4.17/5 (6)

Ninepin Island South

About The Site

There is some distance between the Sai Kung piers and the Ninepin Group, which is a stand-alone group of islands located relatively far from the shore. It is a relatively large dive site consisting of many dive spots, including the Coral Gardens, South Ninepin Island, North Ninepin Island, Fo Siu Pai, One Foot Rock and others. Depth can reach over 30 m and a range of underwater environments, including sandy, rocky and/or muddy bottoms are all found here, making the site suitable for beginners and further-advanced divers alike.

The Ninepin Group site is relatively open and can be a great place to visit on days with calmer winds and waves. On many days, however, one must bear with strong waves throughout the journey to the site. If you are easily seasick, remember to take precautions (e.g. motion-sickness prevention medication)! When currents are strong, care must be taken both under and above water. Use of speedboats are advisable in case currents make it difficult for divers to return to the dive boat. At spots within this site that are relatively deep, divers may consider to use 12 L tanks (note: divers must be aware of the no-decompression limit and must not enter decompression diving mode). Divers should also carry an SMB, whistles, and other gear to help ensure safety in cases of emergencies, and understand how to use them correctly.

At South Ninepin Island’s Coral Gardens dive spot, divers should devise a detailed dive plan before descending. Here, at around 13 – 17 m, many colourful corals and other marine life can be found. Note that this spot is located in the course of many passing vessels, is relatively deep and currents are sometimes strong. Dive plans must be followed closely to control timing and air consumption. Please also reserve extra air for use in case of emergencies.

Another dive spot, One Foot Rock is located in the middle of the sea, unsheltered and fully submerged. The reefs here, invisible to the unexperienced eye, have caused several boats to sink. Remnants of these boats can be found underwater. Sadly, there are not many days of the year where weather conditions and underwater visibility allow for diving at One Foot Rock. There is a rich diversity of habitats at this dive spot, and is definitely worth a visit. A whale shark encounter has even been reported here by a diver once!

At the inner bay of South Ninepin Island, the shallow areas are about 3 – 6 m. In recent years, an increased coverage of anemone is observed, with a growing anemonefish community comparable to that of Basalt Island. A small shrine, “Tin Hau Temple”, is located atop Dong Tsui Shan (東嘴山) at the island, where fishermen visit for worship.

The Ninepin Group is a geosite of the Hong Kong UNESCO Global Geopark, characterized by the hexagonal rock columns exposed at North Ninepin Island, and the magnificent caves, rock arches and other landmarks located around the site.

Soft Coral & Gorgonian: Yes

AFCD Coral Area Anchor: Some dive spots

Marine Protected Area: No

Sandy / Rubble Habitat: Yes

Rock / Boulder Habitat: Yes

Anemone Garden: Yes

Deep water areas (> 18m): Yes

Surface Traffic: Partially busy

Mobile Signal: Weak

Muddy / Silty Habitat: Yes

AFCD HK Artificial Reef Project: No

Beach: No

Rate this site

1 = Simple, 5 = Difficult

Total Cumulative Species Count: 200

Suggested Boarding pier: Sai Kung Pier or Pak Sha Wan

Distance from Suggested Boarding Pier: 14 – 19 km from Sai Kung Pier / 14 – 19 km from Pak Sha Wan Pier