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Dive Review of Nai'a in
Fiji and Tuvalu

Nai'a, Nov, 2007,

by Barry Cole, NJ, USA ( 1 report). Report 3723.

Reporter and Travel

Dive Experience 101-250 dives
Where else diving Honolulu/Oahu, HI; Catalina, Point Lobos, CA
Closest Airport Getting There

Dive Conditions

Weather sunny, windy, rainy, cloudy Seas calm, choppy, surge, currents, noCurrents
Water Temp 82 to 84 Fahrenheit Wetsuit Thickness 4
Water Visibility 25 to 100 Feet

Dive Policy

Dive own profile yes
Enforced diving restrictions Open water certification was necessary to dive; EAN 32 was available for those with EAN certification; on dives there were no significant restrictions.
Liveaboard? yes Nitrox Available? N/A

What I Saw

Sharks Lots Mantas 1 or 2
Dolphins 1 or 2 Whale Sharks None
Turtles 1 or 2 Whales None
Corals 5 stars Tropical Fish 5 stars
Small Critters 5 stars Large Fish 4 stars
Large Pelagics 3 stars

Underwater Photography 1 (worst) - 5 (best):

Subject Matter 5 stars Boat Facilities 5 stars
Overall rating for UWP's 5 stars Shore Facilities N/A
UW Photo Comments Well designed camera room with compressed air, rinse tanks, and the crew transported cameras from the Nai'a to the small boats, and then placed cameras in the rinse tanks after each dive. On the dives the hard and soft corals, variety of fish, underwater terrain were all far more than I expected/imagined.

Ratings and Overall Comments 1 (worst) - 5 (best):

Accommodations 4 stars Food 5 stars
Service and Attitude 5 stars Environmental Sensitivity N/A
Dive Operation 5 stars Shore Diving 3 stars
Snorkeling N/A
Value for $$ N/A
Beginners 2 stars
Advanced 5 stars
Comments From the beginning to the end of trip the service was outstanding, and provided by a warm and friendly crew. The philosophy on the Nai'a was that it became a Fijian village at sea. We were welcomed into the "village" and treated as members of the extended family. Everyone was very helpful, smiled when approached, and those crew members involved with the diving were personally familiar with the dive the sites. Sonia Goggel provided all of the dive site briefings and they were by far the most comprehensive briefings I have ever received. Ritchie (1st officer), Eddie (Divemaster) and Sonia (Cruise Director/Divemaster) participated in the dives, and took time to point out interesting corals, fish, worms and anything else people indicated they wanted to see. The opportunity to see sharks was ample, and Nagali Passage was one particularly wonderful site where 30 or more sharks were actively feeding. We were dropped directly on to dive sites, generally conducting drift dives, experiencing a great variety of swim throughs, reef structures, depths, and water conditions, before we were picked up by the small boats where ever we ended. Hot showers were available on deck near our dive/gear stations, and each cabin had its own toilet and shower. Currents varied from none to 2 knots, with surge more likely to be experienced near the tops of formations and in more narrow swim throughs. Meals were varied with fresh fruits and vegetables available throughout the cruise. There was no shortage of snacks and beverages, and the afternoon snack always included freshly baked goodies. Visits to 2 island villages gave an interesting opportunity to see the "real" Fiji, and one night we had a traditional "lovo" (BBQ) that was prepared on land. Bus transfers, baggage/gear handling by the crew, a series of naturalist presentations by Sonia, and continual onboard assistance made this first live aboard experience for me quite memorable. I highly recommend the Nai'a for those who are advanced open water divers, or already have comfort in ocean diving. In terms of fish and corals, I cannot imagine better opportunities with no other divers other than my shipmates. There were no crowds and this was truly "on demand" diving.
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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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