News from Asia Divers

What’s been happening this week


It’s been great enjoying time at the Barrel Bar at El Galleon this past week with the good weather, our IDC candidates (now certified Instructors) and of course a lot of our guests. Keep those sunsets in Puerto Galera coming!

Underwater’s Ultimate Weapon


Listen to this audio recording below from Radiolab . Start from 2:00 and end at 3:25. What did you hear? Rice pops? Twigs being burned? Frying bacon?

No – they are snapping shrimps, or rightfully called “pistol” shrimps which belong to the family Alpheidae. Do the sound even hint to a deadly weapon?

For starters, a snapping shrimp is a tiny creature, reaching one to two inches – just half of your finger . Now it gets scarier: it has a distinctive large claw which it uses to stun a prey instantaneously! The cracking sound produced is what you hear during low tide in shallow waters. Some species live mutually with gobies in burrows: the shrimp provides a home for the goby, while the fish confers protection to shrimp against predators .

To see the whole story and  know more about snapping shrimps or pistol shrimps, visit SeaLifeBase:

E-IDC update

Yay !! Our candidates all passed the PADI Instructor Exams with flying colors and are now PADI Open Water Scuba Instructors!!! Heartfelt congratulations to Vincent Wolf and Kirk Zhong for a job well done and for keeping up our 100% first time pass rate. We are so proud of you!!


Party time!!!

And then it was party time!  Vincent and Kirk tried our newly designed instructor t-shirt shooter combination – that btw was non-alcoholic – but clearly lived up to expectations… B)  A long party night followed in the Point Bar….

The team will be back in Puerto Galera in a few weeks for the instructor internship month with Asia Divers and also to complete their MSDT specialty course training.

Next upcoming IDC in March

If you would like to become a PADI Instructor or Staff Instructor, join our March IDC on 17th -26th March with the PADI IE on 27/28th and secure your space now via email to

Start the eLearning component via this link:


Underwater’s Ultimate Weapon

A new year begins with lots going on in Puerto Galera!


It’s been a fun week to start 2018 for everyone as they all got their PADI diving certifications. Congratulations to Kyle, Marcil, David, James and Alexandra for all their hard work over the holiday. They we’re thrilled to complete their courses and then have a fun dive with no actual skills to do at the end of their training and to make a family underwater video. Luckily for everyone we had a very hungry turtle that was happy to have himself filmed for quite a while to become one of the film’s stars!


Divemaster Duo! Juliana and John teamed up over the Christmas/New Year holiday to do their PADI Divemaster course. Not an easy job with so many options to stray off and enjoy the festivities, but they stayed focused and did it good!!  Congratulations to you both. You’ll be seeing more of John over the next while as he’ll be helping out around the resort and also getting into leading dives by himself.


It’s always a fun time to go out on a scooter dive! First time for Sheika ….she teamed up with Pete and Trevor to fly underwater. Next time you’re in PG ask one of our instructors about trying out the DPV.

Blast from the past photo


Allan says that this is probably the earliest photo he has of himself with diving gear on (tank and weights were close by). Allan would have been around 13 years old when this photo was taken.

Deck the halls at El Galleon!


You know that Christmas is really here when EL Gal/Asia Divers and Ocean Dive Supply have our Christmas party…and oh what a party it was. Lots of games, a talent competition, great food, cool prizes from the raffle, gift exchange, and non-stop bell ringing in the Point Bar made this an amazing night.  We’re ready for the holidays!


Christmas plans

Just a reminder that if you’re still a bit stuck on what to do over Christmas…we’ve got rooms here. Contact to join the fun! On the 24th, Santa arrives to hand out toys to the local kids followed by a lunch for them on the morning of the 24th. Our Christmas dinner at El Galleon will be on the evening of the 24th followed by some fun time up in the Point Bar. Christmas Day, we’re going to do a Verde Island dive trip in the morning followed by an amazing Christmas lunch on the island with time for relaxing, playing volleyball and getting into a festive mood. We’ll have a boat for the divers leaving at eight and another boat for the non-divers leaving later in the morning. We’re also planning to do the BCD/Beer float in the ocean on the way home….just like we did for our anniversary party.


Tommy on his Christmas dinner tour around the Philippines continues in Alona with Luz, Riza and Marlie and in Cebu with Rose, Vangie, Jane and Jomar

December on the beach

This is a great shot taken at our 30th Anniversary weekend by Beth Watson. As our official photographer for the event  she has come up with quite a fine selection of photos. You can see of all these images on our website: and and Facebook page . They are also on Beth’s website

Thanks to Beth for taking some amazing photos of our Anniversary week that we’ll keep in our memory treasure chest forever.  It’s always interesting when Beth and Steve arrive here.  You can see what happens to our camera room with just their gear in it…actually, most of it is Beths!


