FAQ - Yap - Micronesia
Where is the dive center located?
The dive center is on the hotel premises within a few steps of the lobby and guest rooms. For those not staying at Manta Ray Bay, we offer complimentary transportation in our air-conditioned vans.
What time does the dive center open in the morning?
Generally 06:00 or one hour before the departure time of the first dive trip.
What time does the dive center close?
22:00 is closing time but the dive shop manager lives on the premises and is available 24 hours a day, if needed.
Is there storage for my personal gear?
Yes there is a private locker for every diver located within feet of the dive boats.
Do the staff speak English?
All our staff members are fluent in English (some crew members also speak German, French and Japanese).
Does the dive center cater to photographers?
Yes, there are 6 custom built “camera hotels” with locked storage so that you don’t have to take your cameras to your room, lighted work areas, charging stations for strobes and batteries with both U.S. standard 110 volt/60 as well as European plugs with 220 volt power, padded work area so that gear doesn’t roll, clean air to dry cameras and strobes as well as magnifying glasses for close work.
Is there a place to wash my dive gear?
Extra deep tiled and lighted rinse tanks are adjacent to the dive dock and within feet of the gear storage area. The tanks are drained and refilled with fresh water several times daily. We have separate rinse tanks exclusive for photo gear.
Is there dive instruction offered?
Yap Divers, as both a PADI 5-Star Dive Center and PADI Gold Palm Resort offers a full range of dive courses, including a manta awareness course and NITROX specialties. We also offer Discover Scuba courses for non divers who are interested in sampling this aquatic adventure.
Are the instructors certified?
All our instructors are fully PADI certified for basic, advanced and NITROX training.
Are there dive boat trips in the morning?
Boats depart every morning for a two tank dive trip. The manta dive trips generally depart between 07:00 and 09:00. Reef trips and wall dives depart between 08:00 and 10:00. Third and fourth dives are available in the afternoon as well as a night dive.
How many tanks per trip?
2 tanks per trip are normal but the dive centre caters to customers' desires. 3 or 4 tank dive trips can be scheduled upon request.
Are there afternoon dives?
Are there afternoon dives?
Yes a third and fourth dive is available. The shark dives depart at 15:00 and are a one tank dive. We have found an excellent macro dive site for those of you who wish to find and photograph nudibranchs.
Are there night dives?
Yes, night dives are available any night of the week upon request. Night dives are generally one tank boat trips, no more than 5 to 15 minutes from the hotel. There are multiple sites for excellent night diving, including encounters with lionfish, octopus, Spanish dancers and other nocturnal creatures.
Are there shore dives?
Yap does not offer shore diving because the best channels, coral gardens and wall dives are more than a mile from shore. Yap's shoreline is mostly mangrove formations which provide the nutrients and nesting places for juvenile fish.
Is rental dive gear available?
Yes, a full line of ScubaPro rental gear that is completely renewed each November, thus assuring you of new state of the art dive gear. We also offer dive skins and computers.
Is NITROX available?
Yes, Yap Divers has a state of the art membrane system and NITROX is available for all dives.
What about Rebreathers?
Rebreathers are not available for rent but we do allow rebreathers and we do support them with O2 and with a limited supply of sofno lime.
How many dive boats are available?
Yap Divers owns and operates 7 custom designed dive boats. These vessels have been designed and equipped specifically for diving and contain all of the equipment to make your trip comfortable and safe.
How many divers per boat?
A maximum of 8 divers per boat is normal. The dive centre can accommodate larger numbers for groups and have some of the finest dive boat in Micronesia - Popou capable of carrying up to 22 divers.
Can non-divers come on the boat?
They are more than welcome. Spouses and family members often accompany the diving guests, making the overall experience more enjoyable.
Can snorkelers come on dive boats?
Again, snorkelers are more than welcome. Most dive sites offer the opportunity to snorkel and scuba at the same site. The vertical walls and channels often rise to within a few feet of the surface.
Are there special snorkeling trips?
