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Dive Review of Bamboo Reef Dive/Bamboo Beach Resort in
Fiji and Tuvalu/Bligh Water

July, 2004, an Instant Reader Report by Jill Rain, WA, UNITED STATES
Report Number 1119
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Reporter and Travel
Dive Experience
251-500 dives
Where else diving
Caribbean, Canada, Australia, Baja, Hawaii
Closest Airport
Getting There


Dive Conditions

sunny, windy, rainy  
choppy, surge, currents, noCurrents  
Water Temp
78   to 80    Fahrenheit  
Wetsuit Thickness
Water Visibility
25   to 75    Feet  
Dive Policy
Dive own profile
Enforced diving restrictions  
Not over 100'  
Nitrox Available?
What I saw
1 or 2 
Whale Sharks
1 or 2 
Ratings 1 (worst)- 5 (best):
  5 stars
Tropical Fish
5 stars  
Small Critters
  4 stars
Large Fish
4 stars  
Large Pelagics
  4 stars
Underwater Photography  1 (worst)- 5 (best):
Subject Matter
Boat Facilities
Overall rating for UWP's  
Shore Facilities  
Ratings and Overall Comments  1 (worst)- 5 (best):
4 stars
5 stars
Service and Attitude
5 stars
Environmental Sensitivity  
Dive Operation
3 stars  
Shore Diving  
1 stars  

Overall Rating

Value for $$
3 stars   
3 stars    
I booked a week of my trip to Fiji here expecting a 5-star experience, but
found it was not entirely as advertised, particularly the diving
The resort:  Bamboo Beach is brand-new, located in the narrow middle of
Nananu-I-Ra Island, with the dining hall and bures strung out along the
crest of the ridge.  The good points --> Spectacular views of the sea,
sunrises, sunsets, a wonderful beach on the windward side of the island.
The food is generally very good and well presented.  You check off what you
want the day before (if you forget to check it off, you're out of luck).
The Fijian serving staff were always wonderfully warm, helpful and
friendly, as were the housekeeping and dive staff (and the Filipino office
staff). The bad points --> While the bures are spacious and attractive,
with big picture windows, an outdoor shower and a deck with a great view,
there are no windows that can be opened.  This means that once the
mosquitoes come out in the late afternoon, you have to go inside, close the
doors and listen to the air conditioning, rather than hearing and smelling
the tropical breezes, birds and ocean down below. Also, the bures are
duplexes, with thin walls so you can hear conversation and people walking
around next door.  
The dive operation:  Bamboo Reef is the new incarnation of Crystal Divers,
and from what I saw, compared to past years, it has taken a giant leap
backward.  The owner, Dan Grenier, was nowhere to be seen - reportedly he
was out of Fiji for a few months.  His replacement was new, not around
much, and knew little about the dive sites and the local scene.  Bamboo
Reef caters primarily to big Saturday-Saturday groups.  As an independent
traveller, my dive choices were limited by the whim of whatever big group
happened to be there at the time. Two independent couples and I had to tag
along to mostly fringe reef sites, in spite of the BR information flyer
which advertises trips to the outer reef sites on request, because that's
what the "big groups" wanted to do. Based on the 2 big groups I
saw when I was there, BR is designed for casual occasional divers. Some
people hadn't dived in years, none were very experienced, most were freaked
out by mild currents and few had dives longer than 40 minutes (many were
shorter, or skipped pre-paid dives altogether).  BR requires 6 divers (and
an extra $40 US) to go to the outer reef (8 to E-6), where the really
spectacular diving Fiji is known for is to be found.  We
"non-group" divers got shut out of that option (except 1 day out
of 6) because the group divers weren't interested in the longer boat ride,
and BR doesn't find it worthwhile to take less than the minimum policy
number even for passionate divers who had travelled a great distance
expecting the old Crystal Divers experience. The bottom line of the current
operation can also be seen in cramming as many as 13 divers (+ dive staff)
onto one boat.
In sum:  If you want a pleasant tropical upscale vacation spot and you have
a casual interest in diving, Bamboo Beach will work for you.  If you are a
serious diver wanting to dive the best of the Bligh Water, either do a
live-aboard, or book with Kai Viti Diving, which is based in Raki Raki (on
mainland Viti Levu opposite Nananu-I-Ra) which is the only dive operation
in this area that routinely goes to the outer sites (unfortunately they
were closed when I was there). Ra Divers, serving Wananevu clients, is
mainly a fringe reef operation like Bamboo Reef Divers. Note: If you do
happen to find yourself diving the fringe reef, be sure to request the dive
site BR calls "Breath-taker" which has, at the right tide, lots
of schooling sharks, barracuda, trevallies, and rays. And as always at any
site, head to the side of the bommie where the current is strongest: 
that's where the best soft corals and most numerous fish are.
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Note: The information here was reported by the author above, but has NOT been reviewed nor edited by Undercurrent prior to posting on our website. Please report any major problems by writing to us and referencing the report number above.

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