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Dive Review of Maluku Divers in

December, 2010, an Instant Reader Report by Jennifer Widom, CA, US
Sr. Reviewer   (10 reports, with 2 Helpful votes)
Report Number 5884
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Reporter and Travel
Dive Experience
501-1000 dives
Where else diving
Closest Airport
Getting There


Dive Conditions

sunny, windy, rainy, cloudy, dry  
calm, choppy, no currents  
Water Temp
83   to 83    Fahrenheit  
Wetsuit Thickness
Water Visibility
40   to 70    Feet  
Dive Policy
Dive own profile
Enforced diving restrictions  
Nitrox Available?
What I saw
Whale Sharks
Ratings 1 (worst)- 5 (best):
  3 stars
Tropical Fish
3 stars  
Small Critters
  5 stars
Large Fish
2 stars  
Large Pelagics
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  
Ratings and Overall Comments  1 (worst)- 5 (best):
4 stars
4 stars
Service and Attitude
5 stars
Environmental Sensitivity  
3 stars
Dive Operation
4 stars  
Shore Diving  

Overall Rating

Value for $$
4 stars    
4 stars   
5 stars    
(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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