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Dive Review of Gangga Island Resort in
Indonesia/Northern Sulawesi

Gangga Island Resort, Jul, 2006,

by Steven Levin, VA, USA . Report 2819.

Reporter and Travel

Dive Experience Over 1000 dives
Where else diving Worldwide
Closest Airport Getting There

Dive Conditions

Weather sunny Seas calm
Water Temp 82 to 84 Fahrenheit Wetsuit Thickness 3
Water Visibility 50 to 80 Feet

Dive Policy

Dive own profile yes
Enforced diving restrictions You could dive with the dive guide. Groups were always very small or operate largely on your own.
Liveaboard? no Nitrox Available? N/A

What I Saw

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

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

Subject Matter 5 stars Boat Facilities 4 stars
Overall rating for UWP's 4 stars Shore Facilities 4 stars
UW Photo Comments The dive boats have plastic tanks for cameras. A new dive shop with additional facilities for underwater photographers was being built and very near completion.

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

Accommodations 5 stars Food 5 stars
Service and Attitude 5 stars Environmental Sensitivity N/A
Dive Operation 5 stars Shore Diving 1 stars
Snorkeling N/A
Value for $$ N/A
Beginners 4 stars
Advanced 5 stars
Comments The Resort. The resort has a good physical plant with spacious common areas. There is a main area that contains the bar, various sitting areas, and a large dining area. This area has a pool table. The resort has a nice pool and a very credible white sand beach. There are many lounge chairs, covered areas, and other places in which to rest by the beach - in other words, lots of shade.

The Rooms. The rooms are double bungalows that provide very good privacy. The rooms are spacious. Amenities include a television, mini-bar, coffee-tea making, and air conditioning. There is good lighting and a good number of outlets. The room contains a built-in desk. In a corner of the room there was another table with two chairs, the coffee-tea making equipment, and a coffee-table. There was a collection of fresh fruit upon arrival. The bungalow has a nice patio/terrace with chairs and a table that faces the ocean.

Meals. Meal times are 7:00 AM onward for breakfast, lunch from 1:00 PM to 3:00 PM and dinner a rather latish 8:00 PM to 10:00 PM. There is a tea service at 5:00 PM that consists of fruit and sandwiches. Dinner was served buffet-style in an outside covered area. You could sit at long tables holding six to ten people with your feet in the sand. The first dinner offered a small salad bar (i.e., lettuce, red cabbage, tomatoes, cucumbers, and carrot) with a choice of Thousand Island or French Dressing. There was an appetizer of Fish Fingers with Tartar Sauce or Mayonnaise. The main dishes consisted of two types of fish - grilled Marlin and some whole Snapper-type fish in a sweet-sour sauce. There were prawns and squid that were being grilled. Non-fish items consisted of Nasi Goreng (rice), roasted potatoes, and some mixed steamed vegetables. A Corn Crab soup was also available. Dessert was as assorted of fresh fruits and three different types of cake. Lunch the next day was much better, in my opinion, that the buffet dinner, as was every meal that followed. See the descriptions that follows. This was the only night that dinner was served outside in the pavilion.

Diving. Diving is conducted from the traditional wooden boats. Depending on the boat that is being used entry is either a back roll or a giant stride entry. In either case the entry is easy. All boats have a large ladder. As is usually the case you have the option of handing up your weight belt and tank or just handing up your fins and climbing aboard. I had no problem getting up the ladder with my gear. Depending on the boat there would be one or two small plastic tubs in which cameras could be placed. The dive staff was very good in handling equipment.

All dives were preceded by a good briefing. A set of flip charts diagramming the dive site was used to illustrate the site's topology. All dives were guided and with one or two exception they were drift dives. The dive guide to guest ratio was very good. For most of the diving I had my own guide. Rarely ever did I see more than four people with a single guide. This is probably due to the relatively low occupancy during my visit. The guides were enthusiastic and very professional. While briefed as a one hour maximum I usually was able to dive from 70 to 75 minutes. A few times I dove 80+ minutes with a few dives of 95+ minutes.

The diving area for the resort is an area that includes several islands (i.e., Talisei, Bangka, Gangga) and several sites on the Northern Sulawesi mainland. Travel times were from 30 to 45 minutes depending on the site being visited. Many guests would sit on the bow of the boat or on top of the cabin.

After the first dive there was a refreshment consisting of a "coconut with a straw" and bananas. Water and fresh towels were provided on every dive. The diving schedule was a departure at 8:00 AM for two dives in the local area with a return to the resort for lunch. The afternoon dive was at 3:30 PM.

The dives sites are quite varied and include some of the best in Northern Sulawesi. Dive sites include great pinnacle dives such as Batu Gosoh and Sahung. There are some wonderful wall dives such as Pulisan and muck areas such as Paradise Reef. Both the Bangka Island dive sites and those on the Northern Sulawesi coast offer great soft corals. Sightings typically include Frogfish, nudibranchs, flatworms, and good schooling fish. I spent 45 minutes with a Mimic Octopus at the Paradise Reef site on this trip.
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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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