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Dive Review of Pindito in
Papua New Guinea/Raja Ampat

Pindito, Mar, 2012,

by Chuck Edson , OR, US (Reviewer Reviewer 5 reports). Report 6518.

Reporter and Travel

Dive Experience 251-500 dives
Where else diving Hawaii, Belize, Micronesia, Palau, Wakatobi, Great Barrier Reef, Cozumel, Solomans, Fiji, Sea of Cortez, Bonaire ...
Closest Airport Getting There

Dive Conditions

Weather rainy, cloudy, dry Seas calm, choppy
Water Temp 82 to 84 Fahrenheit Wetsuit Thickness 3
Water Visibility 15 to 75 Feet

Dive Policy

Dive own profile yes
Enforced diving restrictions Recommended depths and guides were reasonable.
Liveaboard? yes Nitrox Available? yes

What I Saw

Sharks None Mantas Squadrons
Dolphins Schools Whale Sharks None
Turtles 1 or 2 Whales > 2
Corals 3 stars Tropical Fish 3 stars
Small Critters 3 stars Large Fish N/A
Large Pelagics N/A

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

Subject Matter 4 stars Boat Facilities 4 stars
Overall rating for UWP's 4 stars Shore Facilities N/A
UW Photo Comments I did not bring an underwater camera but most of the 16 divers did and accommodations and care of equipment seemed very adequate.

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

Accommodations 4 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 $$ 4 stars
Beginners 3 stars
Advanced 3 stars
Comments This trip was organized by Alan Markis through Dolphin Dive in Sacramento CA. It was advertised as "Whale watching and Muck Diving." A marine biologist and whale expert, Benjamin Kahn, was on the ship. He was VERY knowledgeable and on the first day we spotted Sperm Whales. Kahn was on a grant to conduct whale research. Edi Frommenwiler, owner of the Pindio (the dive boat), was on board. Edi is a colorful character, environmentalist and avid underwater photographer who very much supported Kahns research. Although the whale watching and listening through the hydrophone were interesting, these activities compromised the diving opportunities in my opinion. We stayed near deep water to increase prospects of whale sightings which I believe limited chances for good coral diving locales. Also, I felt that we spent too much time following dolphins. (Many on board enjoyed it though.) All this said, I do not regret the trip. It was a pretty good compromise of mammal pursuit and diving (though as implied I was disappointed with some dives). Manta sites were good and some dives were beautiful. The dive staff was excellent and the service was exceptional. The Indonesians were extremely friendly and threw a party when we departed. The food was good but not notable and not much variety. I was disappointed that fish was not served more, but that may have been due to environmental sensitivity. There was a tour of a pearl farm. Alan Markis has a following mostly from Central California. These divers accepted us newcomers warmly. Many of them were older than we are (mid 50s to 60s plus) but there were some youngsters too. Alan is a charming person who is very experienced about diving options in Indonesia but he wasnt always great at guiding his brood through some transfers. All this said I would not hesitate to go diving with Alan again on the Pindito or elsewhere in Indonesia or Raja Ampat. Time and money limit us, however.
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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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