Trip Reports - Maldives Liveaboards

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Boat Trip Datesort ascending Itinerary  
Sea Spirit SS417 17 Nov 2013 to 29 Nov 2013 Manta Research Expedition Central Atolls (12 day)
Guest Transfer
Guests arrived from International departures or hotels and were transferred to Sea Spirit. On the way we were escorted by a pod of Spinner dolphins. What a welcome!
Dive 1
An easy, sheltered site for a check dive. WE found lots of nice critters including a bearded scorpionfish, halfbarred and Dawn gobies with their pistol shrimps, an eel garden, plus all the regular reef inhabitants: longnose butterflyfish, a green turtle, scribbled filefish, lovely carpet anemones with Clarke's anemonefish etc.
A manta somersault fed behind SS at anchorage!
Day 1
Sea Spirit Maldives
Dive 1
Channel dive with an out-flow current. We saw GIANT sweetlips, BUMPHEAD parrotfish, a very large EAGLE RAY, big tunas and schools of fusiliers on the corner plus white tip reef sharks, a WHITE LEAF FISH, A MANGROVE WHIPRAY and lovely schools of oriental sweetlips.
Around the entrance to the lagoon was a huge school of around 200 SPINNER DOLPHINS which gave the dhoni an escort and jummped and flipped entertaining us.
Dive 2
An easy drift dive through seafan and blue soft coral filled overhangs plus swathes of white fluffy deep water seafans and purple Juncella seawhips. We saw a LARGE PINK WHIPRAY, smoke angelfish, white tip sharks, a blue-faced angelfish, round ribbon tail ray and a couple of mantas were feeding in the shallows.
Dive 3
Sheltered ocean reef site with lots of morays including clouded, white mouthed, undulate and yellow margin. Also a pair of Susan's flatworms, a school of humpback snappers, a peacock rock cod with a red-toothed triggerfish in its mouth, a (rare) school of orange stripe emperors and orangespine surgeonfish.
Day 2
Coral Grouper Sea Spirit Maldives
Dive 1
Large thila site in channel with large schools of fusiliers and dogtooth tunas at the surrent point and lots of chasing white tip sharks near the western spur. An area of coral blocks were full of snappers. We drifted along the south of the reef finding overhangs with orange/yellow soft corals, a huge mappa puffer, anemones with porcelain crabs and several clown triggerfish.
Ocean Crossing
Crossing to Rasdhoo atoll
Dive 2
GREAT SHARK DIVE WITH 5-6 LARGE GREY REEF SHARKS HANGING AT THE SPUR. One was a heavily pregnant female and she was extra curious of the divers. Also 2 EAGLE RAYS, enormous tunas and large schools of jacks and snappers. We just hooked in and watched the show for 30 minutes
Same site with a little less current so more chance to explore the reef. The grey sharks were still there plus some white tip sharks, a juvenile razor wrasse (like a little leaf) a pink/white leaf fish, a halimeda GHOST PIPE FISH, two large spearing mantis shrimps, hunting snappers and emperors. A busy, busy reef!
Day 3
Matt videoing grey sharks, Sea Spirit Maldives
Dive 1
SUPER DIVE! Large and small things again. A ROUND RIBBON TAIL RAY along the reef and then another over the sand bay, the friendly fat GREY SHARK, a pair of SHORT FINNED MOBULA RAYS, the ghost pipefish and leaf fish, a PORCUPINE RAY, matfish being cleaned, tunas patrolling the reef etc.
Ocean Crossing
Ocean crossing to Ari atoll
Dive 2
27 WHITE TIP SHARKS AND AN EAGLE RAY! Bouncy channel drift in quite a strong current, but great fun! Lovely blocks and ravines with both swimming and sleeping white tip sharks
Dive 3
Classic Maldives thila site and we were happy to find 6 grey sharks of various sizes cruising the current point plus dogtooth and skipjack tunas, 100's bannerfish, an octopus, Clarke's anemonefish hiding in a large patch of bubble anemones, millions of fusiliers huddled on the reef with lots og big jacks making raids on the small fish.
Night Dive
Night manta survey in shaltered lagoon. We saw 4 different manta rays with one of the regulars known at "Wiggle" who was very up-close and personal with the divers and we all had a really fun evening as well as completing the survey.
Day 4
Manta ray feeding at the back of Sea Spirit Maldives
Dive 1
Very pretty thila with lovely blue water conditions. Schooling bannerfish and pyramid butterflyfish plus big-eye jacks, giant trevallies and tunas at the current point, a large pregnant grey shark circling in the channel, cleaning stations with banded coral shrimps and Bruuni cleaning shrimp busy on large groupers. Reef covered in blue, freen and orange sponges.
Dive 2
EASY GREY SHARKS as 6-7 cruised the edge of the reef for the whole dive giving us a good show. We also saw lots of newborn white tips out and about. At the current point was a huge school of fusiliers with large dogtooth tunas cruising past and a couple of mantas up shallow feeding.
Dive 3
Sheltered thila site with sweetlip filled coral blocks on sandy slope where three mantas passed by and then there were two mantas up shallow feeding at the end of the dive. We found Three Chromodoris tritos nudis, lots of harlequin sweetlips, penguin oysters in the black coral trees, gut-like sea cucumbers (that is their English name!) a halimeda ghost pipe fish, porcelain crabs, Amboin shrimps etc.
Night Dive
Night dive with the feeding mantas at a different location and FOUR different manta rays identified throughout the evening. A large pink whipray really stirred the sand up!
Day 5
Baby white tip shark. Sea Spirit, Maldives
Dive 1
Heavenly blue/pink/yellow/orange soft coral festooned overhangs along the side of this large thila with enormous schools of bluestripe snappers and several white tip sharks plus a grey shark at the current point. We hooked in on the side of the reef and enjoyed the show of a large school of midnight snappers and big-eye jacks hanging in the current.
Dive 2
Blue soft coral frosted overhangs with a big overhang full of pink seafans and purple juncella sea whips and several batfish hanging out. Further up the reef were large porites coral blocks full of bluestrip and humpback snappers. A sea of snappers in fact!
Dive 3
Channel dive through yellow and blue soft coral overhangs with sandy floors, not much current today so we were able to investigate all the pretty ledges full of soldierfish and juvenile cardinals. We also found a giant triton, a pair of porcelain crabs, a large pink bearded scorpionfish, a pair of shortheaded shrimps and a coupe of white tip sharks.
Night Dive
Final night survey and 4 different mantas tonight of which only one was the same as last night and she was a bit OVERFRIENDLY tonight, boffing the divers with her wings as she somersaulted and swam around but really good fun and we all came up laughing! We also saw a GIANT GUITARFISH!
Day 6
Dense school of blue stripe snappers and yellow goatfish. Sea Spirit, Maldives
Dive 1
6 GREY REEF SHARKS AND 2 SILVERTIP SHARKS! WOW! There was alsoa dense school of mackerels and fusiliers off the current point with giant trevallies making feeding raids. A short finned mobula swam past. On the reef top were several very friendly hawksbill turtles, there were lionfish hiding amongst the baitfish and busy predating them. What a great dive!
Dive 2
8 MANTA RAYS FEEDING IN SHALLOW WATER ABOVE A HUGE SCHOOL OF YELLOWBACK FUSILIERS! We snorkelled until we were exhausted!
Dive 3
WE visited the manta cleaning station. There were quite a few mantas up in the shallows feeding nearby but only a single manta briefly visited the cleaning station. Never mind, such a busy morning.
Dive 3
Turtle thila! Lots of friendly and approachable hawksbill turtles plus black coral trees full of glassfish and an occasional longnose hawkfish, bluefaced angelfish, magnificent sand goby and purple and blue magnifica anemones with Maldives blackfoot anemonefish families.
Beautiful sunset over a resort island
Day 7
Manta rays feeding with yellowback fusiliers. Sea Spirit Maldives
Dive 1
Today the wreck had many silversides and glassfish covering the crane and accomodation areas. The hold was full of silversides being chased by lionfish. We found a pair of Chromodoris glenei nudibranchs, a white leaf fish, a fluffy stonefish, mobula and eagle rays off the reef plus a school of Forster's barracudas, big-eye crescent tails, bannerfish etc.
Snorkelling
Morning spent SNORKELLING WITH WHALE SHARKS! First one stayed a little deep but second one played with us until we were exhausted, swimming around and around as if chasing its tail and we had to keep out of his way as he kept coming after the snorkellers. Curious or attracted by the small bubbles from the splashing? Great fun and great photo opportunity.
Dive 2
Gentle drift dive along ocean reef wall with interesting reef structure. White tip sharks sleeping in the sandy gully, an eagle ray at the current point, schools of fish along the reef edge etc. The friendly WHALE SHARK popped up at the end of the dive, missing us already!
Dive 3
A second gentle drift along ocean reef. The coral growth above 15m is excellent at this site, full of small reef fish (two spot angel fish, damsels etc) plus octopus, morays, sweetlips, big eye emperors, banded coral shrimps, red spotted trapezia crabs in the corals etc. 2 eagle rays passed by off the reef.
Day 8
Whale shark smile. MV Sea Spirit, Maldives
Dive 1
Nice small current at this famous thila so nice to circumnavigate the entire reef and enjoy the masses of fish congregated over the top of the reef and in the overhangs. Beautiful seafans on the deeper slopes and small seafans clinging to every surface. We found a shortheaded shrimp, monostichos and glorious flatworms, an ctopus, many anemones. Just lovely!
Ocean Crossing
Ocean crossing to Felidhoo atoll
Dive 2
Blue water and millions of fusiliers and white tip sharks buzzing amongst the thilas and channel front. There was a huge school of red and midnight snappers on the corner and then a lovely damesl filled coral garden inside with humbugs, indians and azur damsels.
Dive 3
Out-flow in channel so jumped inside channel and drifted out past coral blocks full of different coloured acabarias. The ocean reeaf was covered in mature corals with schools of bonito and rainbow runners passing by, plus many, many pyramid butterflyfish and powderblue surgeonfish.
Day 9
Chromodoris tritos nudibranch, MV Sea Spirit Maldives
Dive 1
Stunning ocean reef with yellow soft coral festooned overhangs, many fusiliers and large dogtooth tunas over the drop-off, big caves full of sea whips and seafans, 3x leaf fish and reef fish of every sort.
Dive 2
FISHORAMA!!!! So many snappers and jacks off the channel plus big-eye jacksswirling around, giant trevallies harassing fuslilers and mackerel scads, giant barracuda, pair of green leaf fish (together) and Napoleons plus all the amazzing stuff from the first dive here!
Dive 3
Great macro wall site. We found at least 5 leaf fish, banded coral shrimps on their own or with large morays and many orange and Evans' anthias, white mouthed and yelllow margin morays, a multibar pipefish etc. On the corner was the biggest school of red snappers ever!
Night Dive
Wild night dive with NURSE SHARKS,PINK WHIP RAYS, ROUND RIBBON TAIL RAYS, GIANT TREVALLIES AND BLACKTIP SHARKS. There was a very nervous looking octopus doing everything it could NOT to look like an octopus!
Day 10
Night diving with nurse sharks MV Sea Spirit Maldives
Dive 1
Easy out current drift. We stayed on the corner where three napoleons were standing on their heads, posing, at a cleaning station. On the outside reef we found lots of Lysmata and banded coral shrimps with feisty black cheek morays, white leaf fish, Chromodoris tritos, and lots and lots of reef fish.
Dive 2
We waited patiently at a manta cleaning station but only "Scratch", a local regular manta ray, came past and she didn't hang around for long so we had a good macro hunt instead. We saw a beautiful honecomb moray lots of Durban dancing shrimps, garden eels, lemon merangue wrasse etc.
Dive 3
Ocean reef site with lots of coral blocks. There were a few white tip sharks and several hawksbill turtles plus lots of macro: a honeycomb moray, two porcelain crabs together, three Glossodoris hikuruensis, a leafie, fishting lion fish, Amboin shrimps, plus lots of snappers and all the regular reef fish.
Day 11
Scratch the manta ray from Sea Spirit Maldives
Dive 1
Fabulous last dive! GREY SHARKS, EAGLE RAYS, BIG-EYE JACKS and SNAPPERS at the current point plus the squadron of eagle rays circling around the pinnacles, pink and orange soft coral covered overhangs, white tip sharks and giant trevallies on top etc. The big blocks were full of oriental and silver sweetlips and collared butterflyfish.
Evening Activity
Afternoon visit to Male for shopping and sightseeing then World Premiere of the trip movie.
Day 12
Beautiful soft corals in Maldives from Sea Spirit
Guest Transfer
Early transfer of guests to airport for international flights or onward transfer to resorts.
Day 13
SS417 Team photo aboard Sea Spirit, Maldives
 
Guest Transfer
Guests arrived from International departures or hotels and were transferred to Sea Spirit. On the way we were escorted by a pod of Spinner dolphins. What a welcome!
Dive 1
An easy, sheltered site for a check dive. WE found lots of nice critters including a bearded scorpionfish, halfbarred and Dawn gobies with their pistol shrimps, an eel garden, plus all the regular reef inhabitants: longnose butterflyfish, a green turtle, scribbled filefish, lovely carpet anemones with Clarke's anemonefish etc.
A manta somersault fed behind SS at anchorage!
Day 1
Sea Spirit Maldives
Dive 1
Channel dive with an out-flow current. We saw GIANT sweetlips, BUMPHEAD parrotfish, a very large EAGLE RAY, big tunas and schools of fusiliers on the corner plus white tip reef sharks, a WHITE LEAF FISH, A MANGROVE WHIPRAY and lovely schools of oriental sweetlips.
Around the entrance to the lagoon was a huge school of around 200 SPINNER DOLPHINS which gave the dhoni an escort and jummped and flipped entertaining us.
Dive 2
An easy drift dive through seafan and blue soft coral filled overhangs plus swathes of white fluffy deep water seafans and purple Juncella seawhips. We saw a LARGE PINK WHIPRAY, smoke angelfish, white tip sharks, a blue-faced angelfish, round ribbon tail ray and a couple of mantas were feeding in the shallows.
Dive 3
Sheltered ocean reef site with lots of morays including clouded, white mouthed, undulate and yellow margin. Also a pair of Susan's flatworms, a school of humpback snappers, a peacock rock cod with a red-toothed triggerfish in its mouth, a (rare) school of orange stripe emperors and orangespine surgeonfish.
Day 2
Coral Grouper Sea Spirit Maldives
Dive 1
Large thila site in channel with large schools of fusiliers and dogtooth tunas at the surrent point and lots of chasing white tip sharks near the western spur. An area of coral blocks were full of snappers. We drifted along the south of the reef finding overhangs with orange/yellow soft corals, a huge mappa puffer, anemones with porcelain crabs and several clown triggerfish.
Ocean Crossing
Crossing to Rasdhoo atoll
Dive 2
GREAT SHARK DIVE WITH 5-6 LARGE GREY REEF SHARKS HANGING AT THE SPUR. One was a heavily pregnant female and she was extra curious of the divers. Also 2 EAGLE RAYS, enormous tunas and large schools of jacks and snappers. We just hooked in and watched the show for 30 minutes
Same site with a little less current so more chance to explore the reef. The grey sharks were still there plus some white tip sharks, a juvenile razor wrasse (like a little leaf) a pink/white leaf fish, a halimeda GHOST PIPE FISH, two large spearing mantis shrimps, hunting snappers and emperors. A busy, busy reef!
Day 3
Matt videoing grey sharks, Sea Spirit Maldives
Dive 1
SUPER DIVE! Large and small things again. A ROUND RIBBON TAIL RAY along the reef and then another over the sand bay, the friendly fat GREY SHARK, a pair of SHORT FINNED MOBULA RAYS, the ghost pipefish and leaf fish, a PORCUPINE RAY, matfish being cleaned, tunas patrolling the reef etc.
Ocean Crossing
Ocean crossing to Ari atoll
Dive 2
27 WHITE TIP SHARKS AND AN EAGLE RAY! Bouncy channel drift in quite a strong current, but great fun! Lovely blocks and ravines with both swimming and sleeping white tip sharks
Dive 3
Classic Maldives thila site and we were happy to find 6 grey sharks of various sizes cruising the current point plus dogtooth and skipjack tunas, 100's bannerfish, an octopus, Clarke's anemonefish hiding in a large patch of bubble anemones, millions of fusiliers huddled on the reef with lots og big jacks making raids on the small fish.
Night Dive
Night manta survey in shaltered lagoon. We saw 4 different manta rays with one of the regulars known at "Wiggle" who was very up-close and personal with the divers and we all had a really fun evening as well as completing the survey.
Day 4
Manta ray feeding at the back of Sea Spirit Maldives
Dive 1
Very pretty thila with lovely blue water conditions. Schooling bannerfish and pyramid butterflyfish plus big-eye jacks, giant trevallies and tunas at the current point, a large pregnant grey shark circling in the channel, cleaning stations with banded coral shrimps and Bruuni cleaning shrimp busy on large groupers. Reef covered in blue, freen and orange sponges.
Dive 2
EASY GREY SHARKS as 6-7 cruised the edge of the reef for the whole dive giving us a good show. We also saw lots of newborn white tips out and about. At the current point was a huge school of fusiliers with large dogtooth tunas cruising past and a couple of mantas up shallow feeding.
Dive 3
Sheltered thila site with sweetlip filled coral blocks on sandy slope where three mantas passed by and then there were two mantas up shallow feeding at the end of the dive. We found Three Chromodoris tritos nudis, lots of harlequin sweetlips, penguin oysters in the black coral trees, gut-like sea cucumbers (that is their English name!) a halimeda ghost pipe fish, porcelain crabs, Amboin shrimps etc.
Night Dive
Night dive with the feeding mantas at a different location and FOUR different manta rays identified throughout the evening. A large pink whipray really stirred the sand up!
Day 5
Baby white tip shark. Sea Spirit, Maldives
Dive 1
Heavenly blue/pink/yellow/orange soft coral festooned overhangs along the side of this large thila with enormous schools of bluestripe snappers and several white tip sharks plus a grey shark at the current point. We hooked in on the side of the reef and enjoyed the show of a large school of midnight snappers and big-eye jacks hanging in the current.
Dive 2
Blue soft coral frosted overhangs with a big overhang full of pink seafans and purple juncella sea whips and several batfish hanging out. Further up the reef were large porites coral blocks full of bluestrip and humpback snappers. A sea of snappers in fact!
Dive 3
Channel dive through yellow and blue soft coral overhangs with sandy floors, not much current today so we were able to investigate all the pretty ledges full of soldierfish and juvenile cardinals. We also found a giant triton, a pair of porcelain crabs, a large pink bearded scorpionfish, a pair of shortheaded shrimps and a coupe of white tip sharks.
Night Dive
Final night survey and 4 different mantas tonight of which only one was the same as last night and she was a bit OVERFRIENDLY tonight, boffing the divers with her wings as she somersaulted and swam around but really good fun and we all came up laughing! We also saw a GIANT GUITARFISH!
Day 6
Dense school of blue stripe snappers and yellow goatfish. Sea Spirit, Maldives
Dive 1
6 GREY REEF SHARKS AND 2 SILVERTIP SHARKS! WOW! There was alsoa dense school of mackerels and fusiliers off the current point with giant trevallies making feeding raids. A short finned mobula swam past. On the reef top were several very friendly hawksbill turtles, there were lionfish hiding amongst the baitfish and busy predating them. What a great dive!
Dive 2
8 MANTA RAYS FEEDING IN SHALLOW WATER ABOVE A HUGE SCHOOL OF YELLOWBACK FUSILIERS! We snorkelled until we were exhausted!
Dive 3
WE visited the manta cleaning station. There were quite a few mantas up in the shallows feeding nearby but only a single manta briefly visited the cleaning station. Never mind, such a busy morning.
Dive 3
Turtle thila! Lots of friendly and approachable hawksbill turtles plus black coral trees full of glassfish and an occasional longnose hawkfish, bluefaced angelfish, magnificent sand goby and purple and blue magnifica anemones with Maldives blackfoot anemonefish families.
Beautiful sunset over a resort island
Day 7
Manta rays feeding with yellowback fusiliers. Sea Spirit Maldives
Dive 1
Today the wreck had many silversides and glassfish covering the crane and accomodation areas. The hold was full of silversides being chased by lionfish. We found a pair of Chromodoris glenei nudibranchs, a white leaf fish, a fluffy stonefish, mobula and eagle rays off the reef plus a school of Forster's barracudas, big-eye crescent tails, bannerfish etc.
Snorkelling
Morning spent SNORKELLING WITH WHALE SHARKS! First one stayed a little deep but second one played with us until we were exhausted, swimming around and around as if chasing its tail and we had to keep out of his way as he kept coming after the snorkellers. Curious or attracted by the small bubbles from the splashing? Great fun and great photo opportunity.
Dive 2
Gentle drift dive along ocean reef wall with interesting reef structure. White tip sharks sleeping in the sandy gully, an eagle ray at the current point, schools of fish along the reef edge etc. The friendly WHALE SHARK popped up at the end of the dive, missing us already!
Dive 3
A second gentle drift along ocean reef. The coral growth above 15m is excellent at this site, full of small reef fish (two spot angel fish, damsels etc) plus octopus, morays, sweetlips, big eye emperors, banded coral shrimps, red spotted trapezia crabs in the corals etc. 2 eagle rays passed by off the reef.
Day 8
Whale shark smile. MV Sea Spirit, Maldives
Dive 1
Nice small current at this famous thila so nice to circumnavigate the entire reef and enjoy the masses of fish congregated over the top of the reef and in the overhangs. Beautiful seafans on the deeper slopes and small seafans clinging to every surface. We found a shortheaded shrimp, monostichos and glorious flatworms, an ctopus, many anemones. Just lovely!
Ocean Crossing
Ocean crossing to Felidhoo atoll
Dive 2
Blue water and millions of fusiliers and white tip sharks buzzing amongst the thilas and channel front. There was a huge school of red and midnight snappers on the corner and then a lovely damesl filled coral garden inside with humbugs, indians and azur damsels.
Dive 3
Out-flow in channel so jumped inside channel and drifted out past coral blocks full of different coloured acabarias. The ocean reeaf was covered in mature corals with schools of bonito and rainbow runners passing by, plus many, many pyramid butterflyfish and powderblue surgeonfish.
Day 9
Chromodoris tritos nudibranch, MV Sea Spirit Maldives
Dive 1
Stunning ocean reef with yellow soft coral festooned overhangs, many fusiliers and large dogtooth tunas over the drop-off, big caves full of sea whips and seafans, 3x leaf fish and reef fish of every sort.
Dive 2
FISHORAMA!!!! So many snappers and jacks off the channel plus big-eye jacksswirling around, giant trevallies harassing fuslilers and mackerel scads, giant barracuda, pair of green leaf fish (together) and Napoleons plus all the amazzing stuff from the first dive here!
Dive 3
Great macro wall site. We found at least 5 leaf fish, banded coral shrimps on their own or with large morays and many orange and Evans' anthias, white mouthed and yelllow margin morays, a multibar pipefish etc. On the corner was the biggest school of red snappers ever!
Night Dive
Wild night dive with NURSE SHARKS,PINK WHIP RAYS, ROUND RIBBON TAIL RAYS, GIANT TREVALLIES AND BLACKTIP SHARKS. There was a very nervous looking octopus doing everything it could NOT to look like an octopus!
Day 10
Night diving with nurse sharks MV Sea Spirit Maldives
Dive 1
Easy out current drift. We stayed on the corner where three napoleons were standing on their heads, posing, at a cleaning station. On the outside reef we found lots of Lysmata and banded coral shrimps with feisty black cheek morays, white leaf fish, Chromodoris tritos, and lots and lots of reef fish.
Dive 2
We waited patiently at a manta cleaning station but only "Scratch", a local regular manta ray, came past and she didn't hang around for long so we had a good macro hunt instead. We saw a beautiful honecomb moray lots of Durban dancing shrimps, garden eels, lemon merangue wrasse etc.
Dive 3
Ocean reef site with lots of coral blocks. There were a few white tip sharks and several hawksbill turtles plus lots of macro: a honeycomb moray, two porcelain crabs together, three Glossodoris hikuruensis, a leafie, fishting lion fish, Amboin shrimps, plus lots of snappers and all the regular reef fish.
Day 11
Scratch the manta ray from Sea Spirit Maldives
Dive 1
Fabulous last dive! GREY SHARKS, EAGLE RAYS, BIG-EYE JACKS and SNAPPERS at the current point plus the squadron of eagle rays circling around the pinnacles, pink and orange soft coral covered overhangs, white tip sharks and giant trevallies on top etc. The big blocks were full of oriental and silver sweetlips and collared butterflyfish.
Evening Activity
Afternoon visit to Male for shopping and sightseeing then World Premiere of the trip movie.
Day 12
Beautiful soft corals in Maldives from Sea Spirit
Guest Transfer
Early transfer of guests to airport for international flights or onward transfer to resorts.
Day 13
SS417 Team photo aboard Sea Spirit, Maldives
Sea Spirit SS415 20 Oct 2013 to 1 Nov 2013 Equatorial Far South - Huvadhoo/Foammulah/Gan Addu (12 day)
Guest Transfer
Guests arrived from domestic flight from Male' to Gan in Addu atoll and were transferred to Sea Spirit
Dive 1
Check dive at sheltered site inside atoll with sand slope and coral blocks. We found tiger cardinals, a WHITE LEAF FISH, 50+ Bruuni cleaning shrimps, a banded coral shrimp, yellow and blue-striped snappers, several reef pipefish, Maldives cleaner shrimps, shortheaded anemone shrimp etc.
Day 1
Sea Spirit Maldives with pirate and Welsh flags!
Dive 1
Beautiful coral garden site with schools of black and white snappers, midnight snappers and big eye jacks whirling around large coral blocks; a green turtle, longnose filefish in the staghorn corals, bluebarred parrotfish schools and table corals full of Indian dascyllus. some divers had a school of 70+ BUMPHEAD PARROTFISH swim past!
Dive 2
Adele the famous and friendly manta ray gave us an hours show plus grey sharks, parrotfish, harlequin sweetlips and a sailfish flaring its sail during the ascent.
Dive 3
Ocean facing channel corner drift with vertical reef below 15m and interesting hard corals and purple sea squirts along the edge. We found a giant triton eating a blue sea star and the reef top had thousands of Coopers and Carberry anthias buzzing in the corals.
Day 2
Bumphead parrotfish Sea Spirit Maldives
Dive 1
WOW! 30+ GREY SHARKS on front of channel plus lots of snappers, big eye jacks, dogtooth tunas and fusiliers followed by a brisk drift into the channel to the cleaning station where there were 5 MANTA RAYS busy being cleaned and TWO MORE GREY SHARKS buzzing around. What a dive!
Dive 2
We spent the entire dive at the cleaning station where we had up to 7 MANTAS AT ANY ONE TIME and they were all over us, playing in our bubbles and checking us out closely. The grey sharks were still hanging around and we saw a large wahoo as we made our safety stop.
Dive 3
This is a very special site! A wild ocean facing reef stepping down into the blue with huge ancient coral formations and large schools of fish plus every reef fish. Today there was an enormous school of big eye jacks which kept buzzing past and engulfing us. Also striped and golden jacks, unidentified pompanos and tight schools of pyramid, raccoon and collared butterflyfish.
Day 3
Manta rays in Addu Sea Spirit Maldives
Dive 1
Stern tour of British Loyalty wreck via bomb-hole and propeller. Around the stern were lovely black coral trees with juvenile damsels and lots of Periclimenes shrimps hiding within the fronds.The polyps of the sinoise and whip corals were open and feeding. We saw several longfin batfish and many Pterolidia ianthina nudibranchs on the deck.
Dive 2
We stayed on the cleaning station again and had three busy-cleaning mantas plus grey sharks and a white tip shark, several Napoleon wrasse, a green leaf fish and lovely big-eye emperors.
Dive 3
Good critters and hard corals dive. We found a white leaf fish, a bank of garden eels, Montastrea corals, amazing coral structures from 2-30m with schools of 2-spot snappers, an oriental sweetlips with a 'side parting', 100's garfish in the shallows. There were many varieties of acropora corals full of chromis.
Night Dive
Lots of lovely little critters on the wreck at night: a spider decorator crab, spiny lobsters, trapezia crabs, soft and hard corals with polyps extended, sleeping parrotfish etc.
Day 4
British Loyalty wreck Addu from Sea Spirit, Maldives
Dive 1
Exciting in-drift to channel with 30+ grey sharks and an enormous school of Indian Ocean barred jacks on the outside, plus fusiliers and dogtooth tunas. There were 5 mantas at the cleaning station including our favourites Friendly Bubbler and Tuftee who were really playful today. Great dive!
Dive 2
A fast drift into "Triggerfish Alley" today but at least the yellow margin triggerfish were eyeing eachother up and ignoring the divers leaving us alone to enjoy the beautiful coral sea scape. Beautiful orange, red and yellow menella seafans, porites blocks full of groupers, Indian bannerfish, Napoleons etc.
Dive 3
Dramatic deep caves at ocean reef with lots of purple seafans plus yellow/pink/lilac soft coral covered walls. We also saw several white spotted groupers, a three-legged green turtle (who checked us out a few times making several passes), a beautiful blue coloured yellow trunkfish playing hidey with us, a green leaf fish and lovely coral and reef fish. Black jacks, pompano and a Tambja morosa nudi. Great site!
Day 5
Amazing seafans on vertical walls from Sea Spirit maldives
Dive 1
During our final dive with the manta rays there were five there all busy being cleaned. There was a lot of swimming over divers' heads and checking us out closely. The sweetlips (harlequin, silver and oriental) were all hanging out pouting at us. So cute!
Dive 2
Drift on eastern ocean reef. There was a large pink whip-ray resting in the sand, white tip sharks resting in the sand, a large male olive-Ridley turtle, lovely large Leptoria coral colonies.
Dive 3
Bow tour of British Loyalty wreck. The deck area has lots of glassfish amongst the relics with many lovely vermillion groupers, some being cleaned by Bruuni shrimps. Lots of juvenile cardinals, elongate surgeonfish, damselfish in table corals, lined blennies etc.
Amazing double rainbow just before sunset
Day 6
Manta rays being cleaned MV Sea Spirit Maldives
Dive 1
Dramatic steep ocean wall with many red-brown Melithaeidae seafans with polyps open and feeding below 20m depth. Visibility was good and there were several green turtle swimming along the wall plus milk fish, up in the shallows. We found a carpet anemone with a porcelain crab plus a community of Amboin shrimps. There were garfish and barracudas up in the shallows.
