Michael McFadyen's Scuba Diving Web Site
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Noel Hitchins 1951-2005
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My Yachting Adventures
Below is a list of links to the main pages about my yacht, Catlypso and My Yachting Adventures:
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    Michael's 4WD Trips
    Click here for a list of my Four Wheel Drive and Camping Trips.
    Home Brewing
    Click here for an article about Home Brewing.
    Sydney Dive Site Hints
    "Henry Head inside Botany Bay has some amazing sponge life"
    Aphols Point
    Michael McFadyen's Scuba Diving - Aphols Point, Philippines

    In August 2023 I did a three week long dive trip to the Philippines with my friend John. We spent the first week at Anilao staying at Buceo Anilao Dive Resort.

    There are dozens of dive sites located within 20 minutes run from the resort.

    Unfortunately we had a Super Typhoon hit the northern Philippines when we were there, so the Coast Guard banned all boats and diving later in the week. This dive site was one we visited on the day that the typhoon really started to blow so we went to this site as it was out of the wind.

    Aphols Point is located about three kilometres south from the resort across Maricaban Passage on Maricaban Island. A GPS mark for the dive spot is 13° 39' 30.164" N 120° 54' 05.015" E (using WGS84 as the datum).

    Satellite Photo
    A satellite photo from Google Earth that shows the location of the dive site at the bottom, red marker. Buceo Anilao Resort at top.

    Satellite Photo
    A diagram of the dive site

    The dive boat anchors a short distance off the shore to in about five metres of water. It is very calm here as we are out of the wind. To the north the bottom drops to 10 metres then slopes to 25+ metres. The bottom is sand with small very old broken coral pieces and some larger boulders. We headed north into the deeper water. On the way we see a small white anglerfish.

    Aphols PointAphols Point
    The tiny white anglerfishPygmy sea horse

    From here, we head south-west and over 15 minutes we get to 24 metres. There are lots of barrel sponges, featherstars and small sea whips. We only see a few nudibranchs on the way, but see some lionfish and a juvenile sweetlips. There is also an orangutan crab. We also see a small gorgonia which has a tiny pygmy sea horse on it. It was extremely hard to photograph.

    Aphols PointAphols Point
    Harlequin shrimpSome of the reef

    From here we turned and headed back towards the boat. We travel at 15 to 17 metres. There are a couple of spotted stingrays, some starfish shrimp, a nice cowfish and of course, anemones and clownfish. We also see a banded sea snake and a harlequin shrimp, very light colouring. We end up in the shallows near the boat.

    Aphols PointAphols Point
    The first time I ever saw this stunning nudibranch,
    funeral jorunna - Jorunna funebris
    A starfish shrimp

    This was a really nice dive. Water temperature was 29C in August and the visibility was very good, perhaps 15 to 18 metres. After the dive the wind had come right up and we were ordered by the dive manager to head back across the passage and dive at Mainit Corner where there were more than 12 dive boats, all sent there for the same reason.

    MORE PHOTOS

    Aphols PointAphols Point
    Willans chromodoris - Chromodoris willaniAcoel flatworm on a seastar
    Aphols PointAphols Point
    Orangutan crab in an anemoneBanded sea snake

    Copyright © Michael McFadyen 1990 to 2023
    Non-commercial use of an article or photograph is permitted with appropriate URL reference to this site.
    Dive shops, dive operators, publications and government departments cannot use anything without first seeking and receiving approval from Michael McFadyen.
    This web site has been wholly thought up, designed, constructed and funded for over 25 years by Michael McFadyen
    without any help from the Australian Dive Industry since 1996!