From the book "Straight to the South", part 3 "Visiting a sea cow", episode 23.
The Neill and Havelock Islands are separated by a strait with a width of over 4 km, sometimes manta ray come there, but we were not lucky to meet them. But when diving on the dive site "Junction"(11°52'7.50"N 93° 1'3.40"E) we immediately saw a large Napoleon fish. Then there were groupers and sweetlips, fan corals gorgonians covered with sea lilies, titan triggerfish and blue-dotted stingray, boxer shrimps, scorpionfish... The water is clear, visibility is about 20-30 meters - we'd dived with pleasure.
Our dive-guide Dharmesh
On the shore before the dive
Another local dive site, which is called "Bus Stop"(11°50'33.80"N 93° 0'29.40"E), frankly pleased us. At the Western end of the Neill island at a depth of 15-20 meters - sea anemones live with clown fishes, snappers perch, Moorish idols, triggerfish and blowfishes, eels and snakes, in general, everything.
There is a "eel garden" on gently sandy slope, where plant-like worm-like sea eels nestled, they never leave their holes and their mouths are open to catch plankton that currents bring.
About 30 lionfish, no less, nested under a large coral, we have never seen so many of them together. Feeling the elbow of the companions, the males boldly attacked the uninvited guests, putting forward their poisonous fins…
We also met a huge grouper. Fish (weighing not less than 20 kg) lays in the sand hole dug by itself, cleaner fish and pilot fish circled around. Eyes of the grouper were evil: they say, large groupers rush even on a sharks. But this one slightly panicked at our approaching and went out, comparing size of the visitors to its one…
The place of this dive is located in front of the most famous of the local beaches, which is called Lakshmanpur Beach, or just the beach № 1. Meeting sunsets on it is a favorite attraction of visiting tourists.
Sea view of the beach № 1
You can get there by tuk-tuk on the road or on foot along the sea…
The people located on the white coral sand eating fruit and snacks purchased in the opening by the evening of the numerous shops, they are reverently watching the sun descending into the waters of the Bay of Bengal.
Not many people risk to swim, because there are sharp corals and prickly blowfish on the sandy bottom and they can get you hurt. Often the horizon in the West is closed by clouds, and people are happy to see individual colored rays which break through the clouds – any way there is nothing much to do in the evening on the Neill Island. And here you are - the sea, the sunset, it is so romantic! :)
Look at our movie about the clean waters of the Neill Island: