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Dive Review of The Village in

July, 2006, an Instant Reader Report by NEAL LANGERMAN, CA, USAQ
Report Number 2889
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Reporter and Travel
Dive Experience
Over 1000 dives
Where else diving
All over the Pacific, all coasts of USA, Gulf, Caribb, etc.
Closest Airport
Getting There


Dive Conditions

sunny, windy  
calm, choppy, currents  
Water Temp
82   to 84    Fahrenheit  
Wetsuit Thickness
Water Visibility
25   to 75    Feet  
Dive Policy
Dive own profile
Enforced diving restrictions  
Nitrox Available?
What I saw
1 or 2 
Whale Sharks
Ratings 1 (worst)- 5 (best):
  3 stars
Tropical Fish
3 stars  
Small Critters
  2 stars
Large Fish
1 stars  
Large Pelagics
  1 stars
Underwater Photography  1 (worst)- 5 (best):
Subject Matter
2 stars  
Boat Facilities
1 stars
Overall rating for UWP's  
1 stars  
Shore Facilities  
1 stars  
The Village acts as if they have never seen a hosed camera.  I had to work
hard to get a clean rinse tank so I could service my housing each day.  
Ratings and Overall Comments  1 (worst)- 5 (best):
5 stars
3 stars
Service and Attitude
4 stars
Environmental Sensitivity  
Dive Operation
1 stars  
Shore Diving  
3 stars  

Overall Rating

Value for $$
1 stars   
3 stars    
My wife and I have more than 65 years of diving experience between us
around the world on live-aboard and land-based operations.  Pohnpei of the
Federated States of Micronesia is approximately in the center of the vast
ocean area which comprises FSM.  We stayed at The Village Resort which
provided all diving, meals and lodging on a strictly ala carte basis.  The
Village is over 25 years old and is reported to be the best accommodations
on Pohnpei.  It is set on the side of a steep volcanic escarpment.  Diving
starts by meeting in the Long Building and walking down a steep
coral-surfaced road to the waterfront.  Gear is transported in a truck.  If
you are carrying equipment or cameras, this walk is onerous and unpleasant.
 At the waterfront, several barebones skiffs are tied to the stone walls. 
The skiffs have no seats, no tank racks and minimal shade.  Cushions are
provided for divers to sit on the skiff deck and lean against the sides. 
Four or five divers, a guide and an operator appear to be the maximum safe
load for the skiffs, which are powered by two outboard motors.  The skiff
is unprepared for most reasonably anticipated emergencies.  Communications
is provided by mobile phone, which may or may not have reception.  Oxygen
and a first-aid kit were unavailable.  Indeed, when a guest fell in the
skiff and dislocated a finger joint, no materials were available to provide
a splint to stabilize the injury, even though all that was needed was

Diving can be inside the reef or on the outer reef and surrounding atolls. 
Visibility on the outer reef and atolls is markedly better than inside. 
Manta Ray Road is a channel inside the reef with two cleaning stations at
which Mantas frequent.  Visibility is relatively low in the channel, but
is tide dependent.  A reef hook is essential but not provided or even
offered by The Village staff.

Diving from the minimalist skiffs is simple.  The guide helps you put on
your BC and you back roll into the water.  You need to remove your gear to
get back into the skiff.  The fish are typical Indo-Pacific, with beautiful
hard corals.  We saw many more anemone with the Anemonefish (Nemo) on the
reefs of Pohnpei than at Yap or Palau.  Sharks and Spotted Eagle Rays
cruised just off the outer reefs.  At one point a school (20  30 fish) of
young White Tip sharks cruised by within 30  50 meters of the divers. 
This was well within the clear visibility of the water.  Ant Atoll is a
must-do dive.  The water clarity is exceptional.  The hard corals were the
most beautiful we saw in FSM.  On our first dive, a Spotted Eagle Ray swam
by about 20 meters out from us.  White Tips and Black Tips were hunting on
the shallow reef, in about 20 feet of water.  Large Clown Fish and their
Anemone were abundant.  The drift dive through the Ant Atoll channel, about
2 hours into the incoming tide was exceptionally exciting.

While the guides were helpful, we found the overall operation to be less
professional than we expected based on the reputation of The Village.  The
senior management was responsive to reasonable requests only with great
effort on our part  well beyond what any guest at a resort should be
forced to expend.  Their attitude resulted in our overall frustration with
what otherwise would be an exceptional resort.

Pohnpei and The Village are not for the faint-of-heart divers.  But those
who are very self-sufficient will have some memorable diving experiences.
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Other dive reports on The Village

All Micronesia Dive Reviews and Reports
Diving Guide to Micronesia
Diving Reviews for All Dive Destinations

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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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