Ocean Crossing
Ocean crossing between Addu and Huvadhoo atolls crossing the Equator on the way
Dive 2
Dusk dive on pretty thila. The schools of neon fusiliers were being chased by tunas and bluefin jacks and a grey shark cruised the current point. We found two pairs of elegant squat lobsters, 2x green leaf fish, a block full of glassfish high in the water column as it was quite late and many regal featherstars walking around.
Day 7
Big eye jacks Sea Spirit Maldives
Dive 1
A busy current point at the thila this morning with tunas and neon fusiliers, sleek surgeonfish a sleeping white tip shark in the sand and a grey shark cruising around. We found all the critters from yesterday evening plus a very large STONEFISH, black saddle coral groupers, juvenile oriental sweetlips flic-flacing around etc.
Dive 2
We crossed the entire channel front where we had ~5 GREY SHARKS passing in front of us plus a large school of big-eye jacks which mobbed us. On the south corner a ZEBRA SHARK was sleeping on a ledge. We also saw white tip sharks, big milk fish, many soldier and squirrelfish, a P. bedfordi and a block full of black cheek morays.
Dive 3
Out-current drift! ZEBRA SHARK, huge male GREEN TURTLE plus several other smaller greens, white tip sharks, two round ribbon tail rays, 3x white leaf fish, blackcheek morays, Indian butterflyfish, Napoleon, axelspot hogfish.
Evening Activity
The weather became windy so we overnighted inside local village harbour. Matt caught a large SPANISH DANCER off the back of the boat (Hexabranchus sanguines) and AM did a presentation on manta ecology and behaviours.
Day 8
Zebra shark day MV Sea Spirit maldives
Dive 1
Small out-current drift and found TWO ZEBRA SHARKS one of which was very accomodating and we spent 20 minutes photograhing him. There were also many green turtles, a HUGE Halgerda iota/willeyi (still getting it identified- it could be a new species!), round ribbon tail ray, a large school of greencheek parrotfish and enjoyed the excellent hard corals on the outside wall.
Dive 2
Still an out-current so drifted along the chennel inside finding lots of green turtles, a PORCUPINE RAY with a bitten off tail, white tip sharks sleeping along the ledge on the front and spent the second half of the dive on the corner herding ENORMOUS SCHOOLS OF BLUESTRIPE AND HUMPBACK SNAPPERS, raccoon butterflyfish, oriental sweetlips and several hawksbilland green turtles. This is a fabulous place!
Dive 3
For contrast we visited a coral garden site with a steep wall on the outside with coral blocks full of glassfish and every cardinal species plus many black coral trees. The inner lagoon reef is full of different table corals and other acroporas with every species of goby (and shrimp!) including magnificent, pinkbars etc, sand perches and azur, humbug, blue-green etc damsels. Lovely!
Day 9
Friendly turtle Sea Spirit Maldives
Dive 1
Great thila site with an ENORMOUS SCHOOL OF BIG EYE JACKS which whizzed around and around buzzing the divers as they went, also barred and buefin jacks and large dogtooth tunas harassing the jacks and fusiliers. An area of lovely black corals had large penguin and thorny oysters plus longnose hawkfish. WE also found unusual blue sea squirts, a Nembrotha cristata nudibranch, Solanger's puferfish etc.
Dive 2
Messed up currents and a big sea so unable to dive site as we wanted but still found some nice critters: hawksbill turtle, eagle ray, spearing mantis shrimp and three white leaffish in a block with beautiful white acabaria coral
Dive 3
The wind was really blowing this afternoon but underwater we enjoyed a serene and beautiful shallow thila with large schools of silversides meandering amongst large coral patches on shallow reef slope and superb, every-colour, acabaria corals, glassfish, red groupers, longnose hawkfish, Bruuni shrimp cleaner stations, rainbow runners. a PORCUPINE RAY, golden, big-eye and black jacks. Wow!!
Day 10
Unidentified Halgerda nudi Sea Spirit Maldives
Dive 1
WOW! GREY SHARKS, LARGE SCHOOL OF GOLDEN JACKS which mobbed us, LARGE SCHOOL OF RAINBOW RUNNERS, SHORT FINNED MOBULAS, EAGLE RAY, plus pink/yellow spotted leaf fish, blue ribbon eel, devil scorpionfish, many peacock mantis shrimp, Amboin shrimps and lots of feisty black cheek morays.
Dive 2
Brisk drift dive over a ridge covered with hard corals with large blocks full of glassfish along the edge of the reef with red groupers. At the end of the dive was a coral garden with every kind of damsel fish, surgeonfish etc plus 5 young hawksbill turtles.
Dive 3
Rather heavy plankton at this site but there were dense schools of silversides all over the crown of the reef being chased by tunas, barracudas and blue fins. There were large schools of both orbicular and longfin batfish, a large spearing mantis shrimp, orange spot blennies, porcupinefish, and several divers were BUZZED BY A SMALL POD OF DOLPHINS!!!
Snorkelling
Snorkel with up to 7 Indo-Pacific bottlenose dolphins for around 30 minutes. They were very curious of us humans and kept swimming underneath us and peering up at us. So endearing!
Day 11
Porcupine ray Sea Spirit maldives
Dive 1
Brisk current at this channel site so quite a tricky dive. There were grey sharks and white tip sharks but the bigger school kept their distance and only 3-4 came past the group. There were also hundreds of neon fusiliers and many Forsters barracudas. During the drift into the channel we saw a round ribbon tail ray and a zebra shark.
Dive 2
Big current and lots of action on the surface with a baitball of rainbow runners hunting with dozens of terns. At the current point were several grey sharks being mobbed by rainbow runners which were rubbing themselves against the sharks. As we ascended up the reef slope millions of yellow black and blue-yellow fusiliers charged past pursued by large dogtoth tunas. Wow. We found the leaf fish and ribbon eels again. What a way to finish.
Daytime Excursion
Afternoon visit to a secluded sandbank
Day 12
Morning coffee for guests on Sea Spirit Maldives
Guest Transfer
Guests transferred to Kaadhedhdhoo airport for domestic flight to Male' and onward international flights.
Day 13
 
Guest Transfer
Guests arrived from domestic flight from Male' to Gan in Addu atoll and were transferred to Sea Spirit
Dive 1
Check dive at sheltered site inside atoll with sand slope and coral blocks. We found tiger cardinals, a WHITE LEAF FISH, 50+ Bruuni cleaning shrimps, a banded coral shrimp, yellow and blue-striped snappers, several reef pipefish, Maldives cleaner shrimps, shortheaded anemone shrimp etc.
Day 1
Sea Spirit Maldives with pirate and Welsh flags!
Dive 1
Beautiful coral garden site with schools of black and white snappers, midnight snappers and big eye jacks whirling around large coral blocks; a green turtle, longnose filefish in the staghorn corals, bluebarred parrotfish schools and table corals full of Indian dascyllus. some divers had a school of 70+ BUMPHEAD PARROTFISH swim past!
Dive 2
Adele the famous and friendly manta ray gave us an hours show plus grey sharks, parrotfish, harlequin sweetlips and a sailfish flaring its sail during the ascent.
Dive 3
Ocean facing channel corner drift with vertical reef below 15m and interesting hard corals and purple sea squirts along the edge. We found a giant triton eating a blue sea star and the reef top had thousands of Coopers and Carberry anthias buzzing in the corals.
Day 2
Bumphead parrotfish Sea Spirit Maldives
Dive 1
WOW! 30+ GREY SHARKS on front of channel plus lots of snappers, big eye jacks, dogtooth tunas and fusiliers followed by a brisk drift into the channel to the cleaning station where there were 5 MANTA RAYS busy being cleaned and TWO MORE GREY SHARKS buzzing around. What a dive!
Dive 2
We spent the entire dive at the cleaning station where we had up to 7 MANTAS AT ANY ONE TIME and they were all over us, playing in our bubbles and checking us out closely. The grey sharks were still hanging around and we saw a large wahoo as we made our safety stop.
Dive 3
This is a very special site! A wild ocean facing reef stepping down into the blue with huge ancient coral formations and large schools of fish plus every reef fish. Today there was an enormous school of big eye jacks which kept buzzing past and engulfing us. Also striped and golden jacks, unidentified pompanos and tight schools of pyramid, raccoon and collared butterflyfish.
Day 3
Manta rays in Addu Sea Spirit Maldives
Dive 1
Stern tour of British Loyalty wreck via bomb-hole and propeller. Around the stern were lovely black coral trees with juvenile damsels and lots of Periclimenes shrimps hiding within the fronds.The polyps of the sinoise and whip corals were open and feeding. We saw several longfin batfish and many Pterolidia ianthina nudibranchs on the deck.
Dive 2
We stayed on the cleaning station again and had three busy-cleaning mantas plus grey sharks and a white tip shark, several Napoleon wrasse, a green leaf fish and lovely big-eye emperors.
Dive 3
Good critters and hard corals dive. We found a white leaf fish, a bank of garden eels, Montastrea corals, amazing coral structures from 2-30m with schools of 2-spot snappers, an oriental sweetlips with a 'side parting', 100's garfish in the shallows. There were many varieties of acropora corals full of chromis.
Night Dive
Lots of lovely little critters on the wreck at night: a spider decorator crab, spiny lobsters, trapezia crabs, soft and hard corals with polyps extended, sleeping parrotfish etc.
Day 4
British Loyalty wreck Addu from Sea Spirit, Maldives
Dive 1
Exciting in-drift to channel with 30+ grey sharks and an enormous school of Indian Ocean barred jacks on the outside, plus fusiliers and dogtooth tunas. There were 5 mantas at the cleaning station including our favourites Friendly Bubbler and Tuftee who were really playful today. Great dive!
Dive 2
A fast drift into "Triggerfish Alley" today but at least the yellow margin triggerfish were eyeing eachother up and ignoring the divers leaving us alone to enjoy the beautiful coral sea scape. Beautiful orange, red and yellow menella seafans, porites blocks full of groupers, Indian bannerfish, Napoleons etc.
Dive 3
Dramatic deep caves at ocean reef with lots of purple seafans plus yellow/pink/lilac soft coral covered walls. We also saw several white spotted groupers, a three-legged green turtle (who checked us out a few times making several passes), a beautiful blue coloured yellow trunkfish playing hidey with us, a green leaf fish and lovely coral and reef fish. Black jacks, pompano and a Tambja morosa nudi. Great site!
Day 5
Amazing seafans on vertical walls from Sea Spirit maldives
Dive 1
During our final dive with the manta rays there were five there all busy being cleaned. There was a lot of swimming over divers' heads and checking us out closely. The sweetlips (harlequin, silver and oriental) were all hanging out pouting at us. So cute!
Dive 2
Drift on eastern ocean reef. There was a large pink whip-ray resting in the sand, white tip sharks resting in the sand, a large male olive-Ridley turtle, lovely large Leptoria coral colonies.
Dive 3
Bow tour of British Loyalty wreck. The deck area has lots of glassfish amongst the relics with many lovely vermillion groupers, some being cleaned by Bruuni shrimps. Lots of juvenile cardinals, elongate surgeonfish, damselfish in table corals, lined blennies etc.
Amazing double rainbow just before sunset
Day 6
Manta rays being cleaned MV Sea Spirit Maldives
Dive 1
Dramatic steep ocean wall with many red-brown Melithaeidae seafans with polyps open and feeding below 20m depth. Visibility was good and there were several green turtle swimming along the wall plus milk fish, up in the shallows. We found a carpet anemone with a porcelain crab plus a community of Amboin shrimps. There were garfish and barracudas up in the shallows.
Ocean Crossing
Ocean crossing between Addu and Huvadhoo atolls crossing the Equator on the way
Dive 2
Dusk dive on pretty thila. The schools of neon fusiliers were being chased by tunas and bluefin jacks and a grey shark cruised the current point. We found two pairs of elegant squat lobsters, 2x green leaf fish, a block full of glassfish high in the water column as it was quite late and many regal featherstars walking around.
Day 7
Big eye jacks Sea Spirit Maldives
Dive 1
A busy current point at the thila this morning with tunas and neon fusiliers, sleek surgeonfish a sleeping white tip shark in the sand and a grey shark cruising around. We found all the critters from yesterday evening plus a very large STONEFISH, black saddle coral groupers, juvenile oriental sweetlips flic-flacing around etc.
Dive 2
We crossed the entire channel front where we had ~5 GREY SHARKS passing in front of us plus a large school of big-eye jacks which mobbed us. On the south corner a ZEBRA SHARK was sleeping on a ledge. We also saw white tip sharks, big milk fish, many soldier and squirrelfish, a P. bedfordi and a block full of black cheek morays.
Dive 3
Out-current drift! ZEBRA SHARK, huge male GREEN TURTLE plus several other smaller greens, white tip sharks, two round ribbon tail rays, 3x white leaf fish, blackcheek morays, Indian butterflyfish, Napoleon, axelspot hogfish.
Evening Activity
The weather became windy so we overnighted inside local village harbour. Matt caught a large SPANISH DANCER off the back of the boat (Hexabranchus sanguines) and AM did a presentation on manta ecology and behaviours.
Day 8
Zebra shark day MV Sea Spirit maldives
Dive 1
Small out-current drift and found TWO ZEBRA SHARKS one of which was very accomodating and we spent 20 minutes photograhing him. There were also many green turtles, a HUGE Halgerda iota/willeyi (still getting it identified- it could be a new species!), round ribbon tail ray, a large school of greencheek parrotfish and enjoyed the excellent hard corals on the outside wall.
Dive 2
Still an out-current so drifted along the chennel inside finding lots of green turtles, a PORCUPINE RAY with a bitten off tail, white tip sharks sleeping along the ledge on the front and spent the second half of the dive on the corner herding ENORMOUS SCHOOLS OF BLUESTRIPE AND HUMPBACK SNAPPERS, raccoon butterflyfish, oriental sweetlips and several hawksbilland green turtles. This is a fabulous place!
Dive 3
For contrast we visited a coral garden site with a steep wall on the outside with coral blocks full of glassfish and every cardinal species plus many black coral trees. The inner lagoon reef is full of different table corals and other acroporas with every species of goby (and shrimp!) including magnificent, pinkbars etc, sand perches and azur, humbug, blue-green etc damsels. Lovely!
Day 9
Friendly turtle Sea Spirit Maldives
Dive 1
Great thila site with an ENORMOUS SCHOOL OF BIG EYE JACKS which whizzed around and around buzzing the divers as they went, also barred and buefin jacks and large dogtooth tunas harassing the jacks and fusiliers. An area of lovely black corals had large penguin and thorny oysters plus longnose hawkfish. WE also found unusual blue sea squirts, a Nembrotha cristata nudibranch, Solanger's puferfish etc.
Dive 2
Messed up currents and a big sea so unable to dive site as we wanted but still found some nice critters: hawksbill turtle, eagle ray, spearing mantis shrimp and three white leaffish in a block with beautiful white acabaria coral
Dive 3
The wind was really blowing this afternoon but underwater we enjoyed a serene and beautiful shallow thila with large schools of silversides meandering amongst large coral patches on shallow reef slope and superb, every-colour, acabaria corals, glassfish, red groupers, longnose hawkfish, Bruuni shrimp cleaner stations, rainbow runners. a PORCUPINE RAY, golden, big-eye and black jacks. Wow!!
Day 10
Unidentified Halgerda nudi Sea Spirit Maldives
Dive 1
WOW! GREY SHARKS, LARGE SCHOOL OF GOLDEN JACKS which mobbed us, LARGE SCHOOL OF RAINBOW RUNNERS, SHORT FINNED MOBULAS, EAGLE RAY, plus pink/yellow spotted leaf fish, blue ribbon eel, devil scorpionfish, many peacock mantis shrimp, Amboin shrimps and lots of feisty black cheek morays.
Dive 2
Brisk drift dive over a ridge covered with hard corals with large blocks full of glassfish along the edge of the reef with red groupers. At the end of the dive was a coral garden with every kind of damsel fish, surgeonfish etc plus 5 young hawksbill turtles.
Dive 3
Rather heavy plankton at this site but there were dense schools of silversides all over the crown of the reef being chased by tunas, barracudas and blue fins. There were large schools of both orbicular and longfin batfish, a large spearing mantis shrimp, orange spot blennies, porcupinefish, and several divers were BUZZED BY A SMALL POD OF DOLPHINS!!!
Snorkelling
Snorkel with up to 7 Indo-Pacific bottlenose dolphins for around 30 minutes. They were very curious of us humans and kept swimming underneath us and peering up at us. So endearing!
Day 11
Porcupine ray Sea Spirit maldives
Dive 1
Brisk current at this channel site so quite a tricky dive. There were grey sharks and white tip sharks but the bigger school kept their distance and only 3-4 came past the group. There were also hundreds of neon fusiliers and many Forsters barracudas. During the drift into the channel we saw a round ribbon tail ray and a zebra shark.
Dive 2
Big current and lots of action on the surface with a baitball of rainbow runners hunting with dozens of terns. At the current point were several grey sharks being mobbed by rainbow runners which were rubbing themselves against the sharks. As we ascended up the reef slope millions of yellow black and blue-yellow fusiliers charged past pursued by large dogtoth tunas. Wow. We found the leaf fish and ribbon eels again. What a way to finish.
Daytime Excursion
Afternoon visit to a secluded sandbank
Day 12
Morning coffee for guests on Sea Spirit Maldives
Guest Transfer
Guests transferred to Kaadhedhdhoo airport for domestic flight to Male' and onward international flights.
Day 13
Sea Spirit SS414 6 Oct 2013 to 16 Oct 2013 Equatorial Far South - Huvadhoo & Addu (10 day)
Guest Transfer
Internal flight from Male' to Gan in Addu atoll, the southernmost atoll of the Maldives
Dive 1
Check dive on northern Ocean reef where we saw a school of ~25 longfin batfish, rivers of fusiliers and huge schools of Evan's anthias, white tip reef sharks, a large green turtle, pairs of longnose filefish, a juvenile empress angelfish, a pretty spotted juvenile harlequin sweetlips and beautiful hard corals in the shallows with seafans and soft corals on the wall. A great start!
Day 1
Sunset on the bow of MV Sea Spirit, Maldives
Dive 1
LARGE BUMPHEAD PARROTFISH pairs making courtship dances were the stars at the Ocean reef site with a beautiful coral garden. We also had a huge school of big eye jacks crossing up and down the reef and engulfing us as they swam past, schools of black and white snappers , blue-fin jacks, a porcelain crab in a carpet anemone and several giant barracudas.
Dive 2
Four manta rays this morning, apparently two females with their "boyfriends", one of which remained for the entire dive and gave us a great introduction to this site. There were two friendly grey sharks and great schools of reef fish.
Dive 3
Easy sheltered dive with magnificent hard coral and lots of reef fish in the shallows. We found a white leaf fish amongst some glassfish, a giant moray, lots of rock cods, slender groupers, 2-spot snappers, many Cooper's anthias. Beautiful!
Day 2
Courting bumphead parrotfish, MV Sea Spirit Maldives
Dive 1
10 MANTAS THIS MORNING, mainly males and all busy being cleaned and being very friendly to divers. The grey sharks was also being very friendly today, coming into have her photo taken.
Dive 2
This time it was the turn for the FEMALE MANTA RAYS to have a clean and put on a show for us. They brought their boyfriends and there was quite a lot of courtship and display. It must be mating season! There was also a white tip shark, funny big-eye emperors watching the proceedings, large triggerfish etc.
Dive 3
This is a superb ocean reef with huge coral formations rammed with reef fish with the occasional pass by schools of rainbow runners or large schools of big-eye jacks, white tip sharks etc. Today we also saw schooling oceanic triggers, an ELECTRIC TORPEDO RAY and large coral groupers stalking their territories.
A superb sunset tonight over drinks on deck
Day 3
Von the manta! from MV Sea Spirit Maldives
Dive 1
7 MANTAS in a very playful mood and we caught them just as the current was changing. They were spending lots of time just hanging above us in our exhaled bubble streams. There were also two GREY SHARKS, and we were mobbed by a school of around 500 BARRED JACKS.
Dive 2
Stern tour of British Loyalty wreck. There were longnose hawkfish and plumed shrimps in the black coral around the propeller and blacktailed snapers in the engine room. Towards the bow there were several longfin batfish being cleaned and a large barracuda. Also an eagle ray and lots of the Phydiana nudibranchs
Dive 3
A very fishy corner with schools of black and white, humpback and bluestripe snappers plus white spotted groupers, a spearing mantis shrimp, hawksbill turtles, marauding blue and bristletooth tangs and the spotted sea cucumbers were spawning.
Night Dive
Night dive on wreck. We saw sharpnose puffers, Scultz pipefish, spiny lobster and longfin batfish
Day 4
Exploring the British loyalty wreck, Addu. Sea Spirit maldives
Dive 1
Dramatic ocean reef drift over large coral formations where we saw several white tips. Later along the reef top we saw two huge giant trevallies, a school of rudderfish, 100's garfish, and thousands of convict tangs.
Dive 2
Split group so some divers went to see the mantas for a final dive whilst others drifted the channel from the oceanside. Between us we saw around 8 MANTAS at the cleaning station, 4 Greys sharks, 8 eagle rays, Napoleons, the school of barred jacks, giant barracudas and lots of snappers
Ocean Crossing
Ocean crossing to Foamullah atoll. JUST OUTSIDE ADDU WE SAW AROUND 1000 MELON HEADED WHALES!!! The pod was ENORMOUS and they were very playful, escorting Sea Spirit and dolphining around like large dolphins. There were literally hundreds of juveniles swimming together. Totally amazing and we were so privileged.
Dive 3
Ocean reef of this island atoll with lovely coralised reef slope with halimeda patches. A school of Forster's barracudas hung in the shallows and all the way along the reef were dense schools of Evan's and Cooper's anthias, some orange and red Lysmata shrimps hiding behind nasty black cheek morays (including one with a white face!) hawksbill turtles and a yellow leaf fish. Really special site.
Day 5
incredible school of 1000 melon headed whales near Addu. Sea Spirit, Maldives
Dive 1
Early morning blue water dive! We saw dogtooth tunas rainbow runners, a wahoo, , barracudas, bonitos, schools of black and white snappers and lots of nosey sleek surgeonfish.
Dive 2
This is a great critter site with beautiful coral blocks on a sand plateau on the side of a big thila with lots of orange and pink seafans. We spent most of our time on the north side and found a pair of candy-stripe elegant squat lobsters, a pale green leaf fish, a pair of banded coral shrimp, spiny lobsters, juvenile batfish, many juvenile cardinals, coral groupers etc..
Dive 3
This is our favourite anemone city with the usual dozen of magnificent anemones and hundreds of Maldives anemone fish. Also "Brucie" the orange chinned Clarke's anemonefish, THREE spearing mantis shrimps, a CHROMODORIS GLENEI, a blacktip shark, bluefin jacks and rivers of fusiliers
Day 6
Rainbow runners, MV Sea Spirit Maldives
Dive 1
Out-current in channel so we dived the ocean reef where an ENORMOUS SCHOOL OF BONITO were being chased by a big dogtooth tunas, there were two green turtles, white tip sharks, schools of emperors and soldierfish, spiny lobsters and a giant barracuda
Spinner dolphin show as 100's of dolphins paraded around inside the atoll and made lots and lots of leaps, somersaults and double salkos! Wow!
Dive 2
Out-current again but we enjoyed a nice drift past coral heads full of snappers, sleeping white tip sharks, green turtles (including one that was waving at us), schooling pyramid butterflyfish and a beautiful outside reef with anthias, reef fish and many small groupers.
Dive 3
A slightly stronger out drift and TWO SUPER-CUTE SLEEPING ZEBRA SHARKS which woke up and swam around then a large PORCUPINE RAY, a drift past coral blocks covered in orange schleronepthia soft coral and seafans and pastel coloured nepthias. The reef top is a mass if reef fish including yellow box pufferfish and a pair of red-brown leaf fish.
Day 7
Sleeping Zebra shark MV Sea Spirit maldives
Dive 1
Out-current drift in channel where there were several green turtles including two standing on tip-toes and being cleaned by tangs! On the corner were huge schools of blue-strip and humpback snappers, raccoon butterflyfish, blue and bristletooth tangs in large marauding schools, a big Napoleon and a couple of eagle rays.
Dive 2
This site is still very new to us but certainly worth a visit as we saw a FREESWIMMING NURSE SHARK, ZEBRA SHARK, BLACK-TIP SHARK, WHITE TIP SHARKS and EAGLE RAYS! Alex had an over-friendly hawksbill turtle climb all over her, not sure what it was looking for but funny for us to watch!
Dive 3
Pristine thila with World-class hard corals full of reef fish and two enormous schools small and large sized big-eye jacks which kept whooshing up from the depths and engulfing us. A school of large rainbow runners also investigated us. There were also sleek surgeonfish, a glorious flatworm, a sabretooth blenny peeking out of a hole, an axel-spot hogfish and millions of orange anthias.
TWO WHALE SHARKS BEHIND SS AT ANCHORAGE SNACKING ON THE BAITFISH BEHIND THE BOAT AT 2AM! ALSO TWO SPINNER DOLPHINS AND TWO MOBULAS FEEDING TOO.
Day 8
Diver photographing school of blue-stripe snappers, Mv Sea Spirit, Maldives
Dive 1
Ocean corner drift over heavily coralised corner and forest of table corals inside channel. There were many schools of black and white snappers, barracudas, 2x eagle rays, white tip sharks, a large Napoleon and lovely reef fish
Dive 2
5x GREY SHARKS cruising the current point, several large dogtooth tunas and rainbow runners cruising past and checking out cleaning stations. In the shallow coral blocks was a blue/yellow ribbon eels, two yellow leaf fish, Lysmata and banded coral shrimps and lots of black saddled coral groupers.
Dive 3
WE descended into a dense schools of silversides then drifted past several large coral blocks full of glassfish, red groupers etc. Rivers of neon and yellowback fusiliers swam past. Also two yellow leaf fish together, a school of longfin batfish, tiny juvenile bicolor parrotfish and every conceivable damselfish bouncing around in a superb coral garden.
Day 9
World class corals. Maldives from Mv Sea Spirit
Dive 1
Back to the thila with everything! Today the dogtooth tunas were chasing the fusliers, making schools explode as the tunas turned stripy as they hunted. A new yellow and pink leaf fish, unusual striped periclimenes shrimps, cruising grey shark and white tip sharks, Amboin shrimps etc. Such a great dive.
Dive 2
AND TO FINISH one of our favourite thilas. A ZEBRA SHARK was sleeping on the reef as we descended and hung around for all the paparazzi to finish their photo session. Matt found a gorgeous juvenile razor wrasse waving around over the sand. The school of Forster's barracudas kept passing us by and checking us out plus all the other beautiful reef fish and great corals at this site. Just a lovely way to finish.
Afternoon and evening at leisure
Day 10
Whale sharks behind Sea Spirit at 2am. Maldives
Guest Transfer
Guests transferred to Kaadhedhdhoo airport for their domestic flight back to Male' and onward transfers to resorts or international flights.
Day 11
Spotty sleeping Zebra shark, MV Sea Spirit, Maldives
 
Guest Transfer
Internal flight from Male' to Gan in Addu atoll, the southernmost atoll of the Maldives
Dive 1
Check dive on northern Ocean reef where we saw a school of ~25 longfin batfish, rivers of fusiliers and huge schools of Evan's anthias, white tip reef sharks, a large green turtle, pairs of longnose filefish, a juvenile empress angelfish, a pretty spotted juvenile harlequin sweetlips and beautiful hard corals in the shallows with seafans and soft corals on the wall. A great start!
Day 1
Sunset on the bow of MV Sea Spirit, Maldives
Dive 1
LARGE BUMPHEAD PARROTFISH pairs making courtship dances were the stars at the Ocean reef site with a beautiful coral garden. We also had a huge school of big eye jacks crossing up and down the reef and engulfing us as they swam past, schools of black and white snappers , blue-fin jacks, a porcelain crab in a carpet anemone and several giant barracudas.
Dive 2
Four manta rays this morning, apparently two females with their "boyfriends", one of which remained for the entire dive and gave us a great introduction to this site. There were two friendly grey sharks and great schools of reef fish.
Dive 3
Easy sheltered dive with magnificent hard coral and lots of reef fish in the shallows. We found a white leaf fish amongst some glassfish, a giant moray, lots of rock cods, slender groupers, 2-spot snappers, many Cooper's anthias. Beautiful!
Day 2
Courting bumphead parrotfish, MV Sea Spirit Maldives
Dive 1
10 MANTAS THIS MORNING, mainly males and all busy being cleaned and being very friendly to divers. The grey sharks was also being very friendly today, coming into have her photo taken.
Dive 2
This time it was the turn for the FEMALE MANTA RAYS to have a clean and put on a show for us. They brought their boyfriends and there was quite a lot of courtship and display. It must be mating season! There was also a white tip shark, funny big-eye emperors watching the proceedings, large triggerfish etc.
Dive 3
This is a superb ocean reef with huge coral formations rammed with reef fish with the occasional pass by schools of rainbow runners or large schools of big-eye jacks, white tip sharks etc. Today we also saw schooling oceanic triggers, an ELECTRIC TORPEDO RAY and large coral groupers stalking their territories.
A superb sunset tonight over drinks on deck
Day 3
Von the manta! from MV Sea Spirit Maldives
Dive 1
7 MANTAS in a very playful mood and we caught them just as the current was changing. They were spending lots of time just hanging above us in our exhaled bubble streams. There were also two GREY SHARKS, and we were mobbed by a school of around 500 BARRED JACKS.
Dive 2
Stern tour of British Loyalty wreck. There were longnose hawkfish and plumed shrimps in the black coral around the propeller and blacktailed snapers in the engine room. Towards the bow there were several longfin batfish being cleaned and a large barracuda. Also an eagle ray and lots of the Phydiana nudibranchs
Dive 3
A very fishy corner with schools of black and white, humpback and bluestripe snappers plus white spotted groupers, a spearing mantis shrimp, hawksbill turtles, marauding blue and bristletooth tangs and the spotted sea cucumbers were spawning.
Night Dive
Night dive on wreck. We saw sharpnose puffers, Scultz pipefish, spiny lobster and longfin batfish
Day 4
Exploring the British loyalty wreck, Addu. Sea Spirit maldives
Dive 1
Dramatic ocean reef drift over large coral formations where we saw several white tips. Later along the reef top we saw two huge giant trevallies, a school of rudderfish, 100's garfish, and thousands of convict tangs.
