lysmata and Tapestry shrimps, three friendly hawksbill turtles, honeycomb morays and saw schools of one spine unicornfish, schooling bannerfish, goldspot emperors etc.
Snorkelling
We made a short snorkel with a couple of mantas feeding in the lagoon
Mid-morning we travelled back towards Male' and our evening anchorage. During the afternoon we made an excursion to Male' for sightseeing, shopping and a visit to the ice-cream parlour.
Day 7
Hungry manta feeding in lagoon from MV Sea Spirit, maldives
Guest Transfer
Most guests were transferred to the airport for their return flights to Europe. One lucky guest was travelling onwards to a resort and another was staying on Sea Spirit for another 12 nights!
Day 8
View across the deck of Sea Spirit to Niumath the dhiving dhoni
 
Guest Transfer
Guests arrived from international flights throughout the day. Divers who arrived on morning flights made a check dive.
Dive 1
Easy-drift check dive. We saw several honeycomb morays, a pair of porcelain crabs and a shorthead anemone shrimp in a carpet anemone, a peacock mantis shrimp, many red-spotted trapezia crabs in pocillipora plus several harlequin and oriental sweetlips. Revers of neon and lined fusiliers passed by and bullethead parrotfish crunched their way along the reef.
Day 1
A fimbriated moray, one of the morays commonly seen at today's check dive site from MV Sea Spirit
Dive 1
ONE MANTA (Meri) passed by several times but didn't stay long each time so we kept busy looking for macro items. There was a lovely blue beaded anemone with a tine Clareke's anemonefish, pinkbar and dracula gobies with respective pistol shrimps, garden eels, several lionfish, morays etc.
Dive 2
SUPER MANTA SHOW as we watched mantas almost from the moment we descended and throughout the dive. We saw 7 different animals including Meri manta who seemed happier with some manta company and between them we had a wonderful performance. We also saw a large crown jellyfish, white spotted groupers amongst the coral blocks, porcelain crabs etc.
Dive 3
A lively afternoon dive as we watched DOZENS OF PINK WHIP RAYS zooming around, up and down the reef and past divers. There were also a couple of round ribbontail rays and a single feathertail ray. A huge blue Napoleon wrasse hung out watching proceedings and every nook and crannie was filled with large morays: honeycomb, fimbriated, giant, undulate etc. We also found a red bubble anemone, a juvenile imerial angelfish (blue/black/white whorls) and a juvenile oriental sweetlips.
Day 2
A friendly manta from MV Sea Soirit, Maldives
Dive 1
There were THREE EAGLE RAYS AT THE CURRENT POINT plus many, many fusiliers and tunas plus schools of big-eye jacks and black and white snappers. The current had pufferd up the BLUE, PINK, ORANGE AND YELLOW SOFT CORAL and the entire site looked very colourful. We managed to tour most of the reef and found a large Mappa puffer, various angelfish and all the usual reef fish along the way
Dive 2
Clear blue water as we descended on this west-facing ocean reef. On the corner was a large school of big eye jacks which looped into the depths and closer to the reef were schools of goldspot emperors and blue stripe snappers. The current picked up and we had a brisk drift flying past a good reef where millions of blunthead wrasses were spawning and there were magnificent anemones in various colours. We saw a few white tip sharks riding the current and we were carried all the way to the inner lagoon
Ocean Crossing
Ocean crossing to Rasdhoo
Dive 3
One of our favourite site and lots of great fish action with SEVERAL LARGE GREY SHARKS CRUISING AROUND, A SLEEPING RIBBONTAIL RAY, A PASSING MANTA, A FEATHERTAIL RAY, SEVERAL LARGE DOGTOOTH TUNAS, WHORLING BIG EYE JACKS, several spearing mantis shrimps in their nests, longnose emperors out hunting, Clarke's and blackfoot anemonefish in magnificent anemones and a green leaf fish
Day 3
Beautiful soft corals at this thila site, from MV Sea Spirit, Maldives
Dive 1
A SMALL-EYE STING RAY was a rare sightin on this spectacular ocean reef, also SEVERAL CIRCLING GREY SHARKS, A COCKATOO WASPFISH, white tips sleeping in the sand and under coral blocks, longfin batfish being cleaned, a moray cleaning station with Lysmat, boxer and Bruuni cleaner shrimps, marauding tunas, a friendly turtle who ambled along with us and every single imaginable species of fish, all in a nice easy current!
Ocean Crossing
Crossing into North Ari Atoll, we took a look around the Gangehi region to see if there were mantas or whale sharks feeding but did not get lucky
Dive 2
Clear blue water again and about 20 WHITE TIP SHARKS resting on the bottom of the channel! We also saw a sleeping ZEBRA SHARK, FEATHERTAIL RAY, eagle ray, goldfinger dart pompano, yet more white tips and enjoyed the varied topography of the channel
Dive 3
We saw lots of baby grey sharks over the deep blocks on this thila and yet more sleeping white tips. Large golden jacks and rainbow runners approached the blocks to be cleaned amongst the lovely black coral bushes. Divers found a pair of octopus mating, chevron and Forster's barracudas, hermit crabs and small lysmata shrimps amongst the coral rubble and enjoyed the bank of bubble anemones full of Clarke's anemonefishes of all sizes
Dive 4
There were white tip shark and large morays out huntinp plus packs of aggressive jacks making all the fish nervous and tucking well into the reef. There are lovely overhangs covered in yellow cup coral tubastrea and home to banded coral shrimps, saron shrimps, hinge beaks etc plus a sleeping hawksbill turtle
Night Dive
OUTSTANDING DIVE WITH 5 HUNGRY MANTAS FEEDING AT THE BACK OF SEA SPIRIT. There was a very small, likely baby, manta amongst the group who was so endearing and it looked like she was still learning the ropes and copying the bigger mantas. It was an incredible show.
Day 4
Night manta dive from MV Sea Spirit, Maldives
Dive 1
Classic Maldives Thila with great swathes of blue stripe snappers along the south plateau and a large grey shark cruising around. Later there were FOUR GREY SHARKS hunting and/or fighting with some giant trevallies which made for quite a show! We also found schools of chevron and Forster's barracudas, schools of longfin batfish, many HAWKSBILL TURTLES feeding on the top and lots of bannerfish and anthias bouncing in the current
Dive 2
A pretty thila with many black coral trees with penguin oysters, blue finger sponges and creepy gut like sea cucumbers. Shallower were large coral blocks decorated with colourful featherstars with large lionfish, ear-muff blennies, a very friendly turtle, a peacock mantis shrimp and lots of reef fish plus bluefin jack and giant trevallies chasing around above the reef
Dive 3
This was a large thila on the front of a channel with overhangs dropping down to 40+m. There were schools of black and white snappers and big eye jacks on the front. We drifted into the channel past several shallower overhangs with lots of schools of oriental sweelips. Inside were large coral blocks, some filled with glassfish. We found porcelain crabs in an anemone, a green leaf fish, a pale pink scorpionfish etc.
Day 5
Clarke's anemonefish peering out from anemone from MV Sea Spirit
Dive 1
Beautiful small thila with large blocks and canyons smothered in seafans and seawhips with schools of colourful reef fish nestled amongst them. We saw a grey reef shark and really giant barracuda, a white leaf fish, a round ribbontail ray and EN ELECTRIC TORPEDO RAY. We swam to the large thila to find some shallower reef and found a nurse shark in a coral block on the top!
Ocean Crossing
Ocean crossing to South Male' atoll
Dive 2
A great macro dive and today we found lots of ribbon eels, both black and blue ones and intermediate ones which looked purple! We also found scorpionfish, many Maldives cleaner shrimps, Lysmata shrimps (and had to take care about the nasty blackcheek morays lurking in the reef) plus banded boxer and Lysmata shrimps. We also saw a couple of Napoleons, an octopus and had the current reverse completely by the end!
Dive 3
An ocean facing reef with small overhangs and lots of coral blocks full of anthias and a variety of morays. We found a pair of multibar pipefish in one hole. A MANTA swam past and we had several large tunas cruising around. There was a really fat puffer in the corner overhangs plus many lovely orange seafans, a pair of mating yellow trunkfish and lots of pretty reef fish
Day 6
Hawksbill turtle allowing a close portrait photo from MV Sea Spirit, Maldives
Dive 1
A brisk drift through overhangs and past coral blocks buzzing with anthias and hung with lovely pastel coloured spiky nepthia soft corals. There were lots of colourful soft coral covered blocks on the outside where we found Lysmata and Tapestry shrimps, three friendly hawksbill turtles, honeycomb morays and saw schools of one spine unicornfish, schooling bannerfish, goldspot emperors etc.
Snorkelling
We made a short snorkel with a couple of mantas feeding in the lagoon
Mid-morning we travelled back towards Male' and our evening anchorage. During the afternoon we made an excursion to Male' for sightseeing, shopping and a visit to the ice-cream parlour.
Day 7
Hungry manta feeding in lagoon from MV Sea Spirit, maldives
Guest Transfer
Most guests were transferred to the airport for their return flights to Europe. One lucky guest was travelling onwards to a resort and another was staying on Sea Spirit for another 12 nights!
Day 8
View across the deck of Sea Spirit to Niumath the dhiving dhoni
Sea Spirit SS481 27 Sep 2015 to 4 Oct 2015 Close Encounters (7 day)
Guest Transfer
Guests arrived from international flights and from hotels in Male' and were transferred to Sea Spirit during the morning. We set up dive kit and went out for a check dive
Dive 1
A small current on an ocean facing reef for our check dive. A BLACKTIP REEF SHARK was flying around in the shallows, a large Napoleon was cruising along the slope we found honeycomb and giant morays, bi-color cleaner wrasses, schools of bannerfish and pyramid butterflyfish and ascended into dense schools of fusiliers
Day 1
Honeycomb moray surrounded by finger corals from MV Sea Spirit, Maldives
Dive 1
A LOVELY MANTA SHOW WITH 2-3 mantas constantly on the main blocks circling around and sometimes peering closely at divers. The big female 'Clare' was particularly curious. We also found a little smallscale scorponfish, a juvenile razor wrasse, a blue beaded anemone with a tiny Clarke's anemonefish and lots of glassfish in blocks
Dive 2
What a show! 2 MANTAS, WHITE TIP SHARKS in the shallows and sleeping on the bottom, 4 EAGLE RAYS IN FORMATION, a pair of green leaf fish, a black ribbon eel, various morays plus lovely schools of 2-spot and bluestripe snappers along slope and oriental sweetlipsand collared butterflyfish in the shallows
Dive 3
Drift through a long overhangs hung with blue and pink soft coral with a high ceiling full of soldierfish and lots of seafans and seawhips on the floor. The drift continued past a pink soft coral covered wall and a deep overhang and then onto a coral slope with some small coral blocks full of cute humbug damsels and chromis
Day 2
Lovely manta show from MV Sea Spirit, Maldives
Dive 1
Interesting drift through fairy grottos full of fluffy pink seafans and many seawhips woth large silver and harlequin sweetlips and beautiful blue anemones on the reef slope. Schools of yellowback fusiliers and mackerel scads swam past
Dive 2
A FRIENDLY LARGE MANTA WE CALLED SIKA SWAM UP AND DOWN OVER OUR HEADS AS SHE CLEANED NEXT TO THE REEF AND PLAYED IN OUR BUBBLES. A further two swam over our heads. We really enjoyed this beautiful ocean reef corner with good hard corals, blue finger sponges nd many crinoids in a varietuy of colours and every surface buzzing with anthias and reef fish. We also found a gold leaf fish.
Dive 3
The afternoon dive was abandoned when the dhoni developed mechanical problems. The guests went swimming to the lagoon reef. Later that evening we had a small manta feeding on plankton attracted by lights behind Sea Spirit, she stayed for most of the night and was enchanting to watch
Day 3
Otherworldly shot of SUPER-MOON from MV Sea Spirit, Maldives
Dive 1
A dramatic ocean reef site with 200 longfin batfish hanging in he water column and white tip sharks on the reef top and along the sand at depth. A large blue napoleon wrasse cruised past divers several times. On the corner were many large coral blocks full of every kind of reef fish but we noted spot-faced surgeon, blueface and two spot angelfish and many tiny juvenile butterflyfish which were like little jewels
Dive 2
OUTSTANDING DIVE WITH A BACHELOR PARTY OF 12 MALE MANTAS HANGING OUT AT THE CLEANING STATION AND SWOOPING AROUND AND PLAYING WITH EACHOTHER. We guess they were getting ready for mating season! We also found a white-tailed MANGROVE WHIPRAY, white tip sharks, spotted groupers, many oriental sweetlips, porcelain crabs and shorthead anemone shrimps in carpet anemones and a friendly hawksbill turtle who was too busy with it's lunch to be very bothered with us!
