Santa Gets a Surprise

Story & Photos by Tim Rock

Last nite a new guest who calls himself Santa Claus had a nice birthday aboard the Mnuw. Sporting a long, white Santa-like beard it is easy to see why he has that moniker.

Today Santa got the presents as he was circled by mantas at the new cleaning station found by Yap Divers.

Manta? What Manta? Mr. Manta Claus

After today we can call him Manta Claus.

There was another critter that got into the picture. A small hawksbill sea turtle also made a showing at the cleaning station. There are hydroids farther down the reef, so he probably came after lunch! Turtles love hydroids (ug).

Hawksbill at the Cleaning Station

When the mantas were not around, which was rare today, the cleaner wrasse were even cleaning the damsels and chromis! Must be why all the cleaner wrasses are fat here!

Wrasse cleans anyone and everyone

And “Manta” Ray Bullion was also here, lighting up the reef with his strobes to the point where he use all of his batteries up. So then he used mine! Ray is seen here in the background looking like a bolt of lightning.

Mantas and Ray "White Light" Bullion

We had long and very satisfying interactions with the rays today. It is such a privalege to be able to watch them in the wild do what they do daily. This is indeed a magical place.

Yap Manta

Manta Carousel

Manta Cleaning Station

What’s in store tomorrow? Mantas for sure, plus some outer reef dives and some macro hunting.

Life’s tough. We gotta do it!!

TR

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Jim Reilly
Jim Reilly
11:27 21 Mar 18
We stayed at the hotel and dove with Manta Ray divers in early December 2017. The hotel is very comfortable, well run and staffed with wonderful employees. During our visit my wife came down with an illness and the consideration and support from the hotel and dive staff could not have been better.read more
Sandy Stinson
Sandy Stinson
16:03 03 Mar 18
The staff couldn't be more friendly and accommodating. Food is good, (worth upgrading to include all meals). Diving is good too.read more
Alex Divinsky
Alex Divinsky
17:24 01 Jan 18
The best place to stay in Yap. The resort is really nice and clean, the scuba diving is great, and the docked ship that houses the bar, restaurant, and movie screen is very cool. I really enjoyed my stay here.read more
ASALI
ASALI
10:44 01 Jan 18
Offers one of the best accommodation service. It also has a uniquely designed restaurant.
Yi-Hsin Lin
Yi-Hsin Lin
00:53 21 Feb 17
The whole place centers around the scuba diving operation. Probably better to find somewhere else if you're not a diver. The dive operation was generally good, but a little too laid back - schedules weren't always clear, and sometimes would change without any notice. Sometimes it was hard to tell if this was really because of changing tides/weather or because of the island pace of life. Pizza is a surprisingly good option at the restaurant.read more
William Myers
William Myers
21:01 21 Jul 18
Great hotel. Have stayed twice.
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