Dive 2
Split group so some divers went to see the mantas for a final dive whilst others drifted the channel from the oceanside. Between us we saw around 8 MANTAS at the cleaning station, 4 Greys sharks, 8 eagle rays, Napoleons, the school of barred jacks, giant barracudas and lots of snappers
Ocean Crossing
Ocean crossing to Foamullah atoll. JUST OUTSIDE ADDU WE SAW AROUND 1000 MELON HEADED WHALES!!! The pod was ENORMOUS and they were very playful, escorting Sea Spirit and dolphining around like large dolphins. There were literally hundreds of juveniles swimming together. Totally amazing and we were so privileged.
Dive 3
Ocean reef of this island atoll with lovely coralised reef slope with halimeda patches. A school of Forster's barracudas hung in the shallows and all the way along the reef were dense schools of Evan's and Cooper's anthias, some orange and red Lysmata shrimps hiding behind nasty black cheek morays (including one with a white face!) hawksbill turtles and a yellow leaf fish. Really special site.
Day 5
incredible school of 1000 melon headed whales near Addu. Sea Spirit, Maldives
Dive 1
Early morning blue water dive! We saw dogtooth tunas rainbow runners, a wahoo, , barracudas, bonitos, schools of black and white snappers and lots of nosey sleek surgeonfish.
Dive 2
This is a great critter site with beautiful coral blocks on a sand plateau on the side of a big thila with lots of orange and pink seafans. We spent most of our time on the north side and found a pair of candy-stripe elegant squat lobsters, a pale green leaf fish, a pair of banded coral shrimp, spiny lobsters, juvenile batfish, many juvenile cardinals, coral groupers etc..
Dive 3
This is our favourite anemone city with the usual dozen of magnificent anemones and hundreds of Maldives anemone fish. Also "Brucie" the orange chinned Clarke's anemonefish, THREE spearing mantis shrimps, a CHROMODORIS GLENEI, a blacktip shark, bluefin jacks and rivers of fusiliers
Day 6
Rainbow runners, MV Sea Spirit Maldives
Dive 1
Out-current in channel so we dived the ocean reef where an ENORMOUS SCHOOL OF BONITO were being chased by a big dogtooth tunas, there were two green turtles, white tip sharks, schools of emperors and soldierfish, spiny lobsters and a giant barracuda
Spinner dolphin show as 100's of dolphins paraded around inside the atoll and made lots and lots of leaps, somersaults and double salkos! Wow!
Dive 2
Out-current again but we enjoyed a nice drift past coral heads full of snappers, sleeping white tip sharks, green turtles (including one that was waving at us), schooling pyramid butterflyfish and a beautiful outside reef with anthias, reef fish and many small groupers.
Dive 3
A slightly stronger out drift and TWO SUPER-CUTE SLEEPING ZEBRA SHARKS which woke up and swam around then a large PORCUPINE RAY, a drift past coral blocks covered in orange schleronepthia soft coral and seafans and pastel coloured nepthias. The reef top is a mass if reef fish including yellow box pufferfish and a pair of red-brown leaf fish.
Day 7
Sleeping Zebra shark MV Sea Spirit maldives
Dive 1
Out-current drift in channel where there were several green turtles including two standing on tip-toes and being cleaned by tangs! On the corner were huge schools of blue-strip and humpback snappers, raccoon butterflyfish, blue and bristletooth tangs in large marauding schools, a big Napoleon and a couple of eagle rays.
Dive 2
This site is still very new to us but certainly worth a visit as we saw a FREESWIMMING NURSE SHARK, ZEBRA SHARK, BLACK-TIP SHARK, WHITE TIP SHARKS and EAGLE RAYS! Alex had an over-friendly hawksbill turtle climb all over her, not sure what it was looking for but funny for us to watch!
Dive 3
Pristine thila with World-class hard corals full of reef fish and two enormous schools small and large sized big-eye jacks which kept whooshing up from the depths and engulfing us. A school of large rainbow runners also investigated us. There were also sleek surgeonfish, a glorious flatworm, a sabretooth blenny peeking out of a hole, an axel-spot hogfish and millions of orange anthias.
TWO WHALE SHARKS BEHIND SS AT ANCHORAGE SNACKING ON THE BAITFISH BEHIND THE BOAT AT 2AM! ALSO TWO SPINNER DOLPHINS AND TWO MOBULAS FEEDING TOO.
Day 8
Diver photographing school of blue-stripe snappers, Mv Sea Spirit, Maldives
Dive 1
Ocean corner drift over heavily coralised corner and forest of table corals inside channel. There were many schools of black and white snappers, barracudas, 2x eagle rays, white tip sharks, a large Napoleon and lovely reef fish
Dive 2
5x GREY SHARKS cruising the current point, several large dogtooth tunas and rainbow runners cruising past and checking out cleaning stations. In the shallow coral blocks was a blue/yellow ribbon eels, two yellow leaf fish, Lysmata and banded coral shrimps and lots of black saddled coral groupers.
Dive 3
WE descended into a dense schools of silversides then drifted past several large coral blocks full of glassfish, red groupers etc. Rivers of neon and yellowback fusiliers swam past. Also two yellow leaf fish together, a school of longfin batfish, tiny juvenile bicolor parrotfish and every conceivable damselfish bouncing around in a superb coral garden.
Day 9
World class corals. Maldives from Mv Sea Spirit
Dive 1
Back to the thila with everything! Today the dogtooth tunas were chasing the fusliers, making schools explode as the tunas turned stripy as they hunted. A new yellow and pink leaf fish, unusual striped periclimenes shrimps, cruising grey shark and white tip sharks, Amboin shrimps etc. Such a great dive.
Dive 2
AND TO FINISH one of our favourite thilas. A ZEBRA SHARK was sleeping on the reef as we descended and hung around for all the paparazzi to finish their photo session. Matt found a gorgeous juvenile razor wrasse waving around over the sand. The school of Forster's barracudas kept passing us by and checking us out plus all the other beautiful reef fish and great corals at this site. Just a lovely way to finish.
Afternoon and evening at leisure
Day 10
Whale sharks behind Sea Spirit at 2am. Maldives
Guest Transfer
Guests transferred to Kaadhedhdhoo airport for their domestic flight back to Male' and onward transfers to resorts or international flights.
Day 11
Spotty sleeping Zebra shark, MV Sea Spirit, Maldives
Sea Spirit SS413 22 Sep 2013 to 4 Oct 2013 Equatorial Far South - Huvadhoo/Foammulah/Gan Addu (12 day)
Guest Transfer
Two sets of guest arrivals to Kaadhedhdhoo airport in Huvadhoo atoll due to international flight arrival times.
Dive 1
Easy check dive at site with coral crown and slope with hard coral formations. We saw a hawksbill turtle, table corals full of blue-green chromis, schools of sargeant majors, shallow blocks full of glassfish and red groupers and lots of juvenile fish generally.
Day 1
Island sunset MV Sea Spirit Maldives
Dive 1
Pretty thila with silverside baitfish all over the shallows, undulating in waves as tunas and jacks made attacks. There were also lots of glassfish over coral blocks and ledges and lots of small groupers watching all the small fish! We found a spearing mantis shrimp, a magnificent goby, a school of Forster's barracudas, barred soapfish, schools od yellow goatfish, crescent-tailed big-eyes, turtles etc. The top has really good hard corals.
Dive 2
There was a big current whooshing into the channel and a DOLPHIN PARTY back in the channel where they were jumping around but not coming near the divers. Along the front of the channel were a couple of grey sharks and white tips and 4x eagle rays. Inside the channel was a large school of Forster's barracudas, chevron barracudas and a turtle. We had a fast drift WHEEEE!
Dive 3
Beautiful coral garden site with streams of fusiliers pouring over a ridge of reef which continues for several hundred metres. There were black and white snappers, dogtooth tunas, blocks full of glassfish, 2x leaf fish, corals full of blue-green, Indian, humbug etc. damsels.
Day 2
Colourful anthias MV Sea spirit Maldives
Dive 1
Great cleaning station thila where we saw a shortfinned MOBULA RAY, school of dogtooth tunas, streams of yellowback fusiliers plus black sadled coral groupers, rainbow runners, juvenile empress angelfish, a barred moray, 2x yellow leaf fish PURPLE RIBBON EEL, 4x CHROMODORIS TRITOS, carpet anemones with anboin shrimps etc. Busy little site!
Dive 2
Out-current in channel where we found a FEATHERTAIL RAY, a ZEBRA SHARK, WHITE TIP SHARKS on the channel front where there was also lots of puffed up pastel coloured nepthia soft corals, hawksbill turtles and big porites coral blocks full of fish, including big groupers. The outside reef is lovely and fishy too.
Dive 3
In-current but only big schools of fusiliers and reef fish on the channel front. We drifted in past sleeping white tip sharks and then over large coral formations interspersed with orange soft coral and sea fans. We saw blue stripe snapper schools, a blotched porcupine puffer with a yellow trumpet fish shadowing. The shallow corals were full of Cooper's anthias and very pretty.
Day 3
Big eye jacks school MV Sea Spirit Maldives
Dive 1
Another out-current so green and hawksbill turtles, a freeswimming glorious flatworm, 4x EAGLE RAYS on the outside reef, white tips, large milk fish, schooling greencheek parrotfish, pair of giant morays etc. It was just nice playing around in the shallows on the outside reef.
Dive 2
This site is a pretty hard coral garden surrounded by a hard coral reef with a dramatic contrast of topography. This site is good for looking for small stuff, especially pinkbar gobies with pistol shrimps, magnificent gobies, eyelash blennies, lemon gobies and every type of damselfish. Superb corals!
Dive 3
This site was TURTLE TOWN today despite the strong in-current. The green turtles flew off like fireworks as we drifted towards them. There were also lots of circular and longfin batfish and some big napoleons
Day 4
Huge male turtle MV Sea Spirit Maldives
Dive 1
The crazy school of big-eye jacks at this thila site came around and mobbed us several times. There were snappers and surgeonfish at the current point which was at the steep end of the reef where there were many black coral trees with longnose hawkfish. The entire reef-top plus the eastern spur were covered in excellent hard corals and every kind of reef fish and buzzing with anthias today. So pretty!
Dive 2
Experimental dive at northern Ocean reef. The corner had large flattenned coral blocks with schools of snappers hanging out plus rainbow runners and white tip sharks. Further along the reef the slope is steeper but there were lots more interesting ledges and blocks full of Evan's anthias. We found two white leaf fish, ribbon eels, Lysmata cleaning shrimps around blackcheek morays, turtles etc. Great site, we'll be back.
Dive 3
Sheltered thila/giri site with undulating, meandering hills of hard coral interspersed with sandy patches. We found turtles, lots of Maldives sponge snails, yellowstripe goatfish school, a family of Clarke's anemonefish guarding their eggs. This is a lovely coral landscape.
Night Dive
Night dive on southern reef of island with steep topography. It was a little quiet tonight with a small current. We saw a white tip shark, lots of large plate-sized featherstars, a Richter's prawn burowing itself in the sand, parrotfish sleeping etc.
Evening Activity
Visit ashore to Bird Island.
Day 5
Yellow/green leaf fish MV Sea Spirit Maldives
Dive 1
Dramatic ocean reef with large coral covered thilas across sprawling channel front. An enormous BLACK TUNA was being cleaned. Above the thilas were schools of 2-spot, blue-stripe and red snappers plus juvenile and adult black & white snappers, a leaf fish and a sleeping round ribbon-tailed ray.
Great dolphin show next to island Lots of spinner dolphins jumping up and down, spinning and bow-wave riding. The crew then caught a huge wahoo and we had some of it for lunch!
Dive 2
Channel out-current drift with several large GREEN TURTLES, a sleeping round ronnon-tailed ray, white tip sharks then a huge school of blue-stripe snappers on the corner plus humpback snappers and raccoon butterflyfish and a friendly hawksbill turtles.
Dive 3
Pretty thila with so many magnificent anemones with their families of Maldives anemonefish and three spot damsels. We also found a spearing mantis shrimp, a cute yellow boxfish, a smallscale scorpionfish and misguided remoras trying to attach under the dhoni!
Evening Activity
Shore visit to abandoned village on island with lots of fruit bats flying around and fruit trees amongst the ruined village. Captain Mohammed cut open some fresh coconuts and we went for a stroll on the beach.
Day 5
Spinner dolphins MV Sea Spirit Maldives
Dive 1
There was still an out current in the main channel so too little pressure for sharks but we crossed the channel and had a school of big-eye jacks come in along the channel front. On the south corner the reef is very dramatic with soldierfish and goldspot emperors plus many pyramid butterflyfish and both hawksbill and green turtles and a really interesting reefscape.
Dive 2
Out-current drift with several large green turtles hiding amongst the coral blocks and a couple of large eagle rays, an unidentified black and white Thecacera nudibranch, nice schools of black and white snappers, large staghorn coral colonies with blue-green chromis, butterflyfish and lots of buzzing anthias.
Dive 3
The current point at this thila was busy with a huge school of sleek surgeonfish plus a circling grey reef shark. The anthias were really bouncing around on the big pavona coral and there were lots of glassfish. We found a pale green leaf fish, Bruuni cleaner shrimps, a big titan triggerfish being cleaned, a small school of cute juvenile long fin batfish and just enjoyed a really beautiful reef with lovely blocks and seafans.
Day 7
Blue-lined snappers MV Sea Spirit Maldives
Dive 1
Back to the pretty thila and along with all the things seen last dive we found the pair of elegant squat lobsters, a humungeous STONEFISH, a spearing mantis shrimp, three spiny lobsters, a bartail moray, a tiny oriental sweetlips flapping around and a blue-lined flatworm.This is a great macro site as well as being a beautiful reef.
Ocean Crossing
Ocean crossing to Foamullah atoll crossing the EQUATOR on the way.
Dive 2
A moderate drift but rather fuzzy visibility. There was a large school of black and white snappers, many large rainbow runners and schools of sleek surgeonfish but otherwise rather quiet today.
Dive 3
Late afternoon dive along lovely coralised wall with areas of halimeda and blue millepora firecoral. Lots if 4-saddle and dusky groupers, Forster's barracudas, and lots of small cute hawksbill turtles plus many, many anthias.
Evening Activity
Guests had a wander around the harbour area of this local island
Day 8
Pyramid butterflyfish MV Sea Spirit Maldives
Dive 1
Early dive and we saw a VERY LARGE HAMMERHEAD SHARK plus lots of black and white snappers
Ocean Crossing
Ocean crossing to Addu atoll. The crew hooked a large marlin but it escaped before they landed it.
Dive 2
FOUR MANTA RAYS at the cleaning station and two stayed for the entire dive. The current was quite brisk so we had to hook in. The pale one had about 20 tiny yellow pilot jacks in front of her mouth! As we drifted out of the channel we passed a couple of large blue Napoleon wrasses and some large coral groupers.
Dive 3
Beautiful reefscape with large coral formations and then a huge coral garden with many reef fish. We found a sleeping FEATHERTAIL ray, white tip shark, goldfinger dart, bearded scorpionfish and patches of sailors eye balls
Day 9
Super friendly manta MV Sea Spirit Maldives
Dive 1
18 DIFFERENT MANTA RAYS AROUND THE CLEANING STATION this morning. They were having quite a party with lots of hovering above the reef and then swooping in to be cleaned or to swim through our bubble streams. Also TWO FRIENDLY GREY SHARKS
Dive 2
~10 very sociable manta rays, this time spending the majority of time being cleaned and checking out the divers very closely. They were so close, this was a very special dive!
Dive 3
Ocean reef site on outside of channel where lots of midnight snappers were behaving rather strangely and inverting themselves! We found a spearing mantis shrimp a pair of green phyllidia slugs, schools of yellow snappers, bristletooth tangs and powder-blue surgeonfish marauding around in the shallows and very beautiful hard corals
Day 10
Friendly grey shark MV Sea Spirit Maldives
Dive 1
Stern tour of British loyalty wreck going through the large bomb hole and down to the propellor and back along the up-turned deck via the engine room with the huge oil storage compartments, an accomodation area etc. We saw a large barracuda, blacktail snappers, beautiful black coral trees, phydiana nudibranchs all over the deck and Schultz' pipefish.
Dive 2
We dived just as the current was changing and the mantas were very chilled and busy cleaning. The behaved like they were REALLY pleased to see us and we had an AMAZING dive with them all over us!
Dive 3
Far western ocean reef with huge coral blocks covered in schools of fish of all species and huge coral formations down the reef slope from 10-25m + Huge schools of black and white snappers, many large groupers of all species, beautiful leather corals and pink and yellow soft corals. A very special site.
Guests declined a night dive in favour of extra beer time!
Day 11
AMAZING manta rays MV Sea Spirit Maldives
Dive 1
An early morning dive at the manta cleaning station as the current started running into the atoll and there were about 20 manta rays flying high like enormous birds. Individuals broke off to clean and to swim through our bubbles. The two friendly grey sharks seemed to be enjoying the current. Great dive
Dive 2
What a way to finish! It was although they knew it was our last dive and were trying to make it special by making EXTRA CLOSE passes. This will be remembered for a while! Friendly bubbler was just great! A blacktip shark tried to get in on the act today.
Afternoon at rest, just chilling out. THREE trip movie premieres this week thanks to Robert, Heath and Matt
Day 12
Snappers at the big coral blocks MV Sea Spirit Maldives
Guest Transfer
Two departures to Male from Gan airport.
Day 13
Island visit group SS413 MV Sea Spirit Maldives
 
Guest Transfer
Two sets of guest arrivals to Kaadhedhdhoo airport in Huvadhoo atoll due to international flight arrival times.
Dive 1
Easy check dive at site with coral crown and slope with hard coral formations. We saw a hawksbill turtle, table corals full of blue-green chromis, schools of sargeant majors, shallow blocks full of glassfish and red groupers and lots of juvenile fish generally.
Day 1
Island sunset MV Sea Spirit Maldives
Dive 1
Pretty thila with silverside baitfish all over the shallows, undulating in waves as tunas and jacks made attacks. There were also lots of glassfish over coral blocks and ledges and lots of small groupers watching all the small fish! We found a spearing mantis shrimp, a magnificent goby, a school of Forster's barracudas, barred soapfish, schools od yellow goatfish, crescent-tailed big-eyes, turtles etc. The top has really good hard corals.
Dive 2
There was a big current whooshing into the channel and a DOLPHIN PARTY back in the channel where they were jumping around but not coming near the divers. Along the front of the channel were a couple of grey sharks and white tips and 4x eagle rays. Inside the channel was a large school of Forster's barracudas, chevron barracudas and a turtle. We had a fast drift WHEEEE!
Dive 3
Beautiful coral garden site with streams of fusiliers pouring over a ridge of reef which continues for several hundred metres. There were black and white snappers, dogtooth tunas, blocks full of glassfish, 2x leaf fish, corals full of blue-green, Indian, humbug etc. damsels.
Day 2
Colourful anthias MV Sea spirit Maldives
Dive 1
Great cleaning station thila where we saw a shortfinned MOBULA RAY, school of dogtooth tunas, streams of yellowback fusiliers plus black sadled coral groupers, rainbow runners, juvenile empress angelfish, a barred moray, 2x yellow leaf fish PURPLE RIBBON EEL, 4x CHROMODORIS TRITOS, carpet anemones with anboin shrimps etc. Busy little site!
Dive 2
Out-current in channel where we found a FEATHERTAIL RAY, a ZEBRA SHARK, WHITE TIP SHARKS on the channel front where there was also lots of puffed up pastel coloured nepthia soft corals, hawksbill turtles and big porites coral blocks full of fish, including big groupers. The outside reef is lovely and fishy too.
Dive 3
In-current but only big schools of fusiliers and reef fish on the channel front. We drifted in past sleeping white tip sharks and then over large coral formations interspersed with orange soft coral and sea fans. We saw blue stripe snapper schools, a blotched porcupine puffer with a yellow trumpet fish shadowing. The shallow corals were full of Cooper's anthias and very pretty.
Day 3
Big eye jacks school MV Sea Spirit Maldives
Dive 1
Another out-current so green and hawksbill turtles, a freeswimming glorious flatworm, 4x EAGLE RAYS on the outside reef, white tips, large milk fish, schooling greencheek parrotfish, pair of giant morays etc. It was just nice playing around in the shallows on the outside reef.
Dive 2
This site is a pretty hard coral garden surrounded by a hard coral reef with a dramatic contrast of topography. This site is good for looking for small stuff, especially pinkbar gobies with pistol shrimps, magnificent gobies, eyelash blennies, lemon gobies and every type of damselfish. Superb corals!
Dive 3
This site was TURTLE TOWN today despite the strong in-current. The green turtles flew off like fireworks as we drifted towards them. There were also lots of circular and longfin batfish and some big napoleons
Day 4
Huge male turtle MV Sea Spirit Maldives
Dive 1
The crazy school of big-eye jacks at this thila site came around and mobbed us several times. There were snappers and surgeonfish at the current point which was at the steep end of the reef where there were many black coral trees with longnose hawkfish. The entire reef-top plus the eastern spur were covered in excellent hard corals and every kind of reef fish and buzzing with anthias today. So pretty!
Dive 2
Experimental dive at northern Ocean reef. The corner had large flattenned coral blocks with schools of snappers hanging out plus rainbow runners and white tip sharks. Further along the reef the slope is steeper but there were lots more interesting ledges and blocks full of Evan's anthias. We found two white leaf fish, ribbon eels, Lysmata cleaning shrimps around blackcheek morays, turtles etc. Great site, we'll be back.
Dive 3
Sheltered thila/giri site with undulating, meandering hills of hard coral interspersed with sandy patches. We found turtles, lots of Maldives sponge snails, yellowstripe goatfish school, a family of Clarke's anemonefish guarding their eggs. This is a lovely coral landscape.
Night Dive
Night dive on southern reef of island with steep topography. It was a little quiet tonight with a small current. We saw a white tip shark, lots of large plate-sized featherstars, a Richter's prawn burowing itself in the sand, parrotfish sleeping etc.
Evening Activity
Visit ashore to Bird Island.
Day 5
Yellow/green leaf fish MV Sea Spirit Maldives
Dive 1
Dramatic ocean reef with large coral covered thilas across sprawling channel front. An enormous BLACK TUNA was being cleaned. Above the thilas were schools of 2-spot, blue-stripe and red snappers plus juvenile and adult black & white snappers, a leaf fish and a sleeping round ribbon-tailed ray.
Great dolphin show next to island Lots of spinner dolphins jumping up and down, spinning and bow-wave riding. The crew then caught a huge wahoo and we had some of it for lunch!
Dive 2
Channel out-current drift with several large GREEN TURTLES, a sleeping round ronnon-tailed ray, white tip sharks then a huge school of blue-stripe snappers on the corner plus humpback snappers and raccoon butterflyfish and a friendly hawksbill turtles.
Dive 3
Pretty thila with so many magnificent anemones with their families of Maldives anemonefish and three spot damsels. We also found a spearing mantis shrimp, a cute yellow boxfish, a smallscale scorpionfish and misguided remoras trying to attach under the dhoni!
Evening Activity
Shore visit to abandoned village on island with lots of fruit bats flying around and fruit trees amongst the ruined village. Captain Mohammed cut open some fresh coconuts and we went for a stroll on the beach.
Day 5
Spinner dolphins MV Sea Spirit Maldives
Dive 1
There was still an out current in the main channel so too little pressure for sharks but we crossed the channel and had a school of big-eye jacks come in along the channel front. On the south corner the reef is very dramatic with soldierfish and goldspot emperors plus many pyramid butterflyfish and both hawksbill and green turtles and a really interesting reefscape.
Dive 2
Out-current drift with several large green turtles hiding amongst the coral blocks and a couple of large eagle rays, an unidentified black and white Thecacera nudibranch, nice schools of black and white snappers, large staghorn coral colonies with blue-green chromis, butterflyfish and lots of buzzing anthias.
Dive 3
The current point at this thila was busy with a huge school of sleek surgeonfish plus a circling grey reef shark. The anthias were really bouncing around on the big pavona coral and there were lots of glassfish. We found a pale green leaf fish, Bruuni cleaner shrimps, a big titan triggerfish being cleaned, a small school of cute juvenile long fin batfish and just enjoyed a really beautiful reef with lovely blocks and seafans.
Day 7
Blue-lined snappers MV Sea Spirit Maldives
Dive 1
Back to the pretty thila and along with all the things seen last dive we found the pair of elegant squat lobsters, a humungeous STONEFISH, a spearing mantis shrimp, three spiny lobsters, a bartail moray, a tiny oriental sweetlips flapping around and a blue-lined flatworm.This is a great macro site as well as being a beautiful reef.
Ocean Crossing
Ocean crossing to Foamullah atoll crossing the EQUATOR on the way.
Dive 2
A moderate drift but rather fuzzy visibility. There was a large school of black and white snappers, many large rainbow runners and schools of sleek surgeonfish but otherwise rather quiet today.
Dive 3
Late afternoon dive along lovely coralised wall with areas of halimeda and blue millepora firecoral. Lots if 4-saddle and dusky groupers, Forster's barracudas, and lots of small cute hawksbill turtles plus many, many anthias.
Evening Activity
Guests had a wander around the harbour area of this local island
Day 8
Pyramid butterflyfish MV Sea Spirit Maldives
Dive 1
Early dive and we saw a VERY LARGE HAMMERHEAD SHARK plus lots of black and white snappers
Ocean Crossing
Ocean crossing to Addu atoll. The crew hooked a large marlin but it escaped before they landed it.
Dive 2
FOUR MANTA RAYS at the cleaning station and two stayed for the entire dive. The current was quite brisk so we had to hook in. The pale one had about 20 tiny yellow pilot jacks in front of her mouth! As we drifted out of the channel we passed a couple of large blue Napoleon wrasses and some large coral groupers.
Dive 3
Beautiful reefscape with large coral formations and then a huge coral garden with many reef fish. We found a sleeping FEATHERTAIL ray, white tip shark, goldfinger dart, bearded scorpionfish and patches of sailors eye balls
Day 9
Super friendly manta MV Sea Spirit Maldives
Dive 1
18 DIFFERENT MANTA RAYS AROUND THE CLEANING STATION this morning. They were having quite a party with lots of hovering above the reef and then swooping in to be cleaned or to swim through our bubble streams. Also TWO FRIENDLY GREY SHARKS
Dive 2
~10 very sociable manta rays, this time spending the majority of time being cleaned and checking out the divers very closely. They were so close, this was a very special dive!
Dive 3
Ocean reef site on outside of channel where lots of midnight snappers were behaving rather strangely and inverting themselves! We found a spearing mantis shrimp a pair of green phyllidia slugs, schools of yellow snappers, bristletooth tangs and powder-blue surgeonfish marauding around in the shallows and very beautiful hard corals
Day 10
Friendly grey shark MV Sea Spirit Maldives
Dive 1
Stern tour of British loyalty wreck going through the large bomb hole and down to the propellor and back along the up-turned deck via the engine room with the huge oil storage compartments, an accomodation area etc. We saw a large barracuda, blacktail snappers, beautiful black coral trees, phydiana nudibranchs all over the deck and Schultz' pipefish.
Dive 2
We dived just as the current was changing and the mantas were very chilled and busy cleaning. The behaved like they were REALLY pleased to see us and we had an AMAZING dive with them all over us!
Dive 3
Far western ocean reef with huge coral blocks covered in schools of fish of all species and huge coral formations down the reef slope from 10-25m + Huge schools of black and white snappers, many large groupers of all species, beautiful leather corals and pink and yellow soft corals. A very special site.
Guests declined a night dive in favour of extra beer time!
Day 11
AMAZING manta rays MV Sea Spirit Maldives
Dive 1
An early morning dive at the manta cleaning station as the current started running into the atoll and there were about 20 manta rays flying high like enormous birds. Individuals broke off to clean and to swim through our bubbles. The two friendly grey sharks seemed to be enjoying the current. Great dive
Dive 2
What a way to finish! It was although they knew it was our last dive and were trying to make it special by making EXTRA CLOSE passes. This will be remembered for a while! Friendly bubbler was just great! A blacktip shark tried to get in on the act today.
Afternoon at rest, just chilling out. THREE trip movie premieres this week thanks to Robert, Heath and Matt
Day 12
Snappers at the big coral blocks MV Sea Spirit Maldives
Guest Transfer
Two departures to Male from Gan airport.
Day 13
Island visit group SS413 MV Sea Spirit Maldives
Sea Spirit SS412 8 Sep 2013 to 20 Sep 2013 Equatorial Far South - Huvadhoo/Foammulah/Gan Addu (12 day)
Guest Transfer
Internal flight from Male international airport into Gan international airport in Addu. Flight was a little delayed. Guests transferred to Sea Spirit in time for a late lunch
Dive 1
Late check dive on northern ocean reef. It was just nice to get wet and havea gentle drift! We found a green LEAF FISH, a large green turtle and lots of white spotted groupers being cleaned. The wall had lovely red and purple menella seafans and sea whips on the vertical wall. We finished the dive just in time for sunset!
Day 1
Sea Spirit, Maldives view of deck
Dive 1
Ocean reef and channel dive in blue clear water but only 25 degrees below 25m- chilly! WHAT A DIVE! BLACKTIP AND GREY SHARKS PLUS WHITE TIP SHARKS, schools of snappers, Napoleons, schools of jacks and millions of fusiliers and 11 MANTA RAYS which seemed very happy to see us!
Dive 2
Back to the manta point and around 11 MANTA RAYS AROUND FOR THE ENTIRE DIVE. There was very good visibility but cold water and most of the mantas were busy being cleaned and interacting with divers and each other. Also GREY SHARKS, harlequin sweetlips and lovely corals on the reef top.
Dive 3
Ocean reef to channel with excellent hard corals all the way down the slope from 3 to 30m depth. Lots of large coral blocks full of reef fish: Napoleons of different sizes, hawksbill turtles, black and white snappers, white spotted box pufferfish, yellow trumpetfish and phyllidia slugs of various species.
Day 2
Manta rays, Addu Sea Spirit Maldives
Dive 1
LOVEFEST AMONGST THE MANTAS with two frisky males chasing after Abigail , a big female. One followed closely behind her for the entire dive, Aaaaah! There was lots of cleaning activity and socialising amongst the other mantas and there were about 6 around today.
Dive 2
It was stronger current but there were still around 6 mantas busy cleaning and socialising and plenty of hanging over the divers' heads and enjoying a jacuzzi so a great show for us.
Dive 3
Small current and a gentle out-drift in the SE channel of the atoll. The reef top was pretty with an area of blue magnifica anemones with lots of orange Maldives clownfish, plus Clarke's anemonefish, three occelated phyllidias together, a big Napoleon, millions of Cooper's anthias, giant morays and a tiny flic-flacing oriental sweetlips. We found the chain for the WW2 submarine net.