Dive 3
Easy, then brisk drift along the ocean reef. We saw lots of white tip sharks, an enormous dogtooth tuna plus other tunas chasing schools of neon fusiliers, a manta, a green leaf fish in a block full of glassfish, a small (and a large!) spotted boxfish, eyelash blennies, turtles etc.
Day 4
Amazing bachelor manta show at Lankan from MV Sea Spirit, Maldives
Dive 1
Stunning PINK, ORANGE, YELLOW and BLUE SOFT CORAL smothered ledges and blockw with many reeaf fish including a Napoleon and a schools of black and white snappers. On the reef top was a school of large chevron barracudas plus an enormous giant trevally.
Ocean Crossing
Ocean crossing to South Male' atoll
Dive 2
Small wreck next to reef with lots of white acabaria coral lined overhangs and windows. There were lots of different shrimps around the stern including Durban dancing shrimps and red-and-orange Lysmata shrimps. There were several large lionfish on top of the wheelhouse and a small Bedfords flatwom. To complete the set we also found white-lined and Sisan's flatworms on the reef
Dive 3
Lots of coral blocks and small ledges on ocean facing reef. Large tunas, bluefin jacks and white tip sharks cruised past and there were dense schools od lined and neon fusiliers pulling shapes and flowing both shallow and deep along the reef edge. We found banded coral shrimps, coral beautys and billions of anthias plus lovely morays amongst the coral blocks.
Night Dive
Night dive on giri with steep walls where we found some unidentified flat worms including a velvety black one and a white one with purple/blue margins. The corals were full of trapezia crabs and squat lobsters and there were many featherstars including large dinner-plate like Regal and palm front crinoids. We found an orange/black P. geometrica nudi and lots of different crabs.
Day 5
amazing soft corals plus beautiful reef fish;a riot of colour from MV Sea Spirit, Maldives
Dive 1
FISHORAMA at the current point with schools of black and white and red snappers plus many sleek surgeonfish hanging out. EAGLE RAYS AND GREY SHARK cruised around in the top reef and along the main canyon and further down the thila we saw MANY GREY SHARKS OF DIFFERENT SIZES LOOKING FOR CLEANING STATIONS! Lovely green and hawksbill turtles, schools of oriental and silver sweetlips, Meyers and Indian butterflyfish. Lovely dive!
Dive 2
Coral blocks across an ocean reef fronting two channels smothered in patel coloured nepthia soft corals, colourful featherstars, purple juncella sea whips and just about every kind of reef fish! There were four white tip sharks cruisng about in what appeared to be courtship behaviour and TWO MANTAS swam past along the drop off. We found anemone shrimps, honeycomb morays etc.
Dive 3
CRITTERVILLE DIVE IN THE VALLEY OF THE GOBIES!!! Blue and black ribbon eels, pinkbar and dracula gobies with correspondingly coloured pistol shrimps, spearing mantis shrimp, large scorpionfish, many juvenile cardinals plus many bouncing anthials, wrasses of every species, murex shell, tiger cowrie plus lovely blue finger sponges, crinoids and a white anemone with a porcelain crab.
Evening Activity
Ashore to sandbank to watch the sunset and enjoy Pimms or cold wine and beers. A lovely way to end a fabulous diving day
Day 6
eagle ray soaring above us from MV Sea Spirit, Maldives
Dive 1
FANTASTIC LAST DIVE!! WE DESCENDED ONTO MILLIONS OF BIG EYE JACKS CLOSE TO THE REEF AND THEN REALISED THAT THERE WERE LOTS OF GREY SHARKS MIXED IN AMONGST ALL THE FISH PLUS EAGLE RAYS MEANDERING AROUND. SLIGHTLY INTO THE CHANNEL WE FOUND A BLOCK WITH AROUND 20 BABY GREY SHARKS HANGING OUT TOGETHER AND THEN ANOTHER BLOCK WHERE SEVERAL LARGE ADULTS WE STANDING ON THEIR TAILS WITH THEIR MOUTHS OPEN AND BEING CLEANED. THERE WERE SCHOOLS OF FORSTER'S AND CHEVRON BARRACUDAS AND ANOTHER "CARPET" OF BARRED JACKS. The top reef was lovely; we found a really freindly hawksbill turtle busy munching soft coral plus schools of sweetlips, surgeonfish, soldierfish etc. A really classic, but special, Maldives site!
Daytime Excursion
Visit to Guraidhoo local island for some souvenir shopping. The fishermen were busy cleaning their catch and the boat was surrounded by many pink whip rays in the shallows.
We travelled back to Male' and our evening anchorage and the divers had an afternoon at leisure
Day 7
Lots of baby grey sharks seen from MV Sea Spirit, Maldives
Guests were transferred to the airport early morning for onward transfer to Coco Palm Resort or international flights back to USA.
Day 8
Group photo, relaxing at sandbank from MV Sea Spirit
 
Guest Transfer
Guests arrived from international flights and from hotels in Male' and were transferred to Sea Spirit during the morning. We set up dive kit and went out for a check dive
Dive 1
A small current on an ocean facing reef for our check dive. A BLACKTIP REEF SHARK was flying around in the shallows, a large Napoleon was cruising along the slope we found honeycomb and giant morays, bi-color cleaner wrasses, schools of bannerfish and pyramid butterflyfish and ascended into dense schools of fusiliers
Day 1
Honeycomb moray surrounded by finger corals from MV Sea Spirit, Maldives
Dive 1
A LOVELY MANTA SHOW WITH 2-3 mantas constantly on the main blocks circling around and sometimes peering closely at divers. The big female 'Clare' was particularly curious. We also found a little smallscale scorponfish, a juvenile razor wrasse, a blue beaded anemone with a tiny Clarke's anemonefish and lots of glassfish in blocks
Dive 2
What a show! 2 MANTAS, WHITE TIP SHARKS in the shallows and sleeping on the bottom, 4 EAGLE RAYS IN FORMATION, a pair of green leaf fish, a black ribbon eel, various morays plus lovely schools of 2-spot and bluestripe snappers along slope and oriental sweetlipsand collared butterflyfish in the shallows
Dive 3
Drift through a long overhangs hung with blue and pink soft coral with a high ceiling full of soldierfish and lots of seafans and seawhips on the floor. The drift continued past a pink soft coral covered wall and a deep overhang and then onto a coral slope with some small coral blocks full of cute humbug damsels and chromis
Day 2
Lovely manta show from MV Sea Spirit, Maldives
Dive 1
Interesting drift through fairy grottos full of fluffy pink seafans and many seawhips woth large silver and harlequin sweetlips and beautiful blue anemones on the reef slope. Schools of yellowback fusiliers and mackerel scads swam past
Dive 2
A FRIENDLY LARGE MANTA WE CALLED SIKA SWAM UP AND DOWN OVER OUR HEADS AS SHE CLEANED NEXT TO THE REEF AND PLAYED IN OUR BUBBLES. A further two swam over our heads. We really enjoyed this beautiful ocean reef corner with good hard corals, blue finger sponges nd many crinoids in a varietuy of colours and every surface buzzing with anthias and reef fish. We also found a gold leaf fish.
Dive 3
The afternoon dive was abandoned when the dhoni developed mechanical problems. The guests went swimming to the lagoon reef. Later that evening we had a small manta feeding on plankton attracted by lights behind Sea Spirit, she stayed for most of the night and was enchanting to watch
Day 3
Otherworldly shot of SUPER-MOON from MV Sea Spirit, Maldives
Dive 1
A dramatic ocean reef site with 200 longfin batfish hanging in he water column and white tip sharks on the reef top and along the sand at depth. A large blue napoleon wrasse cruised past divers several times. On the corner were many large coral blocks full of every kind of reef fish but we noted spot-faced surgeon, blueface and two spot angelfish and many tiny juvenile butterflyfish which were like little jewels
Dive 2
OUTSTANDING DIVE WITH A BACHELOR PARTY OF 12 MALE MANTAS HANGING OUT AT THE CLEANING STATION AND SWOOPING AROUND AND PLAYING WITH EACHOTHER. We guess they were getting ready for mating season! We also found a white-tailed MANGROVE WHIPRAY, white tip sharks, spotted groupers, many oriental sweetlips, porcelain crabs and shorthead anemone shrimps in carpet anemones and a friendly hawksbill turtle who was too busy with it's lunch to be very bothered with us!
Dive 3
Easy, then brisk drift along the ocean reef. We saw lots of white tip sharks, an enormous dogtooth tuna plus other tunas chasing schools of neon fusiliers, a manta, a green leaf fish in a block full of glassfish, a small (and a large!) spotted boxfish, eyelash blennies, turtles etc.
Day 4
Amazing bachelor manta show at Lankan from MV Sea Spirit, Maldives
Dive 1
Stunning PINK, ORANGE, YELLOW and BLUE SOFT CORAL smothered ledges and blockw with many reeaf fish including a Napoleon and a schools of black and white snappers. On the reef top was a school of large chevron barracudas plus an enormous giant trevally.
Ocean Crossing
Ocean crossing to South Male' atoll
Dive 2
Small wreck next to reef with lots of white acabaria coral lined overhangs and windows. There were lots of different shrimps around the stern including Durban dancing shrimps and red-and-orange Lysmata shrimps. There were several large lionfish on top of the wheelhouse and a small Bedfords flatwom. To complete the set we also found white-lined and Sisan's flatworms on the reef
Dive 3
Lots of coral blocks and small ledges on ocean facing reef. Large tunas, bluefin jacks and white tip sharks cruised past and there were dense schools od lined and neon fusiliers pulling shapes and flowing both shallow and deep along the reef edge. We found banded coral shrimps, coral beautys and billions of anthias plus lovely morays amongst the coral blocks.
Night Dive
Night dive on giri with steep walls where we found some unidentified flat worms including a velvety black one and a white one with purple/blue margins. The corals were full of trapezia crabs and squat lobsters and there were many featherstars including large dinner-plate like Regal and palm front crinoids. We found an orange/black P. geometrica nudi and lots of different crabs.
Day 5
amazing soft corals plus beautiful reef fish;a riot of colour from MV Sea Spirit, Maldives
Dive 1
FISHORAMA at the current point with schools of black and white and red snappers plus many sleek surgeonfish hanging out. EAGLE RAYS AND GREY SHARK cruised around in the top reef and along the main canyon and further down the thila we saw MANY GREY SHARKS OF DIFFERENT SIZES LOOKING FOR CLEANING STATIONS! Lovely green and hawksbill turtles, schools of oriental and silver sweetlips, Meyers and Indian butterflyfish. Lovely dive!
Dive 2
Coral blocks across an ocean reef fronting two channels smothered in patel coloured nepthia soft corals, colourful featherstars, purple juncella sea whips and just about every kind of reef fish! There were four white tip sharks cruisng about in what appeared to be courtship behaviour and TWO MANTAS swam past along the drop off. We found anemone shrimps, honeycomb morays etc.
Dive 3
CRITTERVILLE DIVE IN THE VALLEY OF THE GOBIES!!! Blue and black ribbon eels, pinkbar and dracula gobies with correspondingly coloured pistol shrimps, spearing mantis shrimp, large scorpionfish, many juvenile cardinals plus many bouncing anthials, wrasses of every species, murex shell, tiger cowrie plus lovely blue finger sponges, crinoids and a white anemone with a porcelain crab.
Evening Activity
Ashore to sandbank to watch the sunset and enjoy Pimms or cold wine and beers. A lovely way to end a fabulous diving day
Day 6
eagle ray soaring above us from MV Sea Spirit, Maldives
Dive 1
FANTASTIC LAST DIVE!! WE DESCENDED ONTO MILLIONS OF BIG EYE JACKS CLOSE TO THE REEF AND THEN REALISED THAT THERE WERE LOTS OF GREY SHARKS MIXED IN AMONGST ALL THE FISH PLUS EAGLE RAYS MEANDERING AROUND. SLIGHTLY INTO THE CHANNEL WE FOUND A BLOCK WITH AROUND 20 BABY GREY SHARKS HANGING OUT TOGETHER AND THEN ANOTHER BLOCK WHERE SEVERAL LARGE ADULTS WE STANDING ON THEIR TAILS WITH THEIR MOUTHS OPEN AND BEING CLEANED. THERE WERE SCHOOLS OF FORSTER'S AND CHEVRON BARRACUDAS AND ANOTHER "CARPET" OF BARRED JACKS. The top reef was lovely; we found a really freindly hawksbill turtle busy munching soft coral plus schools of sweetlips, surgeonfish, soldierfish etc. A really classic, but special, Maldives site!
