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Dive Review of M/V Pawara in
Thailand/Similan Islands

February, 2008, an Instant Reader Report by Randy Saffell, OK, USA
Reviewer   (4 reports)
Report Number 3984
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Reporter and Travel
Dive Experience
501-1000 dives
Where else diving
Truk Lagoon, Bonaire, Saba, Guadalupe, Cozumel, Florida, Gulf Of Mexico
Closest Airport
Getting There


Dive Conditions

sunny, dry  
choppy, currents  
Water Temp
82   to 85    Fahrenheit  
Wetsuit Thickness
Water Visibility
50   to 75    Feet  
Dive Policy
Dive own profile
Enforced diving restrictions  
Divers were given the option of staying with the DM or diving in buddy
teams after the first day or so.  
Nitrox Available?
What I saw
1 or 2 
Whale Sharks
1 or 2 
Ratings 1 (worst)- 5 (best):
  5 stars
Tropical Fish
5 stars  
Small Critters
  5 stars
Large Fish
3 stars  
Large Pelagics
  1 stars
Underwater Photography  1 (worst)- 5 (best):
Subject Matter
5 stars  
Boat Facilities
4 stars
Overall rating for UWP's  
5 stars  
Shore Facilities  
There are no camera tables near the dive deck but two large camera barrels.
The inside lounge area has numerous places to charge batteries but it is
upstais and sort of akward to get the cameras up and down the stairs each
time. However, I have NEVER had a crew handle our cameras with such care
and concern. Any physical limitations the boat had was overshaddowed by the
crew. They knew how to hold cameras to get them in/out of the water and
were very careful when they put them in the water buckets. Very Impressive,
they could give lessons to other crews I have seen. Kuddos to the crew!
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  
1 stars  

Overall Rating

Value for $$
3 stars   
5 stars    
The Good: The M/V Pawara is a 2 Y/O ship. It is in excellent condition and
very comfortable. The dive deck is large and spacious with a good distance
between tanks. There is room for 20 divers, on our trip we had 14 so we
were divided into two groups of 7, each with a DM that led each dive, if
you wanted to go with him. I found out that it was a good idea to go with
them as they knew where the stuff was I wanted to see. Ghost Pipefish,
Harlequin Shrimp, Dancing Shrimp, Seahorses, Rock Fish,  etc. However, if
you wanted to go alone with you camera all you had to do was wave at the

As normal all you had to do was take off your 1st stage and the crew filled
your tank and put it back on for you. We did 4 dives a day plus 2 the last
day for 22 dives in the 6 days, with 3 night dives. 

We had no dive related problems for the week. Music was piped over the
intercom 15 minutes before briefings so everyone could assemble or in my
case, wake up!

There was 5 meals a day, all were great. Since this is Thailand there were
the usual what is this questions. Some of our pickier divers passed on
things that I thought were great, but I had no idea what it was. There was
non-alcholic beverages on the boat and beer could be purchased. Some of the
divers brought there own beer or other beverages. The crew was more than
happy to put it in the refrigerator for them.

The boat was always moving between dives so we would not have to dive the
same place twice unless we requested it. We did spend 1 day and all four
dives at Richelieu Rock, but that was a unanimous request as there was so
much to see. There were 2 wreck dives, Beacon Reef and Tuna Wreck, both
loaded with marine life.

Just luck of the draw we did not see mantas or whale sharks, but there was
enough other stuff to make the trip. 

If you want a small live aboard that caters to divers with no overcrowding
and great accommodations this is it.

The Bad: The ONLY thing I could complain about was the mattress. They were
very hard as were the pillows. Some of us would sleep on the lounge deck or
in the inside lounge as they were softer. If I was going to make this trip
again, (and I would) I would take a small air mattress and my own pillow.
Thats all, it was perfect in every other way.
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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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