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Dive Review of Ocean Explorer II in

October, 2007, an Instant Reader Report by Larry & Judy Walters, OHio, U.S.A.
Reviewer   (4 reports)
Report Number 3715
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Reporter and Travel
Dive Experience
251-500 dives
Where else diving
Great Barrier Reef,Tahiti,Fiji,Bonaire,Cozumel,Roatan,Belize, Trinidad,
Philippines and Florida Keys
Closest Airport
Getting There


Dive Conditions

calm, surge  
Water Temp
85   to 86    Fahrenheit  
Wetsuit Thickness
Water Visibility
50   to 100    Feet  
Dive Policy
Dive own profile
Enforced diving restrictions  
time & depth but all were well seasoned divers and they allowed longer
dives if within your computer  
Nitrox Available?
What I saw
1 or 2 
Whale Sharks
> 2 
Ratings 1 (worst)- 5 (best):
  5 stars
Tropical Fish
5 stars  
Small Critters
  4 stars
Large Fish
5 stars  
Large Pelagics
  3 stars
Underwater Photography  1 (worst)- 5 (best):
Subject Matter
5 stars  
Boat Facilities
5 stars
Overall rating for UWP's  
5 stars  
Shore Facilities  
Nice large tables and compressed air hose for drying camera.  We all had a
picked a color of towel and used it the entire week and they were dryed for
reuse.  Nice large clean tank for putting camera's in before dives.  Nice
hot shower which the girls got to use first and hoses for the men to rinse.
Ratings and Overall Comments  1 (worst)- 5 (best):
5 stars
5 stars
Service and Attitude
5 stars
Environmental Sensitivity  
Dive Operation
5 stars  
Shore Diving  
3 stars  

Overall Rating

Value for $$
3 stars   
5 stars    
Place the Ocean Hunter II on the top of your list for liveaboards!  Just
got off October 2007!

Our pre-arranged transfer took us from our hotel to Fish & Fins where
we were welcomed by owner Tova Bornovski upon our arrival and Navot (his
wife) welcomed us back a week later when the Ocean Hunter II returned and
docked.  This was the fourth liveaboard we had experienced and the best in
so many ways.

The flight from Los Angeles was 14 hours, but once you got there, checked
in, met the crew and got into the 85 degree water, you were hooked and
forgot all about the long trip because it proved to be worth it during the
check out dive.

The crew was fantastic in every way imaginable and became part of our group
immediately. All of them were friendly and happy with safety being their
first priority. We had 10 divers in our group and were fortunate to have
another couple that blended in well with our group.  After being on the
Nimrod in Australia, and two Peter Hughes' liveaboards, I can tell you the
crew can make a huge different in the outcome of your diving vacation.  We
both find if the captain has the respect of his crew and he treats them
with respect it makes for a win, win trip.  When you are spending the
amount of money you do for liveaboard, you want to get the most for your
buck and this crew goes beyond what you can possibly imagine.

There was a nice variety of food.  One of our divers did not eat fish and
the chef made sure there was meat for him.  They asked if anyone had any
special requests for food preparation, (I did not speak up) but Arlee
noticed right away I was picking sesame seeds off what they had prepared. 
After the first day, I had my food without seeds.  There were always snacks
or candy after dives and it showed up on the scale when we got home with us
each gaining 5 pounds. The variety of fresh fruit in the morning was
fantastic and with every dinner you were served homemade soup and a special
dessert. Arlee and Chetra were truly amazing in the small kitchen.    
Our captain was Kenneth, sometimes doubling as one of the dive masters. 
Our dive masters Eddie and Saikei were awesome by being a step above the
usual.  If they werent showing us something, I was finding Silkei taking
my BC off in the water as he was reaching for my fins I have had four back
surgeries and it was necessary to float my BC in and out of the water.  But
Silkei was unbelievably close by when I was ready to get out of the water
cleverly removing my fins and BC. 
I was totally blown away when Kenneth said he was going to bring some
nautilus from 600 feet down for us to see close up and personal!  I figured
he was joking until the next morning there was a large cage filled with
about 15 nautilus and a few other critters.  On our first dive the cage was
put into about 20 feet of water where we were able to get a nautilus out of
the cage and see exactly how they swim.  After 250 dives, this experience
ranked right up there with the time I was able to hold on to a 25 foot
whale shark in Roatan.

Other highlights of our scuba trip were a 6 foot tiger shark at the boats
platform one night; not to mention a pair of mantas.  One day on the way
back in the chase boat they spotted a manta ray in the German Channel and
stopped to let us off the boat to snorkel with it.  Our last dive was
really interesting; a cave dive (saw light at the entrance continuously). 
We found out just how satisfying it was to use a reef hook for our 1st
time, too.

Most of the rooms are small, but the crew, food and diving made you quickly
forget about their size.  After all; who stays in their rooms except to
sleep!  We had the only master suite with a private balcony and it was
great for an additional cost.  The only minus is that one week is not
enough time on the boat.  Like most, our entire group was not ready to get
off the boat; you really need 10 days.

I guess I will be remembered as the lady that lost her flashlight to an
octopus, so if you book the Ocean Hunter II soon and see a lighted hole
rest assured it is the octopus with my flashlight.  The crew promised to
take it a bag of batteries to the hole upon their return to that wreck

This liveaboard is one NOT TO BE MISSED!

Judy & Larry Walters

West Chester, Ohio
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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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