Daytime Excursion
Visit to Guraidhoo local island for some souvenir shopping. The fishermen were busy cleaning their catch and the boat was surrounded by many pink whip rays in the shallows.
We travelled back to Male' and our evening anchorage and the divers had an afternoon at leisure
Day 7
Lots of baby grey sharks seen from MV Sea Spirit, Maldives
Guests were transferred to the airport early morning for onward transfer to Coco Palm Resort or international flights back to USA.
Day 8
Group photo, relaxing at sandbank from MV Sea Spirit
Sea Spirit SS480 13 Sep 2015 to 25 Sep 2015 Central Atolls & Beyond (12 day)
Guests arrived from international flights and were transferred to Sea Spirit. As everyone arrived early we set up dive kit, had a briefing and made a late morning check dive
Dive 1
Check dive with many fusiliers and bannerfish at the current point then a slow drift along a fairy steep reef where we found a Phyllidia occelata nudibranch, two large giant spider conch, mant honeycomb, giant, fimbiated and undulate morays, two very large Napoleon wrasses and a turtle being cleaned by wrasses. A great start!
There was a fantastic multicoloured sunset as we enjoyed an evening cocktail
Day 1
Dive 1
No mantas unfortunately but we did see lots of garden eels, a small peacock flounder, lionfish chasing glassfisg, bluefaced angelfish, and many pinkbar gobies with partner pistol shrimps
Dive 2
Orange anthias smothered all the surfaces of the overhangs and coral blocks at this thila site. There were large schools of bluestripe snappers in all the overhangs plus oriental sweetlips and humpback snappers in canyons. We also found group of Amboin shrimps next to a carpet anemone and a "squatter" Clarke's anemonefish in mgnificnt anemone (the fish looked very guilty)
Dive 3
Great macro site: peacock mantis shrimp, Bruuni and banded coral shrimps, bearded scorpionfish, honeycomb moray, plus a huge napoleon at a cleaning station and large schools of one-spine unicornfish, a black saddled coral grouper, and swathes of glassfish and anthias around the magnificent anemones. We heard the squeaks of spinner dolphins and saw a pod pass by on the surface!
Day 2
Dive 1
TOO LUCKY THE MANTA CAME TO SAY HELLO! Plus there were lots of green and hawksbill turtles including one which had found a crown jellyfish and was keeping to himself! We found porcelain crabs in carpet anemones, a shorthead anemone shrimp, Orzaks flatworm and then had another manta swim past just s we were ascending for our safety stop.
Dive 2
A super-fishy site with dense schools of bluestripe snappers, 100's of schooling bannerfish, chevron barracudas, and really beautiful and colourful soft corals, seafans, featherstars, anemones etc. A huge potato cod-like grouper was lurking off one of the deep ledges!
Dive 3
Another fishy site with a bay fringed with large coral blocks full of schools of fish and one covered in collared butterflyfish with it's usual green turtle in residence. Schools of mackerels and neon fusiliers swept past, chased by dogtooth tunas and giant trevallies, there were several white tip sharks sleeping in the sand and lovely harlequin and oriental sweetlips around the blocks. A school of convict tangs swept through the top reef.
Day 3
Dive 1
TWO EAGLE RAYS AT THE CURRENT POINT PLUS TWO MANTAS SWIMMING PAST! A SLEEPING NURSE SHARK AND A SCHOOL OF LARGE CHEVRON BARRACUDAS plus all the stunning PINK, ORANGE, BLUE AND YELLOW SOFT CORALS, a hawksbill turtle, silver sweetlips etc.
Dive 2
THREE LOVELY MANTAS GAVE US A SHOW AS THEY CLEANED OVER CORAL BLOCKS. They seemed to be enjoying the spa treatment. One had a recent shar kbite and looked a little distressed. We went for a drift over the channel and a lovely coral reef and had another mantas swim to us
Dive 3
A lovely drift past spurs where the current set the fish buzzing and through long overhangs full of seafans and seawhips in pink, white and red. We saw Napoleons, giant barracudas, white tip sharks, spotted swettlips, a school of bluefin jacks, and just enjoyed a really terrific reef with excellent acropora, porites and pocillopora corals
Day 4
Dive 1
AMAZING SHOW WITH 16 DIFFERENT MANTA PUTTING ON QUITE THE BEST SHOW POSSIBLE, HOVERING OVER OUR HEADS, COURTING EACHOTHER AND ENJOYING A BUBBLE BATH FROM OUR EXHALED BUBBLES. FABULOUS!!!!!
Dive 2
Ocean reef drift and a manta cleaning on the outer reef blocks, two round ribbontail rays sleeping in the sand, several white tip sharks, glassfish covrd blocks with morays lurking in the glassfish, schools of 2-spot and bluestripe snappers on the reef slope etc.
Ocean Crossing
Ocean crossing to South Male' atoll
Dive 3
Ocean reef corner with large dogtooth tunas patrolling the drop off and chasing schools of fusiliers. A Huge school of bonito tuna flashed past. On the corner were grey sharks and white tip sharks plus many jacks and large snappers. There were lovely coral blocks and small overhangs along the reef wall packed with cleaner shrimps, morals, small groupers etc.
Weather turned very blustery overnight
Day 5
Dive 1
Deep thila site with many overhangs and canyons along the north reef smothered in pink and orange soft coral. A couple of eagle rays swam around and one accompanied us for about 10 mins then another very large one swept beneath us as we ascended. Also a couple of grey sharks, white tip sharks, and the reef top was smothered in reef fish and anthias.
Dive 2
A rather fast drift though some large overhangs so a rather turbulent dive although a couple of green turtles happily swam into the current to show us how inept we are! Also orangespine surgeons, a pair of WHITE LEAF FISH and lots of groupers
Dive 3
A nice chilled dive with some good macro including two octopus, Maldives sponge snails, piano blennies peering out of holes, Periclemenes featherstar shrimps, a freeswimming honeycomb moray, lovely anemones with blackfoot and Clarke's anemones and good hard corals covering shallower ledges and blocks
Day 6
Dive 1
A MANTA SWAM UNDERNEATH US AS WE DESCENDED and then we had a chilled dive along the front of the two channels where there were many coral blocks covered in pastel coloured nepthia soft corals. There were several crown jellyfish floating in the water column and a green turtle was busy munching on one. We found a white tip shark sleeping in the sandy channel, schools of bannerfish, sleek surgeonfish, neon fusiliers etc.
Daytime Excursion
Visit to isolated sandbank between dives
Dive 2
Great macros site where we found several BLUE AND BLACK RIBBON EELS, LARGE LIONFISH, A SPEARING MANTIS SHRIMP IN ITS NEST, a baby Clarke's anemonefish in a red-coloured anemone, Semons anemone, honeycomb morays etc.
Dive 3
Experiment dive on giri site on east of atoll. There were nice coral blocks along the north side with black coral trees and covered in juvenile cardinal fish and many red groupers plus larger lunar-tailed groupers then steeper section with small overhangs where we found a Glorious flatworm and a juvenile bi-coloir parrotfish etc.
Day 7
Dive 1
THERE WERE MANY GREY SHARKS SLOWLY CRUISING AROUND THE DROP OFF AT THE THILA, SOME WERE BEING CLEANED WITH THEIR HEADS UP AND MOUTHS OPEN WHILST SCHOOLS OF 15+ WERE JUST CRUISING PAST AND MIXING IN WITH DENSE SCHOOLS OF FORSTER'S BARRACUDAS.ADULTS WERE CHASING IN WHAT APPEARRED TO BE COURTSHIP RITUALS!! As we got shallower there were more sharks on the top reef pluswhite tips and a couple of green turtles. We spent the remainder of the dive amongst the shallow coral blocks full of sweetlips and butterflyfish. Lovely!
Dive 2
Wreck and reef site. So many shrimps at back of wreck! Lysmata and banded coral shrimps, Dancing Durban and Bruuni all busy cleaning glassfish and small groupers, also several large lionfish hanging around black corls and long hydroids. We found Berthella martensi and Phidiana nudis on the main reef plus a really cure spotted ELECTRIC TORPEDO RAY. Lots of colour and fish life in the shallows here.
Dive 3
Channel drift through small overhangs and coral block with some large groupers and a very big Napoleon and a couple of white tip sharks. On the outside the reef was in TECHNICOLOUR as suddenly the visibility improved. We found a beautifully marked honeycomb moray, schools of emperors and surgeons and a funny topsy-turvy turtle
Day 8
Dive 1
A steep ocean wall with many beautiful overhangs and schools of bluestripe snappers, pyramid butterflyfish and many soldierfish meandering around and providing even more colour to this beautiful reef. We found 2x leaf fish together, and along the reef saw a huge napoleon, BUMPHEAD PARROTFISH, scorpionfish plus millions of neon fusiliers being chased by tunas
Dive 2
We went manta hunting but were unlucky today. We enjoyed the table corals and glassfish filled block plus all the damsels and chromis bouncing in the corals and anemones
Ocean Crossing
Ocean Crossing to Felidhoo atoll
Dive 3
A corner drift with a huge schools of red snappers mid-channel and several white tip sharks then drifted onto a beautiful wall full of Lysmata shrimps plus a colony of Bruuni shrimps which happily gave divers a manicure! The wall was full of juvenile reef fish of all types and the reef has excellent coral so it was nice to just chill out and enjoy
Night Dive
WILD NIGHT DIVE WITH DOZENS OF MARAUDING NURSE SHARKS PLUS PINK WHIP RAYS AND JENKINS RAYS AND A FEW BLACK TIP SHARKS. Giant and bluefin jacks came marauding through and at one point we were smothered in super-excited silversides fleeing the jacks. WOW!
Day 9
Dive 1
Another chilled drift dive around a channel corner onto a steep wall. White tips and grey sharks cruised the drop off but not enough current to hold them. Schools of fusiliers were being chased by jacks and there was a large, mixed, school of red and black and white snappers. Lots of lovely orange anthias shotting around plus groupers and every other kind of reef fish
Dive 2
BEAUTIFUL YELLOW SOFT CORAL CAVES FROM 25-50M DEPTH ON A STUNNING WALL. WE MEANDERED THROUGH MANY OVERHANGS HUNG WITH SOFT CORALS WITH SEA WHIPS AND SEAFANS AND FACING A SHEER DROP OFF. Large schools of big-eye jacks cruised the wall and tunas and occasional shraks passed by. We found a cute green leaf fish plus reef fish of every description. So pretty!
Dive 3
A second visit to this stunning wall working our way from the east side and visiting the slightly shallower overhangs and the upper reef. We saw a huge blue Napoleon and a giant grouper! Bluefin, barred and big-eye jacks cruised the wall. On the top were coral blocks with collared butterflyfish, tangs, surgeons, sweetlips etc.
Evening Activity
Sundowners on beautiful sandbank with a dramatic sky as a backdrop
Day 10
Dive 1
We waited at the spur nearby the yellow soft coral caves to see if something big wanted to cruise past but only had a whirling school of jacks pass us by. We had white tip sharks and a grey shark along the reef plus many large groupers, a lovely octopus, leaf fish, Napoleons and just enjoyed this stunning reef wall
Dive 2
Deep overhangs along this ocean reef site where we found a sleeping ROUND RIBBONTAIL RAY and a rather excited white tip shark whizzing around at the back of the overhang. Along the slope were many coral blocks and above 15m were beautiful coral structures full of reef fish plus snappers, spiny lobsters and a friendly turtle. An unusual sight was dozens of schools of cute baby tangs with 2-300 fish in each school.
Ocean Crossing
Ocean crossing to South Male' atoll
Dive 3
Easy going drift with lots of overhangs hung with every colour of pastel nepthia soft corals plus a million buzzing anthias and large and small Napoleons. Further along we found blue, and black ribbon eels, schools of bannerfish, onespine and sleek surgeon fish and white tip sharks resting in the sandy channel
Day 10
Dive 1
GREAT LAST DIVE!!! GREY SHARKS, INCLUDING A BIG FAT MOMMA SHARK WITH MACKERELS RUBBING THEMSELVES AGAINST HER FLANKS, WHITE TIP SHARKS, BEAUTIFUL EAGLE RAYS, SCHOOLS OF BLACK AND WHITE SNAPPERS, BIG EYE JACKS, SWEETLIPS AND SUPERB ORANGE AND PINK SOFT CORALS SMOTHERING EVERY SURFACE. WOW,WOW,WOW!
