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Dive Review of Grand Komodo Tours/MV Tarata in
Indonesia/Komodo, Alor Islands

August, 2006, an Instant Reader Report by Terry Anderson, TX, USA
Contributor   (19 reports, with 3 Helpful votes)
Report Number 2676
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Reporter and Travel
Dive Experience
251-500 dives
Where else diving
All over the world:  Maldives, Galapagos, Carribean, Pacific
Closest Airport
Getting There


Dive Conditions

Water Temp
71   to 84    Fahrenheit  
Wetsuit Thickness
Water Visibility
50   to 100    Feet  
Dive Policy
Dive own profile
Enforced diving restrictions  
Just bring your own dive equipment and computer.  
Nitrox Available?
What I saw
Whale Sharks
> 2 
Ratings 1 (worst)- 5 (best):
  5 stars
Tropical Fish
5 stars  
Small Critters
  5 stars
Large Fish
3 stars  
Large Pelagics
  4 stars
Underwater Photography  1 (worst)- 5 (best):
Subject Matter
Boat Facilities
Overall rating for UWP's  
3 stars  
Shore Facilities  
Ratings and Overall Comments  1 (worst)- 5 (best):
4 stars
4 stars
Service and Attitude
5 stars
Environmental Sensitivity  
Dive Operation
5 stars  
Shore Diving  
1 stars  

Overall Rating

Value for $$
3 stars   
5 stars    
    This was our third time with Grand Komodo Tours, and our second trip to
Komodo National Park.  Smartly, the Indonesian government designated the
area a National Park in the 1990s and the result is that the reefs and
marine life are healthy and improving, unlike most of the world.  We went
on this trip in 2000 and this time there were more whitetip and gray sharks
and at least as many manta rays, over a dozen.  On one dive 4 mantas
circled us for 15 minutes in the warm water of north Komodo (84 degrees),
and on a cold water dive (71 degrees) on the tip of South Komodo we saw 6
on two dives, feeding in the rich currents.  We also saw an Eagle ray and
nice schools of jacks, some tuna and eels, and loads of lion fish and
turtles.  The designation of the Park means that the locals can only use
small fishing boats in the area, (no large foreign ones) and can use only
single lines, not nets and no dynamite.  That means that you can get fresh
10 or 15 pound tuna off the local boats for dinner, $4 for a tuna, and
still see them in the water.  After a week we left the Park and went to
Alor, which took two days on the boat and we dove colorful walls with great
fans along the way.  Out of the Park--no sharks, mantas, or schools of
jacks or tuna, but in Alor we saw leaf fish, banded sea snakes, and lots of
mandarian fish.  Grand Komodo also took us to villages where we had lots of
fun with the local people, and enjoyed their Independance Day celebrations
on August 17.  We will make a fourth trip to this fascinating country.  You
just get to Bali with your dive equipment and Grand Komodo will set up your
hotels, flights incountry, and everything else, including pre- and
post-dive side trips.  The MV Tarata can take 12 divers, but as usual, we
only had 6, so the gal with only 20 dives always had one of the two fine
DMs along her side.  Oh, of course, dive your own profile on the 3 or 4
dives a day; excellent survice, you're the boss, just tell the DMs what you
want to see.  Great trip for divers who like to visit another culture,
above and below water.  

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Diving Guide to Indonesia
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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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