Anemones at Shelly Beach in Manly
I didn’t get a chance to go scuba diving in Tasmania, so I wanted to make sure I went in Sydney before leaving Australia to get one last day in. I was referred to Dive Centre Manly, who do regular shore dives from Shelly Beach. The dive site is well sheltered with good visibility, and rather shallow at a max depth of about 10 meters.
The site has several friendly blue gropers as well as cuttlefish, octopuses, wobbegong sharks, sweepers, cockatoo fish, and huge schools of barracuda and others. Unfortunately the rare weedy seadragon is no longer at the site, as the colony that had been there died off a few years ago and they never repopulated.
The beautiful blue soft corals at Anemone Reef
My final day of diving out of Ao Nang I did the “Superday”, which is 3 dive sites in one day: King Cruiser Wreck, Shark Point, and Anemone Reef. Unfortunately I couldn’t bring my camera to the wreck because we went past my camera’s limit of 18 meters, but I did get some good shots at Shark Point and Anemone Reef. The current at the latter site was pretty intense and it was the most challenging dive I’ve done so far!
There were loads of lionfish at the sites as well as more moray eels than I could count. I saw a few barracudas and some pretty big triggerfish. I fell in love with a couple of cube boxfish, which are probably the cutest fish ever (followed closely by the ever-popular clown anemonefish). Most impressive for me though was the sheer amount of bright corals and the variety of color, especially at Anemone Reef. I didn’t think I’d be able to find such a rich reef in such a heavily touristed area. Now I am determined to get off the beaten scuba track to find more pristine dive sites!