Daytime Excursion
We motored back to Male' and had lunch on the way, before anchorage. We made an afternoon visit to Male' for gift shopping and a visit to the ice-cream parlour
Day 12
An early departure to the airport for return international flights to Europe.
Day 13
 
Guests arrived from international flights and were transferred to Sea Spirit. As everyone arrived early we set up dive kit, had a briefing and made a late morning check dive
Dive 1
Check dive with many fusiliers and bannerfish at the current point then a slow drift along a fairy steep reef where we found a Phyllidia occelata nudibranch, two large giant spider conch, mant honeycomb, giant, fimbiated and undulate morays, two very large Napoleon wrasses and a turtle being cleaned by wrasses. A great start!
There was a fantastic multicoloured sunset as we enjoyed an evening cocktail
Day 1
Dive 1
No mantas unfortunately but we did see lots of garden eels, a small peacock flounder, lionfish chasing glassfisg, bluefaced angelfish, and many pinkbar gobies with partner pistol shrimps
Dive 2
Orange anthias smothered all the surfaces of the overhangs and coral blocks at this thila site. There were large schools of bluestripe snappers in all the overhangs plus oriental sweetlips and humpback snappers in canyons. We also found group of Amboin shrimps next to a carpet anemone and a "squatter" Clarke's anemonefish in mgnificnt anemone (the fish looked very guilty)
Dive 3
Great macro site: peacock mantis shrimp, Bruuni and banded coral shrimps, bearded scorpionfish, honeycomb moray, plus a huge napoleon at a cleaning station and large schools of one-spine unicornfish, a black saddled coral grouper, and swathes of glassfish and anthias around the magnificent anemones. We heard the squeaks of spinner dolphins and saw a pod pass by on the surface!
Day 2
Dive 1
TOO LUCKY THE MANTA CAME TO SAY HELLO! Plus there were lots of green and hawksbill turtles including one which had found a crown jellyfish and was keeping to himself! We found porcelain crabs in carpet anemones, a shorthead anemone shrimp, Orzaks flatworm and then had another manta swim past just s we were ascending for our safety stop.
Dive 2
A super-fishy site with dense schools of bluestripe snappers, 100's of schooling bannerfish, chevron barracudas, and really beautiful and colourful soft corals, seafans, featherstars, anemones etc. A huge potato cod-like grouper was lurking off one of the deep ledges!
Dive 3
Another fishy site with a bay fringed with large coral blocks full of schools of fish and one covered in collared butterflyfish with it's usual green turtle in residence. Schools of mackerels and neon fusiliers swept past, chased by dogtooth tunas and giant trevallies, there were several white tip sharks sleeping in the sand and lovely harlequin and oriental sweetlips around the blocks. A school of convict tangs swept through the top reef.
Day 3
Dive 1
TWO EAGLE RAYS AT THE CURRENT POINT PLUS TWO MANTAS SWIMMING PAST! A SLEEPING NURSE SHARK AND A SCHOOL OF LARGE CHEVRON BARRACUDAS plus all the stunning PINK, ORANGE, BLUE AND YELLOW SOFT CORALS, a hawksbill turtle, silver sweetlips etc.
Dive 2
THREE LOVELY MANTAS GAVE US A SHOW AS THEY CLEANED OVER CORAL BLOCKS. They seemed to be enjoying the spa treatment. One had a recent shar kbite and looked a little distressed. We went for a drift over the channel and a lovely coral reef and had another mantas swim to us
Dive 3
A lovely drift past spurs where the current set the fish buzzing and through long overhangs full of seafans and seawhips in pink, white and red. We saw Napoleons, giant barracudas, white tip sharks, spotted swettlips, a school of bluefin jacks, and just enjoyed a really terrific reef with excellent acropora, porites and pocillopora corals
Day 4
Dive 1
AMAZING SHOW WITH 16 DIFFERENT MANTA PUTTING ON QUITE THE BEST SHOW POSSIBLE, HOVERING OVER OUR HEADS, COURTING EACHOTHER AND ENJOYING A BUBBLE BATH FROM OUR EXHALED BUBBLES. FABULOUS!!!!!
Dive 2
Ocean reef drift and a manta cleaning on the outer reef blocks, two round ribbontail rays sleeping in the sand, several white tip sharks, glassfish covrd blocks with morays lurking in the glassfish, schools of 2-spot and bluestripe snappers on the reef slope etc.
Ocean Crossing
Ocean crossing to South Male' atoll
Dive 3
Ocean reef corner with large dogtooth tunas patrolling the drop off and chasing schools of fusiliers. A Huge school of bonito tuna flashed past. On the corner were grey sharks and white tip sharks plus many jacks and large snappers. There were lovely coral blocks and small overhangs along the reef wall packed with cleaner shrimps, morals, small groupers etc.
Weather turned very blustery overnight
Day 5
Dive 1
Deep thila site with many overhangs and canyons along the north reef smothered in pink and orange soft coral. A couple of eagle rays swam around and one accompanied us for about 10 mins then another very large one swept beneath us as we ascended. Also a couple of grey sharks, white tip sharks, and the reef top was smothered in reef fish and anthias.
Dive 2
A rather fast drift though some large overhangs so a rather turbulent dive although a couple of green turtles happily swam into the current to show us how inept we are! Also orangespine surgeons, a pair of WHITE LEAF FISH and lots of groupers
Dive 3
A nice chilled dive with some good macro including two octopus, Maldives sponge snails, piano blennies peering out of holes, Periclemenes featherstar shrimps, a freeswimming honeycomb moray, lovely anemones with blackfoot and Clarke's anemones and good hard corals covering shallower ledges and blocks
Day 6
Dive 1
A MANTA SWAM UNDERNEATH US AS WE DESCENDED and then we had a chilled dive along the front of the two channels where there were many coral blocks covered in pastel coloured nepthia soft corals. There were several crown jellyfish floating in the water column and a green turtle was busy munching on one. We found a white tip shark sleeping in the sandy channel, schools of bannerfish, sleek surgeonfish, neon fusiliers etc.
Daytime Excursion
Visit to isolated sandbank between dives
Dive 2
Great macros site where we found several BLUE AND BLACK RIBBON EELS, LARGE LIONFISH, A SPEARING MANTIS SHRIMP IN ITS NEST, a baby Clarke's anemonefish in a red-coloured anemone, Semons anemone, honeycomb morays etc.
Dive 3
Experiment dive on giri site on east of atoll. There were nice coral blocks along the north side with black coral trees and covered in juvenile cardinal fish and many red groupers plus larger lunar-tailed groupers then steeper section with small overhangs where we found a Glorious flatworm and a juvenile bi-coloir parrotfish etc.
Day 7
Dive 1
THERE WERE MANY GREY SHARKS SLOWLY CRUISING AROUND THE DROP OFF AT THE THILA, SOME WERE BEING CLEANED WITH THEIR HEADS UP AND MOUTHS OPEN WHILST SCHOOLS OF 15+ WERE JUST CRUISING PAST AND MIXING IN WITH DENSE SCHOOLS OF FORSTER'S BARRACUDAS.ADULTS WERE CHASING IN WHAT APPEARRED TO BE COURTSHIP RITUALS!! As we got shallower there were more sharks on the top reef pluswhite tips and a couple of green turtles. We spent the remainder of the dive amongst the shallow coral blocks full of sweetlips and butterflyfish. Lovely!
Dive 2
Wreck and reef site. So many shrimps at back of wreck! Lysmata and banded coral shrimps, Dancing Durban and Bruuni all busy cleaning glassfish and small groupers, also several large lionfish hanging around black corls and long hydroids. We found Berthella martensi and Phidiana nudis on the main reef plus a really cure spotted ELECTRIC TORPEDO RAY. Lots of colour and fish life in the shallows here.
Dive 3
Channel drift through small overhangs and coral block with some large groupers and a very big Napoleon and a couple of white tip sharks. On the outside the reef was in TECHNICOLOUR as suddenly the visibility improved. We found a beautifully marked honeycomb moray, schools of emperors and surgeons and a funny topsy-turvy turtle
Day 8
Dive 1
A steep ocean wall with many beautiful overhangs and schools of bluestripe snappers, pyramid butterflyfish and many soldierfish meandering around and providing even more colour to this beautiful reef. We found 2x leaf fish together, and along the reef saw a huge napoleon, BUMPHEAD PARROTFISH, scorpionfish plus millions of neon fusiliers being chased by tunas
Dive 2
We went manta hunting but were unlucky today. We enjoyed the table corals and glassfish filled block plus all the damsels and chromis bouncing in the corals and anemones
Ocean Crossing
Ocean Crossing to Felidhoo atoll
Dive 3
A corner drift with a huge schools of red snappers mid-channel and several white tip sharks then drifted onto a beautiful wall full of Lysmata shrimps plus a colony of Bruuni shrimps which happily gave divers a manicure! The wall was full of juvenile reef fish of all types and the reef has excellent coral so it was nice to just chill out and enjoy
Night Dive
WILD NIGHT DIVE WITH DOZENS OF MARAUDING NURSE SHARKS PLUS PINK WHIP RAYS AND JENKINS RAYS AND A FEW BLACK TIP SHARKS. Giant and bluefin jacks came marauding through and at one point we were smothered in super-excited silversides fleeing the jacks. WOW!
Day 9
Dive 1
Another chilled drift dive around a channel corner onto a steep wall. White tips and grey sharks cruised the drop off but not enough current to hold them. Schools of fusiliers were being chased by jacks and there was a large, mixed, school of red and black and white snappers. Lots of lovely orange anthias shotting around plus groupers and every other kind of reef fish
Dive 2
BEAUTIFUL YELLOW SOFT CORAL CAVES FROM 25-50M DEPTH ON A STUNNING WALL. WE MEANDERED THROUGH MANY OVERHANGS HUNG WITH SOFT CORALS WITH SEA WHIPS AND SEAFANS AND FACING A SHEER DROP OFF. Large schools of big-eye jacks cruised the wall and tunas and occasional shraks passed by. We found a cute green leaf fish plus reef fish of every description. So pretty!
Dive 3
A second visit to this stunning wall working our way from the east side and visiting the slightly shallower overhangs and the upper reef. We saw a huge blue Napoleon and a giant grouper! Bluefin, barred and big-eye jacks cruised the wall. On the top were coral blocks with collared butterflyfish, tangs, surgeons, sweetlips etc.
Evening Activity
Sundowners on beautiful sandbank with a dramatic sky as a backdrop
Day 10
Dive 1
We waited at the spur nearby the yellow soft coral caves to see if something big wanted to cruise past but only had a whirling school of jacks pass us by. We had white tip sharks and a grey shark along the reef plus many large groupers, a lovely octopus, leaf fish, Napoleons and just enjoyed this stunning reef wall
Dive 2
Deep overhangs along this ocean reef site where we found a sleeping ROUND RIBBONTAIL RAY and a rather excited white tip shark whizzing around at the back of the overhang. Along the slope were many coral blocks and above 15m were beautiful coral structures full of reef fish plus snappers, spiny lobsters and a friendly turtle. An unusual sight was dozens of schools of cute baby tangs with 2-300 fish in each school.
Ocean Crossing
Ocean crossing to South Male' atoll
Dive 3
Easy going drift with lots of overhangs hung with every colour of pastel nepthia soft corals plus a million buzzing anthias and large and small Napoleons. Further along we found blue, and black ribbon eels, schools of bannerfish, onespine and sleek surgeon fish and white tip sharks resting in the sandy channel
Day 10
Dive 1
GREAT LAST DIVE!!! GREY SHARKS, INCLUDING A BIG FAT MOMMA SHARK WITH MACKERELS RUBBING THEMSELVES AGAINST HER FLANKS, WHITE TIP SHARKS, BEAUTIFUL EAGLE RAYS, SCHOOLS OF BLACK AND WHITE SNAPPERS, BIG EYE JACKS, SWEETLIPS AND SUPERB ORANGE AND PINK SOFT CORALS SMOTHERING EVERY SURFACE. WOW,WOW,WOW!
