Diving Myanmar

Shark Cave – Diving Myanmar

Myanmar Diving at Shark Cave -Nurse SharksShark Cave A.K.A Three Islets Burma is also known to be one of Myanmars best diving sites and is on all diving Itineraries of our MV Giamani.

Shark Cave lays approximately 30 kilometres North West of Stewart Island/Bo Wei, and is a small Island strutting out of the sea and with it comes 2 large rock pinnacles, all of these formations rise well above the sea level.

The island itself is in the middle of the two pinnacles, each of these are consider to be separate dive sites, so it is easy to spend the entire day diving here without seeing the same thing twice

The small island is in the middle with the rocks either side (running North West to south east and vice versa). Each can be considered a separate dive site and you can easily spend a full day diving here.

The pinnacle to the North West of the main site is at least 100 metres away and due to the potential strong currents (normally running North to South) it’s easier to do this as 1 separate dive.

The south eastern laying rock is nearest to the main Island and has a large submerged reef covered in hard corals and there are many granite boulders that are strewn around. Here the maximum depth is around 30 metres.

Some begin the dive at the main side of the island, starting on the southern end which is somewhere in the middle of the island. You can drop down here to about 25/30 metres down the side of the wall.

Check out the large granite boulders here all bundled together; here you can catch sleeping Nurse Sharks and maybe even some Stingrays relaxing on the sand.

Myanmar Diving at Shark Cave -The CanyonAlso, out on the sand you can find many different species of anemones with their guests (Nemo) Anemone fish and Eggshell Shrimp. Keep your eyes peeled for the large schools of Barracuda, Trevallies, Snappers and Fusiliers.

There is a natural split in the island rocks down at 18-20 metres, if you then follow it north into the small canyon and after approximately 25 metres there is a cave. The entrance is fairly small but once you are inside this is a large area.

Beware that there can be some strong currents ripping through the granite rocks here so be careful not to get cut on the rocks.

Inside the cave you can find Lobster, Crabs hiding in the rocks, Puffer Fish and others that like to lurk inside caves, including Nurse Sharks.

It is not fully dark as the natural light filters through from both ends of the cave, however we recommend taking a torch with you -as on any dive they always come in handy.

Even small caves like this are not for everyone, so if peering into black holes is not your thing, then just carry on swimming down the small canyon passing the cave. Keep your eyes open here for Black Tips Reef Sharks and if you are lucky Grey Reefs have been spitted here.

Other critters spotted here are ideal for macro hunters and included the usual and not-so-usual-suspects: Harlequin and Boxer Shrimps, Tiger Tail Sea Horses, Ornate Ghost Pipe fish and several different kinds of Frogfish and a smorgasbord of Nudibranch as well.

Diving Myanmar

Burma Banks – Diving Myanmar

The Burma Banks are a chain of enormous underwater flat-topped pinnacles rising from the deep depths and lie approximately 180 kilometers (100 nautical miles) northwest of the Similan Islands.

The waters around the Burma Banks are over 300 meters deep and these spectacular pinnacles rise to, luckily for us, depths suitable for recreational scuba diving Myanmar.

The banks offer some exhilarating and exciting diving; however they are not suited for all levels of diving and are not for everyone. It is recommended that those coming to dive these waters have some dive experience of deeper diving and experience with currents too.

MV Giamani’s Liveaboard Burma diving tours are usually longer than the Thailand Similan Island liveaboards (four days four nights), the trips out to the Banks are often in for 7 days and nights of diving, though you may find a company or two catering for 4-5 day trips.

Thailand liveaboards sailing out to the Burma Banks tend to leave from Ranong, on the Thailand – Burma border, here all visitors (Divers, Divemasters and staff non-Burmese) must check in and go through customs.

There is also a special visa one must acquire before any diving can start and all must pay the fees to the Burmese Government, the cost of this is around 250 US cash – please contact us for any of the latest charges.

Myanmar (Burma) is a very special country and will leave a lasting imprint of the natural splendor of both above and below the water. Unfortunately, in years gone by much damage has been done to the reefs here from dynamite fishing and some areas of reef are simply not worth diving.

Yet the diving here is still exceptional there is an abundance of pelagic fish passing through these wild and electrifying dive sites.

Those divers that love macro diving will be in their element here as it is excellent for spotting small and rare fish and there are other critters that are rarely ever seen further south in the Similan Islands.

If it sharks you seek then you have come to the right place; the most common type of shark is the nurse shark this particular shark is a night feeder that grows to over 3 meters in length- they are quite docile, however touching is really not recommended at all.

There are Silver Tips here too, sometimes mistaken for White Tips, they are much bigger and can be a little more territorial than the smaller cousins.

Silver Tips can grow to 2.5 meters in length and are easily identified by the white trailing edge on their fins these fish are serious predators.

Grey Reef Sharks are seen here too, these sharks are to be admired and can seem to be swimming quite erratically at times, they are territorial yet leave divers alone, and they tend not to come too close to divers.

Diving Myanmar

Black Rock – Diving Myanmar

Black Rock, Diving MyanmarBlack Rock dive site is an 80 metre wide island, and is a favourite of many divers that come diving Myanmar (Burma) in the Mergui Archipelago.

