Pirate Reef

In Boat Dives Close to Tioman Island by Grahame Massicks

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Pirate Reef is a shallow isolated reef of hard corals surrounded by sand. It is situated in Tekek Bay, just off shore from the capital of Tioman Island. It begins at about 5 meters and runs down to about 12 to 14 meters.

<img src="padi-diving-pirate-reef-tioman-island-malaysia.jpg" alt="PADI diving, Pirate Reef, Tioman Island, Malaysia" />

Lucky divers with a green turtle

Because of it’s shallow profile, it is an ideal dive site for novice divers or as a third dive. It can be combined with a visit to either Rengis Island to the south or the Marine Park to the north. The wrecks at Sawadee are also close by. Protected in the Bay of Tekek, it is also a good site to visit when the water is a bit too rough to visit the outer reefs. Being close to Tekek it also offers the opportunity for and alternative location for lunch, or even a quick visit to the duty free shopping.

The reef attracts a good selection of marine life including hawskbill turtles, yellow fined barracuda, schools of antheas and glass fish. It is always worth looking carefully at the surrounding sandy bottom for nudibranchs, sand eels, cuttlefish. On one memorable dive there we followed a banded krait snake as he hunted through the structure of the reef, and went up to the surface for the occasional gulp of air.

Pirate Reef DHL Conservation Project

<img src="padi-diving-pirate-reef-tioman-island-malaysia.jpg" alt="PADI diving, Pirate Reef, Tioman Island, Malaysia" />

DHL diver

A few meters to the north is an artificial reef which was put in place by DHL, the world wide courier service. This is made of hollow concrete balls about two to three feet big. It was put in place about seven or eight years ago. After the construction crew had finished their work, DHL staff from all over the world came here to dive it and I guess they had a company ‘jolly’ at the same time. This admirable conservation effort is interesting because it shows which corals grow quickest, and how the reef might spread out to it in years to come. This will become something for divers of the future to appreciate and enjoy.

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