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Dive Review of Wakatobi in
Indonesia/Southern Sulawesi

Wakatobi, Jul, 2006,

by John DeRoo, MA, USA . Report 2838.

Reporter and Travel

Dive Experience 251-500 dives
Where else diving Bali, Caribbean, Great Barrier Reef, New England, Florida
Closest Airport Getting There

Dive Conditions

Weather Seas calm
Water Temp 79 to 81 Fahrenheit Wetsuit Thickness 3
Water Visibility 75 to 100 Feet

Dive Policy

Dive own profile yes
Enforced diving restrictions 70 minute time limit for most dives; a little less for some. However, the Dive Guide frequently pointed out things to us at 69 minutes so we averaged around 75 minutes.
Liveaboard? no 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 3 stars
Large Pelagics 2 stars

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 Air Conditioned camera room on shore with plenty of space for setting up camera gear. 110V and 220V available for recharging. Several staff members who are willing and able to help. Freshwater rinse tank on the boats for cameras, and a large work surface area. Screening room with a digital projector for viewing stills or videos.

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

Accommodations 5 stars Food 5 stars
Service and Attitude 5 stars Environmental Sensitivity N/A
Dive Operation 5 stars Shore Diving 5 stars
Snorkeling N/A
Value for $$ N/A
Beginners 4 stars
Advanced 5 stars
Comments Macro Heaven. Lots of little critters; nudis on most dives and pygmy seahorses on about a quarter of them. Several cuttlefish, octopuses, a few rays, banded sea snakes, garden eels you could almost touch, Schools of medium-sized reef fish, but virtually no pelagics. The guides were in the water for all boat dives; you could follow them or not as you wanted, but it was worth it to stay relatively close since they know where many of the critters hide. Vis was somewhat limited by the particulates in the water. The dives are nominally 70 minutes, but some people surfaced sooner and were picked up by the boat while some of us stayed a little longer when the guides found things to show us at the end. The house reef can be dived from shore, but watch out for the currents! Or the house reef can be dived from a tender - they will take you "upcurrent" and you can drift back to the resort. The currents were sometimes rather strong and for a couple of dives we couldn't make it to the planned endpoint because of the current. There are three scheduled boat dives a day: two in the morning and one in the afternoon. However, you can do more dives by diving the house reef, too. Nitrox is available - nominally 32%, but I often got 33%. The boat crews were extremely helpful! They would set up your gear and put it up on the bench when it was time to gear up. Some divers on our trip had back problems and the crew helped them gear up sitting on the side of the boat. When you indicated you wanted to do a night dive, they'd take your gear off the boat for you, and return it the next day. Wakatobi does not run on "Island time" - most everything ran on-time and smoothly. The bungalows were clean and had A/C, but we just opened the windows the whole time. The food was excellent - a good variety and more than we could eat.

Overall, the best dive resort we've been to.
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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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