Lovely pink sunset tonight
Day 3
Coral reef, Sea Spirit Maldives
Dive 1
Dive on the famous WW2 wreck inside the atoll and had a stern tour via the bomb-hole, the propeller and the oil storage room and to the bow. There are lovely mature black coral trees and many white and orange sea whips. We found a white pontonides shrimp on a whip, 2 large Mappa puffers, blacktail snappers, lots of iridescent Phydiana nudibranchs, reef pipefish and the friendly batfish entertained us on ascent.
Dive 2
A stronger current than on previous days and the mantas seemed a bit nervous to come in and clean. One stayed shallow and gave divers a show and another swooped around and did some cleaning. We had a hard hook-in.
Dive 3
Lovely blue clear water at this ocean reef site where we drifted over coral blocks and a gently sloping coral garden. We saw many large snappers, bicolor parrotfish, a MANGROVE WHIPRAY sleeping, excellent hard corals full of anthias and chromis. Barracudas and lots of milkfish hung above the reef
Night Dive
Night dive on the wreck. We stayed on the upper parts above 20m depth and found a spiny lobster running around, table corals with several spotted or orange trapezia crabs, a large common crab, lots of hingebeak shrimps, sleeping parrotfish, pipefish etc.
Day 4
Adele the manta ray, Addu, Maldives
Dive 1
Last dive at the manta point and two manta rays came to see us off and give a show. The reef fish on top of the block occupied the cleaners: harlequin and silver sweetlips, bluestripe snappers, big-eye emperors etc. We found a green leaf fish on the reef slope.
Ocean Crossing
Inter atoll crossing from Addu to Huvadhoo. We saw a medium sized unidentified whale, maybe a baby blue whale? Which came up to breathe a few times and then dived.
Dive 2
We dived a thila in the south of Huvadhoo atoll. This is a large site and we only managed the east and northern sides which have lovely orange seafans interspersed around large coral blocks with lots of snappers, emperors, parrotfish, a white tip, rivers of fusilers etc.
Day 5
Well camoflaged leaf fish in halimeda Sea Spirit, Maldives
Dive 1
Great dive on this small thila! At the current point were dogtooth tunas chasing fusiliers. Amongst the coral blocks we found a SLEEPING NURSE SHARK which was completely exposed but we managed to wake her up and off she went. There was also a round RIBBONTAIL ray, a pair of ELEGANT SQUAT LOBSTERS in a pink featherstar, a GREEN and a GOLD LEAF FISHES, a carpet anemone with a shorthead anemone shrimp. There were really nice reef fish and corals all over this site and we had fun playing with the huge schools of silversides up in the shallows as we made our safety stop.
Dive 2
Out-current in channel so dived southern ocean reef. 3x eagle rays, 2x brown/red leaf fish, lvely tight school of pyramid butterflyfish over the spur, many groupers including a large brownmarbled grouper hiding in an overhand, coral blocks full of Evan's anthias with Lysmata cleaning shrimps and nasty black-cheek morays watching the fish. Lots of milk fish swam around in the shallows and an unusual large school of green-cheeked parrotfish swam past.
Dive 3
Small current channel drift over sandy bottom with excellent reef on both sides and lovely orange soft coral and sea fans. We saw several green and hawksbill turtles and a sleeping ZEBRA SHARK which woke up and swam off. A woggle eyed ELECTRIC TORPEDO RAY took off and swam around over the reef at the front of the channel, he was a funny little guy!
Day 6
Grey shark, Sea Spirit, Maldives
Dive 1
Dive on Ocean reef south of channel as current still running out hard. There were 5x GREY REEF SHARKS being cleaned on the spur plus several large dogtooth tunas scooting up and down the reef. Along the ledge at around 20m were schools of bluestripe snappers and goldspot emperors plus lots of soldierfish. A few giant barracudas hung off the reef today.
Dive 2
Mid-atoll large reef with beautiful hard corals all the way down from 1 to 30+m depth and huge schools of blue-stripe snappers meandering around. Today there were a lot of silversides in the shallows and it was fun chasing the huge schools around and making them pulsate.> lovely coral blocks with glassfish, an unsusually large gut-like sea cucumber and a school of Forster's barracudas.
Dive 3
We love this sheltered thila site with its beautiful hard corals and schools of fish, and today it was very dream-like as there were huge schools of silversides mixed in with the glassfish making it all very atmospheric. We found a spearing mantis shrimp in its burrow, a baby clearfin lionfish, Bruuni cleaner shrimps, schols of striped yellow goatfish and crescent tail big-eyes and a very cute little hawksbill turtle.
Day 7
Pyramid butterflyfish Huvadhoo atoll Sea Spirit Maldives
Dive 1
Western channel site where we jumped mid channel and found a few white tip and grey sharks riding the current plus dogtooth tunas and rivers of fusiliers. On the shallower reef were lots of great barracudas stalking the divers plus another electric torpedo ray (!) and schools of red and black and white snappers. We also saw Napoleons of various sizes. The water was very blue.
Dive 2
NEW SITE One of the best things about being in the south is the opportunity to discover new sites and this small thila really delivered. At the current point were ~6 GREY REEF SHARKS, an eagle ray and the whole thila had lots of large rainbow runners and dogtooth tunas hanging around looking for cleaning stations. The top was covered in schools of fish over coral blocks. We found 2x RIBBON EELS,a YELLOW LEAF FISH, OCTOPUS, crown of thorns starfish, a bartail moray and bluefin jacks predating a baitball of silversides. Great dive!
Dive 3
Lovely, sheltered hard coral site. We saw a large grey eagle ray foraging, a sleeping round ribbontail ray, Maldives sponge snail, varicose wart slugs, sand perch, lizard fish party, tunas and schools of fusiliers. Matt found a MIMIC OCTOPUS pulling a variety of shapes ranging from a spiky featherstar to a nudibranch and a sea slug. Totally amazing.
Day 8
Blue ribbon eel, Sea Spirit Maldives
Dive 1
Out-current in this channel so we made an out current drift. We found 4x NURSE SHARKS resting in a big coral block, round ribbon tail rays, white tip sharks sleeping on the channel front, green and hawksbill turtles, a small sleeping ZEBRA SHARK. There were huge schools of bluestripe snappers and humpback snappers on the corner plus racoon butterflyfish and millions of blue-geen chromis over the fields of staghorn corals in the shallows.
Dive 2
There was a small current along the ocean front of channel so tried to cross the front. The outflow got stronger and some divers had to bail early. There were grey sharks and white tips, green turtles, schools of Forster's and chevron barracudas and a funny topsy-turvy turtle being swept around in the surge.
Dive 3
Beautiful hard corals surrounding a lagoon site. There were rivers of fusiliers on the coral slope, coral block cleaning stations with banded coral shrimps, an orange-nape scorpionfish, unicornfish, pinkbar gobies and their pistol shrimps housekeeping their burrows, magnificent gobies, a juvenile black and white snapper, Maldives blennie (pretty, stripey eye pattern) and so many humbug and peacock damsels in the corals.
TWO WHALESHARKS behind SS whilst at night anchorage. Unfortunately they didn't stay for long. One was small at ~3m in length whilst the other was much bigger at ~7-8m, and bigger than most that we see here.
Day 9
Nurse shark, Sea Spirit, Maldives
Dive 1
Another strong out-current in the channel so we made a drift out of the channel onto the outer corner. The turtles were all sheltering on the corner and there must have been 6-7 together pretending not to see us. There was a round ribbon tail ray hiding amongst coral blocks in the channel plus another in the cave on the outside reef. We also saw striped Maori wrasses, a pair of banded coral shrimps, and white tip sharks patrolling the reef edge.
Dive 2
Shallow thila/giri site with current point over the coral blocks at the E tip with dozens of long-fin batfish and many sleek surgeonfish. The topography of the site is interesting as it undulates in and out with large coral structures overhanging a sandy plateau which are full of reef fish and glassfish, cleaners etc. There were some beautiful blue magnifica anemones but they has Clarke's anemonefish with them! In the shallows were beautiful yellow, orange, brown and white acabaria soft corals.
Dive 3
NEW SITE Another exploration of an interesting ridge of reef extending #300m north from an island. The hard coral growth on the top pf the "thila" was stunning with lots of fusiliers and dogtooth tunas. In the shallower area was a beautiful coral garden, We saw a foraging eagle ray.
Day 10
Longfin batfish sea Spirit maldives
Dive 1
STRONG in-current at western channel. There were rivers of fusiliers plus tunas on the ocean reef then white tip and grey reef sharks on front of channel. We then had a fast and exciting drift over a forest of table corals. Wheeeee!
Dive 2
Back to the new thila site to see what we could find. There was an eagle ray some grey sharks and a white tip at the current point again and lots of rainbow runners in schools or single, hanging around cleaning stations and waiting to be cleaned. Amongst the shallow blocks we found two yellow leaf fish, two ribbon eels and jacks and groupers eyeing up all the glassfish. Great site!
Dive 3
There was a big swell making diving conditions quite tricky. Forwards and back, forwards and back! At the current point were big schools of snappers and surgeonfish and the top was covered in lovely corals full of every type of reef fish.
Night Dive
Night dive on sheltered reef with Periclimenes, Bruuni, Lysmata, Inornate and Amboin shrimps, a feeding basket star, and the highlight of an amazing pink bobbled sinoise coral like something from outer space. The leather corals were spawning.
Day 11
Naughty Clarks anemonefish in magnifica Sea Spirit Maldives
Dive 1
The viz was a little better at this shallow thila and the top was covered with huge swathes of pulsating silversides chased by dogtooth and bonito tunas. Cool! There were schools od BARRACUDAS, CRESCENT TAIL BIG EYES, BLUESTRIPE SNAPPERS AND GOATFISH. We found a ZEBRA SHARK on the sand slope. There were so many groupers amongst the glassfish.
Dive 2
Tricky current along the front of the channel making it quite hard work. We saw a couple of eagle rays, grey and white tip sharks, a very large school of Forster's barracudas blocking our entry into the channel and then we had an easy drift in lovely blue water.
Daytime Excursion
Afternoon visit to small sandbank surrounded by a "private swimming pool" so we just chilled out and enjoyed the sunshine and this little slice of perfect beach.
Day 12
Zebra shark Sea Spirit Maldives
Guest Transfer
All guests transferred to Kaadhedhdhoo airport for internal flight to Male and onward international connections
Day 13
Group SS412, Sea Spirit Maldives
 
Guest Transfer
Internal flight from Male international airport into Gan international airport in Addu. Flight was a little delayed. Guests transferred to Sea Spirit in time for a late lunch
Dive 1
Late check dive on northern ocean reef. It was just nice to get wet and havea gentle drift! We found a green LEAF FISH, a large green turtle and lots of white spotted groupers being cleaned. The wall had lovely red and purple menella seafans and sea whips on the vertical wall. We finished the dive just in time for sunset!
Day 1
Sea Spirit, Maldives view of deck
Dive 1
Ocean reef and channel dive in blue clear water but only 25 degrees below 25m- chilly! WHAT A DIVE! BLACKTIP AND GREY SHARKS PLUS WHITE TIP SHARKS, schools of snappers, Napoleons, schools of jacks and millions of fusiliers and 11 MANTA RAYS which seemed very happy to see us!
Dive 2
Back to the manta point and around 11 MANTA RAYS AROUND FOR THE ENTIRE DIVE. There was very good visibility but cold water and most of the mantas were busy being cleaned and interacting with divers and each other. Also GREY SHARKS, harlequin sweetlips and lovely corals on the reef top.
Dive 3
Ocean reef to channel with excellent hard corals all the way down the slope from 3 to 30m depth. Lots of large coral blocks full of reef fish: Napoleons of different sizes, hawksbill turtles, black and white snappers, white spotted box pufferfish, yellow trumpetfish and phyllidia slugs of various species.
Day 2
Manta rays, Addu Sea Spirit Maldives
Dive 1
LOVEFEST AMONGST THE MANTAS with two frisky males chasing after Abigail , a big female. One followed closely behind her for the entire dive, Aaaaah! There was lots of cleaning activity and socialising amongst the other mantas and there were about 6 around today.
Dive 2
It was stronger current but there were still around 6 mantas busy cleaning and socialising and plenty of hanging over the divers' heads and enjoying a jacuzzi so a great show for us.
Dive 3
Small current and a gentle out-drift in the SE channel of the atoll. The reef top was pretty with an area of blue magnifica anemones with lots of orange Maldives clownfish, plus Clarke's anemonefish, three occelated phyllidias together, a big Napoleon, millions of Cooper's anthias, giant morays and a tiny flic-flacing oriental sweetlips. We found the chain for the WW2 submarine net.
Lovely pink sunset tonight
Day 3
Coral reef, Sea Spirit Maldives
Dive 1
Dive on the famous WW2 wreck inside the atoll and had a stern tour via the bomb-hole, the propeller and the oil storage room and to the bow. There are lovely mature black coral trees and many white and orange sea whips. We found a white pontonides shrimp on a whip, 2 large Mappa puffers, blacktail snappers, lots of iridescent Phydiana nudibranchs, reef pipefish and the friendly batfish entertained us on ascent.
Dive 2
A stronger current than on previous days and the mantas seemed a bit nervous to come in and clean. One stayed shallow and gave divers a show and another swooped around and did some cleaning. We had a hard hook-in.
Dive 3
Lovely blue clear water at this ocean reef site where we drifted over coral blocks and a gently sloping coral garden. We saw many large snappers, bicolor parrotfish, a MANGROVE WHIPRAY sleeping, excellent hard corals full of anthias and chromis. Barracudas and lots of milkfish hung above the reef
Night Dive
Night dive on the wreck. We stayed on the upper parts above 20m depth and found a spiny lobster running around, table corals with several spotted or orange trapezia crabs, a large common crab, lots of hingebeak shrimps, sleeping parrotfish, pipefish etc.
Day 4
Adele the manta ray, Addu, Maldives
Dive 1
Last dive at the manta point and two manta rays came to see us off and give a show. The reef fish on top of the block occupied the cleaners: harlequin and silver sweetlips, bluestripe snappers, big-eye emperors etc. We found a green leaf fish on the reef slope.
Ocean Crossing
Inter atoll crossing from Addu to Huvadhoo. We saw a medium sized unidentified whale, maybe a baby blue whale? Which came up to breathe a few times and then dived.
Dive 2
We dived a thila in the south of Huvadhoo atoll. This is a large site and we only managed the east and northern sides which have lovely orange seafans interspersed around large coral blocks with lots of snappers, emperors, parrotfish, a white tip, rivers of fusilers etc.
Day 5
Well camoflaged leaf fish in halimeda Sea Spirit, Maldives
Dive 1
Great dive on this small thila! At the current point were dogtooth tunas chasing fusiliers. Amongst the coral blocks we found a SLEEPING NURSE SHARK which was completely exposed but we managed to wake her up and off she went. There was also a round RIBBONTAIL ray, a pair of ELEGANT SQUAT LOBSTERS in a pink featherstar, a GREEN and a GOLD LEAF FISHES, a carpet anemone with a shorthead anemone shrimp. There were really nice reef fish and corals all over this site and we had fun playing with the huge schools of silversides up in the shallows as we made our safety stop.
Dive 2
Out-current in channel so dived southern ocean reef. 3x eagle rays, 2x brown/red leaf fish, lvely tight school of pyramid butterflyfish over the spur, many groupers including a large brownmarbled grouper hiding in an overhand, coral blocks full of Evan's anthias with Lysmata cleaning shrimps and nasty black-cheek morays watching the fish. Lots of milk fish swam around in the shallows and an unusual large school of green-cheeked parrotfish swam past.
Dive 3
Small current channel drift over sandy bottom with excellent reef on both sides and lovely orange soft coral and sea fans. We saw several green and hawksbill turtles and a sleeping ZEBRA SHARK which woke up and swam off. A woggle eyed ELECTRIC TORPEDO RAY took off and swam around over the reef at the front of the channel, he was a funny little guy!
Day 6
Grey shark, Sea Spirit, Maldives
Dive 1
Dive on Ocean reef south of channel as current still running out hard. There were 5x GREY REEF SHARKS being cleaned on the spur plus several large dogtooth tunas scooting up and down the reef. Along the ledge at around 20m were schools of bluestripe snappers and goldspot emperors plus lots of soldierfish. A few giant barracudas hung off the reef today.
Dive 2
Mid-atoll large reef with beautiful hard corals all the way down from 1 to 30+m depth and huge schools of blue-stripe snappers meandering around. Today there were a lot of silversides in the shallows and it was fun chasing the huge schools around and making them pulsate.> lovely coral blocks with glassfish, an unsusually large gut-like sea cucumber and a school of Forster's barracudas.
Dive 3
We love this sheltered thila site with its beautiful hard corals and schools of fish, and today it was very dream-like as there were huge schools of silversides mixed in with the glassfish making it all very atmospheric. We found a spearing mantis shrimp in its burrow, a baby clearfin lionfish, Bruuni cleaner shrimps, schols of striped yellow goatfish and crescent tail big-eyes and a very cute little hawksbill turtle.
Day 7
Pyramid butterflyfish Huvadhoo atoll Sea Spirit Maldives
Dive 1
Western channel site where we jumped mid channel and found a few white tip and grey sharks riding the current plus dogtooth tunas and rivers of fusiliers. On the shallower reef were lots of great barracudas stalking the divers plus another electric torpedo ray (!) and schools of red and black and white snappers. We also saw Napoleons of various sizes. The water was very blue.
Dive 2
NEW SITE One of the best things about being in the south is the opportunity to discover new sites and this small thila really delivered. At the current point were ~6 GREY REEF SHARKS, an eagle ray and the whole thila had lots of large rainbow runners and dogtooth tunas hanging around looking for cleaning stations. The top was covered in schools of fish over coral blocks. We found 2x RIBBON EELS,a YELLOW LEAF FISH, OCTOPUS, crown of thorns starfish, a bartail moray and bluefin jacks predating a baitball of silversides. Great dive!
Dive 3
Lovely, sheltered hard coral site. We saw a large grey eagle ray foraging, a sleeping round ribbontail ray, Maldives sponge snail, varicose wart slugs, sand perch, lizard fish party, tunas and schools of fusiliers. Matt found a MIMIC OCTOPUS pulling a variety of shapes ranging from a spiky featherstar to a nudibranch and a sea slug. Totally amazing.
Day 8
Blue ribbon eel, Sea Spirit Maldives
Dive 1
Out-current in this channel so we made an out current drift. We found 4x NURSE SHARKS resting in a big coral block, round ribbon tail rays, white tip sharks sleeping on the channel front, green and hawksbill turtles, a small sleeping ZEBRA SHARK. There were huge schools of bluestripe snappers and humpback snappers on the corner plus racoon butterflyfish and millions of blue-geen chromis over the fields of staghorn corals in the shallows.
Dive 2
There was a small current along the ocean front of channel so tried to cross the front. The outflow got stronger and some divers had to bail early. There were grey sharks and white tips, green turtles, schools of Forster's and chevron barracudas and a funny topsy-turvy turtle being swept around in the surge.
Dive 3
Beautiful hard corals surrounding a lagoon site. There were rivers of fusiliers on the coral slope, coral block cleaning stations with banded coral shrimps, an orange-nape scorpionfish, unicornfish, pinkbar gobies and their pistol shrimps housekeeping their burrows, magnificent gobies, a juvenile black and white snapper, Maldives blennie (pretty, stripey eye pattern) and so many humbug and peacock damsels in the corals.
TWO WHALESHARKS behind SS whilst at night anchorage. Unfortunately they didn't stay for long. One was small at ~3m in length whilst the other was much bigger at ~7-8m, and bigger than most that we see here.
Day 9
Nurse shark, Sea Spirit, Maldives
Dive 1
Another strong out-current in the channel so we made a drift out of the channel onto the outer corner. The turtles were all sheltering on the corner and there must have been 6-7 together pretending not to see us. There was a round ribbon tail ray hiding amongst coral blocks in the channel plus another in the cave on the outside reef. We also saw striped Maori wrasses, a pair of banded coral shrimps, and white tip sharks patrolling the reef edge.
Dive 2
Shallow thila/giri site with current point over the coral blocks at the E tip with dozens of long-fin batfish and many sleek surgeonfish. The topography of the site is interesting as it undulates in and out with large coral structures overhanging a sandy plateau which are full of reef fish and glassfish, cleaners etc. There were some beautiful blue magnifica anemones but they has Clarke's anemonefish with them! In the shallows were beautiful yellow, orange, brown and white acabaria soft corals.
Dive 3
NEW SITE Another exploration of an interesting ridge of reef extending #300m north from an island. The hard coral growth on the top pf the "thila" was stunning with lots of fusiliers and dogtooth tunas. In the shallower area was a beautiful coral garden, We saw a foraging eagle ray.
Day 10
Longfin batfish sea Spirit maldives
Dive 1
STRONG in-current at western channel. There were rivers of fusiliers plus tunas on the ocean reef then white tip and grey reef sharks on front of channel. We then had a fast and exciting drift over a forest of table corals. Wheeeee!
Dive 2
Back to the new thila site to see what we could find. There was an eagle ray some grey sharks and a white tip at the current point again and lots of rainbow runners in schools or single, hanging around cleaning stations and waiting to be cleaned. Amongst the shallow blocks we found two yellow leaf fish, two ribbon eels and jacks and groupers eyeing up all the glassfish. Great site!
Dive 3
There was a big swell making diving conditions quite tricky. Forwards and back, forwards and back! At the current point were big schools of snappers and surgeonfish and the top was covered in lovely corals full of every type of reef fish.
Night Dive
Night dive on sheltered reef with Periclimenes, Bruuni, Lysmata, Inornate and Amboin shrimps, a feeding basket star, and the highlight of an amazing pink bobbled sinoise coral like something from outer space. The leather corals were spawning.
Day 11
Naughty Clarks anemonefish in magnifica Sea Spirit Maldives
Dive 1
The viz was a little better at this shallow thila and the top was covered with huge swathes of pulsating silversides chased by dogtooth and bonito tunas. Cool! There were schools od BARRACUDAS, CRESCENT TAIL BIG EYES, BLUESTRIPE SNAPPERS AND GOATFISH. We found a ZEBRA SHARK on the sand slope. There were so many groupers amongst the glassfish.
Dive 2
Tricky current along the front of the channel making it quite hard work. We saw a couple of eagle rays, grey and white tip sharks, a very large school of Forster's barracudas blocking our entry into the channel and then we had an easy drift in lovely blue water.
Daytime Excursion
Afternoon visit to small sandbank surrounded by a "private swimming pool" so we just chilled out and enjoyed the sunshine and this little slice of perfect beach.
Day 12
Zebra shark Sea Spirit Maldives
Guest Transfer
All guests transferred to Kaadhedhdhoo airport for internal flight to Male and onward international connections
Day 13
Group SS412, Sea Spirit Maldives
Sea Spirit SS410 11 Aug 2013 to 23 Aug 2013 Equatorial Far South - Huvadhoo/Foammulah/Gan Addu (12 day)
Guest Transfer
Divers arrived from internal flight from Male to Kaadhedhoo in Huvadhoo atoll and transferred to Sea Spirit. The second arrival was after 4pm so a liitle too late for a check dive. Welcome to the beautiful Far South
Snorkelling
Snorkel on island house reef. There were white tip reef sharks eagle rays and lovely reef fish
Day 1
Beautiful coral island in the Maldives from Sea Spirit
Dive 1
Pretty, shallow reef inside atoll with excellent hard corals from 3-30m. Feathertail ray, white tip reef sharks, dogtooth tunas out hunting and one managed to catch breakfast then being cleaned later on Lots of sweepers and juvenile cardinals around coral blocks patrolled by red groupers and rock cods. Schools of crescent tailed big eyes, bluestripe snappers and yellow stripe goatfish, chromis, humbug and barred damsels.
Dive 2
Ocean reef corner with impressive coral growth in large thila-like formations. Schools of black & white snappers, queen coris, yellowstripe goatfish, magnifica anemones with large families of blackfoot anemonefish, spotted groupers, many schools of different species fusliers.
Dive 3
Sheltered coral reef site with huge mounds of acroporas and pocilloporas seperated by sandy patches and large schools of blue-stripe and 2-spot snappers and goatfish. Large coral blocks full of glassfish and groupers, lunar tailed rock cods, huge giant clams, purple-yellow Evan's anthias in the shallows
Evening Activity
Evening visit to Bird island where the lesser frigate birds were soaring far above the island. A couple of herons flew past. A few trees on the north side had toppled over the beach and we had to pick our way through the trees and the jungle to circuit the island!
Day 2
Pavona corals dive site Maldives Sea Spirit
Dive 1
Channel dive with an exciting show of GREY REEF SHARKS, WHITE TIP SHARKS, SEVERAL ROUND RIBBON TAIL RAYS, a ZEBRA SHARK and lots of green and hawksbill turtles inside the channel plus a pair of starry pufferfish, and both round and longfin batfish.
Dive 2
MORE grey sharks, a SQUADRON OF EAGLE RAYS, a wahoo, a huge school of Forster's and chevron barracudas, some dogtooth tunas with BIG teeth. During the drift we found a NURSE SHARK and lots more green turtles
Dive 3
There was an out current in the channel so we drifted the southern reef past several green turtles, a different nurse shark, a huge round ribbon tail ray and onto the corner where we played with the enormous schools of bluestripe snappers. We also saw some super friendly hawksbill turtles another zebra shark, schools of big-eye and bluefin jacks, an ENORMOUS SCHOOL OF BONITOS with dogtooth tunas patrolling underneath the smaller tunas plus grey sharks and white tip sharks. GREAT DIVE!
Day 3
Green turtle Huvadhoo atoll Maldives Sea Spirit
Dive 1
There were SPINNER DOLPHINS in the channel before the dive. Just after we descended we found a ZEBRA SHARK sleeping on a ledge then there were several grey sharks amongst the school of black and white snappers plus large rainbow runners, tunas etc. We drifted in over beautiful porites blocks full of fish and nepthia soft corals. We came across two ribbon rail rays, a pair of zebra sharks and two black ribbon eels!
Dive 2
Grey sharks were riding current on front of channel and there was a eagle ray and a free-swimming zebra shark on the south corner. WE crossed the front past large schools of snappers, big eye jacks and a few black jacks and rainbow runners. There were a few green turtles sleeping on ledges. We continued north where the reef went shallow with good hard corals swarming with Cooper's anthias. Also oriental and silver sweetlips, hawksbill turtles and eagle ray fly-bys.
Dive 3
Lovely channel wall with huge porites corals full of snappers, groupers and soldierfish. There is also excellent orange schleronepthia soft coral and seafans. There were SIX EAGLE RAYS together on the outside and lovely reef fish all the way along.
Day 4
Zebra shark Huvadhoo atoll Maldives
Dive 1
We tried a different channel with a shallower (20m) front. There were overhangs just over the edge with white sand floors and a couple of round ribbon tail rays looking for cleaning stations. An enormous school of bonitos enveloped us and then also came back when we were drifting in the channel. Also tunas, grey sharks white tip sharks and nice corals along the front.
Dive 2
This is a famous channel for GREY SHARKS and there were quite a few around although the current was a little slack so they were off the wall. There were white tip sharks along the reef top and a huge schools of big eye jacks at the S corner and after the spur which broke into smaller schools and buzzed us. We saw several eagle rays 1, 2 then 6 at a time. On the reef top were Meyer's and pyramid butterflyfish and lots of different sweetlips.
Dive 3
Outflow in the channel and a lovely drift past great coral formations with a sleeping ZEBRA SHARK and several GREEN TURTLES. Towards the front of the channel were huge staghorn islets full of chromis and then white tip sharks and napoleons on the outside. A small white leaf fish hid amongst the corals
Evening Activity
Evening visit to abandoned village on pretty island with good beach. It was a very pink sunset tonight.
Day 5
Big eye jacks Huvadhoo atoll Sea Spirit
Dive 1
Lots of GREY SHARKS this morning, both riding the current on the channel front and on the reef top at cleaning stations posing on their tails with their mouths open. The schools of big eye jacks and bonitos mobbed groups of divers and everuthing was getting excited. We had a gentle in-drift on the S corner over shallow coral blocks with Napoleons and lots of groupers. We found a cute juvenile (spotty!) oriental sweetlips.
Dive 2
Final dive at the sharky channel and a small current going north so we passed a few grey sharks and the enormous school of jacks and continued to the north corner where there were several hawksbill turtles hovering a metre above the reef and waiting to be cleaned by the bristletooth tangs- very funny. One liked it's reflection in a camera lens and had an extreme close up. Also giant barracudas, yet more bonitos (v.v.good this week!) angelfish, butterflyfish etc.
Dive 3
A thila site and an opportunity to look for small things and enjoy a beautiful sea scape with large coral blocks an a steep sandy slope and lots of orange sea fans. Large schools of fusiliers pursued by dogtooth tunas hung around the current point. There were groupers guarding blocks full of sweepers and juv. cardinals. We found a green leaf fish, and Orzaks flatworm, lots of Maldives sponge snails, an odd textured coral crab in none of the ID guides, pairs of elegant squat lobsters in feather stars.
Night Dive
Back to thila for night dive. Lots of different crabs and shrimps: a large common crab, squat lobsters, Periclimenes shrimps, a juvenile rock lobster a camouflage grouper caught a fusilier and downed it in two, a white cowrie with a black mantle and a huge scorpion conch.
Day 6
Grey Sharks channel front Huvadhoo atoll Sea Spirit
Dive 1
Back to the pretty thila with rivers of fusiliers streaming past. There were a couple of white tip sharks plus the dogtooth tuna cruising the current point. Over the edge is a wall of orange seafans plunging into the depths with schools of blue stripe snappers. we found another green leaf fish and enjoyed all the bubble, carpet and magnifica anemones with Clarke's and blackfoot anemonefish.
Ocean Crossing
Crossing to Addu
Dive 2
Drift on south plateau of exposed ocean reef as blue water dive (off the reef). Schools of fusiliers, surgeons, mackerels and some big tunas but rather quiet.
Dive 3
North ocean reef with wall smothered in big-eye jacks which just kept coming and coming (thousands- literally) Milk fish up in the shallows then nice large coral blocks full of black & white snappers, red snappers and lots of anthias. A couple of white tips sauntered past.
Day 7
Elegant squat lobster in crinoid Maldives Sea Spirit
Dive 1
Blue water dive to south ocean reef but only the same schools of fish as before despite blue plankton sparklies and surgeon fish off the reef which promised more. The batfish and mackerels were nice.
Dive 2
Out current in channel so dived outside ocean reef in front of channel where there is amazing hard corals all the way from 3 to 30m. There were several friendly hawksbill turtles plus lots of pufferfish in striated black/grey mating colours which were very cute. We found a coral beauty angelfish, and schools of bristletooth tangs and surgeons.
