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Dive Review of Tawali in
Papua New Guinea/Milne Bay

June, 2011, an Instant Reader Report by Michael J. Millet, CA, US
Top Contributor   (63 reports, with 8 Helpful votes)
Report Number 6114
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Reporter and Travel
Dive Experience
0-25 dives
Where else diving
All over the Caribbean, Galapagos, Hawaii, Kosrae, Truk Lagoon, Yap, Palau,
Solomon Islands, Vanuatu, GBR, Indonesia, Revillagigedos, PNG
Closest Airport
Getting There

		

Dive Conditions

Weather
windy, rainy  
Seas
choppy  
Water Temp
81   to 83    Fahrenheit  
Wetsuit Thickness
3
Water Visibility
30   to 60    Feet  
 
Dive Policy
Dive own profile
yes  
 
Enforced diving restrictions  
100' and 1 hour however I had several dives exceeding 70 minutes  
Liveaboard?
no 
Nitrox Available?
yes 
What I saw
Sharks
1 or 2 
Mantas
1 or 2 
Dolphins
None 
Whale Sharks
None 
Turtles
1 or 2 
Whales
None 
Ratings 1 (worst)- 5 (best):
Corals
  4 stars
Tropical Fish
4 stars  
Small Critters
  4 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  
3 stars  
Comments
The various dive boats had differing accommodations for cameras. The
smaller boats had an area set aside for cameras but no rinse tank. The
larger boat had a very spacious camera table and rinse tanks. The dive crew
handled the camera gear efficiently and carefully. Topside, there is a
rinse tank for cameras but it often had no water in it. There is a camera
room at Tawali that is normally locked - a bit inconvenient. It has several
110 volt charging stations. I took care of my camera gear in my room.
Ratings and Overall Comments  1 (worst)- 5 (best):
Accommodations
4 stars
Food
4 stars
Service and Attitude
4 stars
Environmental Sensitivity  
4 stars
Dive Operation
4 stars  
Shore Diving  
N/A  
Snorkeling
N/A  
 
 

Overall Rating

Value for $$
4 stars    
Beginners
3 stars   
Advanced
5 stars    
Comments  
The Tawali resort is located at the far Eastern end of the North Milne Bay
peninsula. It is reached by flying from Port Moresby to Alotau then taking
a Tawali shuttle bus for almost 2 hours over a very bumpy road filled with
bus-swallowing holes. We had to cross several very swollen streams. Then
there is a 20 minute boat ride to reach the resort.

The staff at the resort was very friendly and helpful. Upon arrival, I was
given an orientation of the resort and the dive operation. The guest rooms
are very spacious with 2 queen beds, a large patio, A/C, small frig,
satellite TV. Very Comfortable. The food at the resort was plentiful and
very, very tasty. Benson, the Chef, did an excellent job. The seared
yellow-fin tuna was fantastic. The desserts were scrumptious. The bar has
the local beer, some Australian wines and a limited selection of spirits.
The resort has internet access that is not reliable and is pricey.

Although PNG is considered a malaria country (I took Malarone), I did not
notice a significant number of insects particularly mosquitoes.

For the my first 5 days, I was the sole diver at the resort. So I had my
personal dive guide. The weather was cloudy and rainy with choppy water so
the dive conditions were marginal with green water and low viz. I
understand that the best dive conditions are from November thru January in
the Milne Bay Area. The AM dive trip is for 2 tanks with a single PM tank.
I dove the local reefs - Wahoo Point, Sponge Heaven, Michelle's, Deacon's,
Lawandi. The reefs appear to be in pretty good shape with marine life in
abundance and diversity. The dive sites included walls coral gardens and
black sand (muck). Because of the low viz, macro-photography was primarily
utilized with lots of nudibranchs, pipefish, shrimp and crabs. I did have a
couple of great encounters with a large school of moon jellies. Very cool.


Later during my stay after more divers arrived, we took the larger dive
boat to dive sites farther East some 1 hour cruising time away. These were
3 tanks trips with lunch on the boat. The viz was a bit better at these
sites farther away from the shoreline.

The dive guides at Tawali really know the dive sites and how to find the
critters. They also take complete care of the dive gear including rinsing,
storage and set-up on the dive boat. At the end of the stay, they cleaned
the gear and delivered it to my room. 

In summary, Tawali is a very comfortable resort with a good staff, great
food, a good dive operation and great diving. It is a trek to get to. If I
were to return, it would be in the Nov-Jan time frame.  
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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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