By Ken Knezick, Island Dreams Travel, www.divetrip.com
As I wind up another very satisfying visit to El Galleon Resort, permit me a few comments on this most recent trip. For starters, I’m gratified to see so many smiles on the faces of both the 36 intrepid Island Dreams dive travelers and the amazing staff that has served us so graciously over our 10-night stay. Despite our large group size, the resort and Asia Divers are clearly working at top efficiency. All of our needs have been met, and expectations exceeded, with nary a command heard. Everyone here knows their job and does it with integrity and good humor.
Dining – El Galleon’s open air,
ocean view dining room is one of the most attractive and accommodating you will find anywhere in the world. Under the tutelage of Corsican-born Chef Anton, the delicious and varied cuisine and friendly service are well equal to the organic setting.
Accommodations – The lodging rooms continue to be simple, but meticulously clean and comfortable with good air-con. While some guests were reluctant to make the hike upstairs to the Seaview rooms, I found the short bursts of cardio to be enjoyable and rewarding, perfectly replacing my visits to RPM Spin Class back home, and making me feel much better about enjoying Chef Anton’s chocolate croissants with my morning coffee.
Dive Operations – For all of the other creature comforts, it is the dive deck that places El Galleon and Asia Divers head and shoulders above almost any other dive resort I’ve experienced in 35-years of leading scuba tours around the world. From 6 am through return of the night dive, this expansive area is a hive of well-orchestrated activity. My guests repeatedly remarked that they felt as if they had a personal dive valet to assist them throughout the day. Thus my hat is off to owner Allan Nash, dive coordinator Kjell, repair maestro Andy, and the entire remarkable team of divemasters, boatmen and dive deck staff.
The Diving – None of the above would be of much import if the diving was not equal to the rest of the El Galleon picture. Fortunately, on this count my guests and I again come away very much satisfied. As easy it is to get to Puerto Galera, this region is host to a stunning variety of diving options and marine life variety. Our Island Dreams package had three two-tank trips to Verde Island, where we enjoyed great visibility and a swirling cornucopia of marine life. Other dives offered coral reef, wrecks, critters, and muck diving. The night diving is superb. Best of all, most dive sites are within a five minute ride from El Galleon’s excellent dock. But enough talking, check out a few of the images I produced on this trip, and then come enjoy El Galleon Resort for yourself.