Dive 3
Small current on outside ocean reef to NW of atoll. The hard corals were on a gentle slope and made a lovely coral gardens with large groupers, especially bownmarbled and flower groupers. There were large areas of pristine leather and cabbage corals. Lots and lots of different chromis and damsels with a large barracuda keeping an eye on us.
Day 8
Enormous school of blue-stripe snappers Sea Spirit Maldives
Dive 1
First dive at the manta point and we were delighted to have 15 different mantas turn up to entertain us and socialise with each other. They were mainly hovering above the cleaning station and a grey shark and a white tip were also enjoying the current flow
Dive 2
A different dive with a small current and MUCH FRIENDLIER mantas which were busy being cleaned and checking us out. The mantas were all regulars and not afraid of divers and very interactive. Super dive!
Dive 3
Very small current and rather a lot of plankton in the deeper water but lots of nice small things which is what this site is all about: amboin shrimps, a mouth brooding tiger cardinal, a pregnant reef pipefish, lemon gobies, longnose filefish, a field of garden eels, pinkbar gobies with shrimps and several oriental sweetlips with an odd side-parting front head stripe!
Day 9
Manta ray with diver Sea Spirit in Addu
Dive 1
Stern tour of the British Loyalty wreck. Today it was very clear above 20m but rather silty below so spooky going through the midship bomb-hole at 25m. A big eagle ray passed by, lovely sea whips and sinoise corals on the hull, juvenile cardinals in extensive black coral trees, a large pufferfish, lots of Pterolidia ianthina nudibranchs around the bow, reef pipefish and the usual friendly batfish as we ascended.
Dive 2
16 Manta rays in a very small current today so they were busy being cleaned. It was a different group to yesterday with many of the young friendly ones which like to hang in the exhaled bubble streams. Super fun. Meanwhile the lovely school of bluestripe snappers harlequin sweetlips and big eye emperors just hung out oblivious to our presence.
Dive 3
Easy ocean reef site with large coral blocks overhanging the drop-off. Napoleons, green and hawksbill turtles, eagle rays in the shallows, fusiliers and mackerels feeding in the channel out-flow (there is a lot of plankton this week- it must be the full moon!) Sgt Majors and chromis guarding eggs, a Nembrotha cristata nudi, 5 guineafowl puffers together, lots of groupers again.
Night dive cancelled as everyone worn out!
Day 10
Blackfoot clownfish in magnifica anemone Maldives Sea Spirit
Dive 1
AWESOME!!! We had 30 PLUS MANTA RAYS turn up at the cleaning station during the dive! There were just so many up the reef, on the cleaning sttaion, in the channel and down the reef behind the cleaning station. Totally amazing. The grey reef shark turned up when the current started to run to see what the fuss was about
Dive 2
24 Manta rays turned up during this second dive, 7 being different to before. The current was smaller than before and the mantas were very sociable with us and playing with us. We had a pair of octopus trying to mate as we descended and an eagle ray as we ascended
Dive 3
Brisk drift along east side of atoll ocean reef with plateau which then falls into an overhang and a steep reef there-on. The deep section has lovely corals and a few schools of snappers and white tips sleeping in the sand, the overhang was festooned with orange soft corals and the north wall had nice coral blocks with lots of silver rudderfish, milkfish etc. Some smaller blocks had green orange and brown acabaria.
Enormous pod of spinner dolphins leaping, playing and surfing around front of channel. Mohammed drove Sea Spirit past the dolphins several times so they could bow wave ride. They seemed to be having so much fun!
Day 11
30 Mantas rays at cleaning station Sea Spirit, Addu, Maldives
Dive 1
Last time at the cleaning station and 21 manta rays turned up to say goodbye! This has surely been our busiest week here with more and more mantas learning to bubble bathe. The grey shark turned up later even though the current remained small.
Dive 2
Ocean reef drift from section of shallow reef incline to drop off. Nice coral blocks full of soldierfish and snappers plus lots of different groupers, a few morays peeking out of the dense corals, a very agitated large school of rudderfish, goldfinger darts, milkfish and a very large school of Captain parrotfish. Nice last dive.
Afternoon at leisure
Day 12
Pyramid butterflyfish Sea Spirit maldives
Guest Transfer
Transfer to Gan airport Addu for internal flight to Male and onward international flights.
Day 12
 
Guest Transfer
Divers arrived from internal flight from Male to Kaadhedhoo in Huvadhoo atoll and transferred to Sea Spirit. The second arrival was after 4pm so a liitle too late for a check dive. Welcome to the beautiful Far South
Snorkelling
Snorkel on island house reef. There were white tip reef sharks eagle rays and lovely reef fish
Day 1
Beautiful coral island in the Maldives from Sea Spirit
Dive 1
Pretty, shallow reef inside atoll with excellent hard corals from 3-30m. Feathertail ray, white tip reef sharks, dogtooth tunas out hunting and one managed to catch breakfast then being cleaned later on Lots of sweepers and juvenile cardinals around coral blocks patrolled by red groupers and rock cods. Schools of crescent tailed big eyes, bluestripe snappers and yellow stripe goatfish, chromis, humbug and barred damsels.
Dive 2
Ocean reef corner with impressive coral growth in large thila-like formations. Schools of black & white snappers, queen coris, yellowstripe goatfish, magnifica anemones with large families of blackfoot anemonefish, spotted groupers, many schools of different species fusliers.
Dive 3
Sheltered coral reef site with huge mounds of acroporas and pocilloporas seperated by sandy patches and large schools of blue-stripe and 2-spot snappers and goatfish. Large coral blocks full of glassfish and groupers, lunar tailed rock cods, huge giant clams, purple-yellow Evan's anthias in the shallows
Evening Activity
Evening visit to Bird island where the lesser frigate birds were soaring far above the island. A couple of herons flew past. A few trees on the north side had toppled over the beach and we had to pick our way through the trees and the jungle to circuit the island!
Day 2
Pavona corals dive site Maldives Sea Spirit
Dive 1
Channel dive with an exciting show of GREY REEF SHARKS, WHITE TIP SHARKS, SEVERAL ROUND RIBBON TAIL RAYS, a ZEBRA SHARK and lots of green and hawksbill turtles inside the channel plus a pair of starry pufferfish, and both round and longfin batfish.
Dive 2
MORE grey sharks, a SQUADRON OF EAGLE RAYS, a wahoo, a huge school of Forster's and chevron barracudas, some dogtooth tunas with BIG teeth. During the drift we found a NURSE SHARK and lots more green turtles
Dive 3
There was an out current in the channel so we drifted the southern reef past several green turtles, a different nurse shark, a huge round ribbon tail ray and onto the corner where we played with the enormous schools of bluestripe snappers. We also saw some super friendly hawksbill turtles another zebra shark, schools of big-eye and bluefin jacks, an ENORMOUS SCHOOL OF BONITOS with dogtooth tunas patrolling underneath the smaller tunas plus grey sharks and white tip sharks. GREAT DIVE!
Day 3
Green turtle Huvadhoo atoll Maldives Sea Spirit
Dive 1
There were SPINNER DOLPHINS in the channel before the dive. Just after we descended we found a ZEBRA SHARK sleeping on a ledge then there were several grey sharks amongst the school of black and white snappers plus large rainbow runners, tunas etc. We drifted in over beautiful porites blocks full of fish and nepthia soft corals. We came across two ribbon rail rays, a pair of zebra sharks and two black ribbon eels!
Dive 2
Grey sharks were riding current on front of channel and there was a eagle ray and a free-swimming zebra shark on the south corner. WE crossed the front past large schools of snappers, big eye jacks and a few black jacks and rainbow runners. There were a few green turtles sleeping on ledges. We continued north where the reef went shallow with good hard corals swarming with Cooper's anthias. Also oriental and silver sweetlips, hawksbill turtles and eagle ray fly-bys.
Dive 3
Lovely channel wall with huge porites corals full of snappers, groupers and soldierfish. There is also excellent orange schleronepthia soft coral and seafans. There were SIX EAGLE RAYS together on the outside and lovely reef fish all the way along.
Day 4
Zebra shark Huvadhoo atoll Maldives
Dive 1
We tried a different channel with a shallower (20m) front. There were overhangs just over the edge with white sand floors and a couple of round ribbon tail rays looking for cleaning stations. An enormous school of bonitos enveloped us and then also came back when we were drifting in the channel. Also tunas, grey sharks white tip sharks and nice corals along the front.
Dive 2
This is a famous channel for GREY SHARKS and there were quite a few around although the current was a little slack so they were off the wall. There were white tip sharks along the reef top and a huge schools of big eye jacks at the S corner and after the spur which broke into smaller schools and buzzed us. We saw several eagle rays 1, 2 then 6 at a time. On the reef top were Meyer's and pyramid butterflyfish and lots of different sweetlips.
Dive 3
Outflow in the channel and a lovely drift past great coral formations with a sleeping ZEBRA SHARK and several GREEN TURTLES. Towards the front of the channel were huge staghorn islets full of chromis and then white tip sharks and napoleons on the outside. A small white leaf fish hid amongst the corals
Evening Activity
Evening visit to abandoned village on pretty island with good beach. It was a very pink sunset tonight.
Day 5
Big eye jacks Huvadhoo atoll Sea Spirit
Dive 1
Lots of GREY SHARKS this morning, both riding the current on the channel front and on the reef top at cleaning stations posing on their tails with their mouths open. The schools of big eye jacks and bonitos mobbed groups of divers and everuthing was getting excited. We had a gentle in-drift on the S corner over shallow coral blocks with Napoleons and lots of groupers. We found a cute juvenile (spotty!) oriental sweetlips.
Dive 2
Final dive at the sharky channel and a small current going north so we passed a few grey sharks and the enormous school of jacks and continued to the north corner where there were several hawksbill turtles hovering a metre above the reef and waiting to be cleaned by the bristletooth tangs- very funny. One liked it's reflection in a camera lens and had an extreme close up. Also giant barracudas, yet more bonitos (v.v.good this week!) angelfish, butterflyfish etc.
Dive 3
A thila site and an opportunity to look for small things and enjoy a beautiful sea scape with large coral blocks an a steep sandy slope and lots of orange sea fans. Large schools of fusiliers pursued by dogtooth tunas hung around the current point. There were groupers guarding blocks full of sweepers and juv. cardinals. We found a green leaf fish, and Orzaks flatworm, lots of Maldives sponge snails, an odd textured coral crab in none of the ID guides, pairs of elegant squat lobsters in feather stars.
Night Dive
Back to thila for night dive. Lots of different crabs and shrimps: a large common crab, squat lobsters, Periclimenes shrimps, a juvenile rock lobster a camouflage grouper caught a fusilier and downed it in two, a white cowrie with a black mantle and a huge scorpion conch.
Day 6
Grey Sharks channel front Huvadhoo atoll Sea Spirit
Dive 1
Back to the pretty thila with rivers of fusiliers streaming past. There were a couple of white tip sharks plus the dogtooth tuna cruising the current point. Over the edge is a wall of orange seafans plunging into the depths with schools of blue stripe snappers. we found another green leaf fish and enjoyed all the bubble, carpet and magnifica anemones with Clarke's and blackfoot anemonefish.
Ocean Crossing
Crossing to Addu
Dive 2
Drift on south plateau of exposed ocean reef as blue water dive (off the reef). Schools of fusiliers, surgeons, mackerels and some big tunas but rather quiet.
Dive 3
North ocean reef with wall smothered in big-eye jacks which just kept coming and coming (thousands- literally) Milk fish up in the shallows then nice large coral blocks full of black & white snappers, red snappers and lots of anthias. A couple of white tips sauntered past.
Day 7
Elegant squat lobster in crinoid Maldives Sea Spirit
Dive 1
Blue water dive to south ocean reef but only the same schools of fish as before despite blue plankton sparklies and surgeon fish off the reef which promised more. The batfish and mackerels were nice.
Dive 2
Out current in channel so dived outside ocean reef in front of channel where there is amazing hard corals all the way from 3 to 30m. There were several friendly hawksbill turtles plus lots of pufferfish in striated black/grey mating colours which were very cute. We found a coral beauty angelfish, and schools of bristletooth tangs and surgeons.
Dive 3
Small current on outside ocean reef to NW of atoll. The hard corals were on a gentle slope and made a lovely coral gardens with large groupers, especially bownmarbled and flower groupers. There were large areas of pristine leather and cabbage corals. Lots and lots of different chromis and damsels with a large barracuda keeping an eye on us.
Day 8
Enormous school of blue-stripe snappers Sea Spirit Maldives
Dive 1
First dive at the manta point and we were delighted to have 15 different mantas turn up to entertain us and socialise with each other. They were mainly hovering above the cleaning station and a grey shark and a white tip were also enjoying the current flow
Dive 2
A different dive with a small current and MUCH FRIENDLIER mantas which were busy being cleaned and checking us out. The mantas were all regulars and not afraid of divers and very interactive. Super dive!
Dive 3
Very small current and rather a lot of plankton in the deeper water but lots of nice small things which is what this site is all about: amboin shrimps, a mouth brooding tiger cardinal, a pregnant reef pipefish, lemon gobies, longnose filefish, a field of garden eels, pinkbar gobies with shrimps and several oriental sweetlips with an odd side-parting front head stripe!
Day 9
Manta ray with diver Sea Spirit in Addu
Dive 1
Stern tour of the British Loyalty wreck. Today it was very clear above 20m but rather silty below so spooky going through the midship bomb-hole at 25m. A big eagle ray passed by, lovely sea whips and sinoise corals on the hull, juvenile cardinals in extensive black coral trees, a large pufferfish, lots of Pterolidia ianthina nudibranchs around the bow, reef pipefish and the usual friendly batfish as we ascended.
Dive 2
16 Manta rays in a very small current today so they were busy being cleaned. It was a different group to yesterday with many of the young friendly ones which like to hang in the exhaled bubble streams. Super fun. Meanwhile the lovely school of bluestripe snappers harlequin sweetlips and big eye emperors just hung out oblivious to our presence.
Dive 3
Easy ocean reef site with large coral blocks overhanging the drop-off. Napoleons, green and hawksbill turtles, eagle rays in the shallows, fusiliers and mackerels feeding in the channel out-flow (there is a lot of plankton this week- it must be the full moon!) Sgt Majors and chromis guarding eggs, a Nembrotha cristata nudi, 5 guineafowl puffers together, lots of groupers again.
Night dive cancelled as everyone worn out!
Day 10
Blackfoot clownfish in magnifica anemone Maldives Sea Spirit
Dive 1
AWESOME!!! We had 30 PLUS MANTA RAYS turn up at the cleaning station during the dive! There were just so many up the reef, on the cleaning sttaion, in the channel and down the reef behind the cleaning station. Totally amazing. The grey reef shark turned up when the current started to run to see what the fuss was about
Dive 2
24 Manta rays turned up during this second dive, 7 being different to before. The current was smaller than before and the mantas were very sociable with us and playing with us. We had a pair of octopus trying to mate as we descended and an eagle ray as we ascended
Dive 3
Brisk drift along east side of atoll ocean reef with plateau which then falls into an overhang and a steep reef there-on. The deep section has lovely corals and a few schools of snappers and white tips sleeping in the sand, the overhang was festooned with orange soft corals and the north wall had nice coral blocks with lots of silver rudderfish, milkfish etc. Some smaller blocks had green orange and brown acabaria.
Enormous pod of spinner dolphins leaping, playing and surfing around front of channel. Mohammed drove Sea Spirit past the dolphins several times so they could bow wave ride. They seemed to be having so much fun!
Day 11
30 Mantas rays at cleaning station Sea Spirit, Addu, Maldives
Dive 1
Last time at the cleaning station and 21 manta rays turned up to say goodbye! This has surely been our busiest week here with more and more mantas learning to bubble bathe. The grey shark turned up later even though the current remained small.
Dive 2
Ocean reef drift from section of shallow reef incline to drop off. Nice coral blocks full of soldierfish and snappers plus lots of different groupers, a few morays peeking out of the dense corals, a very agitated large school of rudderfish, goldfinger darts, milkfish and a very large school of Captain parrotfish. Nice last dive.
Afternoon at leisure
Day 12
Pyramid butterflyfish Sea Spirit maldives
Guest Transfer
Transfer to Gan airport Addu for internal flight to Male and onward international flights.
Day 12
Sea Spirit SS408 14 Jul 2013 to 26 Jul 2013 Equatorial Far South - Huvadhoo/Foammulah/Gan Addu (12 day)
Guest Transfer
Guests arrived from internal flight from Male to Gan International airport and transferred to Sea Spirit in time for lunch
Dive 1
Check dive on steep ocean reef. We had an easy drift with very blue water, so good visibility. There were lots of green turtles who flew off like fireworks but a more friendly hawksbill. The top reef shimmered with anthias. The wall has many beautiful red/pink/brown Menella seafans and today the Vlaming's surgeonfish were busy being cleaned.
Day 1
Matt on the bow of Sea Spirit Maldives
Dive 1
It was very squally topside and the ocean reef was very rough so we made an experimental dive on a sheltered inner reef. We discovered an attractive coral garden with some impressive Turbinaria coral formations, Maldives sponge snails, schools of bluestripe snappers, varicose wart slugs, a glorious flatworm and segmented worms. There were several turtles in the "bay" section of the garden.
Dive 2
There was quite a strong in-current but we had 6 OF OUR REGULAR MANTA RAYS from this site busy around the cleaning station, ready to greet us and stayed for the whole dive. Manta "Friendly Bubbler" really lived up to her name and hovered above Nemo and Anne-Marie several times. There were also two grey sharks and a white tip shark trying to get in on the act.
A large pod of 100's of spinner dolphins passed out of the channel after the dive but then came back in again before the 3rd dive and were then playing around the ocean corner at the end of the 3rd dive. They always managed to stay just beyond our sight but we heard them squeaking away.
Dive 3
Beautiful hard coral covered ocean reef with huge "critter condo" coral formations housing squirrelfish, groupers, wrasses, bullseyes etc. Several Napoleon wrasse of varying sizes cruised up and down. Schools of black and white and midnight snappers hung out on the corner, plus a giant barracuda. There were lots of pretty magnifica anemones with their "households" of Maldives anemonefish and three-spot dascyllus.
Day 2
Manta ray hovers over divers to enjoy bubble bath Sea Spirit Maldives
Dive 1
There was a big swell on the ocean and surge on the top reef so we made our dive a little west of the normal location to avoid being swept into the area of turbulent water. Here there is a steep ocean reef which evolves into a slope with an amazing coral garden above 20m depth. Today we saw rainbow runners, giant barracudas, Napoleons, a mixed school of powderblue surgeons and bristletooth tangs and the powderblues were courting. On ascent we saw a pair of MANGROVE WHIPRAYS.
Dive 2
UP TO 16 MANTA RAYS at any one time today so a really impressive show! There was a small current to start with and the mantas were busy being cleaned. The two GREY SHARK were also cleaning by stopping and tilting upwards and opening their mouths. Later the mantas were hovering behind the cleaning station as the current increased.
Dive 3
A stern tour of the BRITISH LOYALTY wreck, descending to the side of the deck then over the side and through the bomb-hole and towards the very attractive propeller covered in black corals, sea whip and sinoise corals. We then returned along the deck towards the engine hold full of black-tail snappers and onwards towards the bow and back. We found several reef pipefish, many blue/purple Phidiana segmented worms, an EAGLE RAY, juvenile batfish, sptted coral groupers and then mobbed by the school of adult longfin batfish on the way up.
Night Dive
Night dive on the wreck. We found a berried lobster, a banded boxer shrimp, Bruuni cleaner shrimp just wafting around, feeding black corals, red-spotted and orange trapezia crabs in the table corals, scorpionfish, lionfish and a Pontonides shrimp on a whip coral.
Day 3
magnificent anemone and Maldives anemone fish Sea Spirit
Dive 1
There was an out-current at Mudakan so we dived the outside reef corner. There were rivers of yellow-back, lunar and neon fusiliers, several hawksbill turtles including a large mature male. The acropora corals close to the corner are quite spectacular and pulsating with blue-green chromis and Napoleon wrasse pass-bys. A manta fly-by completed the dive.
Dive 2
There was a small out current and less visibility than on previous dives at the manta point but my goodness, they were SO FRIENDLY TODAY and we had around 15 different MANTA RAYS hanging over our exhaled bubbles, playing with us and checking us out very closely. This dive will be remembered for a long time!
Dive 3
Pretty coral garden site with coral blocks on a sandy slope full of juvenile cardinals, spotted and red groupers, anthias and a WHITE LEAF FISH then a slope of superb corral structures from the surface down to 30m and the shallower areas full of beautiful reef fish. This section has to be one of the most exquisite hard coral reefs in the entire Maldives.
Evening Activity
Evening presentation on Manta ecology and behaviours.
Day 4
Beautiful Manta Ray Sea Spirit Maldives
Dive 1
Our final dive for this trip with the SUPER-FRIENDLY ADDU MANTA RAYS! We were not disappointed and enjoyed the acrobatics and antics of at least 16 different mantas today. They seemed to be socialising with each other more today and there seemed to be quite a lot of courtship activity going on.
Ocean Crossing
Ocean crossing between Addu and Huvadhoo atolls, crossing the Equator around 13:00. Today there was swell but it was a smooth crossing taking around 6 hours.
Dive 2
Large, pretty thila with a busy current point and many fusliers, surgeonfish, and blue-stripe snappers before a gentle drift along the eastern slope, past coral blocks and sea fans with groupers, morays, white tip sharks on the sand, yet more turtles orangespine surgeonfish, Maori wrasse, schools of snappers etc. The shallow top reef on the northern side is very attractive.
Evening Activity
Sundowners on top deck to enjoy the moody sunset.
Day 5
Several manta rays Sea Spirit Maldives
Dive 1
The southernmost ocean reef of Huvadhoo atoll makes a gentle slope out onto a long plateau and we hoped for something large to come along. There were several green and hawksbill turtles plus orbicular batfish. Just inside the eastern channel there is a large thila structure with huge areas of good staghorn coral full of chromis plus white tip sharks, hundreds of humpback snappers and lots of big groupers.
Cruise amongst the lagoons on the western side of Huvadhoo atoll which are full of coral blocks and other shallow reefs. The lagoons and small islands are stunning.
Dive 2
New Site! Beautiful coral garden site with every kind of damselfish especially neons, fusilier damsels, and indian, humbug and 3 spot dascyllus. There were big blocks full of juvenile cardinals amongst black corals and penguin oysters, lizardfish lurking, many groupers including half barred, vermilion and peacock.
Dive 3
Lovely thila site with large dogtooth tunas patrolling the current point amongst millions of fusiliers and bluefin jacks. There were schools of Forster's barracudas, crescent tail big-eyes, blue-striped snappers and yellow goatfish. We spotted the uncommon barred soapfish amongst the really good hard corals in the shallows. A crown of thorns starfish was being deterred from eating a coral by a tiny trapezia crab grabbing one of its spikes and waving it hard. Amazing!
Day 6
Huvadhoo atoll islands and lagoons on the western side, Sea Spirit Maldives.
Dive 1
An in-current in the channel but coming in all directions on the front so a little difficult to cross the channel so we eventually drifted in. The schools of fusiliers were dramatically chased by dogtooth tunas. We also saw white tip sharks, chevron barracudas and a large green turtle.
Dive 2
A small-in current so very nice to stay on channel front and watch the fish show. There were three EAGLE RAYS then GREY SHARKS amongst the snappers and jacks on the corner. On the north side of the channel was a HUGE school of crescent tail big-eyes and lots of grey sharks were hiding amongst the red fish! Also a ZEBRA SHARK, barracudas, white tip sharks and lots of green turtles.
Dive 3
Drift dive along channel wall with beautiful orange soft coral hung porites blocks interespersed by large orange sea fans and swarms of snappers and soldierfish. WE suddenly arrived at the channel front and the vista turned technicolour blue. There were schools of pyramid butterflyfish a "banana" guineafowl puffer, lysmata shrmp cleaning Cooper's anthias and a large spotted eagle ray. Lovely!
Day 7
Green turtle, Sea Spirit Maldives.
Dive 1
The 3x EAGLE RAYS greeted us at the corner of the channel and then we had big schools of black and white snappers, big eyed jacks, plus grey sharks (including one VERY large momma) white tips, a round ribbon tail ray, rainbow runners, schools of mackerel scads and large Napoleons. Good dive.
Dive 2
Out current so dived southern outer corner of channel where there was good visibility and a spur of reef attracted grey sharks, black and white snappers, jacks and nosy black jacks. We also saw myriads of pyramid butterflyfish plus Meyer's and raccoon species. An enormous school of bonito passed by the outer reef.
Dive 3
This is a very pretty shallow thila with every colour of magnificent anemone and "households" of Maldives anemone fish and three spot dascyllus.We found lemon gobies, a big tail-less eagleray, juvenile chromis in the corals and so many different fungia corals.
Beautiful pink sunset tonight.
Day 8
Grey sharks at channel. Sea Spirit Maldives
Dive 1
LOTS of GREY SHARKS, A HUGE SCHOOL OF BIG EYE JACKS, an eagle ray, black jacks, great barracudas etc on the front of the channel with a reef front buzzing with anthias, plus Napoleons, rainbow runners and schools of mackerel scads. An exciting start to the day.
Dive 2
Out current in channel so we visited an outside reef for some visibility. We saw napoleons, grey sharks, pyramid butterflyfish, dogtooth tunas another banana yellow pufferfish and a pretty silver leaf fish. After the dive there were hundreds of SPINNER DOLPHINS playing in the channel jumping up and spinning and splash landing and they then gave the dhoni an escort.
Dive 3
Out-current drift along sand road between coral thilas in channel. We found a sleeping ZEBRA SHARK and a large sleeping PINK WHIPRAY, a large hawksbill turtle, an octopus and lots of different reef fish amongst the hard coral lined reef structure. The islets of staghorn were 10m across, pulsating with thousands of blue-green chromis.
Evening Activity
Ashore to uninhabited island where we visited the remains of an abandoned settlement which was quite eerie. There were many fruit trees and the fruit bats had really moved in. There was a lovely beach facing the sunset.
Day 9
Huge school of big eye jacks Sea Spirit maldives
Dive 1
An in current but rather fuzzy visibility making the many grey sharks out there a little hard to see, but they were there! Also a HAMMERHEAD shark, lots of white tips, big eye jacks, an enormous great barracuda plus some smaller friends and lots of rainbow runners.
Dive 2
11 EAGLE RAYS IN FORMATION which soared over our heads a couple of times then the grey sharks came in very close so a great start to this channel front dive. The group split and some crossed the channel getting a great grey sharks show whilst others drifted in and got a round ribbon tail ray and lots of green and hawksbill turtles- a GREAT dive!
Dive 3
A small current and we were able to immerse ourselves in the enormous school of bluestripe snappers on the channel corner. We slowly drifted in past two round ribbon tail rays and then found three NURSE SHARKS in a big block. The current reversed so we drifted back out. Lots of turtles plus humpback snappers and raccoon butterflyfish.,
Day 10
Squadron of Eagle rays Sea Spirit maldives
Dive 1
A small current so we crossed the channel to the north corner where there was a nice group of grey sharks plus the odd single one which took a route straight through the divers! There was a large school of Forster's barracudas plus a large great barracida being cleaned, a mangrove whipray and many green turtles.
Dive 2
A small out-current so we started just inside the channel and found FIVE NURSE SHARKS in the big block, a green turtle and enormous schools of bluestripe and humpback snappers on the ocean corner. There was a baby white tip shark hiding in a coral block, more hawksbill turtles and a nervous school of goldfinger darts
Dive 3
This site has pretty coral blocks full of glassfish, juvenile cardinals and baby anthias and chromis so that the whole reef pulsates with baby fish in some areas. We found lots of different gobies plus an inidentified snub-nosed pipefish, lysmata and banded coral shrimps. The northside has a stunning shallow coral garden with schools of different reef fish.
Evening Activity
Ashore to Bird Island where 50+ lesser frigate birds were hovering overhead and riding the thermals. Later on the crew caught two tunas which went on the menu for Thursday.
Day 11
Nurse shark sleeping during the day, Sea Spirit Maldives
Dive 1
Beautiful hard-coral topped thila absolutely smothered with different fusiliers. A large school of juvenile big-eye jacks swept past several times sometimes chased by barred and black jacks, A school of rainbow runners checked us out but couldn't make out what we were. Beautiful site!
Dive 2
Elongated thila with spur at northern end enxtending down past 35m and covered in hard corals plus coral blocks with acabaria, nepthia and sea gan soft corals. There is a section which is smothered in large seafans from 15 to 35m depth. All the usual reef fish where hiding out amongst the corals. A lovely last dive.
We travelled to our overnight anchorage and had a lazy afternoon.
Day 12
Dense schools of fish in Huvadhoo atoll Sea Spirit maldives
Guest Transfer
All guests transferred to Kadhedhdhoo airport for internal flight back to Male and onward travel to Europe with Emirates.
Day 13
Group photo of SS408 Sea Spirit, Maldives
 
Guest Transfer
Guests arrived from internal flight from Male to Gan International airport and transferred to Sea Spirit in time for lunch
Dive 1
Check dive on steep ocean reef. We had an easy drift with very blue water, so good visibility. There were lots of green turtles who flew off like fireworks but a more friendly hawksbill. The top reef shimmered with anthias. The wall has many beautiful red/pink/brown Menella seafans and today the Vlaming's surgeonfish were busy being cleaned.
Day 1
Matt on the bow of Sea Spirit Maldives
Dive 1
It was very squally topside and the ocean reef was very rough so we made an experimental dive on a sheltered inner reef. We discovered an attractive coral garden with some impressive Turbinaria coral formations, Maldives sponge snails, schools of bluestripe snappers, varicose wart slugs, a glorious flatworm and segmented worms. There were several turtles in the "bay" section of the garden.
Dive 2
There was quite a strong in-current but we had 6 OF OUR REGULAR MANTA RAYS from this site busy around the cleaning station, ready to greet us and stayed for the whole dive. Manta "Friendly Bubbler" really lived up to her name and hovered above Nemo and Anne-Marie several times. There were also two grey sharks and a white tip shark trying to get in on the act.
A large pod of 100's of spinner dolphins passed out of the channel after the dive but then came back in again before the 3rd dive and were then playing around the ocean corner at the end of the 3rd dive. They always managed to stay just beyond our sight but we heard them squeaking away.
