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Layang layang

The island is renowned for its amazing scuba diving opportunities, and this is the only real reason for visiting the island.


Each dive is done as a group under the direction of a dive master and a boat driver. Before each dive, the dive master will take your group through the dive plan i.e. underwater itinerary, maximum depth, bottom time, low air metric, usual marine sightings, etc. Usually you have the same boat for the duration of your trip and so you leave your dive gear in the boat only taking with you your computers and cameras after each dive. Someone else takes care of replacing your air cylinder between dives - but don't be slack - check your air pressure and attachments as soon as you board the boat for your dive rather than just before you jump in.

The dive centre expects that everyone is diving with a computer and the Dive Masters reserve the right to check/monitor your dive computer to make sure you haven't exceeded maximum depth etc. If you are found to have exceeded then you face a 24 hour diving ban. In addition, there is no diving for the rest of the day once you've consumed alcohol.

The dive rules are: maximum depth 40 metres and no deco time allowed - there is NO decompression chamber available hence if you get bent, then you are in trouble. Air is the only gas mix available - there is no Nitrox or other blends, hence no Technical diving possible. The island also has a no gloves policy for divers.

Dive gear rental is available at the Dive Centre. If you have your own gear, it's best to take it with you as the rental gear isn't well maintained and is old, faded and getting worn out. Most divers that visit Layang Layang are fairly experienced and thus take their own gear.

Dive photography is a big thing at the Island and there is an annual digital photography competition with prizes sufficient to attract the serious marine photographer.


There are twelve or so dive sites - all which are accessed by boat and are from 5-15 minutes away from the dive centre. The visibility is usually very good at 20 metres and more. The water temperature is somewhere around 30 degrees C. Each dive will give you opportunity to see large creatures such as sharks, turtles and manta rays - maybe even the elusive hammerhead shark. A vast array of intact, unbleached hard and soft corals, barrel sponges, gorgonian fans, schools of large fish and the usual array of colourful little fish are easy to see on each dive. The diving conditions such as current will vary with the weather and the dive master will select a suitable site accordingly.

  • Crack Reef

  • D Wall

  • Navigator's Lane

  • Snapper's Ledge

  • The Tunnel

  • Wrasse Strip

  • Dog Tooth Lair

  • Gorgonian Forest

  • Shark's Cave

  • The Runaway

  • The Valley

  • The Point - For a chance to see any hammerheads, this is the location where divers swim away from the reef at the beginning of the dive into the blue at about 30-35 metres depth for about 5-10 minutes before returning to the reef and completing the remaining 30 minutes slow ascending dive along the reef wall.

  • Pier Diving - Diving is available from the pier but with the sandy bottom and movement of the boats, it is very murky with visibility being 2-4 metres. That being said, there is an amazing array of marine life to be seen directly under the pier from huge moray eels to baby lion fish. Pier dives are offered for those wanting to do a night dive without the expense of chartering a boat and also as the last dive of your visit. A bit of trivia - the 2007 photo competition winner took his winning shot from a night dive at the pier.

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