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Diving around Taipei

Discussion in 'Taiwan' started by Koalaroo, Jun 7, 2017.

  1. Koalaroo

    Koalaroo Angel Fish

    # of Dives: 25 - 49
    Location: Sydney
    28
    11
    3
    Since the last post here seems to have been posted in 2009, and had its last reply in 2016, I wanted to see if there was any good, recent recommendations.

    I will be in Taipei in 12 hours (yay short notice business trip), spend the weekend in Taiwan, and fly back home Tuesday night.

    I'm looking to dive Saturday, Sunday, and maybe one or two fairly shallow dives on Monday morning.

    We have a hotel booked in Taipei City at the moment, but are flexible to be anywhere from Saturday onward.
    I know absolutely nothing on Taipei / Taiwan diving and was wondering if you can help me out :)

    Thanks heaps,
    Koala
     
  2. DiverDownD3

    DiverDownD3 Manta Ray

    # of Dives: 50 - 99
    Location: SOBX, NC
    502
    220
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    I went to Taiwan 2 years ago for work, it was recommended to dive in Kaohsiung. I was staying there for a few days anyway, but didn't get a chance to dive. It takes about 2 hours via bullet train (IIRC about $45USD each way). Good luck, hope you get to dive. I enjoyed my trip to Taiwan.
     
    Koalaroo likes this.
  3. cerich

    cerich ScubaBoard Supporter ScubaBoard Supporter

    # of Dives: 5,000 - ∞
    Location: Georgia
    6,564
    3,309
    113
    Koalaroo likes this.
  4. CarcharodonCarcharias

    CarcharodonCarcharias Manta Ray

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    For Taiwan, you can dive in the Northeast (Shimen, Keelung)area, South (Kenting), Lanyu Island, Green Island, and Penghu Island. Given your short turnaround, the islands are not going to work. Northeast will be the most convenient and easiest. South is doable, but you will need to take the high speed railway from TPE to Kaohsiung and from Kaohsiung to Kenting. TPE to Kaohsiung will take you about 2.5 hours and Kaohsiung to Kenting could be 2 hours or more depending your mode of transportation and traffic condition.
     
    Koalaroo likes this.
  5. hsinhai

    hsinhai Nassau Grouper

    # of Dives: 200 - 499
    Location: Taipei, Taiwan
    101
    41
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    If you plan more than a day of diving I would go south, coach or high speed train will get you to Kaohsiung. Diving either Kenting or XLC (XiaoLiuQiu), its just a much more enjoyable experience, and this weekend weathers going to be awesome.

    If you stay up north there are a few dive shops running fun dives in LongDong already. Looks like most will be out on Sat you could try FunDiversTw or the Scuba Shop Taipei or as cerich said you could contact nigel.

    Depending on your experience, a few friends are diving unguided up north, they all have their own gear and simply grab air in the morning. I'd take you out but i'm heading down south for the weekend. I will be diving with a few friends on XLC on Saturday, we're not staying as the hostel we normally stay in is full.

    If you do head down to Kenting, look up Andy and he could likely get you out on a boat or organize some shore dives. If he is busy try Carrie & Tony they will always be able to get you wet..

    Whatever you get up to, try to give a bit more notice and maybe we can hook up.

    Hsin
     
    cerich and Koalaroo like this.
  6. Koalaroo

    Koalaroo Angel Fish

    # of Dives: 25 - 49
    Location: Sydney
    28
    11
    3
    Hi all,

    Thanks for all your tips and advice - We ended up going to Nigel's Scubar. We knew diving was a challenge due to short notice, but Nigel and his team jumped in completely, organised us an overnight stay, and we had 6 absolutely stellar Macrodives! I was after Nudibranchs mostly, and WOW did the North deliver !!!!
    We saw the largest Nudibranch I have ever seen (Spanish Dancer) - 3 of them, even, though one was only "a baby" :wink: ... and a ton of others. The whole weekend was an amazing, laid back, relaxed experience I am glad we did not miss. I will have photos up soon.

    Day 1: Ruby Point and Garden of Even (most eastern point in Taiwan); currents were pretty strong, and after a month of bad weather the visibility into the distance was not phenomenal (6-8meters or so). However, the Macro world was impressive as can be. It was on the Eastern-Most point that we saw 2 Spanish Dancer Nudis. (Man, they were as big as my cats!) Neither Dive went deeper than 18 meters (Ruby Point) and average depth was about 10-12 meters. Water temperature was 26 degrees.