Dive 3
Beautiful hard coral covered ocean reef with huge "critter condo" coral formations housing squirrelfish, groupers, wrasses, bullseyes etc. Several Napoleon wrasse of varying sizes cruised up and down. Schools of black and white and midnight snappers hung out on the corner, plus a giant barracuda. There were lots of pretty magnifica anemones with their "households" of Maldives anemonefish and three-spot dascyllus.
Day 2
Manta ray hovers over divers to enjoy bubble bath Sea Spirit Maldives
Dive 1
There was a big swell on the ocean and surge on the top reef so we made our dive a little west of the normal location to avoid being swept into the area of turbulent water. Here there is a steep ocean reef which evolves into a slope with an amazing coral garden above 20m depth. Today we saw rainbow runners, giant barracudas, Napoleons, a mixed school of powderblue surgeons and bristletooth tangs and the powderblues were courting. On ascent we saw a pair of MANGROVE WHIPRAYS.
Dive 2
UP TO 16 MANTA RAYS at any one time today so a really impressive show! There was a small current to start with and the mantas were busy being cleaned. The two GREY SHARK were also cleaning by stopping and tilting upwards and opening their mouths. Later the mantas were hovering behind the cleaning station as the current increased.
Dive 3
A stern tour of the BRITISH LOYALTY wreck, descending to the side of the deck then over the side and through the bomb-hole and towards the very attractive propeller covered in black corals, sea whip and sinoise corals. We then returned along the deck towards the engine hold full of black-tail snappers and onwards towards the bow and back. We found several reef pipefish, many blue/purple Phidiana segmented worms, an EAGLE RAY, juvenile batfish, sptted coral groupers and then mobbed by the school of adult longfin batfish on the way up.
Night Dive
Night dive on the wreck. We found a berried lobster, a banded boxer shrimp, Bruuni cleaner shrimp just wafting around, feeding black corals, red-spotted and orange trapezia crabs in the table corals, scorpionfish, lionfish and a Pontonides shrimp on a whip coral.
Day 3
magnificent anemone and Maldives anemone fish Sea Spirit
Dive 1
There was an out-current at Mudakan so we dived the outside reef corner. There were rivers of yellow-back, lunar and neon fusiliers, several hawksbill turtles including a large mature male. The acropora corals close to the corner are quite spectacular and pulsating with blue-green chromis and Napoleon wrasse pass-bys. A manta fly-by completed the dive.
Dive 2
There was a small out current and less visibility than on previous dives at the manta point but my goodness, they were SO FRIENDLY TODAY and we had around 15 different MANTA RAYS hanging over our exhaled bubbles, playing with us and checking us out very closely. This dive will be remembered for a long time!
Dive 3
Pretty coral garden site with coral blocks on a sandy slope full of juvenile cardinals, spotted and red groupers, anthias and a WHITE LEAF FISH then a slope of superb corral structures from the surface down to 30m and the shallower areas full of beautiful reef fish. This section has to be one of the most exquisite hard coral reefs in the entire Maldives.
Evening Activity
Evening presentation on Manta ecology and behaviours.
Day 4
Beautiful Manta Ray Sea Spirit Maldives
Dive 1
Our final dive for this trip with the SUPER-FRIENDLY ADDU MANTA RAYS! We were not disappointed and enjoyed the acrobatics and antics of at least 16 different mantas today. They seemed to be socialising with each other more today and there seemed to be quite a lot of courtship activity going on.
Ocean Crossing
Ocean crossing between Addu and Huvadhoo atolls, crossing the Equator around 13:00. Today there was swell but it was a smooth crossing taking around 6 hours.
Dive 2
Large, pretty thila with a busy current point and many fusliers, surgeonfish, and blue-stripe snappers before a gentle drift along the eastern slope, past coral blocks and sea fans with groupers, morays, white tip sharks on the sand, yet more turtles orangespine surgeonfish, Maori wrasse, schools of snappers etc. The shallow top reef on the northern side is very attractive.
Evening Activity
Sundowners on top deck to enjoy the moody sunset.
Day 5
Several manta rays Sea Spirit Maldives
Dive 1
The southernmost ocean reef of Huvadhoo atoll makes a gentle slope out onto a long plateau and we hoped for something large to come along. There were several green and hawksbill turtles plus orbicular batfish. Just inside the eastern channel there is a large thila structure with huge areas of good staghorn coral full of chromis plus white tip sharks, hundreds of humpback snappers and lots of big groupers.
Cruise amongst the lagoons on the western side of Huvadhoo atoll which are full of coral blocks and other shallow reefs. The lagoons and small islands are stunning.
Dive 2
New Site! Beautiful coral garden site with every kind of damselfish especially neons, fusilier damsels, and indian, humbug and 3 spot dascyllus. There were big blocks full of juvenile cardinals amongst black corals and penguin oysters, lizardfish lurking, many groupers including half barred, vermilion and peacock.
Dive 3
Lovely thila site with large dogtooth tunas patrolling the current point amongst millions of fusiliers and bluefin jacks. There were schools of Forster's barracudas, crescent tail big-eyes, blue-striped snappers and yellow goatfish. We spotted the uncommon barred soapfish amongst the really good hard corals in the shallows. A crown of thorns starfish was being deterred from eating a coral by a tiny trapezia crab grabbing one of its spikes and waving it hard. Amazing!
Day 6
Huvadhoo atoll islands and lagoons on the western side, Sea Spirit Maldives.
Dive 1
An in-current in the channel but coming in all directions on the front so a little difficult to cross the channel so we eventually drifted in. The schools of fusiliers were dramatically chased by dogtooth tunas. We also saw white tip sharks, chevron barracudas and a large green turtle.
Dive 2
A small-in current so very nice to stay on channel front and watch the fish show. There were three EAGLE RAYS then GREY SHARKS amongst the snappers and jacks on the corner. On the north side of the channel was a HUGE school of crescent tail big-eyes and lots of grey sharks were hiding amongst the red fish! Also a ZEBRA SHARK, barracudas, white tip sharks and lots of green turtles.
Dive 3
Drift dive along channel wall with beautiful orange soft coral hung porites blocks interespersed by large orange sea fans and swarms of snappers and soldierfish. WE suddenly arrived at the channel front and the vista turned technicolour blue. There were schools of pyramid butterflyfish a "banana" guineafowl puffer, lysmata shrmp cleaning Cooper's anthias and a large spotted eagle ray. Lovely!
Day 7
Green turtle, Sea Spirit Maldives.
Dive 1
The 3x EAGLE RAYS greeted us at the corner of the channel and then we had big schools of black and white snappers, big eyed jacks, plus grey sharks (including one VERY large momma) white tips, a round ribbon tail ray, rainbow runners, schools of mackerel scads and large Napoleons. Good dive.
Dive 2
Out current so dived southern outer corner of channel where there was good visibility and a spur of reef attracted grey sharks, black and white snappers, jacks and nosy black jacks. We also saw myriads of pyramid butterflyfish plus Meyer's and raccoon species. An enormous school of bonito passed by the outer reef.
Dive 3
This is a very pretty shallow thila with every colour of magnificent anemone and "households" of Maldives anemone fish and three spot dascyllus.We found lemon gobies, a big tail-less eagleray, juvenile chromis in the corals and so many different fungia corals.
Beautiful pink sunset tonight.
Day 8
Grey sharks at channel. Sea Spirit Maldives
Dive 1
LOTS of GREY SHARKS, A HUGE SCHOOL OF BIG EYE JACKS, an eagle ray, black jacks, great barracudas etc on the front of the channel with a reef front buzzing with anthias, plus Napoleons, rainbow runners and schools of mackerel scads. An exciting start to the day.
Dive 2
Out current in channel so we visited an outside reef for some visibility. We saw napoleons, grey sharks, pyramid butterflyfish, dogtooth tunas another banana yellow pufferfish and a pretty silver leaf fish. After the dive there were hundreds of SPINNER DOLPHINS playing in the channel jumping up and spinning and splash landing and they then gave the dhoni an escort.
Dive 3
Out-current drift along sand road between coral thilas in channel. We found a sleeping ZEBRA SHARK and a large sleeping PINK WHIPRAY, a large hawksbill turtle, an octopus and lots of different reef fish amongst the hard coral lined reef structure. The islets of staghorn were 10m across, pulsating with thousands of blue-green chromis.
Evening Activity
Ashore to uninhabited island where we visited the remains of an abandoned settlement which was quite eerie. There were many fruit trees and the fruit bats had really moved in. There was a lovely beach facing the sunset.
Day 9
Huge school of big eye jacks Sea Spirit maldives
Dive 1
An in current but rather fuzzy visibility making the many grey sharks out there a little hard to see, but they were there! Also a HAMMERHEAD shark, lots of white tips, big eye jacks, an enormous great barracuda plus some smaller friends and lots of rainbow runners.
Dive 2
11 EAGLE RAYS IN FORMATION which soared over our heads a couple of times then the grey sharks came in very close so a great start to this channel front dive. The group split and some crossed the channel getting a great grey sharks show whilst others drifted in and got a round ribbon tail ray and lots of green and hawksbill turtles- a GREAT dive!
Dive 3
A small current and we were able to immerse ourselves in the enormous school of bluestripe snappers on the channel corner. We slowly drifted in past two round ribbon tail rays and then found three NURSE SHARKS in a big block. The current reversed so we drifted back out. Lots of turtles plus humpback snappers and raccoon butterflyfish.,
Day 10
Squadron of Eagle rays Sea Spirit maldives
Dive 1
A small current so we crossed the channel to the north corner where there was a nice group of grey sharks plus the odd single one which took a route straight through the divers! There was a large school of Forster's barracudas plus a large great barracida being cleaned, a mangrove whipray and many green turtles.
Dive 2
A small out-current so we started just inside the channel and found FIVE NURSE SHARKS in the big block, a green turtle and enormous schools of bluestripe and humpback snappers on the ocean corner. There was a baby white tip shark hiding in a coral block, more hawksbill turtles and a nervous school of goldfinger darts
Dive 3
This site has pretty coral blocks full of glassfish, juvenile cardinals and baby anthias and chromis so that the whole reef pulsates with baby fish in some areas. We found lots of different gobies plus an inidentified snub-nosed pipefish, lysmata and banded coral shrimps. The northside has a stunning shallow coral garden with schools of different reef fish.
Evening Activity
Ashore to Bird Island where 50+ lesser frigate birds were hovering overhead and riding the thermals. Later on the crew caught two tunas which went on the menu for Thursday.
Day 11
Nurse shark sleeping during the day, Sea Spirit Maldives
Dive 1
Beautiful hard-coral topped thila absolutely smothered with different fusiliers. A large school of juvenile big-eye jacks swept past several times sometimes chased by barred and black jacks, A school of rainbow runners checked us out but couldn't make out what we were. Beautiful site!
Dive 2
Elongated thila with spur at northern end enxtending down past 35m and covered in hard corals plus coral blocks with acabaria, nepthia and sea gan soft corals. There is a section which is smothered in large seafans from 15 to 35m depth. All the usual reef fish where hiding out amongst the corals. A lovely last dive.
We travelled to our overnight anchorage and had a lazy afternoon.
Day 12
Dense schools of fish in Huvadhoo atoll Sea Spirit maldives
Guest Transfer
All guests transferred to Kadhedhdhoo airport for internal flight back to Male and onward travel to Europe with Emirates.
Day 13
Group photo of SS408 Sea Spirit, Maldives
Sea Spirit SS407 30 Jun 2013 to 12 Jul 2013 Equatorial Far South - Huvadhoo/Foammulah/Gan Addu (12 day)
Guest Transfer
Guests arrived from internal flight to Kaadhdhedhoo airport and were transferred to Sea Spirit in time for lunch
Dive 1
Easy, later afternoon, check dive just to check kit and get wet. Lots of pretty hard coral bommies with barred soapfish, lemon gobies, Stieglitz gobies with pistol shrimps, reef pipefish, edible sea cucumbers, varicose wart slugs and an eagle ray in the shallows
Day 1
Sea Spirit Maldives
Dive 1
Pretty, shallow thila with excellent hard coral coverage with most species present. We found a PORCUPINE RAY in the sand, whip corals with small gobies, schools of blue stripe snappers, yellow goatfish and crescent-tailed big-eyes. A pair of EAGLE RAYS soared up and down the reef. The coral blocks were full of glassfish and groupers.
Dive 2
Deeper, more dramatic thila with large schools of fusiliers at current point and a wall of seafans from 18 to past 40m depth. We saw two cute small hawksbill turtles, an adhesive anemone was surrounded by Amboin shrimps, arch-eye and pixie hawkfish, rainbow runners and purple/yellow Evans' anthias everywhere. Top coral blocks were full of yellow orange and brown acabarias.
Dive 3
Beautiful hard coral ocean reef with huge structures rising 2-3m above sand. There were schools of red, midnight and black and white snappers, great barracudas, goldfinger dartfish, white tip and grey sharks.
Evening Activity
Evening visit to bird island. There was a large flock of lesser frigate birds riding the thermals above the island.
Day 2
Beautiful coral reef at Havodigalaa from Sea Spirit Maldives
Dive 1
WILD CURRENT! V.V. strong current with snappers and jacks working hard to stay on the channel front and grey sharks over the edge at about 35m. During the channel drift we found a very spotty ZEBRA SHARK, lots (40+) of orbicular batfish, silver sweetlips and many hawksbill and green turtles.
Dive 2
There was still a strong current but it was a little more manageable and we were able to make a partial channel crossing. There were 20+ GREY SHARKS on the channel front. We hooked in and hung on. Some ended up with a dramatic in-drift in the middle of the channel : WHEEEE! More turtles plus eagle rays.
Dive 3
Nice macro site with superb hard corals down reef slope and pretty coral islets in lagoon area. We found Bedford and freeswimming glorious flatworms, Bruuni cleaning shrimps, black coral trees full of juvenile cardinals, a school of barracudas and table corals full of blue-green chromis, indian and humbug damsels. Cute!
Day 3
Green Turtle from Sea Spirit Maldives
Dive 1
Another strong current so hang on then drift fast! Grey sharks and dogtooth tunas scooted around on channel front followed by fast drift to the turtle garden where there must have been 20+large green turtles plus barracudas, goldfinger darts and a nurse shark!
Dive 2
A really strong current at a different channel with bubbles streaming horizontally behind us and it was hard to hang on. Some big grey sharks soared over our heads showing us how to do it, some white tip sharks also got in on the act. Anther fast drift into the channel over beautiful porites coral blocks full of blue stripe snappers, gold spot emperors, big green turtles and a zebra shark trying to hide!
A large pod of spinner dolphins were on their way out of the channel so we played with them on the dhoni and they gave us an escort.
Dive 3
Strong in-current again! So a fast drift along a stunning channel wall festooned with orange seafans and orange soft corals. We saw a ribbon tail ray, a mangrove whipray, white tip sharks and more turtles. A beautiful site
Night Dive
Night dive at inner house reef of island. We disturbed a sleeping green turtle as we descended. There were lots of Maldives sponge snails and different shrimp species including my favourite furry-legged Saron shrimps, also large red furry hermit crab, squat lobsters, adult and juvenile batfish, bristleworms etc.
Day 4
Sleeping Zebra shark from Sea Spirit Maldives
Dive 1
Some divers saw a hammerhead shark during descent in the deep water on the front of the channel. The current was strong again and we hauled ourselves into the front of the channel to watch grey sharks again. Dogtooth tunas were also parading along the front. We had another exciting drift in with green turtles, a ribbon tailed ray, blue stripe snappers, silver and a juvenile oriental sweetlips
Dive 2
Onto shark channel and it didn't fail to deliver. There were around 50 grey sharks on the front plus lots of white tips and every variety of large snappers. We were mobbed by lots of rainbow runners and millions of fusiliers when we were out in the blue.
Dive 3
After two days of channels we needed something a little more sheltered so we all really enjoyed this pretty thila with excellent hard corals, every reef fish and an uncountable number of mangificent anemones with their families of blackfoot clownfish. We also loved the clouds of purple/yellow Evan's anthias.
An amazing sunset this evening!
Day 5
Grey shark cruising in front of channel from Sea Spirit Maldives
Dive 1
Back to sharky channel and an even STRONGER current. What is going on this week! There were still lots of grey sharks out there plus Napoleons, a dramatic whirl of big-eye jacks and barracudas. We had a brisk drift and had a FEATHERTAIL RAY scoot past and some divers found a coral block with three nurse sharks.
Dive 2
Last channel dive and-impossibly!- yet a stronger current so we got pinned on the front having navigated a storm of fusiliers and rainbow runners and hung in for dear life. As well as the shark show we had to duck tiny blue jellyfish piling into the channel from the ocean.
Dive 3
A beautiful thila with great schools of reef fish, groupers, walls bedecked with whip corals and orange seafans etc. We found a pair of yellow leaf fish and Patricia was bitten by a feisty black cheeked moray.
Day 6
Diver Mandy with hard corals from Sea Spirit Maldives
Dive 1
NEW SITE: There was a pod of spinner dolphins passing by the site just before we jumped in and they came by later and sonared us. Some divers were lucky enough to see them underwater. This site is a beuatiful house reef with excellent hard corals of all types down the slope from 3 to 30+m depth. We saw white tip sharks, yellow goatfish, bluefin jacks and lovely coral blocks laced with pink and purple seafans.
Dive 2
NEW SITE: We took a cruise around the outside of the atoll in search of some big fish and dived this southern ocean reef. It was a dramatic site with a gentle slope of good corals interspersed with large porites structures 10m across in some places. We found some turtles and were checked out by a wahoo but there were lovely schools of snappers all the way along the drift.
Dive 3
NEW SITE: A very pretty thila with lots of nice coral blocks, a school of FORSTERS BARRACUDAS, painted sweetlips, two-spot snappers, blue stripes and gold spots. There was a large Clarke's anemonefish which we chased around a coral block. We don't think she had seen divers before!
Day 7
Amazing sunset from Sea Spirit Maldives
Dive 1
A great drift on a big thila. At the current point were squillions of fusiliers plus surgeonfish, jacks and a couple of white tip sharks. All the way along the sides were large coral block full of large brown marbled, black saddled , slender etc. groupers plus large schools of snappers hung in the water column. The top had some impressive hard corals plus schools of reef fish. Really lovely!
Ocean Crossing
Inter-atoll crossing to Addu. The crew caught a dorado on the way.
Dive 2
We made a tour of the bomb-hole, propeller, engine room and hold and past the central accommodation block to the bow of the British Loyalty. There are some stunning black coral trees in a delicate shade of peach around the propeller and lots of long white whip corals. Jan found us a Pontonides shrimp. There were iridescent Pterolidia segmented worms and a scorpionfish hiding in full sight!
Night Dive
Night dive at the British Loyalty. Very atmospheric! Spiny lobsters, lots of different species of shrimps, sleeping parrotfish, sinoise corals with polyps fully extended, lots of other corals feeding
Day 8
Friendly long-fin batfish from Sea Spirit Maldives
Dive 1
Great dive! Eagle ray, grey sharks and white tip sharks, schools of snappers, several Napoleons and 7 different mantas handing out in the current around the cleaning station and flying around our heads. The friendly grey shark also made an appearance.
Dive 2
Two different manta rays came patrolling up the channel or on the outside reef at this eastern channel site. Also a white tip over the sand, lots of yellow box puffers, and a large school of Captain parrotfish.
Dive 3
Sheltered reef with huge coral structures rising from 30-6m depth. A white leaf fish in a block, an unidentified nudibranch, reef pipefish, oriental and harlequin sweetlips at cleaning stations. Beautiful adult and baby Meyer's butterflyfish.
Day 9
Playful manta rays from Sea Spirit Maldives
Dive 1
WOW, 8 EXTREMELY FRIENDLY MANTA RAYS who were busy checking eachother out and performing courtship rituals with each other, but they were not too busy to play bubble baths with us!
Dive 2
15 FRISKY MANTAS, more cleaning activity and lots of hanging around next to the reef. Just a brilliant dive! They were busy checking us out so the grey reef shark didn't get a look in!
Dive 3
Lovely reef with huge block on the channel corner full of reef fish: snappers, soldierfish, hunting blue-fin jacks, clouds of chromis, friendly hawksbill turtles, a tiny BLACK RIBBON EEL, giant barracuda and amazing coral formations.
Evening Activity
Evening presentation on manta ecology and behaviour.
Day 10
Lots of friendly manta rays from Sea Spirit Maldives
Dive 1
Ocean reef with gentle slope to 40m depth and then drop off. The Deep Diver class made their deepest dive today.There was a series of coral and fish covered thilas at around 25m depth then a slope full of hard corals and lots of snappers and jacks. Lots of blue-fin jacks, milk fish and BUMPHEAD PARROTFISH today.
Dive 2
Back to the manta point and yes! 12 SUPER-FRIENDLY MANTAS! There was more cleaning activity and mantas socialising with eachother as the current was very small but they were still busy checking us out. A nosey Napoleon wrasse followed us up for our safety stop.
Dive 3
Dramatic ocean reef which was vertical to 50+++m depth and covered in orange soft corals. The north wall was patrolled by dogtooth tunas and schools of jacks. On the NE tip the reef sloped a little more and there were large coral blocks full of chubbs, emperors, soldierfish eyc. Unfortunately the yellow margin triggerfish were paying us rather a lot of attention too!
Day 11
Menella soft corals from Sea Spirit Maldives
Dive 1
Vertical wall with lovely Menella seafans from 15-40+m depth. Some were pale orange and not described in texts. There were lots of hawksbill and green turtles being pursued by longfin batfish. The batfish were also hanging out at a cleaning station. There were also milkfish, hundreds of pencilled surgeonfish and more intimidating-looking yellow margin triggers.
Dive 2
What a way to finish! ABOUT 15 FRIENDLY MANTAS and they were all over us today as if they knew it was the last dive. This will be remembered for a very long time. We just didn't want to come up.
Evening Activity
Evening excursion around island wetlands in NW of atoll.
Day 12
Wetlands at Hithadhoo from Sea Spirit Maldives
Guest Transfer
Transfer from SS to Gan airport for internal flight back to Male and onward connections
Day 13
SS407 Group shot from Sea Spirit Maldives
 
Guest Transfer
Guests arrived from internal flight to Kaadhdhedhoo airport and were transferred to Sea Spirit in time for lunch
Dive 1
Easy, later afternoon, check dive just to check kit and get wet. Lots of pretty hard coral bommies with barred soapfish, lemon gobies, Stieglitz gobies with pistol shrimps, reef pipefish, edible sea cucumbers, varicose wart slugs and an eagle ray in the shallows
Day 1
Sea Spirit Maldives
Dive 1
Pretty, shallow thila with excellent hard coral coverage with most species present. We found a PORCUPINE RAY in the sand, whip corals with small gobies, schools of blue stripe snappers, yellow goatfish and crescent-tailed big-eyes. A pair of EAGLE RAYS soared up and down the reef. The coral blocks were full of glassfish and groupers.
Dive 2
Deeper, more dramatic thila with large schools of fusiliers at current point and a wall of seafans from 18 to past 40m depth. We saw two cute small hawksbill turtles, an adhesive anemone was surrounded by Amboin shrimps, arch-eye and pixie hawkfish, rainbow runners and purple/yellow Evans' anthias everywhere. Top coral blocks were full of yellow orange and brown acabarias.
Dive 3
Beautiful hard coral ocean reef with huge structures rising 2-3m above sand. There were schools of red, midnight and black and white snappers, great barracudas, goldfinger dartfish, white tip and grey sharks.
Evening Activity
Evening visit to bird island. There was a large flock of lesser frigate birds riding the thermals above the island.
Day 2
Beautiful coral reef at Havodigalaa from Sea Spirit Maldives
Dive 1
WILD CURRENT! V.V. strong current with snappers and jacks working hard to stay on the channel front and grey sharks over the edge at about 35m. During the channel drift we found a very spotty ZEBRA SHARK, lots (40+) of orbicular batfish, silver sweetlips and many hawksbill and green turtles.
Dive 2
There was still a strong current but it was a little more manageable and we were able to make a partial channel crossing. There were 20+ GREY SHARKS on the channel front. We hooked in and hung on. Some ended up with a dramatic in-drift in the middle of the channel : WHEEEE! More turtles plus eagle rays.
Dive 3
Nice macro site with superb hard corals down reef slope and pretty coral islets in lagoon area. We found Bedford and freeswimming glorious flatworms, Bruuni cleaning shrimps, black coral trees full of juvenile cardinals, a school of barracudas and table corals full of blue-green chromis, indian and humbug damsels. Cute!
Day 3
Green Turtle from Sea Spirit Maldives
Dive 1
Another strong current so hang on then drift fast! Grey sharks and dogtooth tunas scooted around on channel front followed by fast drift to the turtle garden where there must have been 20+large green turtles plus barracudas, goldfinger darts and a nurse shark!
Dive 2
A really strong current at a different channel with bubbles streaming horizontally behind us and it was hard to hang on. Some big grey sharks soared over our heads showing us how to do it, some white tip sharks also got in on the act. Anther fast drift into the channel over beautiful porites coral blocks full of blue stripe snappers, gold spot emperors, big green turtles and a zebra shark trying to hide!
A large pod of spinner dolphins were on their way out of the channel so we played with them on the dhoni and they gave us an escort.
Dive 3
Strong in-current again! So a fast drift along a stunning channel wall festooned with orange seafans and orange soft corals. We saw a ribbon tail ray, a mangrove whipray, white tip sharks and more turtles. A beautiful site
Night Dive
Night dive at inner house reef of island. We disturbed a sleeping green turtle as we descended. There were lots of Maldives sponge snails and different shrimp species including my favourite furry-legged Saron shrimps, also large red furry hermit crab, squat lobsters, adult and juvenile batfish, bristleworms etc.
Day 4
Sleeping Zebra shark from Sea Spirit Maldives
Dive 1
Some divers saw a hammerhead shark during descent in the deep water on the front of the channel. The current was strong again and we hauled ourselves into the front of the channel to watch grey sharks again. Dogtooth tunas were also parading along the front. We had another exciting drift in with green turtles, a ribbon tailed ray, blue stripe snappers, silver and a juvenile oriental sweetlips
Dive 2
Onto shark channel and it didn't fail to deliver. There were around 50 grey sharks on the front plus lots of white tips and every variety of large snappers. We were mobbed by lots of rainbow runners and millions of fusiliers when we were out in the blue.
Dive 3
After two days of channels we needed something a little more sheltered so we all really enjoyed this pretty thila with excellent hard corals, every reef fish and an uncountable number of mangificent anemones with their families of blackfoot clownfish. We also loved the clouds of purple/yellow Evan's anthias.
An amazing sunset this evening!
Day 5
Grey shark cruising in front of channel from Sea Spirit Maldives
Dive 1
Back to sharky channel and an even STRONGER current. What is going on this week! There were still lots of grey sharks out there plus Napoleons, a dramatic whirl of big-eye jacks and barracudas. We had a brisk drift and had a FEATHERTAIL RAY scoot past and some divers found a coral block with three nurse sharks.
Dive 2
Last channel dive and-impossibly!- yet a stronger current so we got pinned on the front having navigated a storm of fusiliers and rainbow runners and hung in for dear life. As well as the shark show we had to duck tiny blue jellyfish piling into the channel from the ocean.
Dive 3
A beautiful thila with great schools of reef fish, groupers, walls bedecked with whip corals and orange seafans etc. We found a pair of yellow leaf fish and Patricia was bitten by a feisty black cheeked moray.
Day 6
Diver Mandy with hard corals from Sea Spirit Maldives
Dive 1
NEW SITE: There was a pod of spinner dolphins passing by the site just before we jumped in and they came by later and sonared us. Some divers were lucky enough to see them underwater. This site is a beuatiful house reef with excellent hard corals of all types down the slope from 3 to 30+m depth. We saw white tip sharks, yellow goatfish, bluefin jacks and lovely coral blocks laced with pink and purple seafans.
Dive 2
NEW SITE: We took a cruise around the outside of the atoll in search of some big fish and dived this southern ocean reef. It was a dramatic site with a gentle slope of good corals interspersed with large porites structures 10m across in some places. We found some turtles and were checked out by a wahoo but there were lovely schools of snappers all the way along the drift.
Dive 3
NEW SITE: A very pretty thila with lots of nice coral blocks, a school of FORSTERS BARRACUDAS, painted sweetlips, two-spot snappers, blue stripes and gold spots. There was a large Clarke's anemonefish which we chased around a coral block. We don't think she had seen divers before!
Day 7
Amazing sunset from Sea Spirit Maldives
Dive 1
A great drift on a big thila. At the current point were squillions of fusiliers plus surgeonfish, jacks and a couple of white tip sharks. All the way along the sides were large coral block full of large brown marbled, black saddled , slender etc. groupers plus large schools of snappers hung in the water column. The top had some impressive hard corals plus schools of reef fish. Really lovely!
Ocean Crossing
Inter-atoll crossing to Addu. The crew caught a dorado on the way.
Dive 2
We made a tour of the bomb-hole, propeller, engine room and hold and past the central accommodation block to the bow of the British Loyalty. There are some stunning black coral trees in a delicate shade of peach around the propeller and lots of long white whip corals. Jan found us a Pontonides shrimp. There were iridescent Pterolidia segmented worms and a scorpionfish hiding in full sight!
Night Dive
Night dive at the British Loyalty. Very atmospheric! Spiny lobsters, lots of different species of shrimps, sleeping parrotfish, sinoise corals with polyps fully extended, lots of other corals feeding
Day 8
Friendly long-fin batfish from Sea Spirit Maldives
Dive 1
Great dive! Eagle ray, grey sharks and white tip sharks, schools of snappers, several Napoleons and 7 different mantas handing out in the current around the cleaning station and flying around our heads. The friendly grey shark also made an appearance.
Dive 2
Two different manta rays came patrolling up the channel or on the outside reef at this eastern channel site. Also a white tip over the sand, lots of yellow box puffers, and a large school of Captain parrotfish.
Dive 3
Sheltered reef with huge coral structures rising from 30-6m depth. A white leaf fish in a block, an unidentified nudibranch, reef pipefish, oriental and harlequin sweetlips at cleaning stations. Beautiful adult and baby Meyer's butterflyfish.
Day 9
Playful manta rays from Sea Spirit Maldives
Dive 1
WOW, 8 EXTREMELY FRIENDLY MANTA RAYS who were busy checking eachother out and performing courtship rituals with each other, but they were not too busy to play bubble baths with us!
Dive 2
15 FRISKY MANTAS, more cleaning activity and lots of hanging around next to the reef. Just a brilliant dive! They were busy checking us out so the grey reef shark didn't get a look in!
Dive 3
Lovely reef with huge block on the channel corner full of reef fish: snappers, soldierfish, hunting blue-fin jacks, clouds of chromis, friendly hawksbill turtles, a tiny BLACK RIBBON EEL, giant barracuda and amazing coral formations.
