Manta Mania 2017 Event Report

Yap Manta Ray Diving Micronesia
Manta Mania 2017 is our fastest growing event and made for a full house this year.

People and scientists from all over the world shared a few common interests – diving with manta rays, conservation and good times.

This is the week where we go manta diving everyday, learn about marine ecology, human impact, conservation efforts and are side-by-side with some of today’s leading people in their scientific communities.

V55A0479In Yap we always say “It’s more than mantas!” and our science symposium included special talks about turtle, fish and shark research from the scientists on those front lines.

7T8A7832Everyday there was special event dive plans that put us in the water with Yap’s wildlife.

During the week we saw mantas clean in the lagoon, dive groups were seeing mantas surface feeding from the boat, there’s mantas passing divers along the southern walls in the blue and one was ID’d at the caverns.

Our new pride and joy media from the week was a new baby male named “Gabe” that was ID’d cleaning just outside the Yap Caverns amphitheater – a magical moment experienced by just one diver and her camera.

Citizen Science

Workshops were inside views of the research and the people behind it showing what it takes to protect sharks, turtles and manta rays in today’s world, it is tougher than it sounds.

Evening media presentations were part entertainment, part science, mostly conservation but all illustrated human impact on marine life.

Micronesia Conservation Workshop

From plastics, pollution and practices that negatively effect the marine environment, human impact was presented by people in the know and some who have years of data showing it.

We saw charts, graphs and images with some information that will encourage us to play a more positive role in our global ecosystem.

Lots of Diving

Dive days were buzzing with everything else Yap – sharks, schools of bumpheads, snapper, barracuda, turtles, cuttlefish, and of course, manta rays. Vertigo was the site of a morning shark dive with 5 mantas feeding in the blue – wildlife interactions were all over the outer reef and southern walls.

Diving Micronesia

The package includes all of our specialties – shark feed, mandarinfish and night dives. Another upgrade was a “Rumung”, the forbidden island, tour during a surface interval lunch in the village at a traditional Yapese men’s house.

Diving Micronesia

Citizen Science

During the week we gathered the following data:

  • 24 manta encounters this week
  • 11 were males
  • 6 were female
  • 7 could not be sexed
  • “Dotty” is pregnant
  • 1 new manta ID
  • We saw the smallest manta ray ever seen in Yap
  • Increased manta encounters outside the reef
  • Resident manta “Victor” had a fishing line injury above his left eye

The Yap Manta Project is driven by photo ID’s. Your photos of Yap manta ray belly shots with time stamps is citizen science, email

Next Year

Manta Mania 2018 is going to end right around the Yap Day celebration. It will be our 4th event and you can extend for the island’s biggest cultural festival – the absolute best of Yap, manta ray mating season and the opportunity to see everything Yapese in and out of the water.

Do you know how easy it is to get to Yap?
Bill is committed to telling the world how easy it is to get to Yap if you email him, he knows how to get you here the fastest, the cheapest and the smoothest from anywhere in the world, try it for yourself, email for personal itineraries that you can buy or book anywhere.

2017 Traveler’s Choice


It’s a big shout out from the Traveler Community that put Manta Ray Bay Resort in the Top 25 Hotels in the South Pacific. Receiving this award is a great honor and making this even more special, Manta Ray Bay Resort is the first and only dive operation to achieve this.

A big shout out to Bill Acker and his staff for delivering the quality of service that ranks among the finest hospitality businesses in the region. We are extremely happy to put this in the spotlight.

Find us in the Top 25 Hotels of the South Pacific on Trip Advisor.


NEW Sea-Life Adventures Event

June 18th to July 1st

Coming up this summer is Yap’s newest event, Sea-Life Adventures, designed for families with interactive activities for travelers of all-ages from 2 to 17 and adults, both divers and non-divers – this event truly is for everybody.

There will be interactive educational sessions with field trips to sites where participants will be learning about island and marine ecology through hands-on activities and laboratory sessions.

