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There are 28 reefs between Miri and Sibuti area.

The best time to dive in Miri is March to September, when you can expect visibility of up to 30m.
During the rest of the year, the monsoon can cause visibility to drop to 10m or less.

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A Brief Description of MIRI Dive sites

Miri's inner reefs range from 20 to 6 metres.

1. Anemone Reef
 

Is a shallow reef (6 to 9 m) covered with soft corals and anemones. During August, migrating green turtles can be found here.

2. Sea Fan Garden
 

Lies between 15 and 20m with many gorgonian sea fans and sea whips.

3. Grouper Patch
 

A rocky outcrop (18 m max. depth) covered with hard and soft corals and - of course - inhabited by several giant groupers.

4. Eves Garden
 

One of the best shallow reefs as it is large and varies from 18 to 6 metres and has many species found upon it. It is covered in healthy corals. There are about 15 other shallow reef formations.

Miri's outer reefs, obviously further away, but the better and more consistent visibility is worth the trip.

5. Tukau drop off 
 

The reef furthest from shore, about 24-28 km (40mins by boat). The reef consist of several longish strips with a wall which drops off from 20 to 45 meter. It is possible to see reef sharks, napoleon wrasse, groupers, schooling mackerel, jacks, trevally, barracudas and turtles. During certain times of the year whale sharks might be seen here.

6. Batu Suleiman
 

30 metres at its shallowest, dropping to 45 metres. The water is normally clear and many fish are found here.

7. Santak
 

Shaped like a dogs bone and covered in large Gorgonian fans at the west end. 25 – 30 metres deep.
Some of these reefs are 800 metres long and 100 + metres wide and would take several dives to explore.

Wrecks around Miri

8. Atago Maru 
 

World War Two Japanese merchant ship and lies just off Lutong (north of Miri). The 105 meter ship is sitting upright with the top deck just 9 metres from the surface. Most of the hull is covered with corals. Visibility is not always good due to silt, but it teems with small & medium sized fish.

9. Sri Gadong
 

A small 30m cargo ship lying in 20m on a sandy bottom about a 40 minutes boat ride south.

Also there are two barges and the bow of an unknown vessel (believed to be an oil tanker sunk in WW2.

10. Kenyalang
 

There is also an artificial reef, Kenyalang, which is a large piece of redundant oil rig teeming with small fish. 13m to 22m max depth. A surprisingly nice dive.

DIVING CONDITIONS IN MIRI

The predominant diving in Miri is reef diving, though there are 5 wrecks in the area.  The reefs fall into 4 main areas – Siwa (3-18m), Midreef Area (18-25m), Tukau/Santak (21-40m) and Suleiman/Sulit (38-50m).  The reefs are either long north south structures or smaller mounds.  Some of the reefs can be over 2km in size.

The wrecks are:

Sri Gadong, a small freighter which sank in the 1960’s, which lies in 18 metres of water.

Atago Maru, a large WW2 Japanese freighter, sunk in 1944, and in about 12 metres of water.

Unknown. It looks like the bow section of a large vessel, possibly a tanker. Origin unknown.
Finally, two barges.

The predominant bottom current is in the heading of 30˚.  This can at times be unpredictable, though in general is a weak current (max 1-2 knots).  However surface currents can be very changeable and strong.  Tidal currents are generally East/West and weak (up to 0.4 knots).


Visibility can be extremely unpredictable due to the proximity of the Baram river.  Visibility can range from 1m to 30m+.  Visibility can also be changeable vertically, with common layers of poor visibility from 0-10m and also below the common thermocline at 30-35m.

 


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DIVE INSTRUCTOR

SteveName: Steve Axon
Profession: PADI Master Scuba Diver Trainer & BSAC Open Water Instructor
Location: Miri, Borneo Malaysia


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