Yes, Yap Diver's offers dedicated snorkeling trips to the best snorkeling areas. These trips depart both in the morning and the afternoon and include a personal guide.
What time do you get back from the morning dive?
Morning dive trips return between noon and 13:00.
Is lunch served on the boat or at the resort?
On the boat you have a generous snack consisting of fresh baked pastries and fruit, as well as hot tea and ice water. Lunch is available at the resort.
What time does the afternoon trip depart?
The afternoon trips depart between 14:30 and 15:30. All trips return in time for dinner or a night dive.
How close are the boats to the Hotel?
The boats are at the hotel and it is as easy to get to the dive boats as it is to get to breakfast.
Is there shade on the boats?
Every one of our boats are completely shaded and have custom built dive ladders for easy entry and exit.
What safety equipment is on the dive boats?
All of our boats have first aid kits, DAN O2 kits, flares and VHF radios. Our boats have twin engines and we have switched to environmentally friendly 4 stroke engines. These new engines are fuel efficient, quite and do not burn oil so there is none of the oily smell associated with most dive boats.
Are weight belts available?
Yes, weights and belts are provided by Yap Divers. We have belts in a wide range of sizes and weights in 2,3 and 4 pound (1 to 2 kilo) increments.
What size scuba tanks are used?
We use 80 cubic foot aluminum tanks and we have 63 cubic foot tanks available for guests desiring lighter or shorter tanks. All of the tanks are regularly inspected and hydrostatically tested.
What is the water temperature?
The water temperature is 28 C degrees all year round, warm enough to wear just a dive skin, Polartec, or 3mm neoprene suit.
What is the underwater visibility?
On our reefs and walls the visibility often exceeds 50 meters and can top 60 meters. The visibility in the channels for the manta dives range from 10 meters up to 30 meters but since the manta rays come so close to you, this is ample.
What is the range of diving depths?
Our Manta dives are anywhere from 6 to 20 meters. Average depths for reef dives is 15 - 25 meters and our walls begin at 6 meters and plunge vertically to more than 120 meters.
Are there strong currents?
Occasional currents (mild to medium) in the channels for the manta dives are easy to navigate, since there are calm spots behind high coral heads and coral ridges. Mild currents occasionally occur on the outside walls, making them excellent for drift dives. Overall, Yap diving is easy and safe.
Are the coral reefs alive?
Our reefs are in phenomenal condition, almost pristine. We are blessed with some of the most beautiful coral formations in the Pacific - table corals the size of dinner tables, giant mounds of blue staghorn, golden elkhorn and giant brain corals. All formations are healthy and robust. We also have selections of soft corals in Mi’l Channel as well as the soft corals of Yellow Wall.
Any sign of coral bleaching?
El Niño has spared Yap and there is virtually no coral bleaching on Yap's reefs. The island of Yap is adjacent to one of the Pacific's deepest submarine trenches, providing the reefs with fresh, cool, clean water on a consistent basis.
What will I see on my dives?
Mantas, of course. Yap has the largest concentration of manta rays in the world, and they are easily accessible to divers. But, there is more than mantas - lots of sharks, schools of bigeye jacks, schools of blackfin barracudas, extremely colorful tropical reef fish, two species of sea turtles, tons of anemones and clownfish plus a tremendous variety of hard corals. If you are interested in extreme close-up photography, Yap offers an opportunity to photograph rare species such as the fire goby, leaffish, ghost pipefish, longnose filefish, seahorses, mandarinfish, shrimpfish, dragon wrasse and dozens of nudibranches.
How many dive sites does Yap have?
We have explored and charted over 50 spectacular dive sites and there is still over 85 km of uncharted reefs and channels.
How does the diving compare with Palau?
The diving in Yap is different but equally as good. Yap offers the best opportunity to encounter, dive with and photograph manta rays. There is no better place in the world for this type of big animal diving. Yap also has a very wide selection of macro subjects not easily found in Palau. As a result of visits from most of the world's top underwater photo journalists, Yap is now rated as a world class diving destination.
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