We will be snorkeling the mangroves, performing plankton tows and sampling for microscope and lab sessions back at the resort. This is a unique event where we will be learning with research scientists about the local ecology and marine environment

Learn more at:

Special Event Includes:

  • 7 night / 10 dives and all meals included
  • Visit to a Traditional Yapese Village
  • Night snorkel, plankton tow, fishing trip
  • Local navigation workshop and canoe trip
  • Beach BBQ with fire circle
  • Watershed hike, local buffet dinner
  • Pizza and burgers movie nights
  • Babysitting and activities for all-ages
  • Airport transfers, taxes and wake-up service


MantaFest 2017

V55A2683-2-EditCelebrate our 10th annual MantaFest photo and video festival – this year will be our biggest workshop with our best line up of presenting professionals and the most prizes we’ve ever given away.

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August 26th – September 10th are the dates for the next MantaFest photography festival in Yap.

Our presenter line up is Frank Schneider freelance photographer and writer in Germany, Steven Miller from Ikelite Photo School, David Fleetham freelance photographer from Hawaii, Tim Rock freelance photographer from Guam, Ray Bullion freelance photographer from California and Andy Shumacher from Schumacher films Germany.

We’ll have a rich program this year featuring photo and video workshops and contest categories. Come learn from top industry professionals who will be presenting their tricks of the trade and providing one-on-one training with everything underwater photography.

Learn about new gear, advanced shooting techniques, post capture processing with Lightroom and Photoshop. Shoot and edit side by side with professionals throughout the two week event – everyone goes home a better photographer!

This year we have a NEW best of class prize, one week on the Chuuk Odyssey liveaboard that will compliment our best of show with Dive Damai prize – we’ll also be giving away a dive package at Manta Ray Bay Resort.

Ikelite is sponsoring the contest with two $500 gift certificates and several of their new Gamma torches, expect to see a couple of sets of Mares dive gear being handed out at the awards ceremony.

mf21All-inclusive MantaFest packages for 4, 7 or 14 night stays start at (standard room)
from: $1,339, $2,229 or $3,829!

  • Hotel room
  • 3, 5 or 11 dive days (2-tank)
  • Mandarinfish dive
  • Night dive
  • Afternoon macro dive
  • Nitrox
  • Sunset split shoots
  • Culture/Land shoots
  • Breakfast, Lunch & Dinner daily
  • Island tour followed by Beach BBQ
  • Local Dinner Buffet on Friday
  • Late check-out
  • Roundtrip airport transfers
  • Free Wi-Fi in public areas
  • Photography Workshops
  • Professional Training
  • Photo Contest Entry
  • Evening Media Presentations
  • Hotel Taxes
  • Wake-up service with coffee and tea

First Yapese Dive Instructor

op-instructorCongratulations to OP Acker on becoming the first Yapese dive instructor and carrying on the Acker legacy as a dive pioneer in Yap.

With OP on the dive team, there are now two Ackers as PADI professionals on the dive boats showing guests Yap magic underwater.

As Manta Ray Bay celebrates our 30th anniversary as a world-class dive operation, we turn a corner and welcome the next 30 years of success.

New Marine Biology Weeks Event

November 12th – November 26th


Join our Marine Biology event where we’ll be diving Yap on a conservation learning expedition with scientists teaching three different workshops.

Eco-adventure for everyone! Divers, snorkelers and non-divers can learn about and help conserve precious coral reefs in an active hands-on workshop in Yap.

7 night / 10 dives $1,869 -or- 14 night / 22 dives $3,149

    Package Includes:

  • Marine Biology workshop
  • Fluorescent Night-/Mandarin Dive
  • Land tour, kayaking
  • Local dinner buffet and Beach BBQ
  • Hotel room, diving and workshops
  • Coral Reefs at day and night
  • Sand bottom sampling, plankton tows
  • Stereomicroscope sessions, species lists
  • Fish, Invertebrate and Coral ID
  • Course Book, Marine biology Quiz and Certificate
  • Airport transfers ,taxes and breakfast

Customize Your Package

We offer 3 different workshops during Marine Biology Weeks. Create your adventure with one, two or three workshops in one or two-week long packages:

  • Basic Workshop
  • Advanced Workshop
  • Coral ID Workshop

Rates for the 1-week package with basic and advanced workshops start at $1,979 per person.

Our 2-week package that includes the basic, advanced and coral ID workshops start at just $3,479.

Get the details!



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Availability & Reservations