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New Dive Centre Opens at Awei Pila Resort in Myanmar's Mergui Archipelago

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A luxury hotel on the barely touched Myanmar's Mergui Archipelago in the Andaman Sea has opened with a PADI dive centre.

Awei Pila is a 2.5-hour speedboat ride from the port of Kawthaung. Pila has 40 beaches, three sources of freshwater and a Moken sea gipsy settlement. The Mergui Archipelago is made up of 800 islands, atolls and reefs and sits about 50 miles from the mainland.

The hotel, owned by Yangon-based Memories Group, is the only resort on the island and opened 15 December 2018. It has 24 air-conditioned tented villas, a spa, and a restaurant with 24-hour service. 

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One of the Sea View tented villas

The Awei Pila Dive Center offers PADI courses from entry-level Discover Scuba Diving experiences to Divemaster programmes. 

Certified divers have 12 different dive sites to choose from, with depths ranging from 12 to 30m, including Shark Cave and Rocky Island. Most are just a short boat ride from the resort.

'We go out in the morning for two dives, stop for lunch, then take one dive in the afternoon,' said Awei Pila’s resident marine biologist and dive instructor Marcelo Guimaraes. 'We also have night dives upon demand, where you’ll see squid, lobsters, turtles and an array of open corals.'

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Diving is accessible from the beach, or a short RIB ride

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Myanmar's coral reefs are vibrant and diverse and little explored

The Mergui Archipelago is known for its diversity and quantity of marine life. 

'Divers can swim among schools of barracudas, yellow snappers and fusiliers, and will be able to get up close and personal with nudibranchs, sea horses and scorpion fish,' said  Guimaraes. 'And at certain times of the year, we come across manta rays and whale sharks.'

All-inclusive stays, including three 'gourmet' meals a day, start at US$750 per night for two persons. For more information, visit the Awei Pila website at www.memoriesgroup.com/hotel-myanmar/awei-pila-resort-mergui-archipelago.

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