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June 1997 Vol. 12, No. 6   RSS Feed for Undercurrent Issues
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Sangalakki Saved

from the June, 1997 issue of Undercurrent   Subscribe Now

In the July 1993 issue of In Depth, our correspondent reported on the recently opened resort of Sangalakki in Indonesian Borneo. He described Sangalakki as having a jellyfish lake like Micronesia, more turtles than Sipadan, and mantas like Yap. If you read about it and went there, you were quick; within a year the resort was closed -- not due to the lack of divers or funds, but because of government politics.

After the Indonesian government closed the resort, Borneo Divers, the operators of Pt. Sangalakki (and another resort on Sipadan), in a Hollywoodstyle response, flew in a large amphibious cargo plane and scooped up everything that wasn't bolted down, including dive boats and the resort staff. Ever since, rumors of Borneo Divers reopening have been circulating around the dive world -- always just over the horizon.

Now my hat is off to Borneo Divers. They wanted Sangalakki with a passion. For three years they persisted in their efforts to get permission to reopen the resort -- and they succeeded. It is now officially open.

Turtles, cuttlefish, mantas, and a host of weird creatures are Sangalakki's strong suit, but because of its lack of beach diving and a 20-minute boat ride to nearby Kakaban Island for wall dives, I still recommend Sangalakki as an addon to Sipadan (allow yourself plenty of travel time). A wecome-back special of $1,325 (seven-day package) is valid through July.

(Island Dreams Travel, 800-346-6116, fax 713-973-8585; Tropical Adventures, 206-441-3483 or 206-247-3483, fax 206-441-5431.)

J. Q.

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