Sumilon Island is beautiful. Lush green trees covering the island, white sand being lapped by the waves and crystal clear water, Island paradise.
The boat trip takes about an hour from Dumaguete and the first dive we do is a drift dive. The boat drops us in and we descend to about 22m. The current leads us past large patches of coral surrounded by colourful reef fish swimming against the water. There are bright anemone fish defending their territory, juvenile Speckled-fin Grouper’s and some big Ribbon Sweetlips sheltering under big coral bommies.
The current takes us around to the start of a small wall where there are some Black-tip reef sharks hiding but as they are a little skittish they soon dash away from their hiding place. Making our way across a sandy patch at around 18m we reach an area, sheltered from the current and alive with life. Well camouflaged Scorpion fish, vivid Nudibranches, maze marked Map Puffer fish and shy Black-Saddled Toby’s are spotted. We ascend shallower to complete our safety stop amongst the shallow reef where soft corals move gently with the water, bright feather stars spread themselves out to catch food and Purple Anthias catch your eye.
We relax between dives enjoying our lunch, strolling on the sand bar and chatting before the boat moves to the second dive site. This is a sloping wall dive and we spend most of the time around 20m. Again there is high live coral coverage and as we make our way along the wall the Black soft coral creates overhanging bushes.
Purple Anthias and Golden Damsel fish dart between the Black coral and we see some large Giant Trevally cruising past. There are lots of indents in the wall where we see White-tip and Double-tooth Soldier fish hiding, Nudibranches and Flatworms travel slowly along the substrate and a Snowflake moray peeps out from its hole. A stunning juvenile Lion fish tries to blend in but our Dive Master spots its. We ascend to the flat reef section and make our way back to the boat passing Long Nose, Spot-Banded, Redfin, Eastern Triangle and Panda butterfly fish, Regal and Bicolour Angel fish and even glimpse a Blue-Girdled Angel fish before it hides away. During the safety stop we spot a Titan Trigger fish who looks to be guarding its nest so we move slowly away, just in case.
The snorkelers on the boat also had a great day as the reefs around Sumilon Island start very shallow giving non-divers a great view of the underwater world. And for those that are not sure if they will enjoy SCUBA diving but want to try Harold’s Dive Center can offer Discover SCUBA Diving for ages 10 years and above.
There was so much to see I could write about it all day and upload lots more photos to give you an idea but that’s all photos do, give you an idea – you really need to see it for yourself!