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Dive Review of Kararu/MV Voyager in
Indonesia/Bali to Komodo

Kararu/MV Voyager, Jun, 2006,

by Lauren Greider, CA, USA (Reviewer Reviewer 3 reports). Report 2558.

Reporter and Travel

Dive Experience 501-1000 dives
Where else diving Palau, Solomon Islands, Thailand, PNG, Coral Sea, Fiji, Rangiroa, Sulawesi
Closest Airport Getting There

Dive Conditions

Weather sunny, cloudy, dry Seas calm, choppy
Water Temp 75 to 81 Fahrenheit Wetsuit Thickness 3
Water Visibility 10 to 125 Feet

Dive Policy

Dive own profile yes
Enforced diving restrictions Please avoid decompression dives
Liveaboard? yes Nitrox Available? N/A

What I Saw

Sharks 1 or 2 Mantas None
Dolphins None Whale Sharks None
Turtles > 2 Whales None
Corals 5 stars Tropical Fish 5 stars
Small Critters 5 stars Large Fish 4 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 The camera area had cabinets with work surfaces above them. There were 110 and 220 volt outlets on all of the work stations. Normally the boat has E-6 processing but the crew that process were off my trip. There were two large dunk tanks on the main boat. The crew was very careful with our cameras on the tender boat.

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

Accommodations 5 stars Food 3 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 boat is industrial looking on the exterior but very comfortable and stable. My room was very spacious with slate floors and granite counters in the bathroom. Each room has individual air conditioning units and controls and they worked well. I glanced into several other rooms (future trip planning) and they all looked very nice. All had individual bathrooms with the exception of the two single rooms that shared a very good sized one. There were some cockroaches onboard but they are working on getting rid of them. The dive deck was large and had individual storage under the tanks. We dove from tender boats.

The food was very good and well prepared. Each evening was a different theme. It was occasionally too spicy for me, but the other guests were fine with it. They were great about special diets and alternate foods also. Bottled water was available in the lounge and upper deck for small water bottle refills. This was very nice.

The dive guides are wonderful and probably the best any of us have had the pleasure to dive with. They know the area very well and know how to look for interesting critters. They also did a good job spreading us out so we weren't all waiting to photograph the same subject. I told one of the guides that I really wanted to photograph a nurse shark and he found me one sleeping under a large table coral! Sasha, the boat owner was onboard andjoined us on some of the dives. He was very enthusiastic and fun to be around.

We dove Lombok Island where the visibility wasn't great but the critters were. Our first dive we dropped in on a Caledonian stinger! We dove around Sumbawa Island (with short land excursion to a salt water lake), Sangeand Island, Komodo, Rinca, Sumbawa again, and one day around Bali. The water was about 81 degrees everywhere but Komodo and Rinca where the water was colder and about 75. I was grateful to have brought a 3 mm and a 5 mm wetsuit and a hood.

The water had a good deal of life and diversity but also remarkably good visibility most sites. Throughout the 10 days of diving I saw stone fish, scorpion fish, jaw fish with eggs in his mouth, small octopus, long arm octopus, moray eels, blue and black ribbon eels, banded pipe fish, dragonets, star gazers, ornate ghost pipe fish (many), anenome fish and crabs, boxer crabs, zebra crabs on fire urchins, large and small frog fish, leaf scorpion fish, squat lobster, cuttlefish, pygmy sea horses, small cowries, oranatang crabs, stacks of fish, gardens of corals, many different shrimp, torpedo rays, bobtail squid, flat worms, turtles, several white tip sharks, sting rays, lion fish, bat fish, and many very beautiful nudibranchs too numerous to name. We would look through the nudibranch book after the dives trying to identify what we saw, chromodoris, nembrotha, glossodoris, berthella, flabellina, phyllodesmium and others. The fish seemed very relaxed around divers because most of us were photographing critters.

We took a beautiful ranger lead walk on Komodo Island. We saw one lazy Komodo dragon behind the ranger station cafeteria. He posed for us with our cameras without incident! In Horseshoe Bay on Rinca we could see monkies on the beach in the morning and the Komodo dragons in the afternoon. We went to shore one afternoon and actually saw two of the dragons mating!

Overall it was a wonderful trip and I will go 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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