Evening Activity
Evening presentation on manta ecology and behaviour.
Day 10
Lots of friendly manta rays from Sea Spirit Maldives
Dive 1
Ocean reef with gentle slope to 40m depth and then drop off. The Deep Diver class made their deepest dive today.There was a series of coral and fish covered thilas at around 25m depth then a slope full of hard corals and lots of snappers and jacks. Lots of blue-fin jacks, milk fish and BUMPHEAD PARROTFISH today.
Dive 2
Back to the manta point and yes! 12 SUPER-FRIENDLY MANTAS! There was more cleaning activity and mantas socialising with eachother as the current was very small but they were still busy checking us out. A nosey Napoleon wrasse followed us up for our safety stop.
Dive 3
Dramatic ocean reef which was vertical to 50+++m depth and covered in orange soft corals. The north wall was patrolled by dogtooth tunas and schools of jacks. On the NE tip the reef sloped a little more and there were large coral blocks full of chubbs, emperors, soldierfish eyc. Unfortunately the yellow margin triggerfish were paying us rather a lot of attention too!
Day 11
Menella soft corals from Sea Spirit Maldives
Dive 1
Vertical wall with lovely Menella seafans from 15-40+m depth. Some were pale orange and not described in texts. There were lots of hawksbill and green turtles being pursued by longfin batfish. The batfish were also hanging out at a cleaning station. There were also milkfish, hundreds of pencilled surgeonfish and more intimidating-looking yellow margin triggers.
Dive 2
What a way to finish! ABOUT 15 FRIENDLY MANTAS and they were all over us today as if they knew it was the last dive. This will be remembered for a very long time. We just didn't want to come up.
Evening Activity
Evening excursion around island wetlands in NW of atoll.
Day 12
Wetlands at Hithadhoo from Sea Spirit Maldives
Guest Transfer
Transfer from SS to Gan airport for internal flight back to Male and onward connections
Day 13
SS407 Group shot from Sea Spirit Maldives
Sea Spirit SS404 12 May 2013 to 22 May 2013 Manta & Whaleshark Special (10 day)
Guest Transfer
Arrival from international flight and transfer to Sea Spirit.
Dive 1
Check dive. Big swell and surf topside so hard to find sheltered reef. Underwater we had a big surge so we made an abbreviated dive. We saw a pair of ginormous tunas, schools of large rainbow runners and mackerel scads, a bearded scorpionfish, white tip reef shark, long nose butterflyfish, giant and yellowmargin morays and a Phyllidia occelata seaslug.
Day 1
Dive 1
BEAUTIFUL PINK AND ORANGE SOFT CORAL COVERED BLOCKS AND TERRACES. The overhangs were festooned with blue and yellow soft corals. Over the reef were black and white snappers and a wonderful swirling school of big-eye jacks. Two EAGLE RAYS soared over the western current point amongst huge schools of fusiliers. On the reef a lovely blotched porcupinefish and a mappa puffer.
MANTA RAY feeding by making somersaults and pass-bys behind Sea Spirit for around two hours after dinner.
Day 2
Dive 1
Ocean corner dive with several Napoleons, a white tip shark, a tight scholl of black and white snappers, a large dogtooth tuna, a spotted boxfish, a spotted porcupinefish, a hawksbill turtle, a freeswimming honeycomb moray and a pair of shortheaded shrimps in a carpet anemone.
Dive 2
Several GREEN TURTLES sleeping in the reef and amonsgst the fish-filled coral blocks, a white tip resting in the sand, two EAGLE RAYS along the top reef, schools of oriental sweetlips waiting in turn to be cleaned, collared butterflyfish school, racoon butterflyfish, black saddled coral groupers, honeycomb morays etc. Beautiful!
Dive 3
Easy ocean drift with two very friendly hawksbill turtles: one doing handstands! Bicolour parrotfish, rivers of fusiliers, orange and green magnifica anemones, blocks with lots of sweepers and boomerang triggerfish posturing at eachother and making a little mating dance.
Day 3
Dive 1
There were several hawksbill turtles just as we descended and one had a really perfect, beautiful shell. Longnose emperors were hunting up and down the reef and rivers of yellowback, neon and lunar fusiliers swept past as we drifted along the wall. In one area there were large schools of yellow goatfish, blue-stripe and humpback snappers, spiny lobsters and lots of other reef fish amongst orange acabaria clad coral blocks. Lovely!
Ocean Crossing
Travel to South Male atoll
Dive 2
Reef and wreck site. There were longnose and pixie hawkfish amongst black coral trees along the sides of the wreck and Bruuni cleaning shrimp attending to spotted red rock cods on the rear deck. Also peacock mantis shrimps and lionfish. On the main reef we found a Susans' flatworm, Maldives sponge snails, reef pipefish, orange magnifica anemones with bright orangev Maldives anemonefish and lots of white acabaria framed windows full of red soldierfish.
Dive 3
Easy channel drift with several GREEN TURTLES and then a huge blue Napoleon in a cave. One overhang was full of seawhips and soldierfish. WE also saw black saddled coral groupers and brown marbled groupers, unicorn fish, white tip sharks and enjoyed the coral blocks full of reef fish and anthias. We came up to a big squall on the surface.
Day 4
Dive 1
Lovely easy ocean dift dive on channel fronts. There were two huge Napoleons (they are very common this trip!), several dogtooth tunas, a funny topsy-turvy hawksbill turtles, a white leaf fish, a school of bannerfish, a school of baby goatfish, a giant grouper which disappearred into a tiny hole under a coral block but we did find it peering out- two huge eyes!! Lovely fish-filled coral blocks.
Dive 2
MANTA RAY ACTION! 5 different manta rays visited the cleaning station during our 40 minute wait then we had 3-4 mantas close to the shallow reef either being ceaned or feeding. The reef is also very pretty with table corals full of humbug and Indian damsels, blue-green chromis and lots of butterflyfish and anemones.
Dive 3
A brisk and bouncy channel dift today! We saw white tip sharks, giant trevallies, blue fin jacks and a long overhang full of orange seafans. On the corner were lots of coralised blocks full of reef fish with a yellow leaf fish, rock cods, indian bannerfish, racoon butterflyfish, orange spined and pesky Vlaming's surgeonfish.
Sundowners on the front deck and an evening presentation on manta ray ecology and behaviour.
Day 5
Dive 1
A small current on this beautiful pink and orange soft coral covered thila and lots of big-fish action. EAGLE RAYS (A SQUADRON OF 7 TOGETHER AT ONE POINT), WHITE TIP AN GREY SHARKS cruised the canyoun and large schools of snappers and big eye jacks swirled around on the current point. On the top reef were GRREN AND HAWKSBILL TURTLES and lovely schools of oriental, harlequin and silver sweetlips.
Dive 2
Ocean corner site and lots of great macro. We found two black (juvenile) and three blue/yellow RIBBON EELS, 6 leaf fish, including three close together, Bruuni shrimps cleaning rock cods, peacock mantis shrimps, scorpionfish, pair of mating octopus, a pair of a big blue Napoleon with a female and a couple of friendly hawksbill turtles next to a very pretty shallow reef.
Daytime Excursion
Ashore to pretty sandbank for a stroll and snorkel
Dive 3
Great macro dive again! A tiny flic-flacing juvenile oriental sweetlips, 10 tiny juvenile (and hence spotty!) yellowmargin triggerfish, Durban dancing shrimps, an overhang full of juvenile cardinal and glassfish, blue finger sponges forming strange hand shapes and many coral islets full of chromis, anthias, damsels etc. and patrolled by red groupers.
Drinks on Sea Queen as both groups of guests had a get together
Day 6
Dive 1
Back to the soft coral thila and today we had lots of white tip sharks roaming about on the top of the reef plus eagle rays cruising up and down the canyon whlst huge schools of fish hung out on the current point: snappers, jacks and many fusiliers. More green turtles on top of the reef. We had a quick snorkel with a feeding manta after the dive.
Dive 2
We went back to the cleaning station but no mantas today. We enjoyed the pretty shalow coral reef afterwards. Lots of pink and orange anemones and millions of feeding fusiliers.
Ocean Crossing
Ocean crossing to Felidhoo atoll
Dive 3
Easy drift with lots of white tips on the channel front plus a cheeky MANTA which buzzed birthday girl Judy! Along the ocean reef were large schools of humpback snappers and goldspot emperors. The reef is beautiful and along with all the lovely reef fish and gard corals we found a pair of white leaf fish plus a yellow and two green ones, banded coral shrimp and Lysmata shrimp cleaning stations guarded by feisty black cheek morays and more friendly white mouthed, yellow margin and giant morays.
Night Dive
AWESOME NIGHT DIVE with 20-30 NURSE SHARK of all sizes either fighting to get at their food or crusing along the reef edge. Some were 3m+ monsters and quite intimidating. Also huge ROUND RIBBON TAIL RAYS, PINK WHIP RAYS AND GIANT TREVALLIES. The divers on Sea Queen and Sea Spirit made a joint dive.
Day 7
Dive 1
Channel drift onto ocean corner where lots of white tip sharks were resting in the sand. A large school of black & white snappers were feeding in the channel and a large honecomb moray was at a cleaning station. A MANTA RAY swam up from the depths. A GREY SHARK was pirouetting along the ocean reef wall. We found lots of blackcheek morays with Lysmata shrimps and the whole reef was smothered with purple/yellow Evan's anthias and orange anthias.
Ocean Crossing
Ocean crossing back to South Male atoll
Dive 2
Another go to look for mantas but they were still avoiding us :-( The pretty coral garden was full of Indian and humbug damsels and a big block was full of glass fish. A turtle said hello.
Dive 3
Channel drift with lots of white tip sharks inside the channel plus a big Napoleon and several honeycomb and giant morays sharing cleaning stations. We also found an ENORMOUS FLUFFY STONEFISH, a freeswimming honeycomb and a round ribbontailed ray. A turtle swatted away the paparazzi!
Day 8
Dive 1
Easy channel drift and dramatic ocean reef site. There were a couple of white tips on the plateau and then a large Napoleon with his two girlfriends on the ocean reef. The many terraces and overhangs were full of soldierfish and crown squirrelfish plus three spot yellow angelfish, all sorts of morays and millions of anthias again.
Dive 2
Really great wreck dive! The holds are full of interesting items, today we found a cassette radio, a make up box, beer bottles and photo albums. We made a tour of the accommodation block including the crew restaurant and the bathrooms and found the cigarette stash. The wreck is surrounded by schools of fusiliers and surgeonfish plus a Tambja morosa nudi on the wheelhouse front plus a Phillidiana sp..
Dive 3
Wow! 8 different MANTA RAYS and lots of our old friends like Winifred and Mick who were very friendly, swimming through our bubbles and checking us out closely. A whole hour of manta fun! Everyone came up smiling.
Day 9
Dive 1
Magical final dive at beautiful blue soft coral covered pinnacles smothered in fish. Schools of 100's of bannerfish shimmerred in the current and sweetlips and emperors were everywhere. The run of overhangs are full of orange seafans and red and white sea whips and the coral blocks on top were decorated with every variety of pastel coloured nepthia soft coral. We found a lovely green turtle and a blue peacock mantis shrimp.
Daytime Excursion
Afternoon visit to Male for shopping, sightseeing and visit to ice-cream parlour.
Day 10
Guest Transfer
Guests to airport for international flight.
Day 11
 
Guest Transfer
Arrival from international flight and transfer to Sea Spirit.
Dive 1
Check dive. Big swell and surf topside so hard to find sheltered reef. Underwater we had a big surge so we made an abbreviated dive. We saw a pair of ginormous tunas, schools of large rainbow runners and mackerel scads, a bearded scorpionfish, white tip reef shark, long nose butterflyfish, giant and yellowmargin morays and a Phyllidia occelata seaslug.
Day 1
Dive 1
BEAUTIFUL PINK AND ORANGE SOFT CORAL COVERED BLOCKS AND TERRACES. The overhangs were festooned with blue and yellow soft corals. Over the reef were black and white snappers and a wonderful swirling school of big-eye jacks. Two EAGLE RAYS soared over the western current point amongst huge schools of fusiliers. On the reef a lovely blotched porcupinefish and a mappa puffer.
MANTA RAY feeding by making somersaults and pass-bys behind Sea Spirit for around two hours after dinner.
Day 2
Dive 1
Ocean corner dive with several Napoleons, a white tip shark, a tight scholl of black and white snappers, a large dogtooth tuna, a spotted boxfish, a spotted porcupinefish, a hawksbill turtle, a freeswimming honeycomb moray and a pair of shortheaded shrimps in a carpet anemone.
Dive 2
Several GREEN TURTLES sleeping in the reef and amonsgst the fish-filled coral blocks, a white tip resting in the sand, two EAGLE RAYS along the top reef, schools of oriental sweetlips waiting in turn to be cleaned, collared butterflyfish school, racoon butterflyfish, black saddled coral groupers, honeycomb morays etc. Beautiful!
Dive 3
Easy ocean drift with two very friendly hawksbill turtles: one doing handstands! Bicolour parrotfish, rivers of fusiliers, orange and green magnifica anemones, blocks with lots of sweepers and boomerang triggerfish posturing at eachother and making a little mating dance.
Day 3
Dive 1
There were several hawksbill turtles just as we descended and one had a really perfect, beautiful shell. Longnose emperors were hunting up and down the reef and rivers of yellowback, neon and lunar fusiliers swept past as we drifted along the wall. In one area there were large schools of yellow goatfish, blue-stripe and humpback snappers, spiny lobsters and lots of other reef fish amongst orange acabaria clad coral blocks. Lovely!
Ocean Crossing
Travel to South Male atoll
Dive 2
Reef and wreck site. There were longnose and pixie hawkfish amongst black coral trees along the sides of the wreck and Bruuni cleaning shrimp attending to spotted red rock cods on the rear deck. Also peacock mantis shrimps and lionfish. On the main reef we found a Susans' flatworm, Maldives sponge snails, reef pipefish, orange magnifica anemones with bright orangev Maldives anemonefish and lots of white acabaria framed windows full of red soldierfish.
Dive 3
Easy channel drift with several GREEN TURTLES and then a huge blue Napoleon in a cave. One overhang was full of seawhips and soldierfish. WE also saw black saddled coral groupers and brown marbled groupers, unicorn fish, white tip sharks and enjoyed the coral blocks full of reef fish and anthias. We came up to a big squall on the surface.
Day 4
Dive 1
Lovely easy ocean dift dive on channel fronts. There were two huge Napoleons (they are very common this trip!), several dogtooth tunas, a funny topsy-turvy hawksbill turtles, a white leaf fish, a school of bannerfish, a school of baby goatfish, a giant grouper which disappearred into a tiny hole under a coral block but we did find it peering out- two huge eyes!! Lovely fish-filled coral blocks.
Dive 2
MANTA RAY ACTION! 5 different manta rays visited the cleaning station during our 40 minute wait then we had 3-4 mantas close to the shallow reef either being ceaned or feeding. The reef is also very pretty with table corals full of humbug and Indian damsels, blue-green chromis and lots of butterflyfish and anemones.
Dive 3
A brisk and bouncy channel dift today! We saw white tip sharks, giant trevallies, blue fin jacks and a long overhang full of orange seafans. On the corner were lots of coralised blocks full of reef fish with a yellow leaf fish, rock cods, indian bannerfish, racoon butterflyfish, orange spined and pesky Vlaming's surgeonfish.
Sundowners on the front deck and an evening presentation on manta ray ecology and behaviour.
Day 5
Dive 1
A small current on this beautiful pink and orange soft coral covered thila and lots of big-fish action. EAGLE RAYS (A SQUADRON OF 7 TOGETHER AT ONE POINT), WHITE TIP AN GREY SHARKS cruised the canyoun and large schools of snappers and big eye jacks swirled around on the current point. On the top reef were GRREN AND HAWKSBILL TURTLES and lovely schools of oriental, harlequin and silver sweetlips.
Dive 2
Ocean corner site and lots of great macro. We found two black (juvenile) and three blue/yellow RIBBON EELS, 6 leaf fish, including three close together, Bruuni shrimps cleaning rock cods, peacock mantis shrimps, scorpionfish, pair of mating octopus, a pair of a big blue Napoleon with a female and a couple of friendly hawksbill turtles next to a very pretty shallow reef.
Daytime Excursion
Ashore to pretty sandbank for a stroll and snorkel
Dive 3
Great macro dive again! A tiny flic-flacing juvenile oriental sweetlips, 10 tiny juvenile (and hence spotty!) yellowmargin triggerfish, Durban dancing shrimps, an overhang full of juvenile cardinal and glassfish, blue finger sponges forming strange hand shapes and many coral islets full of chromis, anthias, damsels etc. and patrolled by red groupers.
Drinks on Sea Queen as both groups of guests had a get together
Day 6
Dive 1
Back to the soft coral thila and today we had lots of white tip sharks roaming about on the top of the reef plus eagle rays cruising up and down the canyon whlst huge schools of fish hung out on the current point: snappers, jacks and many fusiliers. More green turtles on top of the reef. We had a quick snorkel with a feeding manta after the dive.
Dive 2
We went back to the cleaning station but no mantas today. We enjoyed the pretty shalow coral reef afterwards. Lots of pink and orange anemones and millions of feeding fusiliers.
Ocean Crossing
Ocean crossing to Felidhoo atoll
Dive 3
Easy drift with lots of white tips on the channel front plus a cheeky MANTA which buzzed birthday girl Judy! Along the ocean reef were large schools of humpback snappers and goldspot emperors. The reef is beautiful and along with all the lovely reef fish and gard corals we found a pair of white leaf fish plus a yellow and two green ones, banded coral shrimp and Lysmata shrimp cleaning stations guarded by feisty black cheek morays and more friendly white mouthed, yellow margin and giant morays.
Night Dive
AWESOME NIGHT DIVE with 20-30 NURSE SHARK of all sizes either fighting to get at their food or crusing along the reef edge. Some were 3m+ monsters and quite intimidating. Also huge ROUND RIBBON TAIL RAYS, PINK WHIP RAYS AND GIANT TREVALLIES. The divers on Sea Queen and Sea Spirit made a joint dive.
Day 7
Dive 1
Channel drift onto ocean corner where lots of white tip sharks were resting in the sand. A large school of black & white snappers were feeding in the channel and a large honecomb moray was at a cleaning station. A MANTA RAY swam up from the depths. A GREY SHARK was pirouetting along the ocean reef wall. We found lots of blackcheek morays with Lysmata shrimps and the whole reef was smothered with purple/yellow Evan's anthias and orange anthias.
Ocean Crossing
Ocean crossing back to South Male atoll
Dive 2
Another go to look for mantas but they were still avoiding us :-( The pretty coral garden was full of Indian and humbug damsels and a big block was full of glass fish. A turtle said hello.
Dive 3
Channel drift with lots of white tip sharks inside the channel plus a big Napoleon and several honeycomb and giant morays sharing cleaning stations. We also found an ENORMOUS FLUFFY STONEFISH, a freeswimming honeycomb and a round ribbontailed ray. A turtle swatted away the paparazzi!
Day 8
Dive 1
Easy channel drift and dramatic ocean reef site. There were a couple of white tips on the plateau and then a large Napoleon with his two girlfriends on the ocean reef. The many terraces and overhangs were full of soldierfish and crown squirrelfish plus three spot yellow angelfish, all sorts of morays and millions of anthias again.
Dive 2
Really great wreck dive! The holds are full of interesting items, today we found a cassette radio, a make up box, beer bottles and photo albums. We made a tour of the accommodation block including the crew restaurant and the bathrooms and found the cigarette stash. The wreck is surrounded by schools of fusiliers and surgeonfish plus a Tambja morosa nudi on the wheelhouse front plus a Phillidiana sp..
Dive 3
Wow! 8 different MANTA RAYS and lots of our old friends like Winifred and Mick who were very friendly, swimming through our bubbles and checking us out closely. A whole hour of manta fun! Everyone came up smiling.
Day 9
Dive 1
Magical final dive at beautiful blue soft coral covered pinnacles smothered in fish. Schools of 100's of bannerfish shimmerred in the current and sweetlips and emperors were everywhere. The run of overhangs are full of orange seafans and red and white sea whips and the coral blocks on top were decorated with every variety of pastel coloured nepthia soft coral. We found a lovely green turtle and a blue peacock mantis shrimp.
Daytime Excursion
Afternoon visit to Male for shopping, sightseeing and visit to ice-cream parlour.
Day 10
Guest Transfer
Guests to airport for international flight.
Day 11
Sea Spirit SS403 5 May 2013 to 12 May 2013 Close Encounters (7 day)
Guest Transfer
Arrival to Sea Spirit from International flights and resorts
Dive 1
Check dive. Lots of pretty honeycomb morays, a pair of blacktip groupers posturing/displaying, a tiger cowrie, camouflage groupers in nepthia covered coral blocks, a pair of green leaf fish, a porcelain crab, schools of blue-stripe snappers and sleek surgeonfish.
We helped celebrate Chris and Vicky's honeymoon with a cake
Day 1
Dive 1
A stripy ZEBRA SHARK sleeping on the bottom, 4+ WHITE TIP REEF SHARKS either resting on the bottom or out and about, GREEN AND HAWKSBILL TURTLES, fire gobies, a spotted porcupinefish, sweepers and groupers in coral blocks plus all the carpet anemones checked had porcelain crabs in.
Between sites we came across around 30 PILOT WHALES slowly cruising outside the atoll. They were friendly enough to swim over and swim alongside Sea Spirit for a while. Amazing!
Dive 2
The huge BUMPHEAD PARROTFISH were shallow on the top reef at the start of the dive. We had a MANTA RAY fly by and there were 2+3 EAGLE RAYS in the channel. The big blocks had brownmarbled groupers, humpback snappers, and bicolour parrotfish. One of the overhangs was full of soldierfish.
Dive 3
This site was very fishy with schools of bannerfish, red and midnight snappers, goldspot and big-eye emperors, spotted groupers, bluefaced angelfish etc. We found a larger SPOTTY ZEBRA SHARK resting in the sand which woke up and swam around but resettled close by. There were several GREEN TURTLES hiding on the top reef and napoleon wrasses being cleaned.
We found a pelagic sea moth Pegasis volitans swimming around on the surface behind SS at anchorage.
Day 2
Dive 1
Wow this was beautiful today. Blue, yellow, pink and orange soft corals smothered the terraces, coral blocks and terraces and schools of black and white snappers and big-eye jacks swam around the plateau and canyon. Three short finned MOBULA RAYS swam overhead. The large mappa puffer was out and about rather than hiding in the main overhang where we normally find it. Also several Napoleons, a pinkbar goby with two pistol shrimps making nest renovations and several dogtooth tunas chasing the fusiliers.
Dive 2
A small current at this thila site with several ROUND RIBBONTAIL RAYS either sleeping half-hidden in the sand or swimming around and one was hoverring over a cleaning station. There were lots of reef fish around the thila and a huge school of snappers feeding in the current above it. The white tip sharks were sleeping in the sand. We also saw a non-spotted eagle ray and a glorius flatworm.
Dive 3
This site has lovely blue, yellow, pink and orange soft coral overhangs set in a steep wall. In the ceiling there were lots of soldierfish and a giant moray. The caves had lovely seawhips and seafans. The wall is highly coralised and very beautiful. There was a teeny hawksbill turtle and a hiding octopus.
Night Dive
Back to the wall for a lovely, colourful night dive. The yellos and reds really showed up by torchlight and the hanging soft corals looked quite magical. A sleepy turtle divebombed a diver, there were thre large Napoleons being cleaned by Bruuni shrimps as they slept and lots of furry-legged saron shrimps, squat lobsters and trapezia crabs amongst the hard corals plus large hermit crabs.
Day 3
Dive 1
WHEE! The current built to strong at this dramatic thila today. There were several EAGLE RAYS plus WHITE TIP SHARKS at the current point then a fairly quick drift through the amazing overhangs full of large pink seafans with thousands of bluestripe snappers swirling around. The pinnacles were full of fish. The blocks along the sides of the thila had sweetlips humpback and more blue stripe snappers and the biiger blocks in the current shadow were critter condos for groupers etc. A hawksbill turtle surfed the current!
Dive 2
Easy ocean drift with white tip and black tip sharks, spotted and blotched porcupinefish plus coral blocks full of groupers and other reef fish plus a tiny Susan's flatworm. A mangrove whipray was woken up and zoomed off. There was also a lovely green turtle taking a nap.
Ocean Crossing
Inter-atoll crossing
Dive 3
Great wreck-and-reef dive. A large blue Napoleon was at a cleaning station below the bow of the wreck. There are lots of black corals along the hull and we found a longnose hawkfish and a juvenile trumpetfish in hiding. Schultz pipefish, lionfish and Durban shrimps were found around the stern. The main reef is also fascinating with lots of coral ledges full of fish inclusing a red spotted rock cod being cleaned by Bruuni shrimp.
Movie night
Day 4
Dive 1
Easy out-current drift past honeycomb and giant morays and a hawksbill turtle and then a slow drift on the vertical ocean wall with beautiful coralised ledges buzzing with pink and orange anthias. EAGLE RAYS AND WHITE TIP SHARKS cruised the drop off and Napoleons wandered up and down checking us out. We found a white, a green and a yellow leaf fish plus a pair of Pterolidia segmented worms.
Dive 2
AWESOME DIVE! Gentle drift across channel front with swathes of fusiliers being coralled by giant trevallies and dogtooth tunas with white tip sharks along the front, lots of morays plus bannerfish and sleek surgeonfish. A brisk drift through multilevel overhangs full of anthias plus white tip sharks swimming hard and a MANTA swimming up the channel which checked us out and another manta during the safety stop. Adrenalin hit!
Dive 3
SHARKTASTIC! Lots of little GREY SHARKS on the channel corner plus LARGER GREY SHARKS AND WHITE TIP SHARKS along the channel front. A squadron of 12 EAGLE RAYS IN FORMATION and then a MANTA SWAM UP FROM THE DEPTHS. WOW! Lots of honeycomb morays inclusing two freeswimming, an octopus and lovely reeeffish on top of ocean corner.
Night Dive
NURSE SHARK PARTY NIGHT DIVE with half a dozen very large nurse sharks fighting over their feed and playing football with it and giant trevallies and very large round ribbon tail rays trying to get in on the act. Tonight was definitely the night of the nurse sharks and later we had 30+ (a mating aggregation?) cruising up and down the reef like shark wallpaper!
Day 5
Dive 1
Easy drift from channel to ocean reef. We followed three short finned MOBULA out of the channel then white tip sharks sleeping on the channel front and eagle rays plus big-eye jacks and snappers in the channel. On the wall we found Lysmata shrimps busy cleaning morays and rock cods, an octopus, spiny lobsters, a green and a yellow-white leaf fishes, another eagle ray and a large blue Napoleon. Beautiful schools of fish along the reef crest.
Dive 2
Soft coral filled overhangs and pinnacles at the west end of the thila. Every surface was covered with pink and orange soft corals. There was a large green turtle sleeping on a ledge and large silver and oriental sweetlips in the ledges waiting to be cleaned. Lovely seafan and tubastrea trees too. On the top we found a peacock flounder, another green turtle in hiding and the coral block surrounded by dozens of oriental sweetlips and collared butterflyfish.
Dive 3
Great macro dive. We found a super-fun octopus which was pulling all kinds of shapes as it went abut hunting on the reef top, pixie and longnose hawkfish in the black corals along with penguin and thorny oysters, a Chromodoris tritos nudi, reef pipefish, banded coral shrimps, a spearing mantis shrimp in its nest plus the blue-green chromis were "kissing" (read-fighting).
Sundowners on deck with a beautiful chiled sunset
Day 6
Dive 1
Dramatic last dive on ocean front of thila. Lots of GREY SHARKS were cruising the edge amongst the large schools of big-eye jacks and FORSTER'S BARRACUDAS. A posse of small greys were chasing something and were buzzing around whilst a large grey shark was cruising about the cleaning station. The top of the reef has lovely coral with lots of reef fish and anemones etc. We found an unusual jellyfish being attacked by a scribbled filefish!
Return journey to North Male atoll. Afternoon visit to Male for shopping and ice-cream.
Day 7
Guest Transfer
Guests departed via airport for onward transfers to resorts, hotels and international flights
Day 8
 
Guest Transfer
Arrival to Sea Spirit from International flights and resorts
Dive 1
Check dive. Lots of pretty honeycomb morays, a pair of blacktip groupers posturing/displaying, a tiger cowrie, camouflage groupers in nepthia covered coral blocks, a pair of green leaf fish, a porcelain crab, schools of blue-stripe snappers and sleek surgeonfish.
We helped celebrate Chris and Vicky's honeymoon with a cake
Day 1
Dive 1
A stripy ZEBRA SHARK sleeping on the bottom, 4+ WHITE TIP REEF SHARKS either resting on the bottom or out and about, GREEN AND HAWKSBILL TURTLES, fire gobies, a spotted porcupinefish, sweepers and groupers in coral blocks plus all the carpet anemones checked had porcelain crabs in.
Between sites we came across around 30 PILOT WHALES slowly cruising outside the atoll. They were friendly enough to swim over and swim alongside Sea Spirit for a while. Amazing!
Dive 2
The huge BUMPHEAD PARROTFISH were shallow on the top reef at the start of the dive. We had a MANTA RAY fly by and there were 2+3 EAGLE RAYS in the channel. The big blocks had brownmarbled groupers, humpback snappers, and bicolour parrotfish. One of the overhangs was full of soldierfish.
Dive 3
This site was very fishy with schools of bannerfish, red and midnight snappers, goldspot and big-eye emperors, spotted groupers, bluefaced angelfish etc. We found a larger SPOTTY ZEBRA SHARK resting in the sand which woke up and swam around but resettled close by. There were several GREEN TURTLES hiding on the top reef and napoleon wrasses being cleaned.
We found a pelagic sea moth Pegasis volitans swimming around on the surface behind SS at anchorage.
Day 2
Dive 1
Wow this was beautiful today. Blue, yellow, pink and orange soft corals smothered the terraces, coral blocks and terraces and schools of black and white snappers and big-eye jacks swam around the plateau and canyon. Three short finned MOBULA RAYS swam overhead. The large mappa puffer was out and about rather than hiding in the main overhang where we normally find it. Also several Napoleons, a pinkbar goby with two pistol shrimps making nest renovations and several dogtooth tunas chasing the fusiliers.
