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Dive Review of Top Dive/Kia Ora, in
French Polynesia/Moorea, Rangiroa, Bora Bora

Top Dive/Kia Ora, , Aug, 2008,

by Morgan Armstrong, FL, United States ( 1 report). Report 4641.

Reporter and Travel

Dive Experience 251-500 dives
Where else diving Washington State, Florida, Cozumel, Bahamas, Galapagos, Curacao,
Closest Airport Getting There

Dive Conditions

Weather sunny, windy, rainy Seas calm, choppy, surge
Water Temp 78 to 81 Fahrenheit Wetsuit Thickness 3
Water Visibility 60 to 150 Feet

Dive Policy

Dive own profile no
Enforced diving restrictions Stay with the group, 1 hr max dive time
Liveaboard? no Nitrox Available? N/A

What I Saw

Sharks Lots Mantas Squadrons
Dolphins Schools Whale Sharks None
Turtles > 2 Whales None
Corals 5 stars Tropical Fish 5 stars
Small Critters 5 stars Large Fish 5 stars
Large Pelagics 5 stars

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

Subject Matter N/A Boat Facilities N/A
Overall rating for UWP's N/A Shore Facilities N/A
UW Photo Comments [None]

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

Accommodations 5 stars Food 5 stars
Service and Attitude 5 stars Environmental Sensitivity 1 stars
Dive Operation 5 stars Shore Diving N/A
Snorkeling 5 stars
Value for $$ 4 stars
Beginners 1 stars
Advanced 5 stars
Comments Spent 14 days in French Polynesia. First 5 days were spent in Moorea in which 2 days of diving were done. Moorea is simple and good for beginners. It is a 5 minute boat ride out to the dive sites just outside the reef. Surface conditions can get hairy due to the ocean currents coming straight onto the reef. Absolutely stunning visibility, no current just surge. Black Tip Reef Sharks and Lemon Sharks greet the divers. And yes, they do bait them in with a fish tail tucked into their bc's. Coral is pristine and small creatures everywhere. Moorea is a beautiful island, very relaxing with some fun hiking.

The next 6 days were spent in Rangiroa. We dove for 4 days, 4 dives per day for the first three days and then unfortunately only 3 on the last day because of flight. Ok first, I had never heard of this place before it just so happened that I ended up going to F.P. for my honeymoon. My wife and I are avid divers and so we asked where the best diving was. Rangiroa. WOW!! That is all I can say about the diving there. Day 1, dolphins on every dive, hundreds maybe thousands of Grey Reef Sharks, Napolean Wrasse, Black Tip Reef, Barracuda the size of school buses, turtles, tuna. Day 2, Silvertip Sharks, Great Hammerheads, Grey Reef Sharks, Dolphins. Day 3, Everything you read above and now add Mantas every dive. The same for Day 4. It will blow you away, the coral wall is fantastic and the fish are ridiculously abundant. However, watch out, this is no nonsense diving. You dive the passes of this place. Rangiroa is an island shaped like a donut with a giant lagoon in the middle and all the water inside it gets exchanged within two passes. Tiputa and Avatoru. The current and surface conditions can be extreme. Diving done out of zodiacs. Therefore I would say advanced divers only. Top Dive Rangiroa was a first rate dive outfit. They changed your tank for you between dives and were always cheerful and helpful. They used aluminum 100's with 33% Nitrox which gave you nice long dive times. Stayed at the Kia Ora next door to Top Dive. Great place to stay ,the over water bungalows are spectacular and the food was the best. Definitely recommend.

The one negative I have about French Polynesia is they are not exactly reef conscious. I saw more coral destroyed in 4 days than I have in 10 years of diving due to all the tourist divers hitting and touching the reef. I am not exaggerating when I say it truly was an abomination. They keep it up you will have to put this place as another once was and I mean soon. Other than that this place is simply amazing, expensive but amazing.
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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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