Manta Ray Diving in Yap

Yap is gifted with it’s manta ray presence – it’s still one of the only places in the world where you have a great chance of diving with a manta ray any day of the year.

In the winter months the Manta diving is exciting, this is the time when you see small groups of rays and their courtship behavior, mantas dancing.

When you experience a mating train within arm’s reach or mantas balling together in courtship, it’s a “ten” for anyone’s dive log.

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Mantas are frequently seen on drift dives transiting channels and there’s occasional outer reef deep blue water encounters. The most common and longest interactions happen at shallow cleaning stations where divers get buzzed by circling rays.

You can go manta diving every day here in small groups at sites inside the reef on calm water after short boat rides, just minutes from the hotel dock.

The manta presence is so strong that Yap State is a field research site for Manta Trust. Our rays are being identified, measured and indexed in a custom database for the conservation of all Micronesian manta rays.

Check out this season’s manta diving:

How we do it

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We make a dive to a cleaning station and remain stationary at the bottom, and the Mantas come to us.

The Mantas approach, more often than not two or three at a time, and hover at the cleaning station. The Cleaning Wrasse get into the action and nibble away at parasites in the gills and on the skin, getting a free meal while the Manta gets rid of uninvited and irritating guests.

The Mantas will be as close as a few feet from the divers, and the action often goes on for quite some time. The shallow depth and the divers remaining stationary at the cleaning station allows for extended dive times, a typical dive can last 55 to 75 minutes with several Mantas or groups of Mantas being “serviced” at arms length – cleaning station encounters are outstanding for photography. This is an experience that cannot be put in words.

Some simple rules for the dives:

  • We NEVER touch the mantas. They don’t like it, and we respect that.
  • We encourage responsible use of video lights.
  • Avoid hanging on to living coral. There’s plenty of rock and dead coral.
  • Avoid blowing large bubbles under the mantas.

Availability & Reservations

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
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