Oriental Siren

The Worldwide Dive and Sail team welcomes you aboard the S/Y Oriental Siren, their luxury liveaboard dive boat that promises scuba divers a spectacular scuba diving vacation to one of four distinct itineraries throughout the year. Taking advantage of the best dive season in each location, the S/Y Oriental Siren travels to the waters around Thailand and Burma, India, Malaysia, and Timor-Leste, where your scuba diving adventure of a lifetime awaits.

Thailand and Burma

Between November and February, the S/Y Oriental Siren departs from the island of Phuket and takes guests on its 10-night Best of Thailand itinerary, where you will dive Phi Phi, Hin Deang, and the Similan Islands. As you travel along the west coast of Thailand, you will discover the interesting topographies and excellent marine life that put Thailand on every diver’s must do list. Scuba diving is a year round activity on Thailand, which is bound on the west by the clear waters of the Andaman Sea and on the east by the South China Sea. October to May is the best time to explore the dive sites along the west coast, as the rains have subsided and visibility is best.

Once you depart Phuket you will cruise to the Phi Phi Islands where you will explore the dive sites at Bida Nok and Bida Nai. Here you will have the opportunity to visit the famed Maya Beach, described by some as a Thai paradise. Bida Nok presents a bounty of colorful soft corals, large sea fans, and an abundance of all types of reef fish. Here you will also see schools of barracuda and jacks, as well as an occasional Black-tipped Reef Shark.

Depending on the weather, the S/Y Oriental Siren travels to either Hin Daeng where you will explore reefs and look for Whale Sharks, or you will dive the reefs closer to Phuket, paying a visit to Shark Point where you may observe Leopard Sharks at rest on the sand.

Also on this itinerary is diving at Koh Bon, a hard, rocky substrate where you will see soft corals and a cleaning station for Manta Rays. These graceful pelagics may just be curious enough to approach divers. At Koh Bon you will also enjoy such colorful fish as Napoleon Wrasses, Trigger Fish, Yellow Snappers, and Angel Fish. In the deeper water off the edge of the pinnacle at this site you will also find White-tipped Reef Sharks.

One dive site that appeals to all divers is Richelieu Rock, which is actually a mass of enormous pinnacles in the middle of the ocean. Richelieu Rock is known for its abundance of reddish-purple soft corals. Among the varied marine life you will encounter here are Ghost Pipefish, Sea Horses, Harlequin Shrimp, and schools of barracudas.

You will spend several days diving at a number of the dive sites at the Similan Islands. The largest of the pinnacles in the Similan National Park is Elephant Head Rock, where you will enjoy the swim throughs created by the huge boulders here. In addition to White-tipped Reef Sharks hiding among the boulders, you will also encounter Kuhl’s Stingrays, Mantis Shrimp, and a variety of crustaceans.

Also available between November and February on a charter basis is the S/Y Oriental Siren’s itinerary that departs Phuket and takes you to both Thailand and Burma, diving in the Similans Islands and Mergui Archipelago, with its more than 800 islands. You will dive in four different types of dive environments on this itinerary: inshore fringing reefs, offshore fringing reefs, shallows, and banks that rise up from depths of some 1,000 feet (300 m.).

You will first dive at Koh Bon, Koh TaChai, and Richelieu Rock. On the third day of this excursion you will enter Burma at Ranong. One dive site you will visit is Western Rocky, a sharp pinnacle that rises from the depths. You will explore caverns, swim throughs, channels, and rocky walls with amazing overhangs. Look for lobsters, Moebius Elysia, schools of Snappers, and teeming Fusiliers. While in the Burmese waters you may also explore the pinnacle at Fan Forest which, as its name suggests, is covered with huge Gorgonian Fans.

Other dive sites on this itinerary include Captain’s Rock with its submerged pinnacles covered with soft corals and marine life such as Angelfish, Devil Scorpion Fish, Snappers, and Moray Eels. At Black Rock the current will determine your dive route around this rocky pinnacle where Barracuda and schools of Batfish congregate. Look for Octopi, Scorpion Fish, Glassfish, and Nudibranchs. Diving at Three Islets you will encounter Tiger Tail Seahorses, Ghost Pipefish, and Pharoah’s Cuttlefish. In the large cavern and swim through you will encounter Nurse Sharks at rest.

