December 8, 2012

Diving in Perhentian Island

Saw this on Perhentian Island.

Bahahahaha... Can't comment on it cos well.. I'm not married yet! But I think it's so funny.

I did my Open Water Diver course in Tioman Island last year. Basically, it should not be a problem if you want to straight away continue doing Advanced Open Water Diver course right after you passed the Open Water Diver course. Many divers do that cos you can save cost as it is usually cheaper to do it together. Also, you can save on the traveling cost. But I didn't take enough leaves so I didn't have enough time to continue with it.

Doing the Advanced Open Water Diver course helps you increase your confidence and build your scuba skills so you can become more comfortable in the water. It also qualifies you to dive deeper, which is up to 40m as compared to only 18m for Open Water license holder.

Deeper dive allows you to see more of the underwater world, for sure. There's a lot of aquatic life that doesn't live in shallower water, and you can visit wrecks that rest in deeper water. Not wanting to miss out all the fun beyond the 18m depth, I went to Perhentian to further my studies. In diving, that is.

There's a lot of dive centers on Perhentian Island but after comparing some of them and reading reviews on the Internet, I went ahead with Turtle Bay Divers.

They have two dive centers, one on Perhentian Kecil and another one on Perhentian Besar.

What I liked about Turtle Bay was that they conducted the class in a small group. My class was a veryyy smalll one. Only me. One person. haha...

But later, another girl, Alia, joined me. She's from the Perhentian Besar branch. But still OK la.. two students to an instructor. It was like we had a personal instructor. Super like!

We started the course in the afternoon. For this Advanced Open Water Diver course, I needed to complete five adventure dives. Two of them were compulsory by PADI standard, which were Deep Diving and Underwater Navigation, while the other three dives depended on my choice.

 Read the manual and did a quick test and review with our instructor, Joe, and we're good to start our first dive.

Joe suggested that we did Peak Performance Buoyancy, to which I agreed right away. My buoyancy control was bad during my initial dives in Tioman Island! It improved during my trip to Mabul and Sipadan Island but I thought I should continue improving myself. It's a skill that is essential in every dives anyway.

Peak Performance Buoyancy : D' Lagoon, 52 minutes, 12m max depth

The next day, we did Deep Diving, Underwater Navigation and Night Diving.

Deep Diving was interesting. Joe showed us how the color of things changed as we went deeper. Going deeper also means you have to be careful of yourself cos you might get nitrogen narcosis down there. Layman term please! OK.. basically it's the intoxicating effect of nitrogen on you. It usually begins to have noticeable effect on most divers at about 30m deep. Joe told me if it hits me, I'll become 'high', like the drug effect. You're also prone to get decompression sickness, particularly when you're doing repetitive dives.

Deep Dive : Tanjung Piai, 40 minutes, 28m max depth

For Underwater Navigation, we learnt the ways to use the underwater compass, how to navigate using the visual landmarks, kick-cycles and time. Joe asked us to navigate using the compass, taking turns leading each other. When I had to lead, I thought it was quite scary, not knowing where was I heading but I did OK nevertheless.   

Navigation : Shark Point, 52 minutes, 15m max depth

I was actually more nervous to do the Night Dive. Afraid of what I'd see in the dark. But with the guidance from Joe, me and Alia enjoyed the night adventure. We went underwater at around 7.30pm. It was amazing to see the underwater world from a different view. They say even if you go to the same dive site, you'll see it differently during the day and night dives. Some of the sea creatures also actually hide out during the day and only come out at night.

  Night Dive : Batu Nisan Laut, 39 minutes, 12m max depth

Alia, Rizal and moi

On our final course day, we went to Sugar Wreck for Wreck Diving in the morning. It's called Sugar Wreck cos the ship was carrying sugar when it sank. It's an interesting dive, seeing the aquatic life making the ship wreck their home.

Waiting for our 3 minute safety stop

Wreck Diving : Sugar Wreck, 48 minutes, 17m max depth

 Back at the dive center, Joe filled in and signed my license form, and gave me my temporary advanced license card.

with my instructor, Joe and his trainee DiveMaster, Rizal 

I continued with fun dives that afternoon and the morning after. Went to Batu Layar and Tokong Laut. Oh my God. Tokong Laut was so so sooo beautiful!! It's also known as the Temple of the Sea, the Pinnacle. It is a rocky pinnacle rising up from the sea bed at 26m to just above the surface. But if you don't like to dive with many people, you might not like this dive site cos being the favorite dive site in Perhentian, it was very crowded with divers.

Fun Dive 1 : Batu Layar, 57 minutes, 17m max depth

Fun Dive 2 : Tokong Laut, 50 minutes, 23m max depth

Too bad I didn't bring a camera during the dive. I didn't take many photos during all the dives cos I was a student. Had to act like a student la kan? 100% concentration needed.. haha..

But this is a #reasontorepeat. I will definitely return and take more pictures for my memories and to share with you guys! 

Anyway, just three weeks after the trip, I've got mail from Australia. 

My official licence had arrived! Weee!! Can't wait for my next underwater adventures!


norh said...

Bestnya...seronok tengok org buat scuba diving...saya takut nak cuba..

rara said...

norh : try la! your instructor will take care of you.. dun worry :)

P44 Autoworks said...


Cassie Ng said...

hi, may i know which resort/ chalet u were with that time? i'll be heading there soon but have no idea which resort/ chalet is least it's clean.

rara said...

@Cassie: Hi! I stayed at Mohsin Chalet.
Refer my post here -->

Wollymei said...

Hi There!

Im so torned between taking my OWD beginners in tioman vs perhentian, since u have been to both, could you advise which u felt or can advise to go with?

Thank you very much!

rara said...

@Wollymei: Hi! I actually like both operators, Turtle Bay Divers in Perhentian and Eco-Divers in Tioman. My instructors were awesome. But I have to say, Perhentian is more beautiful. :)