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Dive Review of Aqua One in
Indonesia/Komode Is.

Aqua One, Jul, 2006,

by Ralph Baker, NV, USA (Reviewer Reviewer 6 reports). Report 2738.

Reporter and Travel

Dive Experience 251-500 dives
Where else diving Australia, PNG, Solomon Isl., Fiji, Hawaii, Coco Isl., Galapagos Isl., Vancouver, Belize, Caymans, Saba, Turks and Caicos, California, Mexico
Closest Airport Getting There

Dive Conditions

Weather sunny, windy, dry Seas calm, currents
Water Temp 70 to 82 Fahrenheit Wetsuit Thickness 5
Water Visibility 100 to 80 Feet

Dive Policy

Dive own profile yes
Enforced diving restrictions none
Liveaboard? yes Nitrox Available? N/A

What I Saw

Sharks Lots Mantas 1 or 2
Dolphins None Whale Sharks None
Turtles > 2 Whales None
Corals 4 stars Tropical Fish 4 stars
Small Critters 5 stars Large Fish 3 stars
Large Pelagics 2 stars

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

Subject Matter 5 stars Boat Facilities 5 stars
Overall rating for UWP's 5 stars Shore Facilities N/A
UW Photo Comments Camera table away from diving area, crew carried camera to dinghy, put in water tank at end of dive and took back to camera table. Compressed air to blow off housings, lots of electrical outlets both 220 and 110

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

Accommodations 4 stars Food 4 stars
Service and Attitude 5 stars Environmental Sensitivity N/A
Dive Operation 5 stars Shore Diving 3 stars
Snorkeling N/A
Value for $$ N/A
Beginners 2 stars
Advanced 5 stars
Comments We were lucky in that there was only 10 divers and 12 crew members. The service was the best I have ever had. We were split up among three divemasters. That made for very personal dive guides and seeing many more things then I would otherwise have seen. They were excellent at pointing out things, especially the small things. They were very attentive and quick to respond. One diver had some anxiety problems and went to the surface. The diver was never alone and the dive master was very reassuring and calmed him down.

Fish life is very varied. In the colder water there were manta rays. We did see a large mola mola. A variety of stone fish. So many stone fish that you had to be very careful where you put a knee, finger or laid down to take pictures. There was an abundance of small things like box crabs, crinoid shrimps, porcelain craps, cling fish, sea apples, nudibranchs, pigmy seahorses, bob tail squid, and frog fish both the large and small types. Many turtles (I think they were hawksbill and green turtles). On one occasion the turtle actually swam in from the open ocean and swam with one of the divers for some time. The turtle was so close she could touch it without moving her arm more than a few inches from her body.

Few large pelagics. I saw one grey reef shark. Only three manta rays.

Things that were not in season. I was told that the ghost pipe fish are more plentiful in September. The Komodo dragons were mating and hard to find. We saw only two but generally they see 10 to 15. The mating season is from July through most of August.

What type of wet suit? I brought three. One I use in California, a full 3mm suit and a shorty 2mm. My California suite is a 5mm farmer john with jacket. I was never cold nor did I notice the many thermoclines in the colder water. I did get warm in the shallows during the night dive where the water would get to 75 degees F. The divemasters and the other divers had full 5mm suits. They got cold after about 45 minutes. As the days wore on some of the divers sat out some dives because of the cold.

They do two days in the cold water and three in the warm water. There were currents and some were as bad as those I experienced in Vancouver, Canada. We were dropped on the lee side and warned not to go to far to the edge. Only one person had trouble with some difficult surge, everybody else seemed to manage very well. There are 4 dives per day and that includes the night dive. They tell you to dive for only 45 minutes, but that was never enforced. I always got at least 60 minutes and they did not complain. (The diver masters were shivering though in the colder water)

As for the boat, it was definitely a luxury live a board. They claim to hold up to 17 divers, but that would not leave much room. I would think the divers would be crawling all over each other at the dive stations and on the small sun deck, and salon. The food was very good. The bunks are in an L shape with an opening underneath the bunks and at the junction of the legs of the L. They did not have the bunk bed style. Additonal storage space was available as drawers under each bunk.

Great trip, and even greater service. It was like having my own personal dive guide. Worth the 32 hours travel time with a night lay over in Bali. And yes, you must payoff the officials that weigh your bags.
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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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