Daytime Excursion
We motored back to Male' and had lunch on the way, before anchorage. We made an afternoon visit to Male' for gift shopping and a visit to the ice-cream parlour
Day 12
An early departure to the airport for return international flights to Europe.
Day 13
Sea Spirit SS478 30 Aug 2015 to 11 Sep 2015 Central Atolls & Beyond (12 day)
Guest Transfer
All guests arrived via the two morning Emirates flights and were transferred to Sea Spirit. After lunch we did paperwork and set the dive kit up.
Dive 1
Check dive at ocean-facing reef. A nice easy drift and we sighted bumphead parrotfish, white tip sharks, many honeycomb morays, porcelain crabs in anemones, beautiful blue magnificent anemones with families of Maldives anemone fish, spotted trapezia crabs, hawks bill and green turtles plus dogtooth tunas chasing fusiliers
We helped celebrate Claire's birthday with a cake.
Day 1
Sunrise over Himmafushi island, Maldives
Dive 1
What a way to start the day ! A lovely manta show with Ozzie, one of our most established manta rays, along with two other mantas having an early morning spa session. It was good fun as they were curious and kept swimming over to look at divers. There were also areas of garden eels, many pinkbar gobies with pistol shrimps, lionfish etc.
Dive 2
We found a nervous round ribbontail ray under this small wreck, plus the wheelhouse was full of glassfish. On the reef we found a pair of mating octopus, Maldives sponge snail, school of bristletooth tangs feeding on algae, blacktip sharks in the shallow and many small coral groupers
Dive 3
Lots of white tip sharks riding current or just sleeping in the sand around this thila. We also saw an Eagle ray and a grey reef shark plus a school of giant trevallies chasing fusiliers. Around the coral blocks were lovely schools of oriental sweetlips, humpbacks snappers and many other reef fish
Day 2
Fantatic manta show to start day on Seas Spirit Maldives
Dive 1
Less current on the thila today and lots of sleeping white tips but a nice school of 6 EAGLE RAYS and later another 4 plus all the lovely reef fish, white spotted grouper being cleaned, soldierfish, anemonefish, christmas tree worms in coral blocks etc. Lovely!
Ocean Crossing
Ocean crossing to Baa atoll. It was rather slow going today due to big sea
Dive 2
Swathes of silversides and batfish covered the north and eastern part of the thila plus schools of mackerels being chased by tunas and jacks along the wall. We had a lovely drift looking for small stuff and passed an eagle ray. We found pixie and longnose hawkfish, a piano blenny, several smallscale scorpionfish, hermit crabs, lots of different morays and anemones of every colour on the reef top.
Evening Activity
Evening presentation on manta ray ecology and behaviour
Day 3
White tip sharks taking a break from current MV Sea Spirit, Maldives
Dive 1
A very pretty thila with canyons and many overhangs and bluefin jacks chasing silversides at current point. We found a comet fish, scorpionfish, starry puffer, midnight snappers being cleaned and there are really good yellow acabaria soft corals plus pastel nepthia soft corals at this site
Dive 2
A small and a large thila together so we started in the overhangs of the small one and drifted onto and along the larger one. Many of the overhangs were filled with glassfish and we found morays being cleaned by Bruuni shrimps, peacock mantis shrimps, more octopus, a BIG PINK STONEFISH, barred jacks and many surgeonfish along the reef edge
Dive 3
We went in search of mantas feeding but were unlucky so made a dive on a nearby reef with large overhangs hung with pink and orange soft corals plus many read juncella sea whips. We found black saddle coral groupers, a glorious flatworm, a school of platax batfish, and another school of mixed large fish including red and black and white snappers
Night Dive
Back to the overhangs for a night dive. Before we descended over the wall we found a large female ribbontail ray. Ther overhangs were full of hingebeak and Bruuni shrimps, small crabs and tiny squat lobsters, Maldives sponge snails, Susan's flatworm, a stripey reef lobster etc. All the cup corals were open and feeding and made for a wonderful golden show.
Day 4
Beautiful reef fish on thila, Mv Sea Spirit, Maldives
Dive 1
THREE MANTAS SWAM PAST as we were investigating the deep canyons on this long thila. There were several species of groupers including brown marbled and white spotted. We found a yellow pustullate flatworm, a Susan's flatworm, a large lionfish out hunting and just enjoyed the schools of sweetlips and snappers in the shallows.
Snorkelling
We made a snorkel over an ocean reef where we saw mantas in the shallows. They were trying to clean so decided to make a dive.
Dive 2
THIS WAS A VERY SPECIAL DIVE WITH 16+ MANTA RAYS TRYING TO CLEAN AMONGST THE SHALLOW CORAL BLOCKS. They semed very curious of divers and kept swimming very close by and hovering in our exhaled bubbles to enjoy the jacuzzi effect. We made a 90 minute dive and had to say good bye at the end as we were getting low on air.
Daytime Excursion
Went looking in the shallow lagoons and found a POD OF 20 SPINNER DOLPHINS. MOST OF THE POD SEEMED JUVENILE AND THEY SEEMED TO BE PRACTISING THEIR SPINS: VERY CUTE.
Dive 3
Drift dive to see dramatic cave formation of a chimney/ cavern with a deep entry point absolutely jammed with glassfish and two shallow windows. Very pretty. We also saw a large female GIANT GUITAR FISH as she scooted past. There were many nice coral blocks along the reef slope and schools of blue stripe and humpback snappers plus gold spot emperors
Day 5
Beautiful swwetlips on the top of Dharavandhoo thila MV Sea Spirit Maldives
Snorkelling
SNORKEL INSIDE HANIFARU LAGOON AND A MAGNIFICENT SHOW AS THE MANTAS ARRIVED AND WERE FEEDING UP AND DOWN IN THE WATER COLUMN. THEY CAME SO CLOSE TO US WE HAD TO FLATTEN ON THE SURFACE. IT WAS AN INCREDIBLE SESSION
Dive 1
EAGLE RAYS, A MANTA, GREY REEF SHARK: our luck continued as we made a great dive at a nearby thila. What a lovely reef with lots of deep coral blocks and canyons and everything buzzing with orange anthias. We swam through the blue hole, spotted scorpionfish lazing next to large iridescent blue giant clams, found spotted groupers, lovely morays and watched jacks chasing baitballs of neon fusiliers
Ocean Crossing
Ocean crossing to Lhaviyani atoll
Dive 2
There were two NURSE SHARKS SLEEPING UNDER THE WRECK and the shallow areas were buzzing with schools of fish including longfin batfish, sleek surgeonfish, orangespine surgeons and collared butterflyfish. The deck of the wreck was covered in ahrd and soft coral growth and there were black coral trees growing inside the hold. Sgt Majors have taken over the shalows: there were MILLIONS of them
Dive 3
Rather a strong current for a small site but we managed to find a pair of elegant squat lobsters in a green featherstar, mantis shrimps, piano bennies, fire gobies, morays, tilefish, and many types of anthias including Carberryi and Evansi
Day 6
Dive 1
6-7 GREY SHARKS CRUISING AROUND THE CURRENT POINT PUS TWO EAGLE RAYS AND A HUGE SCHOOL OF BIG EYE JACKS. One of the eagle rays was tiny, with a very long tail. We also saw a pair of honeycomb morays, several green turtles, BUMPHEAD PARROTFISH, school of goldfinger dart pompanos, porcelain crabs in anemons etc. Fantastic dive!
AMAZING SPINNER DOLPHIN SHOW AS 300+ DOLPHINS SURROUNDED SEA SPIRIT. THEY WERE RIDING THE BOW WAVE AND JUMPING AROUND. THERE WERE LOTS OF LITTLE ONES ESCORTED BY ADULTS
Dive 2
Many schools of fish on this shallow thila including bluestripe and humpback snappers, yellowfin goatfish, collared butterflyfish, Indian bannerfish and a large swirling school of big-eye jacks. We also found a pair of white leaf fish, napoleons, a moray with boxer shrimp cleaners etc.
Dive 3
We love this beautiful wall site where we found many small-and-large GREEN TURTLES resting on ledges and swimming out off the reef, followed by longfin batfish. There were many fish along the reef and in the deeper overhangs there were soft coral edges ledges and windows. This is a very beautiful reef.
Dive 4
Night dive on small wreck full of shrimps and LARGE sleeping fish including two Napoleons and a large coral grouper and then around 6 BUMPHEAD PARROTFISH srrived later on. The sheer number of shrimps was impressive. There were hundreds of Durban and Bruuni shrimps plus small groups of large boxer shrimps plus plumed and other hingebeak shimps. We also found greenscheek and bicolour parrotfish sleeping and an enormous orange hermit crabin a tun shell
Day 7
Large lionfish prowls anthias covered reef from MV Sea Spirit
Dive 1
THREE SHARKS at the current point amongst a whilwind of rushing big eye jacks and a further 3-4 off the reef plus eagle rays and many snappers again. The grumpy giant sweetlips were being evasive and the green turtles wre busy swimming up and down the reef and going for air breaths. We found a yellowmargin moray being cleaned by two red-and-white Lysmata shrimps and just loved the clouds of orange anthias
Dive 2
A beautiful anemone-covered thila but rather a lot of phytoplankton around, reducing the visibility. WE FOUND THE LILAC-BLUE FROGFISH and had a good hunt around in all the overhangs finding a brown marbled grouper. The reef is SMOTHERED in juvenile Cardinal fish ad today there were several large lionfish out hunting
Dive 3
A successful experiment dive at a narrow channel where we saw several chunky GREY SHARKS cruising around plus large schools of snappers, plus tunas, rainbow runners, big eye emperors etc. Insde the channel we found two stingrays: one was fast asleep and partyly buried in sand
Drinks on the front deck to celebrate a great day's diving
Day 8
Sschool of chevron barracudas from MV Sea Spirit, Maldives
Dive 1
There were TWO STINGRAYS on the front of the channel, one was swimming around in the black corals as if it was scratching an itch. A school of bonito tunas swirled shallow above us. A big Napoleon came past and we found a small green leaf fish, an octopus and several spiny lobsters amongst the dramatic overhangs on the beautiful wall
Ocean Crossing
Ocean Crossing to Kaashidhoo
Dive 2
Dramatic isolated atoll ocean reef site with reef sloped plummeting into the depths. There were some deep overhangs as we descended and then spurs and valleys. An enormous school of mixed longfin and circular batfish dived for the depths, the shallows were full of reef fish including giant sweetlips, Napoleons, a school of goldfinger dart Pompanos, Sgt Majors etc.
Ocean Crossing
Ocean crossing to Gaafaru
Dive 3
SO MANY FISH! SHALLOW THILAS ON THE FRONT OF A CHANNEL JUST SMOTHERED IN FISH! SCHOOL OF 12 EAGLE RAYS AND THEN 2 MATING/COURTING, SCHOOLS OF CHEVRON AND FORSTER'S BARRACUDAS, WHITE TIP SHARKS, SO MANY SNAPPERS AND SWEETLIPS. Congratulations Michel on your 1000th dive
Day 9
Big old male turtle lumbering past divers on MV Sea Spirit
Dive 1
Deep old wreck on ocean reef with dramatic spiky propellor. Half the hull is resting at 40m and the rest scattered up the reef shope so we snaked our way shallow. WE found a magrove whipray and white tip sharks in the deep section and schools of humpback snappers and sweetlips up shallow plus a nice carpet anemone with Amboin shrimps.
Dive 2
Schools of snappers and jacks hovered over deep blocks along the side of dramatic overhangs with beautiful pink seafans and schools of blue stripe snappers and soldierfish. Jacks and tunas cruised off the reef. There were many schools of fish in the shallows plus white tip sharks and a very cute hawksbill turtle
Dive 3
A surprise drift through shallow overhangs hung with yellow, pink, orange and blue soft corals and the drift kept going so an easy dive! The hard corals on this site are particularly good too and there were lots of reef fish all along the site plus Napoleons and tunas cruising around
Dive 4
Stronger current than anticipated so we flew along sections of reef and bounced intio large overhangs on the reef, so maybe not quite the small-things night dive we had planned. We found a Glossodoris nudi,many hingebeak shrimps, a spiny lobster out hunting, many sleeping parrotfish etc.
Day 10
Diver makes new friend with turtle, Mv Sea Spirit
Dive 1
AMAZING 90 MINUTE DIVE WITH MANTAS BEING CLEANED AND JUST SO CLOSE. IT WAS A FANTATIC AND CHILLED SHOW AS 14 MANTAS ENTERTAINED US. WE RECOGNISED SOME OLD FRIENDS AMONGST THEM TOO. Also white tip shark, many snappers Terebellina snail, coral blocks full of damsels bouncing in the current etc.