November to February is considered the cool season in Thailand and Burma, with a northeast breeze and lower levels of humidity. Daytime temperatures average 86°F (30°C). Water temperatures average 80°F-86°F (27°-30°C). Because of the number of dives you will be able to make each day it is recommended that you wear a 3-5 mm. wetsuit for sufficient thermal protection.

Andaman Islands, India

From February to May the S/Y Oriental Siren takes you on a spectacular 8- or 9-night scuba diving excursion to the remote Andaman Islands in Indian territorial waters. The variety of dive sites makes this excursion appealing to all divers. Snorkelers and divers of all levels of experience will enjoy this liveaboard dive vacation to see the best the Andaman Sea has to offer.

Covering an area of approximately 3,100 square miles (8,000 square kilometers) this archipelago is comprised of some 500 islands, islets, and rocky outcrops. This extensive island range, with its unspoiled natural beauty, offers the unique opportunity to experience tropical islands and explore lush coral reefs. The fish population is abundant, with many schooling species of fish and large pelagics such as Giant Grouper and Devil Rays. Endemic species you will see include the Andaman Damselfish and Andaman Sweetlips. Invertebrates such as Trapeze Crabs, Wire-coral Shrimp, Nudibranchs, and Bobtail Squid also populate these waters.

You will depart from Port Blair, the capital city of Andaman and Nicobar Islands in India. The S/Y Oriental Siren first cruises to Button and Narcondam Islands where you will thrill to see the Manta Rays, huge schools of Snappers and Jacks, and large Napoleon Wrasses. You will also travel to Barren Island to dive at Purple Haze where amazing fields of vibrant soft corals stretch out before you. You will dive steep walls and encounter large pelagics and a manta cleaning station. Barren Island’s soft corals and sea fans shelter numerous reef and anemone fish.

While diving at Passage Island you will encounter groups of Mobula Rays, huge Dogtooth Tuna on patrol, and White-tipped Reef Sharks nestled under the coral bommies. At Crazy Girl you will see White-tipped Sharks resting among the coral gardens, as well as schools of Red Snappers and Barracudas, Grey Reef Sharks, and Dogtooth Tuna. Inquisitive mantas may approach you in the waters at South Point off Narcondam Island. Lying underwater for 30 years is the Inchgard Wreck, a 230-foot (70 m.) steam ship, now home to many small critters, including Ghost Pipe Fish.

February to May is considered summer in the Andaman Islands. Temperatures average about 85°F (29°C) with relative humidity at 80%. Water temperatures average 80°F-86°F (27°-30°C). Because of the number of dives you will be able to make each day it is recommended that you wear a 3-5 mm. wetsuit for sufficient thermal protection.

Malaysia

From May to July you can experience the peak of the scuba diving season in Malaysia while traveling aboard the liveaboard boat S/Y Oriental Siren. You will travel to Layang Layang for a 10-night excursion to the renowned Spratly Island chain located in the South China Sea. The diversity of marine life you will see is amazing. Macro creatures include Cuttlefish, Seahorses, and Pipefish. Pelagics include Hammerhead Sharks, Grey Reef Sharks, Leopard Sharks and Silver-tipped Sharks. The stingray population includes Manta Rays, Marbled Rays, Eagle Rays, and Pygmy Devil Rays. Dolphins follow the dive tenders to and from dive sites, and Whale Sharks, Melon-headed Whales, and Orcas have all been spotted on occasion.

Layang Layang, also known as Swallows Reef, is a man-made atoll that was built for the Malaysian Navy. Thirteen coral reefs link together here, and the nutrient rich waters teem with life as a result of the convergent currents. Feeding on plankton from the passing currents are the resident schools of Barracudas, Big-eyed Trevally, and Green and Hawksbill Turtles. Layang Layang’s reputation as one of the top ten dive sites in the world is well deserved thanks to its extreme location, pristine reefs, steep walls, excellent visibility, and consistent sightings of large pelagics.

