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Dive Review of Maluku Divers in
Indonesia/Ambon

Maluku Divers, Dec, 2010,

by Jennifer Widom, CA, US (Sr. Reviewer Sr. Reviewer 10 reports with 2 Helpful votes). Report 5884.

Reporter and Travel

Dive Experience 501-1000 dives
Where else diving worldwide
Closest Airport Getting There

Dive Conditions

Weather sunny, windy, rainy, cloudy, dry Seas calm, choppy, no currents
Water Temp 83 to 83 Fahrenheit Wetsuit Thickness 1
Water Visibility 40 to 70 Feet

Dive Policy

Dive own profile yes
Enforced diving restrictions flexible
Liveaboard? no Nitrox Available? yes

What I Saw

Sharks None Mantas None
Dolphins None Whale Sharks None
Turtles None Whales None
Corals 3 stars Tropical Fish 3 stars
Small Critters 5 stars Large Fish 2 stars
Large Pelagics N/A

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

Subject Matter 5 stars Boat Facilities 4 stars
Overall rating for UWP's 5 stars Shore Facilities 5 stars
UW Photo Comments [None]

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

Accommodations 4 stars Food 4 stars
Service and Attitude 5 stars Environmental Sensitivity 3 stars
Dive Operation 4 stars Shore Diving N/A
Snorkeling N/A
Value for $$ 4 stars
Beginners 4 stars
Advanced 5 stars
Comments (We posted the same review on Tripadvisor)

Bottom line: Maluku Divers is a comfortable new resort with competent and caring staff. The muck diving within 2-10 minutes by boat is excellent. It's a photographer's heaven, and Maluku is the only dive operation so there are no crowds.

The resort offers three boat dives daily, included in the standard accommodation-plus-diving package. A fourth dusk or night dive can be done as an add-on, or as a substitute for a day-dive. Apparently shore diving is possible sometimes and can be good, but when we were there (December) the staff said the waves rendered the house reef pretty much undiveable. Our dives were substantially over an hour, including one 100-minute marathon.

Many of the dive sites are a very short boat ride up or down the shoreline from the resort, but there are a handful of sites across the bay. Although there's some big-fish reef diving within daytrip distance, we stuck with the muck diving, which is what Ambon is most famous for. In reality only a few of the sites actually have garbage and silt as the backdrop, and some have areas of attractive coral reefs with lots of fish. The guides do a good job finding the more elusive and microscopic critters, but anyone can find a plethora of fun and interesting stuff: pipefish, leaffish, frogfish, scorpion and stonefish of all persuasions, mandarin fish, eels everywhere including ribbon eels and reptile snake eels, shrimps and crabs galore including some of the more exotic ones, octopi (including, for us, a lucky sighting of a wonderpus), a wide variety of nudibranchs, and much much more. There's also plenty of the more standard fare of clownfish, lionfish, blue-spotted rays, and so forth. The "Twighlight Zone" dive under the fishing boats is truly unique -- we did it several times. Most of the divers at Maluku are serious photographers. We have only one in our family of four, but all of us enjoyed the diving.

There's no dock built yet -- perhaps the biggest omission at the resort as of our visit -- so boarding the boats means wading in at least chest-deep water. But once onboard the boats are comfortable and cameras well cared for. The boat crew and dive guides are attentive.

The resort itself has been open about a year, although Maluku Divers has been operating in Ambon much longer. The resort was thoughtfully designed and very well executed. The on-site manager, Marcel, obviously does a great job running the place. On the guest side, he's knowledgeable, competent, and always good for an after-dinner yarn or photo critique session. All of the staff are friendly, enthusiastic, and attentive, and they speak good English by Indonesian standards.

There are ten nicely set-up double bungalows: large working and storage areas, A/C, huge bathrooms, comfortable beds, and reliable hot showers. The open-air dining room is pleasant, as is the bar and lounge area. The dive gearing-up zone is expansive, with many camera rinse tanks, showers, hangers, and benches. There's a dedicated air-conditioned camera room with individual work areas and charging zones. One is never bothered by compressor noise, and the generator is far from the main resort so also not a bother. Mosquitoes can be a problem, but the resort is doing everything it can to keep them in check, and it seems to be working.

While the food was delicious overall, in our family we have one big eater (Dad) and two somewhat picky ones (teenagers), so the set menu and modest portions were a slight problem. Once we decided to ask for second helpings and occasional substitutes, always cheerfully accommodated, all was well.

Overall, we found the resort a truly enjoyable place to stay. We came to Ambon after a week of diving in Raja Ampat, and the underwater experience was the perfect compliment. Highly recommended.
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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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