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Dive Review of Te Ave Nui/Maitai Dream in
French Polynesia/Fakarava

July, 2003, an Instant Reader Report by DAVID SHEM-TOV, NA, UK
Sr. Contributor   (20 reports, with 1 Helpful vote)
Report Number 599
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Reporter and Travel
Dive Experience
51-100 dives
Where else diving
Palau, Cozumel, Red Sea, Indian Ocean
Closest Airport
Getting There


Dive Conditions

sunny, windy  
choppy, currents  
Water Temp
26   to 27    Celsius  
Wetsuit Thickness
Water Visibility
20   to 30    Meters  
Dive Policy
Dive own profile
Enforced diving restrictions  
No deco  
Nitrox Available?
What I saw
Whale Sharks
> 2 
Ratings 1 (worst)- 5 (best):
  2 stars
Tropical Fish
4 stars  
Small Critters
  2 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
1 stars
Service and Attitude
3 stars
Environmental Sensitivity  
Dive Operation
4 stars  
Shore Diving  
3 stars  

Overall Rating

Value for $$
2 stars   
4 stars    
Operation offers essentially two superb dives:  high energy pass dive with
inbound tide into lagoon, and a wall dive outside the lagoon when the
current is outgoing into the ocean.  Fairly rough 30 minute rides on
hard-bottomed zodiacs to dive sites.  (They have one covered and one
uncovered boat - and they get to decide which to use.)  Caters mainly to
French divers, though guides make an effort in English.  Generous 12 litre
steel or optional 15 litre steel tanks ensure long dives and no need for
weight belts.  Divemaster Cherie will blend your nitrox on request with
advance notice (he uses a rebreather.)  I chose to stick to air.

Strongest drift dive I experienced (more than Palau or Conzumel.)  I
enjoyed the wall dive even better than the pass dive.  We launched into the
blue.  Very dramatic approach to an almost vertical wall.  Compared to
Rangiroa, less big fish/pelegic life but hard coral in pristine condition.

Unfortunately, poor diving techniques tolerated by divemasters will mean
that coral will soon deteriorate.  I was shocked to see one diver who
decided to propel herself throughout the dive simply by grabbing the coral
using gloved hands.  (This was not the drift dive - where such practice
encouraged here, is questionable anyway.)  Although divemaster empathized
with my concern, he did not feel there was any point in bringing the matter
up with the diver concerned.  (I did.) 
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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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