Dive 2
A small current at this thila site with several ROUND RIBBONTAIL RAYS either sleeping half-hidden in the sand or swimming around and one was hoverring over a cleaning station. There were lots of reef fish around the thila and a huge school of snappers feeding in the current above it. The white tip sharks were sleeping in the sand. We also saw a non-spotted eagle ray and a glorius flatworm.
Dive 3
This site has lovely blue, yellow, pink and orange soft coral overhangs set in a steep wall. In the ceiling there were lots of soldierfish and a giant moray. The caves had lovely seawhips and seafans. The wall is highly coralised and very beautiful. There was a teeny hawksbill turtle and a hiding octopus.
Night Dive
Back to the wall for a lovely, colourful night dive. The yellos and reds really showed up by torchlight and the hanging soft corals looked quite magical. A sleepy turtle divebombed a diver, there were thre large Napoleons being cleaned by Bruuni shrimps as they slept and lots of furry-legged saron shrimps, squat lobsters and trapezia crabs amongst the hard corals plus large hermit crabs.
Day 3
Dive 1
WHEE! The current built to strong at this dramatic thila today. There were several EAGLE RAYS plus WHITE TIP SHARKS at the current point then a fairly quick drift through the amazing overhangs full of large pink seafans with thousands of bluestripe snappers swirling around. The pinnacles were full of fish. The blocks along the sides of the thila had sweetlips humpback and more blue stripe snappers and the biiger blocks in the current shadow were critter condos for groupers etc. A hawksbill turtle surfed the current!
Dive 2
Easy ocean drift with white tip and black tip sharks, spotted and blotched porcupinefish plus coral blocks full of groupers and other reef fish plus a tiny Susan's flatworm. A mangrove whipray was woken up and zoomed off. There was also a lovely green turtle taking a nap.
Ocean Crossing
Inter-atoll crossing
Dive 3
Great wreck-and-reef dive. A large blue Napoleon was at a cleaning station below the bow of the wreck. There are lots of black corals along the hull and we found a longnose hawkfish and a juvenile trumpetfish in hiding. Schultz pipefish, lionfish and Durban shrimps were found around the stern. The main reef is also fascinating with lots of coral ledges full of fish inclusing a red spotted rock cod being cleaned by Bruuni shrimp.
Movie night
Day 4
Dive 1
Easy out-current drift past honeycomb and giant morays and a hawksbill turtle and then a slow drift on the vertical ocean wall with beautiful coralised ledges buzzing with pink and orange anthias. EAGLE RAYS AND WHITE TIP SHARKS cruised the drop off and Napoleons wandered up and down checking us out. We found a white, a green and a yellow leaf fish plus a pair of Pterolidia segmented worms.
Dive 2
AWESOME DIVE! Gentle drift across channel front with swathes of fusiliers being coralled by giant trevallies and dogtooth tunas with white tip sharks along the front, lots of morays plus bannerfish and sleek surgeonfish. A brisk drift through multilevel overhangs full of anthias plus white tip sharks swimming hard and a MANTA swimming up the channel which checked us out and another manta during the safety stop. Adrenalin hit!
Dive 3
SHARKTASTIC! Lots of little GREY SHARKS on the channel corner plus LARGER GREY SHARKS AND WHITE TIP SHARKS along the channel front. A squadron of 12 EAGLE RAYS IN FORMATION and then a MANTA SWAM UP FROM THE DEPTHS. WOW! Lots of honeycomb morays inclusing two freeswimming, an octopus and lovely reeeffish on top of ocean corner.
Night Dive
NURSE SHARK PARTY NIGHT DIVE with half a dozen very large nurse sharks fighting over their feed and playing football with it and giant trevallies and very large round ribbon tail rays trying to get in on the act. Tonight was definitely the night of the nurse sharks and later we had 30+ (a mating aggregation?) cruising up and down the reef like shark wallpaper!
Day 5
Dive 1
Easy drift from channel to ocean reef. We followed three short finned MOBULA out of the channel then white tip sharks sleeping on the channel front and eagle rays plus big-eye jacks and snappers in the channel. On the wall we found Lysmata shrimps busy cleaning morays and rock cods, an octopus, spiny lobsters, a green and a yellow-white leaf fishes, another eagle ray and a large blue Napoleon. Beautiful schools of fish along the reef crest.
Dive 2
Soft coral filled overhangs and pinnacles at the west end of the thila. Every surface was covered with pink and orange soft corals. There was a large green turtle sleeping on a ledge and large silver and oriental sweetlips in the ledges waiting to be cleaned. Lovely seafan and tubastrea trees too. On the top we found a peacock flounder, another green turtle in hiding and the coral block surrounded by dozens of oriental sweetlips and collared butterflyfish.
Dive 3
Great macro dive. We found a super-fun octopus which was pulling all kinds of shapes as it went abut hunting on the reef top, pixie and longnose hawkfish in the black corals along with penguin and thorny oysters, a Chromodoris tritos nudi, reef pipefish, banded coral shrimps, a spearing mantis shrimp in its nest plus the blue-green chromis were "kissing" (read-fighting).
Sundowners on deck with a beautiful chiled sunset
Day 6
Dive 1
Dramatic last dive on ocean front of thila. Lots of GREY SHARKS were cruising the edge amongst the large schools of big-eye jacks and FORSTER'S BARRACUDAS. A posse of small greys were chasing something and were buzzing around whilst a large grey shark was cruising about the cleaning station. The top of the reef has lovely coral with lots of reef fish and anemones etc. We found an unusual jellyfish being attacked by a scribbled filefish!
Return journey to North Male atoll. Afternoon visit to Male for shopping and ice-cream.
Day 7
Guest Transfer
Guests departed via airport for onward transfers to resorts, hotels and international flights
Day 8
Sea Spirit SS402B 28 Apr 2013 to 5 May 2013 Central Atolls (7 days)
Guest Transfer
Arrival to Sea Spirit from International flights and resorts
Dive 1
A late afternoon check dive. We found a large STONEFISH, a pair of Chromodoris tritos nudis, a school of young tunas which swam past several times, a Bruuni cleaning shrimp which gave a manicure, tiger cardinals, spotted coral groupers. There were many regal featherstars in a variety of colour walking around and looking like they were preparing to spawn.
Day 1
Dive 1
Fish City! At the current point was a huge school of neon fusiliers being herded around by giant trevallies, plus black & white, red and bluestriped snappers, bannerfish, and a large school of oriental sweetlips. The deepwater seafans had their white polyps extended and looked like white cotton-candy. There are lovely nepthia soft corals, pink seafans and smaller green hand-sized seafans on all the canyon walls.
Guest Transfer
Ocean crossing to Rasdhoo atoll
Dive 2
White tip sharks, giant trevallies and tunas cruised the reef edge at this dramatic ocean reef. A HUGE school of bonitos swam past and there was even a MANTA fly-past. A large mappa puffer and a porcupine puffer were being cleaned over the garden eels sand area. Some of the midnight snappers were "barking".
Dive 3
At the deep spur a large school of big eye jacks whirled around below 40m. A MANTA came to check us out when we were looking at a pair of green leaf fish! We also saw longfin batfish hanging sideways, 2x large spearing mantis shrimps and a large blue Napoleon being cleaned whilst it rested in a cave.
Day 2
Dive 1
Lovely swirling school of big eye jacks at spur below 40m depth. Grey sharks and white tips cruising the reef edge. Spearing mantis shrimps, pair yellow leaf fish, garden eels and an evil blackcheek moray!
Dive 2
A cute, friendly EAGLE RAY liked having her photograph taken. There were several grey sharks cruising off the reef and many baby white tips either cruising around or hiding under table corals. There were schools of big eye crescent tails, barracudas, mackeral scads and large dogtooth tunas coralling neon fusiliers
Dive 3
Grey sharks and a macro dive! Shortheaded shrimps, porcelain crabs, comet fish, octopus, blue magnificas with Maldives anemonefish and baby three spot damselfish entourages, plus black coral trees with longnose hawkfish.
Night Dive
Busy sharky night dive with white tip and grey sharks whizzing around chasing fish, round ribbon tail rays, morays, giant trevallies and red snappers all out hunting. In small crevices we found plumed, banded coral and furry-legged saron shrimps.
Night Dive
WOW, one, then two MANTA RAYS behind SS at anchorage. What a show!
Day 3
Dive 1
This thila was very sharky today with around 7 GREY SHARKS of various sizes cruising up and down the reef and three SILVERTIPS joining in the fun! One of the grey sharks was standing on its tail to be cleaned. There were photogenic schools of blue stripe snappers and gold spot emperors plus friendly hawksbill turtles, batfish and chevron barracudas.
Dive 2
The batfish were the stars at this thila as the formed groups in the shallows. The beautiful back coral trees were full of juvenile fish and schools of snappers swept around the pink organ sponges and penguin oysters. The yellow acabaria here is very pretty. There were Bruuni shrimp busy cleaning goupers and morays, some divers saw a short-finned mobula ray.
Dive 3
We went in search of mantas and found grey sharks! The seasons are certainly in transition. Two manta rays did pass us by but didn't hang around for long. There were hawksbill turtles, crown squirrelfish, indian bannerfish, ledges full of Cooper's and Evan's anthias, two-spot angelfish and a couple of grey sharks
Day 4
Dive 1
Easy drift with lots of white tip reef sharks on top of the reef. There was a pair of yellow leaf fish. A white mouthed moray, banded coral shrimps with yellowmargin moray.
Dive 2
Schools of surgeonfish, fusiliers and red snappers on the ocean side. A highlight was a pair of mating octopus who were "playing" together for ages. Love was in the air as there was a pair of Maldives sponge snails too. Lovely oriental and harlequin sweetlips, a porcelain crab, tiger cardinals and a large yellow grouper.
Ocean Crossing
Ocean crossing to South Male atoll
Dive 3
Batfish, black saddled coral groupers, glorious flatworm, a comet fish, a purple "tribble", lovely blue magnifica anemones, a Mertensi anemone.
Day 5
Dive 1
There were giant trevallies and tunas chasing fusiliers on the ocean reef and white tips asleep on the front of the channel and swimming up and down on the outside. There was a foraging octopus, honeycomb morays and several schools of snappers and sweetlips.
Dive 2
5-6 EAGLE RAYS cruising the current point plus grey sharks in the depths. There were big eye jacks, black and white snappers and many schools of oriental and silver sweetlips. The overhangs and terraces were smothered in pink and orange soft corals. A large coral block on the top was surrounded by large schools beautiful oriental sweetlips and collared butterflyfish.
Dive 3
An out-current in the channel and quite a quick drift past ledges and overhangs with buzzing anthias. A couple of white tips were soaring over the reef top. The overhangs had lovely orange seafans. Also a pretty yellow leaf fish and lovely blue-faced angelfish.
Night Dive
Multibar pipefish, 2x glorious flatworms, morays hunting, a sleeping starry mappa and turtles swimming up and down for a breath of air.
Day 6
Dive 1
6+ EAGLE RAYS happily posing for photographers and gliding up and down the channel. Great schools of sweetlips, snappers and jacks. A Napoleon with emperor fish entourage. Beautiful soft corals, hard corals and just so many fish. Pash was attacked by a titan trigger :-( Great last dive
Daytime Excursion
Travel back to Male. Afternoon visit for sightseeing and shopping
Day 7
Transfer to airport for international flights
Day 8
 
Guest Transfer
Arrival to Sea Spirit from International flights and resorts
Dive 1
A late afternoon check dive. We found a large STONEFISH, a pair of Chromodoris tritos nudis, a school of young tunas which swam past several times, a Bruuni cleaning shrimp which gave a manicure, tiger cardinals, spotted coral groupers. There were many regal featherstars in a variety of colour walking around and looking like they were preparing to spawn.
Day 1
Dive 1
Fish City! At the current point was a huge school of neon fusiliers being herded around by giant trevallies, plus black & white, red and bluestriped snappers, bannerfish, and a large school of oriental sweetlips. The deepwater seafans had their white polyps extended and looked like white cotton-candy. There are lovely nepthia soft corals, pink seafans and smaller green hand-sized seafans on all the canyon walls.
Guest Transfer
Ocean crossing to Rasdhoo atoll
Dive 2
White tip sharks, giant trevallies and tunas cruised the reef edge at this dramatic ocean reef. A HUGE school of bonitos swam past and there was even a MANTA fly-past. A large mappa puffer and a porcupine puffer were being cleaned over the garden eels sand area. Some of the midnight snappers were "barking".
Dive 3
At the deep spur a large school of big eye jacks whirled around below 40m. A MANTA came to check us out when we were looking at a pair of green leaf fish! We also saw longfin batfish hanging sideways, 2x large spearing mantis shrimps and a large blue Napoleon being cleaned whilst it rested in a cave.
Day 2
Dive 1
Lovely swirling school of big eye jacks at spur below 40m depth. Grey sharks and white tips cruising the reef edge. Spearing mantis shrimps, pair yellow leaf fish, garden eels and an evil blackcheek moray!
Dive 2
A cute, friendly EAGLE RAY liked having her photograph taken. There were several grey sharks cruising off the reef and many baby white tips either cruising around or hiding under table corals. There were schools of big eye crescent tails, barracudas, mackeral scads and large dogtooth tunas coralling neon fusiliers
Dive 3
Grey sharks and a macro dive! Shortheaded shrimps, porcelain crabs, comet fish, octopus, blue magnificas with Maldives anemonefish and baby three spot damselfish entourages, plus black coral trees with longnose hawkfish.
Night Dive
Busy sharky night dive with white tip and grey sharks whizzing around chasing fish, round ribbon tail rays, morays, giant trevallies and red snappers all out hunting. In small crevices we found plumed, banded coral and furry-legged saron shrimps.
Night Dive
WOW, one, then two MANTA RAYS behind SS at anchorage. What a show!
Day 3
Dive 1
This thila was very sharky today with around 7 GREY SHARKS of various sizes cruising up and down the reef and three SILVERTIPS joining in the fun! One of the grey sharks was standing on its tail to be cleaned. There were photogenic schools of blue stripe snappers and gold spot emperors plus friendly hawksbill turtles, batfish and chevron barracudas.
Dive 2
The batfish were the stars at this thila as the formed groups in the shallows. The beautiful back coral trees were full of juvenile fish and schools of snappers swept around the pink organ sponges and penguin oysters. The yellow acabaria here is very pretty. There were Bruuni shrimp busy cleaning goupers and morays, some divers saw a short-finned mobula ray.
Dive 3
We went in search of mantas and found grey sharks! The seasons are certainly in transition. Two manta rays did pass us by but didn't hang around for long. There were hawksbill turtles, crown squirrelfish, indian bannerfish, ledges full of Cooper's and Evan's anthias, two-spot angelfish and a couple of grey sharks
Day 4
Dive 1
Easy drift with lots of white tip reef sharks on top of the reef. There was a pair of yellow leaf fish. A white mouthed moray, banded coral shrimps with yellowmargin moray.
Dive 2
Schools of surgeonfish, fusiliers and red snappers on the ocean side. A highlight was a pair of mating octopus who were "playing" together for ages. Love was in the air as there was a pair of Maldives sponge snails too. Lovely oriental and harlequin sweetlips, a porcelain crab, tiger cardinals and a large yellow grouper.
Ocean Crossing
Ocean crossing to South Male atoll
Dive 3
Batfish, black saddled coral groupers, glorious flatworm, a comet fish, a purple "tribble", lovely blue magnifica anemones, a Mertensi anemone.
Day 5
Dive 1
There were giant trevallies and tunas chasing fusiliers on the ocean reef and white tips asleep on the front of the channel and swimming up and down on the outside. There was a foraging octopus, honeycomb morays and several schools of snappers and sweetlips.
Dive 2
5-6 EAGLE RAYS cruising the current point plus grey sharks in the depths. There were big eye jacks, black and white snappers and many schools of oriental and silver sweetlips. The overhangs and terraces were smothered in pink and orange soft corals. A large coral block on the top was surrounded by large schools beautiful oriental sweetlips and collared butterflyfish.
Dive 3
An out-current in the channel and quite a quick drift past ledges and overhangs with buzzing anthias. A couple of white tips were soaring over the reef top. The overhangs had lovely orange seafans. Also a pretty yellow leaf fish and lovely blue-faced angelfish.
Night Dive
Multibar pipefish, 2x glorious flatworms, morays hunting, a sleeping starry mappa and turtles swimming up and down for a breath of air.
Day 6
Dive 1
6+ EAGLE RAYS happily posing for photographers and gliding up and down the channel. Great schools of sweetlips, snappers and jacks. A Napoleon with emperor fish entourage. Beautiful soft corals, hard corals and just so many fish. Pash was attacked by a titan trigger :-( Great last dive
Daytime Excursion
Travel back to Male. Afternoon visit for sightseeing and shopping
Day 7
Transfer to airport for international flights
Day 8
Sea Spirit SS402A 21 Apr 2013 to 28 Apr 2013 Central Atolls (7 days)
Guest Transfer
Arrival to Sea Spirit from International flights and resorts
Dive 1
Easy check dive. We descended into a mass of blue striped snappers and a sleeping round ribbontail ray. Along the reef we saw schools of bannerfish and sleek surgeonfish. This site has really nice reef fish including black saddled coral groupers, a blotched porcupinefish, nice spotted groupers, many morays plus a pair of Schultz's pipefish and feisty blackfoot anemonefish in orange magnifica anemones
Ocean Crossing
Travel to South Male atoll
Day 1
Dive 1
Wreck dive near a reef so we started by descending onto the wreck which had lots of Bruuni and banded boxer cleaner shrimps on the stern plus lionfish on the wheelhouse and bluefin and giant trevallies chasing fusiliers. We found a P. gloriosa flatworm in a swim-through, and scorpionfish and peacock mantis shrimps on the reef. There are many white acabaria-framed windows. Such a pretty site.
Dive 2
A ROLLERCOASTER RIDE TODAY with a strong current across the front of the channel pinning down huge schools of fusiliers which were being chased by giant trevallies plus WHITE TIP SHARKS, Napoleons, honeycomb morays, bannerfish, harlequin and oriental sweetlips etc. The ride through the overhangs was very bouncy with millions of anthias buzzing in the current and a hawksbill turtle riding the flow. WHEEEE!
Ocean Crossing
Travel to Felidhoo atoll
Dive 3
EASY HOOK-IN AND HANG with 10+ LITTLE GREY SHARKS plus a few medium sized ones parading up and down the channel corner. Very cute! We drifted into the channel past a few honeycomb and giant morays into a pretty coral garden surrounded by white sand dunes.
Night Dive
WILD NIGHT DIVE with NURSE SHARKS, PINK WHIP RAYS, ROUND RIBBON TAIL RAYS and lots of ENORMOUS GIANT TREVALLIES battling out in the hunt for food.
Day 2
Dive 1
SUPER SHARKY TODAY with two groups of 20+ GREY SHARKS plus single LARGE GREY SHARKS so 50 SHARKS today plus EAGLE RAYS and big eye jacks on channel front. Then a wall with 2x white/yellow leaf fish, black & white, red and humpback snappers, black cheek and white mouthed morays plus sand gobies and the upper reef buzzing with Evan's and Cooper's anthias. What a dive!
Ocean Crossing
Travel to Ari atoll
Dive 2
Easy ocean drift with many guineafowl puffers, a pair of sailfin tangs, many anthias, several great barracudas and schools of sleek unicornfish and neon fusiliers.
Dive 3
Gentle drift looking for "lost wreck". There was a lovely school of bluestriped snapper near a barge covered in hard corals and a school of big eye jacks. On the reef slope were many red seafans and purple sea whips plus an area of fluffy white deepwater seafans. A couple of yellow box pufferfish and several Maldives sponge snails
Amazing red sunset over sundowners on deck
Day 3
Dive 1
Great wreck dive and today there was a stiff current making it a little difficult to move around outside the wreck! There were batfish and bluefin jacks out hunting, a huge spearing mantis shrimp, a Chromodoris glenei nudibranch plus milk fish, black tip reef shark and crescent tail big eyes plus all the regular reef fish on the beautiful hard coral house reef.
Snorkelling
WHALE SHARK! After a couple of false starts we managed to snorkel with a small male whale shark. He was very cute!
Dive 2
Sandy area next to thila with lots of WHITE TIP REEF SHARKS plus a ROUND RIBBONTAIL RAY lazing around whilst a grey shark and a school of blue striped snappers hung out on the deeper side of the reef. On the main reef we saw a pair of hawksbill turtles and a MANGROVE WHIP RAY.
Dive 3
MANTA! A lovely male manta swept up and down the reef three times checking us out! Also Napoleons, white mouthed morays, bearded scorpionfish, ledges full of anthias a gobies, feisty ankle-biting jewelled damselfish plus mantis shrimps, and schools of crown squirrelfish, indian bannerfish and goldspot emperors
Day 4
Dive 1
11 DIFFERENT MANTAS GIVING US THE FULL SHOW CONTINOUSLY FOR 90 MINUTES! There were 3-4 at a time swimming through our bubbles, being cleaned and making acrobatic displays. We also saw a leaf fish, lovely Napoleons etc.
Dive 2
Lovely drift through PINK, ORANGE AND BLUE SOFT CORAL overhangs and canyons full of snappers and bannerfish plus white tip sharks riding the current points at the big blocks. In the sandy coral garden areas we found four small peacock flounders playing hide and seek.
Dive 3
At the current point of this thila were giant trevallies chasing fusliers plus white tip sharks on the reef top. Making a circuit we found longnose hawkfish in the black coral trees, a pair of shortheaded shrimps in a carpet anemone, an octopus pulling shapes and colour changing, a hawksbill turtle, a teeny Clarke's anemonefish and yet more flounders.
Night Dive
Night dive to watch grey sharks, white tip sharks ribbontail rays giant trevallies, morays and red snappers out hunting. All the other fish were on the menu! There were lots of beautiful furry-legged tapestry shrimps hiding in the Pavona coral.
Day 5
Dive 1
There were THREE GREY SHARKS crusing the edge of the reef thoughout the dive but the stars today were the giant DOGTOOTH TUNAS which kept making raids on the huge schools of fusiliers and making them explode towards the reef. Wow! Also scorpionfish, several baby white tip sharks hiding under table corals, many crescent tail big eyes, sandy patches with pinkbar gobies and same coloured pistol shrimps and eyelash and fang blennies peering out of small holes in the coral.
Dive 2
Easy current at this beautiful reef so a chance to swim all the way around the reef and check out all the nooks and crannies. Funny yellow with blue lips two-spot angelfish, longnose emperors, axelspot hogfish, McCoskers and ornate wrasses, fly-bys by dogtooth tunas, black and white pairings of big-eye jacks, a large Mappa puffer resting on the bottom and pulling faces; plus really superb hard corals. A great site.
Dive 3
More current this time with grey and white tip reef sharks crusing the wall, three spotted eagle rays, large red snappers hanging out at current point, spearing mantis shrimps in their nests, reef bannerfish at cleaning station block with giant clams buried in the reef and jewelled damselfish tending their hydroid and algae farms. We came back to the shallow reef which had millions of silversides glittering in the evening sun.
Day 6
Dive 1
A different current again, which sent us up the wall on a one-way travellator moving very quickly! We saw grey sharks, eagle rays, white tips and tunas plus schools of snappers and fusliers. The sparkling silversides were all along the shallow reef and the corals on the top reef are truly spectacular. A lovely way to end a terrific trip
Ocean Crossing
Travel back to Male atoll. Mid-ocean we were accompanied by a large school of common dolphins.
Sundowners with an amazing sky with a rainbow, a pink sunset, huge cloud formations and a lightning storm after sunset (but no rain!).
Day 7
Guest Transfer
Early morning transfer to airport for international departures.
Day 8
 
Guest Transfer
Arrival to Sea Spirit from International flights and resorts
Dive 1
Easy check dive. We descended into a mass of blue striped snappers and a sleeping round ribbontail ray. Along the reef we saw schools of bannerfish and sleek surgeonfish. This site has really nice reef fish including black saddled coral groupers, a blotched porcupinefish, nice spotted groupers, many morays plus a pair of Schultz's pipefish and feisty blackfoot anemonefish in orange magnifica anemones
Ocean Crossing
Travel to South Male atoll
Day 1
Dive 1
Wreck dive near a reef so we started by descending onto the wreck which had lots of Bruuni and banded boxer cleaner shrimps on the stern plus lionfish on the wheelhouse and bluefin and giant trevallies chasing fusiliers. We found a P. gloriosa flatworm in a swim-through, and scorpionfish and peacock mantis shrimps on the reef. There are many white acabaria-framed windows. Such a pretty site.
Dive 2
A ROLLERCOASTER RIDE TODAY with a strong current across the front of the channel pinning down huge schools of fusiliers which were being chased by giant trevallies plus WHITE TIP SHARKS, Napoleons, honeycomb morays, bannerfish, harlequin and oriental sweetlips etc. The ride through the overhangs was very bouncy with millions of anthias buzzing in the current and a hawksbill turtle riding the flow. WHEEEE!
Ocean Crossing
Travel to Felidhoo atoll
Dive 3
EASY HOOK-IN AND HANG with 10+ LITTLE GREY SHARKS plus a few medium sized ones parading up and down the channel corner. Very cute! We drifted into the channel past a few honeycomb and giant morays into a pretty coral garden surrounded by white sand dunes.
Night Dive
WILD NIGHT DIVE with NURSE SHARKS, PINK WHIP RAYS, ROUND RIBBON TAIL RAYS and lots of ENORMOUS GIANT TREVALLIES battling out in the hunt for food.
Day 2
Dive 1
SUPER SHARKY TODAY with two groups of 20+ GREY SHARKS plus single LARGE GREY SHARKS so 50 SHARKS today plus EAGLE RAYS and big eye jacks on channel front. Then a wall with 2x white/yellow leaf fish, black & white, red and humpback snappers, black cheek and white mouthed morays plus sand gobies and the upper reef buzzing with Evan's and Cooper's anthias. What a dive!
Ocean Crossing
Travel to Ari atoll
Dive 2
Easy ocean drift with many guineafowl puffers, a pair of sailfin tangs, many anthias, several great barracudas and schools of sleek unicornfish and neon fusiliers.
Dive 3
Gentle drift looking for "lost wreck". There was a lovely school of bluestriped snapper near a barge covered in hard corals and a school of big eye jacks. On the reef slope were many red seafans and purple sea whips plus an area of fluffy white deepwater seafans. A couple of yellow box pufferfish and several Maldives sponge snails
Amazing red sunset over sundowners on deck
Day 3
Dive 1
Great wreck dive and today there was a stiff current making it a little difficult to move around outside the wreck! There were batfish and bluefin jacks out hunting, a huge spearing mantis shrimp, a Chromodoris glenei nudibranch plus milk fish, black tip reef shark and crescent tail big eyes plus all the regular reef fish on the beautiful hard coral house reef.
Snorkelling
WHALE SHARK! After a couple of false starts we managed to snorkel with a small male whale shark. He was very cute!
Dive 2
Sandy area next to thila with lots of WHITE TIP REEF SHARKS plus a ROUND RIBBONTAIL RAY lazing around whilst a grey shark and a school of blue striped snappers hung out on the deeper side of the reef. On the main reef we saw a pair of hawksbill turtles and a MANGROVE WHIP RAY.
Dive 3
MANTA! A lovely male manta swept up and down the reef three times checking us out! Also Napoleons, white mouthed morays, bearded scorpionfish, ledges full of anthias a gobies, feisty ankle-biting jewelled damselfish plus mantis shrimps, and schools of crown squirrelfish, indian bannerfish and goldspot emperors
Day 4
Dive 1
11 DIFFERENT MANTAS GIVING US THE FULL SHOW CONTINOUSLY FOR 90 MINUTES! There were 3-4 at a time swimming through our bubbles, being cleaned and making acrobatic displays. We also saw a leaf fish, lovely Napoleons etc.
Dive 2
Lovely drift through PINK, ORANGE AND BLUE SOFT CORAL overhangs and canyons full of snappers and bannerfish plus white tip sharks riding the current points at the big blocks. In the sandy coral garden areas we found four small peacock flounders playing hide and seek.
Dive 3
At the current point of this thila were giant trevallies chasing fusliers plus white tip sharks on the reef top. Making a circuit we found longnose hawkfish in the black coral trees, a pair of shortheaded shrimps in a carpet anemone, an octopus pulling shapes and colour changing, a hawksbill turtle, a teeny Clarke's anemonefish and yet more flounders.
Night Dive
Night dive to watch grey sharks, white tip sharks ribbontail rays giant trevallies, morays and red snappers out hunting. All the other fish were on the menu! There were lots of beautiful furry-legged tapestry shrimps hiding in the Pavona coral.
Day 5
Dive 1
There were THREE GREY SHARKS crusing the edge of the reef thoughout the dive but the stars today were the giant DOGTOOTH TUNAS which kept making raids on the huge schools of fusiliers and making them explode towards the reef. Wow! Also scorpionfish, several baby white tip sharks hiding under table corals, many crescent tail big eyes, sandy patches with pinkbar gobies and same coloured pistol shrimps and eyelash and fang blennies peering out of small holes in the coral.
Dive 2
Easy current at this beautiful reef so a chance to swim all the way around the reef and check out all the nooks and crannies. Funny yellow with blue lips two-spot angelfish, longnose emperors, axelspot hogfish, McCoskers and ornate wrasses, fly-bys by dogtooth tunas, black and white pairings of big-eye jacks, a large Mappa puffer resting on the bottom and pulling faces; plus really superb hard corals. A great site.
Dive 3
More current this time with grey and white tip reef sharks crusing the wall, three spotted eagle rays, large red snappers hanging out at current point, spearing mantis shrimps in their nests, reef bannerfish at cleaning station block with giant clams buried in the reef and jewelled damselfish tending their hydroid and algae farms. We came back to the shallow reef which had millions of silversides glittering in the evening sun.
Day 6
Dive 1
A different current again, which sent us up the wall on a one-way travellator moving very quickly! We saw grey sharks, eagle rays, white tips and tunas plus schools of snappers and fusliers. The sparkling silversides were all along the shallow reef and the corals on the top reef are truly spectacular. A lovely way to end a terrific trip
Ocean Crossing
Travel back to Male atoll. Mid-ocean we were accompanied by a large school of common dolphins.
Sundowners with an amazing sky with a rainbow, a pink sunset, huge cloud formations and a lightning storm after sunset (but no rain!).
Day 7
Guest Transfer
Early morning transfer to airport for international departures.
Day 8
Sea Spirit SS401 7 Apr 2013 to 19 Apr 2013 Remote Far North (ending in Baa Atoll) (12 day)
Guest Transfer
Guests arrived to Sea Spirit from internal flights from Male international airport to Hanimadhoo to join Far North safari starting in Haa Dhaalu atoll
Dive 1