Dive 2
A brisk drift through overhangs hung with white polyped soft coral seafans and small pink fans and undercut coral spurs buzzing with anthias and bannerfish. A manta cruised up the reef to us and we also saw a few white tip sharks, tunas etc. The hard corals on the slope are also in very good condition at this site.
Dive 3
FUN DIVE WITH 60 MARAUDING PINK WHIPRAYS PLUS A FEW BLOTCHED FANTAIL STINGRAYS AND A FEATHERTAIL RAY GETTING INVOLVED IN THE FRACAS. The reef wall is pepperred with morays, just so many and often 3 or even 5 in a single hole! They were mainly big honeycombs but there were also giant, fimbriated, undulate, peppered and white eye. A great dive was had by all.
Day 11
Terrific manta show: so close. Mv Sea Spirit, Maldives
Dive 1
Last dive on a beautiful soft coral covered thila. The blue, pink, yellow and orange soft corals were all puffed up and pretty and big snappers and many soldierfish hid in the overhangs. We met a large loggerhead? Turtle and saw some Napoleons cruising the reef. A large mappa puffer was hiding out in a shallow overhangs. A beautiful site and the coral was king on this dive.
Travel back to Male'. We encountered a large pod of spinner dolphins so this heled celebrate Elaine's birthday. This was followed by lunch onboard and an afternoon visit to Male' for shopping and a visit to the ice-cream parlour
Day 12
Marauding pink whip rays from MV Sea Spirit, Maldives
Guest Transfer
Guests to airport for international flights to Dubai and Europe and transfers to resorts
Day 13
This trip's group on Sea Spirit, Maldives
 
Guest Transfer
All guests arrived via the two morning Emirates flights and were transferred to Sea Spirit. After lunch we did paperwork and set the dive kit up.
Dive 1
Check dive at ocean-facing reef. A nice easy drift and we sighted bumphead parrotfish, white tip sharks, many honeycomb morays, porcelain crabs in anemones, beautiful blue magnificent anemones with families of Maldives anemone fish, spotted trapezia crabs, hawks bill and green turtles plus dogtooth tunas chasing fusiliers
We helped celebrate Claire's birthday with a cake.
Day 1
Sunrise over Himmafushi island, Maldives
Dive 1
What a way to start the day ! A lovely manta show with Ozzie, one of our most established manta rays, along with two other mantas having an early morning spa session. It was good fun as they were curious and kept swimming over to look at divers. There were also areas of garden eels, many pinkbar gobies with pistol shrimps, lionfish etc.
Dive 2
We found a nervous round ribbontail ray under this small wreck, plus the wheelhouse was full of glassfish. On the reef we found a pair of mating octopus, Maldives sponge snail, school of bristletooth tangs feeding on algae, blacktip sharks in the shallow and many small coral groupers
Dive 3
Lots of white tip sharks riding current or just sleeping in the sand around this thila. We also saw an Eagle ray and a grey reef shark plus a school of giant trevallies chasing fusiliers. Around the coral blocks were lovely schools of oriental sweetlips, humpbacks snappers and many other reef fish
Day 2
Fantatic manta show to start day on Seas Spirit Maldives
Dive 1
Less current on the thila today and lots of sleeping white tips but a nice school of 6 EAGLE RAYS and later another 4 plus all the lovely reef fish, white spotted grouper being cleaned, soldierfish, anemonefish, christmas tree worms in coral blocks etc. Lovely!
Ocean Crossing
Ocean crossing to Baa atoll. It was rather slow going today due to big sea
Dive 2
Swathes of silversides and batfish covered the north and eastern part of the thila plus schools of mackerels being chased by tunas and jacks along the wall. We had a lovely drift looking for small stuff and passed an eagle ray. We found pixie and longnose hawkfish, a piano blenny, several smallscale scorpionfish, hermit crabs, lots of different morays and anemones of every colour on the reef top.
Evening Activity
Evening presentation on manta ray ecology and behaviour
Day 3
White tip sharks taking a break from current MV Sea Spirit, Maldives
Dive 1
A very pretty thila with canyons and many overhangs and bluefin jacks chasing silversides at current point. We found a comet fish, scorpionfish, starry puffer, midnight snappers being cleaned and there are really good yellow acabaria soft corals plus pastel nepthia soft corals at this site
Dive 2
A small and a large thila together so we started in the overhangs of the small one and drifted onto and along the larger one. Many of the overhangs were filled with glassfish and we found morays being cleaned by Bruuni shrimps, peacock mantis shrimps, more octopus, a BIG PINK STONEFISH, barred jacks and many surgeonfish along the reef edge
Dive 3
We went in search of mantas feeding but were unlucky so made a dive on a nearby reef with large overhangs hung with pink and orange soft corals plus many read juncella sea whips. We found black saddle coral groupers, a glorious flatworm, a school of platax batfish, and another school of mixed large fish including red and black and white snappers
Night Dive
Back to the overhangs for a night dive. Before we descended over the wall we found a large female ribbontail ray. Ther overhangs were full of hingebeak and Bruuni shrimps, small crabs and tiny squat lobsters, Maldives sponge snails, Susan's flatworm, a stripey reef lobster etc. All the cup corals were open and feeding and made for a wonderful golden show.
Day 4
Beautiful reef fish on thila, Mv Sea Spirit, Maldives
Dive 1
THREE MANTAS SWAM PAST as we were investigating the deep canyons on this long thila. There were several species of groupers including brown marbled and white spotted. We found a yellow pustullate flatworm, a Susan's flatworm, a large lionfish out hunting and just enjoyed the schools of sweetlips and snappers in the shallows.
Snorkelling
We made a snorkel over an ocean reef where we saw mantas in the shallows. They were trying to clean so decided to make a dive.
Dive 2
THIS WAS A VERY SPECIAL DIVE WITH 16+ MANTA RAYS TRYING TO CLEAN AMONGST THE SHALLOW CORAL BLOCKS. They semed very curious of divers and kept swimming very close by and hovering in our exhaled bubbles to enjoy the jacuzzi effect. We made a 90 minute dive and had to say good bye at the end as we were getting low on air.
Daytime Excursion
Went looking in the shallow lagoons and found a POD OF 20 SPINNER DOLPHINS. MOST OF THE POD SEEMED JUVENILE AND THEY SEEMED TO BE PRACTISING THEIR SPINS: VERY CUTE.
Dive 3
Drift dive to see dramatic cave formation of a chimney/ cavern with a deep entry point absolutely jammed with glassfish and two shallow windows. Very pretty. We also saw a large female GIANT GUITAR FISH as she scooted past. There were many nice coral blocks along the reef slope and schools of blue stripe and humpback snappers plus gold spot emperors
Day 5
Beautiful swwetlips on the top of Dharavandhoo thila MV Sea Spirit Maldives
Snorkelling
SNORKEL INSIDE HANIFARU LAGOON AND A MAGNIFICENT SHOW AS THE MANTAS ARRIVED AND WERE FEEDING UP AND DOWN IN THE WATER COLUMN. THEY CAME SO CLOSE TO US WE HAD TO FLATTEN ON THE SURFACE. IT WAS AN INCREDIBLE SESSION
Dive 1
EAGLE RAYS, A MANTA, GREY REEF SHARK: our luck continued as we made a great dive at a nearby thila. What a lovely reef with lots of deep coral blocks and canyons and everything buzzing with orange anthias. We swam through the blue hole, spotted scorpionfish lazing next to large iridescent blue giant clams, found spotted groupers, lovely morays and watched jacks chasing baitballs of neon fusiliers
Ocean Crossing
Ocean crossing to Lhaviyani atoll
Dive 2
There were two NURSE SHARKS SLEEPING UNDER THE WRECK and the shallow areas were buzzing with schools of fish including longfin batfish, sleek surgeonfish, orangespine surgeons and collared butterflyfish. The deck of the wreck was covered in ahrd and soft coral growth and there were black coral trees growing inside the hold. Sgt Majors have taken over the shalows: there were MILLIONS of them
Dive 3
Rather a strong current for a small site but we managed to find a pair of elegant squat lobsters in a green featherstar, mantis shrimps, piano bennies, fire gobies, morays, tilefish, and many types of anthias including Carberryi and Evansi
Day 6
Dive 1
6-7 GREY SHARKS CRUISING AROUND THE CURRENT POINT PUS TWO EAGLE RAYS AND A HUGE SCHOOL OF BIG EYE JACKS. One of the eagle rays was tiny, with a very long tail. We also saw a pair of honeycomb morays, several green turtles, BUMPHEAD PARROTFISH, school of goldfinger dart pompanos, porcelain crabs in anemons etc. Fantastic dive!
AMAZING SPINNER DOLPHIN SHOW AS 300+ DOLPHINS SURROUNDED SEA SPIRIT. THEY WERE RIDING THE BOW WAVE AND JUMPING AROUND. THERE WERE LOTS OF LITTLE ONES ESCORTED BY ADULTS
Dive 2
Many schools of fish on this shallow thila including bluestripe and humpback snappers, yellowfin goatfish, collared butterflyfish, Indian bannerfish and a large swirling school of big-eye jacks. We also found a pair of white leaf fish, napoleons, a moray with boxer shrimp cleaners etc.
Dive 3
We love this beautiful wall site where we found many small-and-large GREEN TURTLES resting on ledges and swimming out off the reef, followed by longfin batfish. There were many fish along the reef and in the deeper overhangs there were soft coral edges ledges and windows. This is a very beautiful reef.
Dive 4
Night dive on small wreck full of shrimps and LARGE sleeping fish including two Napoleons and a large coral grouper and then around 6 BUMPHEAD PARROTFISH srrived later on. The sheer number of shrimps was impressive. There were hundreds of Durban and Bruuni shrimps plus small groups of large boxer shrimps plus plumed and other hingebeak shimps. We also found greenscheek and bicolour parrotfish sleeping and an enormous orange hermit crabin a tun shell
Day 7
Large lionfish prowls anthias covered reef from MV Sea Spirit
Dive 1
THREE SHARKS at the current point amongst a whilwind of rushing big eye jacks and a further 3-4 off the reef plus eagle rays and many snappers again. The grumpy giant sweetlips were being evasive and the green turtles wre busy swimming up and down the reef and going for air breaths. We found a yellowmargin moray being cleaned by two red-and-white Lysmata shrimps and just loved the clouds of orange anthias
Dive 2
A beautiful anemone-covered thila but rather a lot of phytoplankton around, reducing the visibility. WE FOUND THE LILAC-BLUE FROGFISH and had a good hunt around in all the overhangs finding a brown marbled grouper. The reef is SMOTHERED in juvenile Cardinal fish ad today there were several large lionfish out hunting
Dive 3
A successful experiment dive at a narrow channel where we saw several chunky GREY SHARKS cruising around plus large schools of snappers, plus tunas, rainbow runners, big eye emperors etc. Insde the channel we found two stingrays: one was fast asleep and partyly buried in sand
Drinks on the front deck to celebrate a great day's diving
Day 8
Sschool of chevron barracudas from MV Sea Spirit, Maldives
Dive 1
There were TWO STINGRAYS on the front of the channel, one was swimming around in the black corals as if it was scratching an itch. A school of bonito tunas swirled shallow above us. A big Napoleon came past and we found a small green leaf fish, an octopus and several spiny lobsters amongst the dramatic overhangs on the beautiful wall
Ocean Crossing
Ocean Crossing to Kaashidhoo
Dive 2
Dramatic isolated atoll ocean reef site with reef sloped plummeting into the depths. There were some deep overhangs as we descended and then spurs and valleys. An enormous school of mixed longfin and circular batfish dived for the depths, the shallows were full of reef fish including giant sweetlips, Napoleons, a school of goldfinger dart Pompanos, Sgt Majors etc.
Ocean Crossing
Ocean crossing to Gaafaru
Dive 3
SO MANY FISH! SHALLOW THILAS ON THE FRONT OF A CHANNEL JUST SMOTHERED IN FISH! SCHOOL OF 12 EAGLE RAYS AND THEN 2 MATING/COURTING, SCHOOLS OF CHEVRON AND FORSTER'S BARRACUDAS, WHITE TIP SHARKS, SO MANY SNAPPERS AND SWEETLIPS. Congratulations Michel on your 1000th dive
Day 9
Big old male turtle lumbering past divers on MV Sea Spirit
Dive 1
Deep old wreck on ocean reef with dramatic spiky propellor. Half the hull is resting at 40m and the rest scattered up the reef shope so we snaked our way shallow. WE found a magrove whipray and white tip sharks in the deep section and schools of humpback snappers and sweetlips up shallow plus a nice carpet anemone with Amboin shrimps.
