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Dive Review of Estrella Del Mar in
Galapagos Islands

September, 2009, an Instant Reader Report by Lesa Perrault, WA, USA (2 reports)
Report Number 5130
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Reporter and Travel
Dive Experience
501-1000 dives
Where else diving
Truk, Palau, Tahiti, Indonesia, Cozumel, Red Sea, Turks & Caicos, Costa
Rica, Cayman Islands, Hawaii, Florida, Washington State
Closest Airport
Getting There


Dive Conditions

sunny, windy, rainy, cloudy, dry  
choppy, currents  
Water Temp
65   to 78    Fahrenheit  
Wetsuit Thickness
Water Visibility
20   to 60    Feet  
Dive Policy
Dive own profile
Enforced diving restrictions  
Stick with guide (really was the best way), notify guide at 1000 psi, at
about 750 psi ascend with any member of group that was low on air.  We all
knew eachother, so easily done without much thought.  
Nitrox Available?
What I saw
1 or 2 
Whale Sharks
> 2 
> 2 
> 2 
Ratings 1 (worst)- 5 (best):
  2 stars
Tropical Fish
3 stars  
Small Critters
  2 stars
Large Fish
5 stars  
Large Pelagics
  5 stars
Underwater Photography  1 (worst)- 5 (best):
Subject Matter
5 stars  
Boat Facilities
4 stars
Overall rating for UWP's  
5 stars  
Shore Facilities  
We only had about 3 passengers with large cameras, so they had plenty of
space.  Two medium-sized tables with 8 cubbies underneath, and lots of
charging spots.  Also a large camera tank on lower back deck.
Ratings and Overall Comments  1 (worst)- 5 (best):
5 stars
3 stars
Service and Attitude
5 stars
Environmental Sensitivity  
Dive Operation
5 stars  
Shore Diving  

Overall Rating

Value for $$
5 stars    
1 stars   
5 stars    
Incredible crew, and very nice boat.  When this boat was substituted for
their brand-new boat that was unable to get a license for this year, I was
a little concerned about what we were getting into.  The Estrella Del Mar
turned out to be quite nice.  The rooms were comfortable and very clean,
with a decent-sized shower that you usually don't find on a live-aboard. 
There is plenty of space on the decks for "lounging" both in and
out of the sun, or while sleeping off a little seasickness (you know who
you are :)

The food was good and hit the spot, but by no means gourmet.  There was
always plenty to eat.  A fridge across from the kitchen contained bottles
of water, Coke, Coke Zero, Sprite, local beer (Pilsner), and wine that was
all included in the price of the trip.

Peter and Willy, our naturalists and guides, were top-notch and very
friendly.  They felt like family by the end of the week.  The rest of the
staff was also exceptional...lots of smiles and assistance with whatever
needed to be done.

The diving was amazing.  You can't explain with words, or even pictures,
what it is like to swim alongside a 40-foot whaleshark in open blue water. 
Our boat counted 15 underwater sightings throughout the week between our
two 8-person groups.  Then there are the hammerheads and silky sharks - oh,
and the mantas, dolphins and bait balls!

Overall a 5-star trip.  Outstanding.  Okay, gotta go now - gonna check out
those picture again...
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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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