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Dive Review of Multiple/Kona Bali Kai Condos in
Hawaii/Big Island, Kona

Multiple/Kona Bali Kai Condos, Jan, 2004,

by Carol Cox, FL, USA (Contributor Contributor 14 reports with 1 Helpful vote). Report 918.

Reporter and Travel

Dive Experience Over 1000 dives
Where else diving Guam, Rota, Palau, Truk, Bahamas, Caymans, Cozumel, Florida, Turks & Caicos
Closest Airport Getting There

Dive Conditions

Weather sunny Seas surge
Water Temp 75 to 78 Fahrenheit Wetsuit Thickness 3
Water Visibility 30 to 100 Feet

Dive Policy

Dive own profile yes
Enforced diving restrictions Depth, 700 PSI, 45 minute time limit on night dives
Liveaboard? no Nitrox Available? N/A

What I Saw

Sharks None Mantas Squadrons
Dolphins Schools Whale Sharks None
Turtles > 2 Whales >2
Corals 4 stars Tropical Fish 4 stars
Small Critters 4 stars Large Fish 3 stars
Large Pelagics 4 stars

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

Subject Matter 4 stars Boat Facilities 4 stars
Overall rating for UWP's 4 stars Shore Facilities N/A
UW Photo Comments Both Jack's Diving Locker and Kona Honu dive boats had camera buckets. Divemasters handed you the gear.

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

Accommodations 3 stars Food 3 stars
Service and Attitude 3 stars Environmental Sensitivity N/A
Dive Operation 4 stars Shore Diving 5 stars
Snorkeling N/A
Value for $$ N/A
Beginners 3 stars
Advanced 4 stars
Comments We spent the month of January on the Big Island of Hawaii doing a combination of shore diving, boat diving, and sight-seeing. We worked with Hawaiian Scuba Shack Too, Kona Honu Divers, and Jacks Diving Locker.

Scuba Shack is a smaller operation in an industrial building near Costco. Jay Smith was very accomodating for our shore diving needs. He gave us a deal on renting weights for the month, and sold us 4 used tanks which he bought back for a small price at the end of the month. But we were happy with the convenience of having tanks with us whenever we wanted to dive. He also had good prices on air fills - $2.50 each when we bought an air fill card for 25 fills. Tank fills were very fast, he did a quick repair on a regulator house, and the hours were great, open 7:30 to 5:00, seven days a week. He books with several boat operators and can get a discount for you. Nitrox is available. Email scubashack@aol.com, Ph 808-331-8708, 73-4820 Kanalani St #3, Kailua Kona, HI 96740. I really enjoyed the shore diving when the ocean swells cooperated - January is not the best month for that and sometimes we had to check up to 3 sites before finding one safe enough to enter. And some days we just went sight-seeing. We also went to the Hilo side when it was calm where we saw a Spanish Dancer. During all our shore diving we saw lots of tangs, goatfish, peacock grouper, eels, many turtles, octopuses, cone and conch shells, augers, moorish idols, butterflies, surgeonfish, puffers, trumpetfish, nudibranchs, etc. Topography included lava shelves with tubes and overhangs, sandy patches, arches, and coral as far as you could see. I got a lot of shore diving info from a couple of web sites before the trip that was very helpful.

We did a manta ray night dive with Kona Honu Divers. The boat felt a bit crowded with the number of divers and snorkelers. There were some big swells and we had to dive an alternate site with no mantas. Lots of folks on the boat got sick even though we anchored in a calm bay. We enjoyed the large number of eels in the area and could clearly hear humpback whales singing. That alone was worth the trip.

We also went diving with Jacks Dive Locker where we liked the advanced diving with the smaller crowds. You pay more, but you stay out longer, look for whales and dolphins, they feed you, and they treat you like an experienced diver. We saw some great whale action from their boat. They have a beautiful facility, however, we had some problems. I had trouble getting them to honor my PADI Diving Society coupon as written; the salespeople I talked to werent familiar with the discount but they did honor it finally. Then, when I got my credit card bill, I found out that I was charged for 5 days of diving when we did 4. I called the 800 number and the young man on the phone took down some of my information and then asked if I could call back the next day. That didn't make me happy when it was their mistake and so I mentioned a certain newsletter I was going to write to. (this thing has a lot of power.) I got someone on the phone that took all the necessary information and quickly took care of the problem. We did a 3 tank advanced dive, a 2 tank advanced, and two manta ray dives. We had five mantas on the first manta dive, but none the second night. Once again, the eels put on a great show, including two getting into an argument over territory, and we saw an ornamental octopus and 3 kinds of lobsters. On the advanced dives we saw some rarer fish such as Tinker Butterflies and Bandit Butterflies.

For lodging, we got a good price on a court-yard view condo through Property Network. They gave us a great discount since we were staying a month. Our one-bedroom unit was plain, but was clean and everything worked. The garbage disposal was quickly replaced when it broke and the Property Network staff was always polite and professional. The condo was very convenient to Kailua-Kona and all the diving along the Kona Coast. The facility had picnic tables and benches on the shoreline where we enjoyed watching the show each evening - surfers, turtles dining in the shallows, and the great sunsets.

We saw most of the Big Island during our trip, but didn't manage to do everthing we wanted to. A month just isn't long enough, but that gives us a good excuse to go back again. Aloha!
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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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