It’s beginning to feel a lot like Christmas!


If you’re still undecided what to do over the Christmas holiday contact us as we do have a couple rooms available.  Experience a warm and fuzzy Christmas with friends here! Contact

What’s been happening this week


A big congratulations to Jenny Moore for having the endurance to crack on with her PADI Open Water course on her honeymoon and not get too distracted by all the Anniversary festivities either! Puerto Galera is a wonderful location to learn to scuba dive and there is so much to see in the water.


It was great to have Klaus here with us for the party week and to see him earn a 600 dive t-shirt. We missed Gabi this time, but loved the poster she made for us.


Patrik Bonnier has been with us over the past couple weeks gaining some practical experience as a Divemaster which happens to include lots of time at the Barrel Bar! We have a “Divemaster Experience Week” program for folks who have been certified as Divemasters but would like to gain some good experience in a busy dive center. It’s also a great warm up to those who are starting their IDC. Have a look here for more info:


Congrats to Cathy-Ann Chouinard (Cate) who “Discovered Scuba” with Alli, in-between all the laughs!

30th Anniversary Memories in Puerto Galera

As many of you know we are celebrating Asia Divers 30th Anniversary this year. It’s hard to believe thirty years ago our dive center in Puerto Galera Philippines came to be. There are just so many memories to share of our home and the people who visited us in Sabang and Small Lalaguna. Some came to take PADI scuba diving courses to learn to dive or upgrade their diving skills, some were already divers and wanted to see all the beautiful corals and fishes our area in the Philippines, some came because they just wanted to chill out in the sunshine and have the sea breeze on them. And of course, some came for the great times socializing with friends at the Point Bar. Whatever the reason, we’re just glad to have had all of you in our lives. Here are a few good shots from 1994-1999 from Terry Collins. See if you can recognize a few people in them!

nov17b1 nov17b2

Time is ticking away for our 30th Anniversary festivities. Remember that we’ve added a bit more fun into the big party on Saturday night at our platform as this will now be a Fancy Dress/ Costume Party. Use your imagination because there is no theme and anything goes. The more creative the better…just make it comfortable so you can dance and drink in it!

See the itinerary below.

Friday Nov. 24th
Verde Island diving: Includes 2 dives with BBQ and drinks. It will be a wonderful day over there with lots of time to relax and enjoy the beach after diving.

Saturday November 25th
Our 30th Anniversary party (Costume) on the platform: Includes buffet dinner, fire dance, fireworks and live band.

Sunday November 26th
Golfing at Ponderosa ending with a Sunset cruise with drinks

How Asia Divers began…Allan’s story

Many people who live and work here have “their story” on how they landed up in Puerto Galera in the first place. It makes for very interesting conversation in the bar, and what you’ll find out quite often is most of us really did not plan on living here. Here is Allan’s story.

 How I became a dive resort owner, by Alan Nash

I was formally in Hong Kong working as a construction supervisor and the partner in a nightclub called Rick’s Café. After seven years in HK, I decided I wanted to buy a boat and sail around Asia for a couple of years. I managed to get my masters two and engineer two for costal sailing but had no experience in blue water sailing. I resigned my job and told the company I would see them in two years, went to Hebi Haven yacht club and asked if anyone needed help sailing their boat somewhere in Asia. That’s when I met up with an American guy (Ogle Warfield) with a 42ft Tiana (the Elusive Butterfly) leaving for Puerto Galera, Philippines.

Five days after leaving HK we got sight of the Philippines Islands, and San Fernando. From then on it all went wrong and I had the worst trip you could imagine, typhoon, almost lost the boat on a reef coming into Subic Bay without harbour charts! The owner called a mayday when approaching Subic Bay; I was somewhat disappointed with his decisions. Then he managed to jump into the water with my passport in his pocket, bugger.  After several days in Subic Bay sorting out passports and drying off we headed to Puerto Galera. I arrived in Puerto Galera on the 28th of October, twenty days after leaving HK on October 8, 1985.

