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Dive Review of Seven Seas in
Indonesia/Raja Ampat/Banda Sea

Seven Seas, Nov, 2008,

by Richard Litsch, CA, USA (Reviewer Reviewer 3 reports). Report 4577.

Reporter and Travel

Dive Experience 501-1000 dives
Where else diving Red Sea, Fiji, Great Barrier Reef, Palau, Yap, Truk, various Carribean, Mexico, Galapagos.
Closest Airport Getting There

Dive Conditions

Weather sunny, rainy, cloudy Seas calm
Water Temp 83 to 85 Fahrenheit Wetsuit Thickness 3
Water Visibility 40 to 150 Feet

Dive Policy

Dive own profile yes
Enforced diving restrictions 1 hour maximum dive time
Liveaboard? yes Nitrox Available? N/A

What I Saw

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

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

Subject Matter N/A Boat Facilities N/A
Overall rating for UWP's N/A Shore Facilities N/A
UW Photo Comments [None]

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

Accommodations 5 stars Food 4 stars
Service and Attitude 5 stars Environmental Sensitivity 5 stars
Dive Operation 5 stars Shore Diving N/A
Snorkeling N/A
Value for $$ 5 stars
Beginners 3 stars
Advanced 5 stars
Comments Every serious diver should have Indonesia on their travel list. This two week trip on the SEVEN SEAS left from Sorong and ended up in Ambon. The boat was a traditional Indonesian craft that held 16 divers, in eight air conditioned staterooms all with their own head and shower. I have never seen a harder working staff on a liveaboard. Our trip director, Stewart, was top notch in every way. He had the perfect balance of safety, having a good time and not having to be a Nazi while achieving it. Every guests needs were attended to. Whether it be a shore excursion, wildlife viewing, fishing or whatever, the staff was more than happy to accommodate. The food was varied and plentiful and surprisingly good for such a remote location. A lone vegetarian was well taken care of. Other than beer which was only $2 US a can, wine and booze was expensive. This is not due to the owners fault but it is just hard to come by in this remote part of a Muslim country. Due to the excellent fishing in the area, we were treated to a platter of wonderful sashimi every evening. When the air conditioner in our cabin went out half way through our trip, the owners Jos and Lida Pet insisted that we switch cabins with them. There is really nothing negative to say about the SEVEN SEAS.

Diving was done from two open fiberglass boats which accommodated eight divers each. There was also a zodiac available for diving or other excursions. I found that a skin was all that was required for diving this entire trip, however most people used a three mil suit. The diving was simply stunning. Though the Raja Ampat area had less than hundred foot visibility and some significant currents it is the finest reef I have ever seen. Period. There is not a place on the reef for even the slightest finger hold that is not covered with gorgeous reef life. Dives varied from sheer walls, gorgeous coral gardens both hard and soft, and exhilarating drift dives. As we continued south to the Misool area, which was my favorite part of the trip, we experienced slightly less marine life but this came with outstanding visibility as well as phenomenal top side attractions such as "the cave". The final part of the trip was visiting and diving the Banda Islands. The historical significance of the Banda Islands is well known. The top side attractions were well worth it. We saw a traditional Indonesian dance that was not put on for tourists, because there aren't any. We met the King of Banda and had him on the boat for dinner one night. The diving around the offshore islands around the Banda area was breathtaking. Visibility was at least 150 feet if not unlimited. Beautiful drift and wall diving!

Yes, it is a long way to get to this part of Indonesia, and it makes for quite an expensive trip. But if you're looking for the finest diving in the world, a true adventure below and above water, in first class accommodations you can't beat this trip on the SEVEN SEAS.
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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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