Well, I guess this is Part 1 of my ‘I don’t know how many parts’ write up about the place that really started it all for me. The Perhentian Islands. A small group of islands off the East Coast of Peninsular Malaysia, they have become a yearly pilgrimage for me.

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Today, I want to tell you a little secret about this place. For the past 2 years, I have been diving a little site regularly with my dive buddies, that I’m guessing not many have been taken to dive. The site does not actually have a name, really close to shore (barely a 2 minutes boat ride), is shallow (about 5-8m, depending on the tide), has a lot of boat traffic (gotta be really careful with your buoyancy here!), but most importantly, it has a diverse range of macro subjects for us to shoot!

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The dive site is generally a sandy bottom, with a huge patch of sea grass, a few rocks and concrete blocks, as well as few random coral colonies spread across the site. Descending to the bottom, at first you will wonder why you’re diving in the middle of a “desert”. All sand, and not that many fish around.

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But once you get to the bottom, that’s where the magic happens! Nudibranchs, flatworms, blue ringed octopus, seahorses, gobies, shrimps, crabs of many species play hide and seek with you and your camera.Almost every dive that I have done at this site brings me a new critter that I have not photographed before. All the photos on this post are from this one site! Different dives of course.

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We have tried night dives here as well, and there are so many shrimps and crabs that we spotted, we had no idea which ones to take photos of first!

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We have grown to LOVE this site, to the point that we spend about 70% of our dives in the Perhentians diving here.We spend about an hour to an hour and a half each dive, looking for and shooting these amazing critters and we have never been disappointed by what we find. And if any of you local divers reading this, you don’t have to go to Indonesia or the Philippines looking for the “sheep” nudibranch. At this site, you can pick the “prettiest” or the biggest one to shoot your photos. I’ll show you if you come along with me!

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I cannot simply tell you where this site is (I don’t want it destroyed), but if you would like to give this dive site a go, contact me, I’m most probably planning a trip to the Perhentians, and we shall see if I get the chance to show you this wonderful site I am telling you about.

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