Ending up in Puerto Galera I could not wait to get off the boat. I said to myself if this is what it’s like living on a boat, forget it, and went looking for something to do. That’s when I walked into a dive shop called Reef Raiders owned by two Australian’s, Jim Wilson & Neil (Snake) Krumbeck and a German Willi Tobler. The freelance instructor Dave Penman (English) met me when I walked into the dive shop and we quickly became friends. I was already a certified diver, but had not dived for a few years. He took me out on a dive and I just fell in love with the diving all over again and loved the area. So I asked Dave to take me through the PADI Open Water Course again and onward and upward. He did and within two months I was a divemaster working for the Reef Raiders. I became an instructor in March 1987, and worked with Dave as the instructional team for Reef Raiders until May 1988 when a fire ripped through the beach and took the dive shop with it.

allan1Big Lalaguna in the early days


Small Lalaguna in the early days

I never intended to start my own dive shop, but with not having a dive shop to work out of, and not wanting to go back to working in the real world, I suggested to Dave if he would like to start a dive shop since the previous owners had decided they’d had enough and were heading home. Dave agreed and with that, we worked day and night recovering whatever we could from the fire, regulators, charred wet suits that had been saved but left on the beach. Ten tanks were saved as these tanks were rented out the night of the fire, and a handful of masks and fins. Within a week we had borrowed a thousand dollars and purchased a small 2.7cfm compressor, we were up and running. We used the name Reef Rangers until one of the owners of Reef Raiders came back with a Japanese guy and resurrected Reef Raiders, and asked us to change our name. With that I decided on the spot it would be Asia Divers and Asia Divers was born.


Reef Raiders Willy, Jim, Allan

We started Asia Divers (now where Tech Asia Divers Institute stands) in my spare bedroom being the equipment room and used my kitchen and balcony as classrooms and my living room as the bar. After five great years we badly needed our own rooms so in December 1992 we purchased El Galleon dive resort with seven usable rooms and a small restaurant. Today we have 30 rooms, a new kitchen, pool, three bars and an incredible dive platform.

Our family, the team, is as solid as a rock and we do know how to have fun, it’s our pleasure and our job, one that none of us would trade for anything. We love Puerto Galera, the diving and dive industry as a whole and the many new and old friends we meet every day who appreciate that common interest.  We have come a long way and it’s been a great ride! Looking forward to the next 30 ye

Whos’ been doing what at Asia Divers


It was a great time having Steven Chang here from RIDA Scuba Diving Club, Kaohsiung City, Taiwan with his group of 13 divers.  John and Jenny Butler have been diving with this wonderful group and with us for years so it was real nice to hook up our two companies to make this trip to Puerto Galera so amazing for all of us. If you live in Taiwan you can contact Steven at  or E-mail: about dive courses and other trips he’s doing. Hope to see you all back here soon!


Tommy has been riding motorcycle from Perth to Ayers Rock through the central of Western Australia. The road is called Great Central Highway and is mostly dirt road. He will return along the Old Gun barrel Highway that will be more of an adventure as it us not maintained as the southern route. More on that when he returns to Perth as it is no mobile or internet connection available in this part of Australia.

This was spotted in NY.  El Galleon is proud to be part of the change. No more plastic straws!

Time to boogie at Asia Divers 30th Anniversary


Guess who’s dancing up a storm for our 30th Anniversary?!  Asia Divers 30th Anniversary celebration is getting real close. Contact us if you would like to attend this fun-filled weekend as we do have a few rooms open as of today. The dates of the event are November 24, 25 and 26.  Contact

Here are some of the events we have planned for the weekend:

Friday Nov. 24th
Verde Island diving: Includes 2 dives with BBQ and drinks. It will be a wonderful day over there with lots of time to relax and enjoy the beach after diving.

Saturday November 25th
Our 30th Anniversary party on the platform: Includes buffet dinner, fire dance, fireworks and live band.

Sunday November 26th
Golfing at Ponderosa ending with a Sunset cruise with drinks

Mid autumn fun at Asia Divers


Mid-Autumn dinner with Andy, Qun and all of their students. We’ve had a very busy week here with folks celebrating the Chinese Mid-Autumn. So here’s a few fact for you folks that might not know what this holiday is all about:

Why Mid-Autumn Is Celebrated at Month 8 Day 15? It’s Mid-Way Through the Third Season. The date of the Festival is the middle of the autumn season, according to the Chinese calendar. The third lunar season “autumn” is months 7–9. As the four seasons each have three (29 or 30 day) months on China’s traditional calendars, day 15 of month 8 is “the middle of autumn”.

For the Full Moon

On the 15th of the each lunar month, the moon is at its roundest and brightest, symbolizing togetherness and reunion in Chinese culture. The harvest moon (the full moon at Mid-Autumn, closest to the fall equinox) is traditionally believed to be the brightest of the year.

For Harvest Celebration

Month 8 day 15, is traditionally the time rice is supposed to mature and be harvested. So, people take this festival as an opportunity to celebrate the harvest and worship their gods to show their gratitude.




Happy 61st or should we say 16th birthday to Allan! It was a fun night in the Point Bar celebrating the special day last night with many friends.