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Dive Review of Tawali Dive Resort in
Papua New Guinea/Milne Bay

April, 2006, an Instant Reader Report by Don Lipmanson, CA, United States
Reviewer   (4 reports)
Report Number 2468
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Reporter and Travel
Dive Experience
51-100 dives
Where else diving
Tufi (PNG), Belize, Grand Turk, N. Cal, HI
Closest Airport
Getting There


Dive Conditions

sunny, cloudy  
calm, choppy  
Water Temp
86   to 87    Fahrenheit  
Wetsuit Thickness
Water Visibility
50   to 100    Feet  
Dive Policy
Dive own profile
Enforced diving restrictions  
Surface at 500 psi, safety sausage in currents  
Nitrox Available?
What I saw
Whale Sharks
1 or 2 
Ratings 1 (worst)- 5 (best):
  5 stars
Tropical Fish
5 stars  
Small Critters
  5 stars
Large Fish
4 stars  
Large Pelagics
  3 stars
Underwater Photography  1 (worst)- 5 (best):
Subject Matter
5 stars  
Boat Facilities
Overall rating for UWP's  
Shore Facilities  
Ratings and Overall Comments  1 (worst)- 5 (best):
5 stars
5 stars
Service and Attitude
5 stars
Environmental Sensitivity  
Dive Operation
4 stars  
Shore Diving  
3 stars  

Overall Rating

Value for $$
5 stars   
5 stars    
A lovely resort, as attractive as the website and brochure suggest.  Rooms
are very comfortable, with  great views; a pod of dophins frolicked in the
inlet below our deck just after dawn on several mornings.  Chef Benson's
buffet-style meals were first-rate in variety and in quality of

This resort is entirely about diving; aside from a not-to-be-missed skull
cave, options for land-based activity are minimal; local villages are very
"westernized" and not particularly revealing about local life. 
The ridgetop above the resort probably offers good birding, but runoff and
slippery slopes following a big storm precluded the steep climb.

All diving is from boats, except the house reef which appears decimated by
coral bleaching yet harbors numerous mandarinfish and some leaf
scorpionfish.  Numerous dive sites within minutes of the resort by fast
small boats offered countless varieties of fish, healthy reefs and
unbelievable macro-viewing opportunities (e.g. pygmy seahorses, commensual
and palimonid shrimp, nudibranchs and flatworms).  The muck diving at
Lawadi (aka Dinah's Beach), especially at twilight, is an absolute must: 80
minutes at 25' or less allowed us to see five species of lionfish and three
species of anemonefish, several Cockatoo waspfish, Pegasus sea moths,
closeups of an octopus, etc. etc.

Weather permitting (an Australian cyclone created 48 hours of rough seas)
and following the arrival of a few more divers, we made a few trips past
the eastern tip of the island to some outer reefs, where the walls and
bommies were simply stunning.  Humpback parrotfish reached 4', large
angelfish of various species were abundant, a 2' map pufferfish allowed
very close approach, two species of pygmy seahorses were (barely) visible
on fans at about 75', and groups of trevally stalked schools of fusiliers. 
Chris Carney, captain of the turbocharged 45' Prowler catamaran (and resort
manager) found leeward spots where divers encountered moderate to minimal
currents instead of riproaring areas generated by the storm.  

It's hard to imagine a better way to experience the diving treasures of
Milne Bay than stayng at this attractive, very comfortable location, which
has books aplenty to identify everything marine life, plus a largely
competent support staff.  Besides photo supplies, the one thing
conspicuously lacking was a blender for making tropical cocktails- even
paradise has its drawbacks. 
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Other dive reports on Tawali

All Papua New Guinea Dive Reviews and Reports
Diving Guide to Papua New Guinea
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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