Dive 2
Schools of snappers and jacks hovered over deep blocks along the side of dramatic overhangs with beautiful pink seafans and schools of blue stripe snappers and soldierfish. Jacks and tunas cruised off the reef. There were many schools of fish in the shallows plus white tip sharks and a very cute hawksbill turtle
Dive 3
A surprise drift through shallow overhangs hung with yellow, pink, orange and blue soft corals and the drift kept going so an easy dive! The hard corals on this site are particularly good too and there were lots of reef fish all along the site plus Napoleons and tunas cruising around
Dive 4
Stronger current than anticipated so we flew along sections of reef and bounced intio large overhangs on the reef, so maybe not quite the small-things night dive we had planned. We found a Glossodoris nudi,many hingebeak shrimps, a spiny lobster out hunting, many sleeping parrotfish etc.
Day 10
Diver makes new friend with turtle, Mv Sea Spirit
Dive 1
AMAZING 90 MINUTE DIVE WITH MANTAS BEING CLEANED AND JUST SO CLOSE. IT WAS A FANTATIC AND CHILLED SHOW AS 14 MANTAS ENTERTAINED US. WE RECOGNISED SOME OLD FRIENDS AMONGST THEM TOO. Also white tip shark, many snappers Terebellina snail, coral blocks full of damsels bouncing in the current etc.
Dive 2
A brisk drift through overhangs hung with white polyped soft coral seafans and small pink fans and undercut coral spurs buzzing with anthias and bannerfish. A manta cruised up the reef to us and we also saw a few white tip sharks, tunas etc. The hard corals on the slope are also in very good condition at this site.
Dive 3
FUN DIVE WITH 60 MARAUDING PINK WHIPRAYS PLUS A FEW BLOTCHED FANTAIL STINGRAYS AND A FEATHERTAIL RAY GETTING INVOLVED IN THE FRACAS. The reef wall is pepperred with morays, just so many and often 3 or even 5 in a single hole! They were mainly big honeycombs but there were also giant, fimbriated, undulate, peppered and white eye. A great dive was had by all.
Day 11
Terrific manta show: so close. Mv Sea Spirit, Maldives
Dive 1
Last dive on a beautiful soft coral covered thila. The blue, pink, yellow and orange soft corals were all puffed up and pretty and big snappers and many soldierfish hid in the overhangs. We met a large loggerhead? Turtle and saw some Napoleons cruising the reef. A large mappa puffer was hiding out in a shallow overhangs. A beautiful site and the coral was king on this dive.
Travel back to Male'. We encountered a large pod of spinner dolphins so this heled celebrate Elaine's birthday. This was followed by lunch onboard and an afternoon visit to Male' for shopping and a visit to the ice-cream parlour
Day 12
Marauding pink whip rays from MV Sea Spirit, Maldives
Guest Transfer
Guests to airport for international flights to Dubai and Europe and transfers to resorts
Day 13
This trip's group on Sea Spirit, Maldives
Sea Spirit SS468 17 May 2015 to 24 May 2015 Central Atolls (7 days)
Guest Transfer
Divers arrived from international flights early on Sunday morning and were transferred to Sea Spirit. We travelled into North Male atoll for our evening anchorage
Dive 1
Check dive at an experimental site and WOW! What a show! 100 PINK WHIPRAYS WHIZZING AROUND US, going shallow and deep and just overwhelming us. There were also many different morays: honeycombs, giants, undulates, yellow margin and even some white eyed morays. Interestingly, the morays seemed to be sharing holes in mixed species so three large morays of same size but different species would all be squashed in together! We also saw a hawksbill turtle and many schooling bannerfish
Day 1
100 wild whip rays whizzing around from MV Sea Spirit, Maldives
Dive 1
TWO MANTA RAYS were seen during the dive but we spent the majority investigating macro items and found a small peacock flounder, many combinations of goby and shrimp including dracula and Randalls pistol shrimp, pinkbar and blackbarred gobies; blackspotted and spaghetti eels, lionfish and a tiny Clark'e anemonefish in a blue anemone!
Dive 2
LOVELY MANTA SHOW WITH 5 DIFFERENT MANTAS in and out at the cleaning stations throughout the 70 minute dive. Most of them were sole "bachelors" but Petit Fours, a young adult female, was there for the whole dive. We also found a cute juvenile razor wrasse.
Ocean Crossing
Crossing to South Male' atoll
Dive 3
Lovely wreck and reef site with coral and sponge encrusted walls and lots of lacy white acabaria and black coral trees. We found boxer, Bruuni and Durbhan dancing shrimps on the wreck, a peacock mantis shrimp, Schultz's pipefish, 2x Chromodoris tritos nudibrnchs, Maldives sponge snails, a Susan's flatworm a friendly hawksbill turtle etc.
Day 2
Petit Four the manta puts on a show for divers on MV Sea Spirit
Dive 1
2x EAGLE RAYS were waiting at the current point as we descended and huge schools of red and black/white snappers plus big eye jacks and several giant trevallies arrived as the current started to increase. The ledges were smothered in pink and orange soft corals plus pink seafans and many soldierfish and snappers peered out of every nook and crannie.A large GREY SHARK cruised past and several white tip sharks were seen on the reef top. We loved the schols of grey and oriental sweetlips plus collared butterflyfish and bothe green and hwksbill tutles lumbered by on the reef top
Ocean Crossing
Crossing to Vaavu atoll
Dive 2
An ocean reef with many overhangs at around 25m. We found a small white tip buzzing around in one and a pink whip ray and a round ribbontail ray swam past. Grey sharks and white tip sharks hoverred in the more currenty places! There were so many large grouper: blacksaddled, brown marbled, squaretail etc.
Snorkelling
Quick snorkel with three mantas before the dive. They were feeding on plankton in the shallows.
Dive 3
Channel to corner drift. We saw several Napoleons, a tiny scorpionfish, a leaffish, a large school of red snappers, an octopus and enjoyed the beautiful reef buzzing with anthias and a cascade of table corals embellishing the slope between 5 and 15m.
Night Dive
EXCITING NIGHT DIVE WITH MANY LARGE TAWNY NURSE SHARKS OUT FORAGING. WE ALSO SAW PINK WHIPRAYS AND JENKINS WHIPRAYS AND MANY GIANT TREVALLIES AND RUDDERFISH
Day 3
Wild night dive with nurse sharks from MV Sea Spirit, Maldives
Dive 1
Gentle drift through pastel coloured SOFT CORAL covered overhangs: pinks, greens, oranges etc. White tip sharks bouncing around and then lots of lovely macro items: a pair of octopus, 2x bearded scorpionfish, 2x green leaf fish plus blocks full of glassfish and red groupers, many magnificent anemones etc.
Ocean Crossing
Ocean crossing to Ari atoll
Dive 2
Easy drift on ocean reef looking for a whale shark but we didn't get lucky today :-( We did find a block with three baby white tip sharks, an octopus, a Debelius reef lobster peering out between the fingers of a pavona coral, a pair of eagle rays, white mouthed moray, a cometfish and the reef top was smothered in pyramid butterflyfish
Dive 3
Highlights included a buried-in-sand sleeping feathertail ray, a round ribbontail ray, several sleeping white tip shark, a tiny juvenile oriental sweetlips flapping around, tiger cowrie and a scorpion conch, porcelain crabs in a carpet anemone and a friendly hawksbill turtle who swam along with the group for quite a while!
Day 4
Friendly hawksbill turtle from MV Sea Spirit
Dive 1
There was a brisk current on the wreck and there were lots of fusiliers around being chased by bluefin and giant trevallies. We found a fluffy stonefish, a Chromodoris glenei nudibranch, many glassfish and Bruuni cleaner shrimps, a school of Forster's barracudas nd a spearing mantis shrimp
Dive 2
Millions of bluestripe snappers smothered the southern plateau of this classic Maldives thila and 5x grey sharks cruised the sandy area in the depths. There were several schools of longfin batfish and some were hanging at 90 degrees and looked rather odd/funny. We saw a school of chevron barracudas, found several large brownmarbled groupers peering out of overhangs and generally enjoyed the large schools of schooling bannefish, fusiliers, jacks etc. filling the water column!
Dive 3
A second classic Maldives thila and again a great show with grey and white tip sharks at the current point, a round ribbontail stingray and "Sandwich" our pet eagle ray known here for 13 years now! THE STARS OF THE SHOW WERE SEVERAL VERY ANIMATED OCTOPUS OUT HUNTING AND FLIRTING WITH EACHOTHER. THEY POSED, THEY SPIKED, THEY MADE TALL STATUES, THEY SWAM AROUND. WHAT A FANTASTIC DISPLAY!
Night Dive
A SUPERB NIGHT DIVE WITH 6 AMAZINGLY FRIENDLY MANTAS! THEY COULDN'T GET ANY CLOSER AND THEY LOOPED AND SOMESAULTED BUSILY FEEDING AND PLAYING IN OUR BUBBLES
Day 5
Great night dive with mantas from MV Sea Spirit, Maldives
Dive 1
SHARKSVILLE TODAY WITH 30+ BABY GREY SHARKS forming a tight school and parading up and down at the current point. There were a couple of big mommas around and one joined in the parade! We also saw many white tip sharks including several newborns hiding under table corals, two round ribbontail rays swam through the melee of tunas chasing fusiliers and then there was all the pretty stuff on top. Another fantastic dive
Ocean Crossing
Ocean crossing to Rashoo atoll
Dive 2
Several large schools of big-eye jacks hung out at the current point. We also saw blacktip, white tip and grey sharks and had large dogtooth tunas turning stripey and chasing schools of fusiliers. They passed so close we felt the pressure wave. BANG! The reef top had masses of fish and is in excellent condition: pyramid butterflyfish, goldspot emperors, humpback snappers etc. seen
Dive 3
An opposite current direction and a very different dive! We had 1 then 3 then 4 EAGLE RAYS cruising the drop off, a large grey shark circling and approaching a cleaning station with it's mouth open, all the usual large reef fish (emperors, snappers, batfish, a large brown marbled grouper, mappa and starry puffers) plus lots of lovely little stuff including three spearing mantis shrimps in their nests, two gold leaf fish, a Saron shrimp, a large devil scorpionfish etc.
Day 6
30 baby grey shark at the thila! MV Sea Spirit, Maldives
Dive 1
Our final dive captured everything that is good about Maldives diving! We had a spectacular reefscape with a drop-off plummeting down to hundreds of metres with GREY SHARKS AND EAGLE RAYS cruising past, AN ENORMOUS SCHOOL OF BIG EYE JACKS whiled around up and down and chased larg tunas and even the grey sharks! The reef is full of every imaginable reef fish including a the unusual clown triggerfish and the blue-lipped two spot angelfish. Millions of anthias buzzed in the current and small goupers and emperors were out hunting. The grey sharks gave us a good show of being cleaned whilst they stood on their tails and opened their mouths to allow smalled wrasses access. The reef is covered in pavona and acropora corals with shrimps and moray eels hiding inside. The current gave the site a buzz, bringing it all to life. Wonderful!
Ocean Crossing
Ocean crossing back to North Male' atoll
Daytime Excursion
Aftrnoon visit to Male' for souvenir shopping and a visit to the ice-cream parlour
Day 7
So many jacks from MV Sea Spirit, Maldives
Guest Transfer
Divers returned to Male' international airport to make return flights to Europe or sea plane flights to resorts
Day 8
Spiky octopus pulling shapes, seen from MV Sea Spirit, Maldives
 
Guest Transfer
Divers arrived from international flights early on Sunday morning and were transferred to Sea Spirit. We travelled into North Male atoll for our evening anchorage
Dive 1
Check dive at an experimental site and WOW! What a show! 100 PINK WHIPRAYS WHIZZING AROUND US, going shallow and deep and just overwhelming us. There were also many different morays: honeycombs, giants, undulates, yellow margin and even some white eyed morays. Interestingly, the morays seemed to be sharing holes in mixed species so three large morays of same size but different species would all be squashed in together! We also saw a hawksbill turtle and many schooling bannerfish
Day 1
100 wild whip rays whizzing around from MV Sea Spirit, Maldives
Dive 1
TWO MANTA RAYS were seen during the dive but we spent the majority investigating macro items and found a small peacock flounder, many combinations of goby and shrimp including dracula and Randalls pistol shrimp, pinkbar and blackbarred gobies; blackspotted and spaghetti eels, lionfish and a tiny Clark'e anemonefish in a blue anemone!