This amazing excursion departs from Labuan in Eastern Malaysia. In the area of Labuan you will visit a local reef and also explore wrecks. From there you will make the 15-hour journey to Layang Layang where you will enjoy several days diving many well-known sites at Layang Layang. This trip also takes you to the outer reefs of Mariveles, Dallas, and Investigator Shoal. As you travel to the Dallas Reef, Spinner and Bottlenose Dolphins accompany your dive tender, playing in its wake. Once there you will dive steep walls where Sea Fans, Sponges, and hard corals form. You will see Marble Rays at rest in the coral gardens and Eagle Rays along the wall. Brightly colored Angelfish and Butterfly fish swim all around you.

At depths of about 80 feet (25 m.), you will encounter Leopard and Nurse Sharks at rest at Sharks Cave. If you move very slowly and carefully, you may even be able to get up close for an amazing photo opportunity. Look for lots of soft corals and whips along the outer wall here.

Layang Layang has what is considered an equatorial climate. Temperatures range from 83°-90°F (28°-32°C). Cool sea breezes help to moderate the high levels of humidity. Water temperatures average 78°-86°F (25°-30°C). Because of the number of dives you will be able to make each day it is recommended that you wear a 3-5 mm. wetsuit for sufficient thermal protection.

Timor-Leste

Adventurous divers will enjoy the S/Y Oriental Siren’s Timor-Leste itinerary, which includes a variety of dive sites with diverse topographies and an amazing array of marine life. Traveling from August to November, the S/Y Oriental Siren takes advantage of the peak dive season and takes adventure divers on a world-class 10-night diving excursion to this remote island to the southeast of Indonesia. In addition to experiencing the wonderful critters and vibrant corals that are typical in these waters, you will also explore new sites while visiting pristine corals, offshore pinnacles, and sandy slopes.

Timor-Leste is located approximately 400 miles (640 km.) northwest of Darwin, Australia. The monsoon season occurs from November to March, and the average air temperature is 83°F (28°C). The S/Y Oriental Siren departs from Dili and travels to Atauro Island, Jako Island, the island’s northern coast and back to Dili. The bays around Jako Island provide shelter for numerous tiny species such as Frogfish, Sea Horses, Octopi, and Rhinopi. The currents that pass through this area bring nutrient rich waters that attract large marine animals. At Jako Island you can expect to see White-tipped and Grey Reef Sharks, Mobula Rays, schooling Trevally, and Snappers.

Atauro, with its steep walls, attracts sharks and rays. The dive site here known as The Church presents steep walls that rise from depths of 165 feet (50 m.) or more. The walls are covered with both hard and soft corals and provide shelter to an amazing diversity of crustaceans and mollusks. Also at this site you will encounter pelagics such as Tuna, Swordfish, Barracuda, Reef Sharks, and Hawksbill Turtles.

At Tasi Tolu you will dive a sandy slope that gradually descends to 100 feet (30 m.). The sand is full of amazing creatures such as Rhinopias, Mimic Octopi, Thorny Seahorses, Pipefish, Frogfish, and Nudibranchs. You will also see Seasnakes on the hunt and grazing Dugongs, also known as Seacows. To the east of Dili, along the northern coast is K41, with a beautiful coral garden that attracts schools of Snappers, Batfish, and Yellow-fin Bass. During your dives here you might hear dolphins or see the occasional Whale Shark. You will find Whiptail Rays hiding under coral bommies, and Ghost Pipefish in the shallow waters.

For each of the S/Y Oriental Siren’s itineraries up to four dives are scheduled each day. Qualified divers should bring their certification card and log book along with them. Scuba diving with the Worldwide Dive and Sail team is suitable for divers of all levels of experience, although Advanced Open Water diving certification may be recommended for some destinations. Alternate itineraries may be selected if weather conditions present unsafe or unsuitable diving conditions at your chosen dive site.

Timor-Leste has a hot, humid climate. Temperatures can reach 86°F (30°C). Water temperatures range between 70°-78°F (21°-25°C). Because of the number of dives you will be able to make each day it is recommended that you wear a 3-5 mm. wetsuit for sufficient thermal protection.

The Worldwide Dive and Sail team strives to provide scuba divers and vacationers with the safest, highest quality and most innovative liveaboard experience possible. In addition to unmatched scuba diving, guests aboard the S/Y Oriental Siren will enjoy amazing photography and video opportunities, excellent accommodations, and delicious meals as part of their vacation package. Worldwide Dive and Sail dive boat excursions afford guests both safety and comfort as they travel to some of the world’s premier diving locations.