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Dive Review of Sorido Bay Resort in

May, 2006, an Instant Reader Report by Fred Turoff, PA, USA
Sr. Contributor   (22 reports, with 1 Helpful vote)
Report Number 2554
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Reporter and Travel
Dive Experience
501-1000 dives
Where else diving
Northeast US; Caribbean - US & BVI, Saba, St Lucia, Martinique,
Bonaire; Eastern Pacific - Costa Rica, Coco Island, Galapagos, Sea of
Cortez, Revillagigedos; Western Pacific - Belau, Yap, Fiji, Malaysia, PNG,
Closest Airport
Getting There


Dive Conditions

sunny, dry  
calm, noCurrents  
Water Temp
81   to 83    Fahrenheit  
Wetsuit Thickness
Water Visibility
12   to 100    Feet  
Dive Policy
Dive own profile
Enforced diving restrictions  
About 1 hour per dive, but could vary  
Nitrox Available?
What I saw
Whale Sharks
> 2 
Ratings 1 (worst)- 5 (best):
  5 stars
Tropical Fish
5 stars  
Small Critters
  4 stars
Large Fish
4 stars  
Large Pelagics
  4 stars
Underwater Photography  1 (worst)- 5 (best):
Subject Matter
5 stars  
Boat Facilities
3 stars
Overall rating for UWP's  
4 stars  
Shore Facilities  
4 stars  
Cameras were kept in bungalows in which we slept, where camera tables were
available, but rinsed initially where boats docked at end of jetty. Staff
often volunteered to carry my camera to and from jetty. Once camera center
is completed at foot of jetty, this may change.
Ratings and Overall Comments  1 (worst)- 5 (best):
4 stars
3 stars
Service and Attitude
5 stars
Environmental Sensitivity  
Dive Operation
5 stars  
Shore Diving  
4 stars  

Overall Rating

Value for $$
4 stars   
5 stars    
Sorido Bay Resort, Kri Island, Papua, Indonesia

Sorido Bay Resort is being finished as this report is being written, but
enough was done to show that it is a superior destination. The reefs are as
healthy as any Ive seen, the sea life is plentiful, the staff helpful and
the location beautiful. This is the most remote site Ive visited. Travel
there from the US, due to layovers between planes, takes 2-3 days. Papua is
the eastern end of Indonesia, with Sorong as the main airport. A half-hour
van trip and a two-hour boat ride west brings you to both Sorido Bay Resort
and Kri Eco resort, built and run by Dutchman Max Ammer and partners, with
plenty of vision. Small Kri Island has these two resorts on it and nothing
else  no roads, no bikepaths either.

Perhaps back in 1992, Max had been diving this area and decided to build
Kri Eco, which is Papuan-style bungalows built over the water, with shower
and toilet facilities reachable on the mainland via wooden bridges to each
room on the mainland. His current project, Sorido Bay, has bungalows on the
beach, each of which contains shower and toilet facilities. Each room has
table areas for cameras and both 110 and 220v receptacles. Both resorts
have a main building with a dining area. Watching Sorido Bays facilities
being constructed out of native hardwoods with a woodshop on premises kept
my traveling companion, who is a custom home contractor, engrossed by the
workmanship. Underway as we left were the balance of bungalows, a camera
center and an expanded main building complex. Diving is done from the end
of a long jetty, where most dive gear is kept and boats can pull in no
matter what level the tide is  I noted about a 5-foot swing in tide

Diving is done on adjacent reefs or to a number of local islands. Our
farthest trips took perhaps 45 minutes, where we did two dives and visited
a village between dives. Local dives could be either drop in on the house
reef or within a few minutes of travel. Night dives were most often done on
the Kri Eco jetty, which had plenty of life.

If there is a pygmy seahorse population center, this may well be that
place. There are three and perhaps five species here, and our dive guides
found them on perhaps two out of three dive sites. One particular coral
head we visited on a twilight dive had at least 10. at the other end of the
dive spectrum, there are several sites (the longer boat trips) where mantas
are known to congregate. On four dives we had 2-3 mantas visit us and
either circle us or constantly return for perhaps 15 minutes. On another
voyage in a passage cutting through a larger island, we were surprised to
find two mantas, one white and one black, pass us and slow down for

The water clarity was the one disappointment, as the seas contained much
plankton. So backscatter was a photo problem and lowered visibility
hindered us occasionally. I recorded estimates of 100 down to 12 feet of
vis, with the average perhaps 60. Currents occasionally took us on
unexpected adventures, but most diving was in slow current or relative
calm. Being thin, I used a 3mm full-suit with a 3 mm hooded vest for all
dives for comfort in the 81-83 degree F water.

Animal life was so plentiful. On the house reef, a biologist counted 283
species of fish on one dive. In the David Doubilet book that he signed (as
he was there recently doing an article for National Geographic) he stated
the reefs were the healthiest on the planet. I saw: wobbegon sharks on at
least five dives; a few other sharks; mantis shrimp; cuttlefish; a few
ghost pipefish; plenty of nudibranchs and flatworms; schools of jacks,
yellowtails  and sweetlips; bumphead parrotfish, mantas, pipefish;
lionfish; turtles; a variety of crabs and shrimp, lots of anemonefish;
large lobster; two huge (4) tridachna clams with many smaller versions,
and healthy corals galore.

Although dive times are scheduled, Max and crew will adjust times upon
request. Several optional dive trips are available with additional charge
due to fuel use, such as to the Passage, a three dive trip with lunch.
Fresh fruit and baked goods followed each dive, with delicious freshly-made
juices at the dock. Usually, four dives per day are scheduled, but more can
be added. Exotic birdcalls, not too much insect noise and enthralling
sunrises will please your senses. The food was a bit spicy for me, as I
generally avoid peppery dishes. Both meat and chicken were done more than I
like, but Max explained that was the style to avoid food bacteria or
parasites. Fish was fresh and tasty. I was able to find enough in the
several offerings each family-style meal to keep myself well fed. The staff
members did all they could to make the stay as effortless as possible, even
offering to carry your camera each way between your bungalow and the boat
at the jettys end.  If you play an instrument (guitar or piano, which are
available) youll be able to join in the impromptu staff musical nights as
a performer rather than just a listener.
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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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