Dive 2
LOVELY MANTA SHOW WITH 5 DIFFERENT MANTAS in and out at the cleaning stations throughout the 70 minute dive. Most of them were sole "bachelors" but Petit Fours, a young adult female, was there for the whole dive. We also found a cute juvenile razor wrasse.
Ocean Crossing
Crossing to South Male' atoll
Dive 3
Lovely wreck and reef site with coral and sponge encrusted walls and lots of lacy white acabaria and black coral trees. We found boxer, Bruuni and Durbhan dancing shrimps on the wreck, a peacock mantis shrimp, Schultz's pipefish, 2x Chromodoris tritos nudibrnchs, Maldives sponge snails, a Susan's flatworm a friendly hawksbill turtle etc.
Day 2
Petit Four the manta puts on a show for divers on MV Sea Spirit
Dive 1
2x EAGLE RAYS were waiting at the current point as we descended and huge schools of red and black/white snappers plus big eye jacks and several giant trevallies arrived as the current started to increase. The ledges were smothered in pink and orange soft corals plus pink seafans and many soldierfish and snappers peered out of every nook and crannie.A large GREY SHARK cruised past and several white tip sharks were seen on the reef top. We loved the schols of grey and oriental sweetlips plus collared butterflyfish and bothe green and hwksbill tutles lumbered by on the reef top
Ocean Crossing
Crossing to Vaavu atoll
Dive 2
An ocean reef with many overhangs at around 25m. We found a small white tip buzzing around in one and a pink whip ray and a round ribbontail ray swam past. Grey sharks and white tip sharks hoverred in the more currenty places! There were so many large grouper: blacksaddled, brown marbled, squaretail etc.
Snorkelling
Quick snorkel with three mantas before the dive. They were feeding on plankton in the shallows.
Dive 3
Channel to corner drift. We saw several Napoleons, a tiny scorpionfish, a leaffish, a large school of red snappers, an octopus and enjoyed the beautiful reef buzzing with anthias and a cascade of table corals embellishing the slope between 5 and 15m.
Night Dive
EXCITING NIGHT DIVE WITH MANY LARGE TAWNY NURSE SHARKS OUT FORAGING. WE ALSO SAW PINK WHIPRAYS AND JENKINS WHIPRAYS AND MANY GIANT TREVALLIES AND RUDDERFISH
Day 3
Wild night dive with nurse sharks from MV Sea Spirit, Maldives
Dive 1
Gentle drift through pastel coloured SOFT CORAL covered overhangs: pinks, greens, oranges etc. White tip sharks bouncing around and then lots of lovely macro items: a pair of octopus, 2x bearded scorpionfish, 2x green leaf fish plus blocks full of glassfish and red groupers, many magnificent anemones etc.
Ocean Crossing
Ocean crossing to Ari atoll
Dive 2
Easy drift on ocean reef looking for a whale shark but we didn't get lucky today :-( We did find a block with three baby white tip sharks, an octopus, a Debelius reef lobster peering out between the fingers of a pavona coral, a pair of eagle rays, white mouthed moray, a cometfish and the reef top was smothered in pyramid butterflyfish
Dive 3
Highlights included a buried-in-sand sleeping feathertail ray, a round ribbontail ray, several sleeping white tip shark, a tiny juvenile oriental sweetlips flapping around, tiger cowrie and a scorpion conch, porcelain crabs in a carpet anemone and a friendly hawksbill turtle who swam along with the group for quite a while!
Day 4
Friendly hawksbill turtle from MV Sea Spirit
Dive 1
There was a brisk current on the wreck and there were lots of fusiliers around being chased by bluefin and giant trevallies. We found a fluffy stonefish, a Chromodoris glenei nudibranch, many glassfish and Bruuni cleaner shrimps, a school of Forster's barracudas nd a spearing mantis shrimp
Dive 2
Millions of bluestripe snappers smothered the southern plateau of this classic Maldives thila and 5x grey sharks cruised the sandy area in the depths. There were several schools of longfin batfish and some were hanging at 90 degrees and looked rather odd/funny. We saw a school of chevron barracudas, found several large brownmarbled groupers peering out of overhangs and generally enjoyed the large schools of schooling bannefish, fusiliers, jacks etc. filling the water column!
Dive 3
A second classic Maldives thila and again a great show with grey and white tip sharks at the current point, a round ribbontail stingray and "Sandwich" our pet eagle ray known here for 13 years now! THE STARS OF THE SHOW WERE SEVERAL VERY ANIMATED OCTOPUS OUT HUNTING AND FLIRTING WITH EACHOTHER. THEY POSED, THEY SPIKED, THEY MADE TALL STATUES, THEY SWAM AROUND. WHAT A FANTASTIC DISPLAY!
Night Dive
A SUPERB NIGHT DIVE WITH 6 AMAZINGLY FRIENDLY MANTAS! THEY COULDN'T GET ANY CLOSER AND THEY LOOPED AND SOMESAULTED BUSILY FEEDING AND PLAYING IN OUR BUBBLES
Day 5
Great night dive with mantas from MV Sea Spirit, Maldives
Dive 1
SHARKSVILLE TODAY WITH 30+ BABY GREY SHARKS forming a tight school and parading up and down at the current point. There were a couple of big mommas around and one joined in the parade! We also saw many white tip sharks including several newborns hiding under table corals, two round ribbontail rays swam through the melee of tunas chasing fusiliers and then there was all the pretty stuff on top. Another fantastic dive
Ocean Crossing
Ocean crossing to Rashoo atoll
Dive 2
Several large schools of big-eye jacks hung out at the current point. We also saw blacktip, white tip and grey sharks and had large dogtooth tunas turning stripey and chasing schools of fusiliers. They passed so close we felt the pressure wave. BANG! The reef top had masses of fish and is in excellent condition: pyramid butterflyfish, goldspot emperors, humpback snappers etc. seen
Dive 3
An opposite current direction and a very different dive! We had 1 then 3 then 4 EAGLE RAYS cruising the drop off, a large grey shark circling and approaching a cleaning station with it's mouth open, all the usual large reef fish (emperors, snappers, batfish, a large brown marbled grouper, mappa and starry puffers) plus lots of lovely little stuff including three spearing mantis shrimps in their nests, two gold leaf fish, a Saron shrimp, a large devil scorpionfish etc.
Day 6
30 baby grey shark at the thila! MV Sea Spirit, Maldives
Dive 1
Our final dive captured everything that is good about Maldives diving! We had a spectacular reefscape with a drop-off plummeting down to hundreds of metres with GREY SHARKS AND EAGLE RAYS cruising past, AN ENORMOUS SCHOOL OF BIG EYE JACKS whiled around up and down and chased larg tunas and even the grey sharks! The reef is full of every imaginable reef fish including a the unusual clown triggerfish and the blue-lipped two spot angelfish. Millions of anthias buzzed in the current and small goupers and emperors were out hunting. The grey sharks gave us a good show of being cleaned whilst they stood on their tails and opened their mouths to allow smalled wrasses access. The reef is covered in pavona and acropora corals with shrimps and moray eels hiding inside. The current gave the site a buzz, bringing it all to life. Wonderful!
Ocean Crossing
Ocean crossing back to North Male' atoll
Daytime Excursion
Aftrnoon visit to Male' for souvenir shopping and a visit to the ice-cream parlour
Day 7
So many jacks from MV Sea Spirit, Maldives
Guest Transfer
Divers returned to Male' international airport to make return flights to Europe or sea plane flights to resorts
Day 8
Spiky octopus pulling shapes, seen from MV Sea Spirit, Maldives
Sea Spirit SS466 3 May 2015 to 10 May 2015 Central Atolls (7 days)
Guest Transfer
Guests arrived from international flights and transferred to Sea Spirit. We headed south and crossed over to South Male' atoll
Dive 1
Ocean facing site in front of two channels. There were several Napoleons including a large blue male, schools of bohar snappers, grey sharks and white tip sharks hung off the reef. The reef slope had many coral blocks with purple and pink pastel coloured Nepthia soft corals. We saw a cute Reindeer rockmover wrasse, two honeycomb morays blue and black ribbon eels, sabretooth fangblennies peered out of small holes and there were nice schools of gold spot emperors and schooling bannerfish
Day 1
So many fish! A real feature of the Maldives, from MV Sea Spirit
Dive 1
A BUSY CURRENT POINT WHERE WE SAW EAGLE RAYS (ONE PREGNANT) AND GREY SHARKS AMONGST LARGE SCHOOLS OF BIG EYE JACKS , BLACK AND WHITE AND BOHAR SNAPPERS. Pinnacles were covered in pink and orange soft corals with schools of silver and oriental sweetlips and just so many other reef fish. On the top of the reef were coral blocks with large schools of sweetlips and collared butterflyfish. Just lovely!
Ocean Crossing
Ocean crossing to Vaavu atoll
Dive 2
A small out current so we drifted the corner. Just inside was a large school of fusiliers with a grey shark hiding amongst them. On the outer reef we saw white tip sharks, a couple of eagle rays, grey sharks and a large schol of black and white snappers. We were accompanied by two friendly hawksbill turtles! Table corals grew from 5 to 15m depth and the corals were full of Coopers and orange anthias. We found a gold/yellow leaf fish and lots of Lysmata and boxer cleaner shrimps
Dive 3
LOTS OF GREY SHARKS were cruising along the front of the channel. There were some very large females and a school of around 20 mixed size juveniles. Wow! There were also schools of bonito tunas and rainbow runners plus large dogtooth tunas, a golden jack and giant trevallies. We spent the latter part of the dive up in the shallows enjoying the beautiful coral covered wall
Night Dive
EXCITING NIGHT DIVE WITH DOZENS OF LARGE TAWNY NURSE SHARKS PLUS PINK WHIP RAYS, JENKIN'S WHIP RAYS, A FEATHERTAIL RAY, ROUND RIBBONTAIL RAYS AND EVEN AN EAGLE RAY. THE GIANT TREVALLIES KEPT BULLYING THEIR WAY THROUGH.
Day 2
Two eagle rays, one pregnant from MV Sea Spirit, Maldives
Dive 1
An ocean facing reef with a drift into a lovely coral garden. On the ocean side we saw an eagle ray amongst dense schools of neon and striped fusliliers, there was also a very large school of sleek surgeonfish on the corner. Inside the channel we found a mangrove whipray and a sleeping tawny nurse shark. The coral garden was full of scissortail chromis, Pavos and humbug and Indian dascyllus. We found a pair of very large and pale mangrove whiprays.
Ocean Crossing
Ocean crossing to Ari atoll
Dive 2
A WHALE SHARK SWAM OVER OUR HEADS ABOUT 30 MINUTES INTO THE DIVE! It was really hard work keeping up! We also saw an eagle ray, hawksbill turtles, lots of spotted and guineafowl puffers, carpet anenome with a pair of porcelain crabs and another with a pair of shorthead shrimps, an octopus etc. There were several amazing purple magnificent anemones in the shallows with large families of Maldives clownfish living with them
Dive 3
A great macro site but there was also a school of around 30 large bluefin jacks marauding through and chasing the juvenile fusiliers and schools of glassfish which made for some excitement too! There were many large lionfish, some pretending to be featherstars and waiting to pounce on small passing fish, a large hawksbill turtle, yellow and black featherstars, a couple of crown of thorn starfish, cushion stars, various sea-cucumbers (Graeffe's, pineapple etc.), black coral trees with penguin and zig-zag oysters, many small and large groupers, ear muff bennies and to end an octopus in it's nest who placed a block across the front to keep us out!
Day 3
Whale shark goes over our heads durng a dive. MV Sea Spirit Maldives
Dive 1
An interesting wreck with lots of great animals to be found! A large spearing mantis shrimp was peering out of its nest, a large FLUFFY STONEFISH was hiding under a section of netting, a RED FROGFISH was lying in wait nearby the glassfish, longfin batfish were hanging out waiting to visit various cleaning stations. Divers swam through the main hold and the engine room. We ended the dive up in the shallows amongst the dense corals ful of reef fish.
Dive 2
We waited patiently hoping for a manta show but had to be content with all the white tip sharks sleeping on the sandy bottom pl