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Dive Review of Naia in
Fiji and Tuvalu

February, 2004, an Instant Reader Report by Diana Dickinson, WA, USA
Report Number 1018
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Reporter and Travel
Dive Experience
101-250 dives
Where else diving
Closest Airport
Getting There


Dive Conditions

sunny, windy, rainy, cloudy  
Water Temp
78   to 82    Fahrenheit  
Wetsuit Thickness
Water Visibility
50   to 100    Feet  
Dive Policy
Dive own profile
Enforced diving restrictions  
Nitrox Available?
What I saw
1 or 2 
Whale Sharks
> 2 
Ratings 1 (worst)- 5 (best):
  5 stars
Tropical Fish
5 stars  
Small Critters
  5 stars
Large Fish
4 stars  
Large Pelagics
  4 stars
Underwater Photography  1 (worst)- 5 (best):
Subject Matter
5 stars  
Boat Facilities
5 stars
Overall rating for UWP's  
5 stars  
Shore Facilities  
Dedicated room for photographers includes power strips. On board slide
Ratings and Overall Comments  1 (worst)- 5 (best):
4 stars
4 stars
Service and Attitude
5 stars
Environmental Sensitivity  
Dive Operation
5 stars  
Shore Diving  
3 stars  

Overall Rating

Value for $$
3 stars   
5 stars    
This was our second trip on the Naia and I'd still go back. The Naia is a
well-run operation that caters to divers. With 16 divers on board, it is
slightly crowded, but with two skiffs, there are never more than 8 divers
in a skiff. On most dive sites, divers are in two groups, so that there are
no more than 8 on the site itself. You can dive with the guides or explore
on your own.

Rob and Cat are currently land-based with their new baby, and this trip was
run by Josh and Liz. They are experienced boat operators and the trip ran
smoothly. Josh was able to identify many fish from a simple description.
His Aussie-isms sometimes left us a little confused, though. (We had
trouble with the exact difference between a "rippin' current" and
a "screamin' current.") The dive video Liz made was the best I've
ever seen.

Most diving in Fiji is bommie diving--large underwater plateaus of coral
that ascend from the bottom (at 100-200 feet) to the surface or almost to
the surface. On most dives, I descended to about 100 feet, then worked my
way up the side to a long safety stop at the top of the bommie. Some dives
were 70-75 minutes, as a result. When you come up, the skiffs are waiting
to ferry you back to the boat--no waiting for the rest of the group. (A
safety sausage and dive alert are required, but I never had to use
either---the skiff was always right there.) 

The soft corals in Fiji are beginning to recover from the El Nino of 98
(where they were burnt out), but E-6 is still not as good as its pictures.
(Improvement was apparent between this trip and our trip in the fall of
2002, however.) However, Naia's active program of Fiji exploration has
added some fabulous sites to the list of colorful locations. 

Anthias are plentiful--huge schools at every bommie. Clownfish and anemones
abound. Every dive yielded multiple fish that I hadn't seen before. (We saw
two "Irish Setter" ghost pipefish!) 

Fiji is a 10-hour flight from LAX. While some people advise re-checking
bags at LAX (so Air Pacific is less likely to lose them), the baggage
inspection procedures at LAX seem completely chaotic to me, so I'd check my
bags through, rather than deal with them twice! The Naia's office was able
to arrange a round-trip fare from LAX of $1000. 
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Diving Guide to Fiji and Tuvalu
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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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