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Dive Review of Ra Divers/Wananavu in
Fiji and Tuvalu/Nananu I Ra

April, 2003, an Instant Reader Report by Peter J Maerz, FL, USA
Report Number 578
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Reporter and Travel
Dive Experience
501-1000 dives
Where else diving
Bahamas, Bonaire, Dominica, Guadaloupe, Guanaja, Little Cayman, St. Lucia,
St. Vincent, plus over 100 dives in SE Florida where I live.
Closest Airport
Getting There


Dive Conditions

windy, rainy  
Water Temp
78   to 80    Fahrenheit  
Wetsuit Thickness
Water Visibility
0   to 0    Feet  
Dive Policy
Dive own profile
Enforced diving restrictions  
Nitrox Available?
What I saw
Whale Sharks
Ratings 1 (worst)- 5 (best):
  4 stars
Tropical Fish
3 stars  
Small Critters
  4 stars
Large Fish
2 stars  
Large Pelagics
  1 stars
Underwater Photography  1 (worst)- 5 (best):
Subject Matter
4 stars  
Boat Facilities
2 stars
Overall rating for UWP's  
3 stars  
Shore Facilities  
2 stars  
No rinse tanks on boats. As a digital photographer, I can't speak for film
processing facilities, if they exist. 
Ratings and Overall Comments  1 (worst)- 5 (best):
5 stars
4 stars
Service and Attitude
5 stars
Environmental Sensitivity  
Dive Operation
3 stars  
Shore Diving  
3 stars  

Overall Rating

Value for $$
3 stars   
3 stars    
    This was the second stop in a 3-week Fiji trip. The resort is very
beautiful, with every inch of ground covered with flowering plants, palms
and shrubs. The oceanview "Burre" or cabin I had looked like
something out of Architectural Digest, with high ceilings, spot-lit white
shelving, beautiful hard wood walls and louvered windows and a bathroom
that took up a third of the floor plan with a 15-foot-long vanity and a
shower with plate glass window facing an enclosed garden. An adequate AC
unit over the bed and ceiling fan ameliorated the suffocating heat and
humidity. The views are great from the oceanview burres and the dining
terrace, looking out onto the channel which separates the mainland from the
island of Nananu I Ra and its smaller neighbors. 
    The food here was much better than at the Garden Island Resort on
Taveuni and the pool very unique, with large stones embedded in it and a
rock wall and lush vegetation surrounding it. 
    I had wanted to sign up with the Crystal Divers op after reading raves
in Undercurrent, but, beacasue I was told by Reef and Rainforest that
Crystal told them they were fully booked with "German Tourists",
I was "forced" to dive with Ra Divers. This was disputed by
Crystal's owner/operator when I met him at the resort. Since then, the
truth of who claimed what to whom for what gain has still not clearly come
out, but, of course, this didn't change my situraion at the time.  Sadly, I
took to calling Ra Divers the "Loser Op". Real nice, hard-working
guys, but the equipment is not in great shape and the operation is much
more loosely run than AqueTrek's. Every day a problem prevented us from
leaving anywhere near on time, though they maintained that divers must be
at the dock at 8:30. A dead battery, a shorted wire to the motor that lifts
the outboard up, a fouled fuel filter, a late-signing passenger and other
calamaties within or beyond Ra's control interfered to lesser or greater
degrees with the diving experience. Also, my gear was handled so roughly
that it sustained some pretty serious damage (I watched from shore one
morning when the tank with my gear attached fell over at the hands of the
lead DM. That one took care of a zipper pull on my BC and, as I discovered
after returning home, broke the housing on my second stage---no WONDER I
was sucking so much water on my last dives!).
There were not one but two tropical depressions that made their way over
our resort during the week so conditions were obviously pretty funky. With
that in mind, though, the diving was not nearly as good as in Somosomo
Strait. Nowhere near the amount of fish life, very few sharks (which was a
main attraction for me to this site). But almost every surface blanketed
with finger corals, octo corals and all manner of stuff, a fair amount of
soft corals and some fun swim thru's and overhangs. The diving is all among
large pinnaces or "bommies", stacked one up against the next, so
the views are pretty dramatic (or would be if the vis were greater than the
30 or 40 feet I experienced). Admitedly, we did not dive the farther-out
Bligh Water sites that the liveaboards and, apparently Crystal Divers do,
but it still was not the same experience as in Taveuni.

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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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