Black Rock is situated in a northwest to southeast position, with sheer banks all around, and there is a wall on the west and south west sides. Be prepared to have the dive of your life and keep your eyes open for White tip, Silver tip, and Black tip sharks.

Black Rock stands about 100 miles North West of the Thai-Burmese border town of Kawthaung, which is just across the river from Ranong -Thailand side. Most Diving Myanmar Liveaboard safaris start and end in Thailand.

The Vis here can be anything from 5 metres to 40 metres plus, you really never know. And currents can be completely slack or very strong, and they tend to run from North West to South East (and vice Versa). It is also advisable that there can be some strong upward and downward currents.

Manta Rays in Myanmar
Manta Rays – Diving in Myanmar

At Black Rock you can have some very special close encounters with Manta Rays, also Eagle Rays do the occasional fly-by, and if you can see the bottom clear enough you may even make the huge Marble Rays and Sleeping Leopard sharks that use the sandy bottom for their bed.

On the South side you can find some large boulders, amongst these giant rocks you will see large areas covered in Brown Disc Anemones and there are lots of beautiful Purple coloured Corals too.

In this area, you may also bump into a two metre Giant Barracuda, he generally ignores divers, -presumably they don’t taste too good. You can see him relaxing near the bottom, but if you look very closely you may see him at a cleaning station being pampered by the cleaner wrasses.

There are soft corals which are more densely populated in the deeper southern area of the dive site, and this beautiful coloured area includes orange cup corals, bizarre feather stars, and huge gorgonia sea fans.

For the fans of macro life they should look out for the rare Spotted Hawkish which can be found hiding out in the sea fans. You can find Black Spotted Puffer fish, they are usually just chilling out on the ledges and not straying too far at all.

Moray eels including Zebra, Honeycombed and White Mouthed Morays can be seen, you may even bump into a Giant Moray or Two. Also Blue Ringed Angelfish swim down near the edges of the outlaying rocks. This is a good spot for seeing different kinds of reef sharks and maybe if you are really lucky even Bull sharks.

Another great place to explore is the wall, if the desire takes you, for hunting big-eye Trevally, Pompano and Coral Banded Sea Snakes. Rainbow Runners out hunting pass by in fast moving aggressive schools looking for any unfortunate lonesome fish.

Please do take note that currents can be strong, particularly on the deeper sides of the site. Moving beyond the shelter of the rocks on the island’s east and west tips can make it very hard to get back to the site again. However, if you stay close to the rocks this doesn’t have to be a difficult dive.

Best way for Diving Myanmar is by Liveaboard such as Colona Liveaboards MV Giamani.

Diving Myanmar

Western Rocky – Diving Myanmar

Western Rocky - Diving Myanmar
Western Rocky Islands, Myanmar

Western Rocky is one of the finest dive sites for all who go Diving Myanmar and the whole Andaman Sea, some even compare it to Richelieu Rock, the best Thai dive site, and such is its regard.

Western Rocky is situated approximately 500 m south of the main island. The starting depth for this dive site is a little deep at 12 metres. The dive site is made up of a large pinnacle that spawns several smaller finger-shaped reefs stretching down to over 40 metres.

Western Rocky offers you irresistible high-quality pinnacle, wall diving and reef diving and there is even a very exciting channel right through the centre of the island. Western Rocky has another 2 smaller islets to the east which can actually be reached from the main island or dived as a separately.

On top of the pinnacle there are many soft purple corals, it is quite a site to see. Slowly descending to the deeper parts of the reef you should search all the cracks and crevices of the rock formations, it teems with macro life, it’s great for the macro hunter.

There are several types of Moray Eel lurking in this area, such as Giant, Yellow Edged, White-eyed and if you are really lucky Honeycomb Moray Eel may make an appearance.

Also you can find some small lobsters and crabs nestled into the side of the rock, also Nudibranch can be found as well as Feather Stars, Harlequin Shrimp, Frog fish and sea horses are also in residence here, you just have to find them.

Ghost Pipe Fish found while Diving Myanmar at Western Rocky
Ornate Ghost Pipe Fish in Myanmar

There is a small group of Resident Black Tip Reef Sharks on guard here and you may even see White Tip Ref Sharks, however they will be further towards the bottom, so if the Vis is good you can see them. Also here is a favourite hangout of the rare Shovel-nose Ray or Guitar Shark -as it is also called.

Looking out into the deep wide blue, keep your eyes peeled for more action with a crack team of Barracudas appearing from the depths in search of lunch, also Trevallies, Tunas and other Jacks love to hunt in the currents, there is some great predatory action to get the heart pumping.

The south side of Western Rocky is a fantastic wall dive with huge giant Gorgonian Sea Fans, clambering Feather Stars and beautiful corals growing from the wall.

There are 4 smaller sea mounts rising to the east of the main site and are well worth a dive on their own, you can really spend all day here.

Other species that call Western Rocky home are Squid and Cuttlefish are very common here. There are several species of scorpion fish like the Raggy and Bearded scorpion fish are scattered over the reef waiting for a bite to eat, so be careful where you stick your fingers.

There are currents here and at times can be a little strong, however, that said, when conditions are favourable it is possible to swim the entire way around this site as there are several places to take refuge.

It’s a wonderful dive site and of course you never really know who or what will turn up, Whale sharks and Manta Rays have been known to make spontaneous appearances, so don’t forget your camera.