    Day 2: 2 Dives at Fulien Bay. Sponge gardens, tiny soft corals, sea-stars galore, this is a paradise for the little stuff. Nudibranchs, gorgeous colourful anemonies and corals. sponges, cucumbers, and a ton of colourful things I have absolutely no name for. We were happy to just spend both dives there of the day as one could literally just spend an hour perched on a rock and watch nature unfold in its tiny macro organisms and mini eco systems down there. Vis was about 8-10 meters, and water temp again around 26 degrees.

    Day 3: Meishan & Nudi-Pool. First dive at Meishan in the morning presented us once more with beautiful sponge gardens and soft corals, fan corals and anemonies. Clownfish of course, a school of globe fish, fish I've never seen before and not yet identified and visibilities around 10-12 meters. 3 different species of Lion/scorpion fish and several Robinfish (Red Indians?). And of course tiny stuff. Sooooo much beautiful tiny stuff (I love the world of Macro, what can I say?) ... Viz wise, Meishan was probably the best.
    Second dive we went to "Nudi-Pool" - started out in a large abandoned fish-farm with pools that have swimthroughs. The pools were as clear as glass and many different tropical fish like to breed there it seems, as they were schools of lots of tiny fish everywhere. We swam out into the opens follwoing extensive rockwalls. We tried to find some Harlequin shrimp, but instead fund Octopus instead. And were yet again treated to the sight of a (baby) Spanish Dancer Nudibranch.

    So... Nigel was amazing. Hospitable, helpful and while we had a super relaxing weekend, it was apparent that he a) cares for his gear, b) air quality, c) fun. The combination of Scuba in the morning and Bar (food and drink) in the afternoon/evenings worked really well for us. He also has hot showers on site, where after a dive one can get rid of saltiness before indulging in a cool beer.
    One can also rent surf-boards to go to the local beach (just opposite Scubar really) to ride some waves, or just lounge on either beach or patio. He makes really, really yummy home-made ice cream from scratch and the food the make wasn't half bad either (we ended up eating nothing but his menu up and down the whole weekend xD ). So yes, overall we had a really, really good experience!

    Photos to follow!
     
    Wingy, hsinhai and MelasLithos like this.
  7. hsinhai

    hsinhai Nassau Grouper

    # of Dives: 200 - 499
    Location: Taipei, Taiwan
    101
    41
    28
    Really glad it worked out.. and good to hear you liked Nigel's ice cream. North coast is much better for macro than the south, big variety of nudi's so a good haven for macrodives, even seen blue ring octopus and flamboyant cuttlefish on very very rare occasions. Done a 2hr30min dive in the nudi-pool on a night dive (we never left the pool), its only 2m deep so batteries went flat before we ran out of air!

    That weekend south was awesome for a whole set of different reasons, we did a day trip to XiaoLiuQiu caught the first ferry over, did 2 boat dives, 1 shore dive, and was on the 4:30pm ferry back. Did a wreck dive, saw turtles, octopus, moray eels, trigger fish/clown/titan, parrot fish, bluefin trevally, etc..

    Taiwan really is a well kept diving secret.. wish more would give it a shot if they are passing through..
     
    MelasLithos and cerich like this.
  8. CarcharodonCarcharias

    CarcharodonCarcharias Manta Ray

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    Dont' disagree with you. But if only the fishing industry and the locals can be a bit more environmentally conscious.

    The pygmy seahorses in Kenting are nowhere to be found. Last year the fishing shop jackass hooked the resident grouper at the harbor where fishing is not even allowed in the first place. Don't get me started on all the mantas and mola mola that I've seen harvested from the stationary nets in Hualien.
     
  9. CarcharodonCarcharias

    CarcharodonCarcharias Manta Ray

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    By the way, not to mention the destruction of the tide pools and shallow coral reefs at xiao liu qiu courtesy of unscrupulous operators and ignorant weekend visitors.
     
  10. cerich

    cerich ScubaBoard Supporter ScubaBoard Supporter

    # of Dives: 5,000 - ∞
    Location: Georgia
    6,564
    3,309
    113
    [QUOTE="Koalaroo, post: 8013044, member: 479692" I was after Nudibranchs mostly, and WOW did the North deliver !!!!
    We saw the largest Nudibranch I have ever seen (Spanish Dancer) - 3 of them, even, though one was only "a baby" :wink: ... and a ton of others. The whole weekend was an amazing, laid back, relaxed experience I am glad we did not miss. I will have photos up soon.

    ![/QUOTE]

    one one dive with Nigel up north I saw more nudibranchs than I have seen combined in all of my diving. I was bummed I didn't have my camera system with me

    Glad you had fun, I assume you tried some ice cream? :)
     
    Koalaroo likes this.

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