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Dive Review of Tobago Dive Experience at Manta Lodge/Manta Lodge in
Trinidad and Tobago/Speyside

January, 2010, an Instant Reader Report by Janna Poll, co, usa (2 reports)
Report Number 5346
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Reporter and Travel
Dive Experience
251-500 dives
Where else diving
Indonesia, asia, palua, truk, hawaii, fiji, british columbia, calif,
florida, baja, mexico and cozumel, grand turk, caymans, puerto rico, st
maartin, saba, honduras, belize
Closest Airport
Getting There


Dive Conditions

Water Temp
79   to    Fahrenheit  
Wetsuit Thickness
Water Visibility
70   to 100    Feet  
Dive Policy
Dive own profile
Enforced diving restrictions  
DM arthur wouldn't let anyone go more than 45 minutes.  came up with
1200-1500 # each dive. Said he didn't want to get too much nitrogen in his
system.  Makes it very expensive for divers...and disappointing.  
Nitrox Available?
What I saw
Whale Sharks
1 or 2 
Ratings 1 (worst)- 5 (best):
  4 stars
Tropical Fish
3 stars  
Small Critters
  3 stars
Large Fish
1 stars  
Large Pelagics
  1 stars
Underwater Photography  1 (worst)- 5 (best):
Subject Matter
1 stars  
Boat Facilities
1 stars
Overall rating for UWP's  
1 stars  
Shore Facilities  
No rinse tank.  Only got 13 oz for personal drinking for two dives,
certainly not enough to rinse camera.  scenery so bland that I didn't
bother to assemble the gear I hauled in.  
Unlike Undercurrent report that the current is too wild for camera, not
true.  DM said with some NE storms they get some rippers, but we sure
didn't have much.
Ratings and Overall Comments  1 (worst)- 5 (best):
2 stars
4 stars
Service and Attitude
2 stars
Environmental Sensitivity  
2 stars
Dive Operation
1 stars  
Shore Diving  

Overall Rating

Value for $$
2 stars    
4 stars   
1 stars    
Mosquitoes still active with 25% deet, they didn't care.
Plan for landscape photography, but not so much underwater.  Scenery on
island is incredibly beautiful and unspoiled.  Very few tourists.  Most
locals know each other, especially up in the NE by Speyside.  friendly. 
Island is clean and water was safe.
Tobago dive experience doesn't do much of any service and they don't have
their own dock.  You haul all your gear from hotel, into the truck, onto
the dock, setup, into the boat, between dives and then in reserve.  No
rinse tanks and had to use a city hose on the dock.  Little water, a few
awful cookies, low service.  This isn't a liveaboard, Dorothy!
The shuttle flight to Tobago from POS (tee hee-Trinidad's code) is quite
informal and they allow two 50lb bags to be checked.  If you get off your
flight in POS quickly, you CAN make the last shuttle to Tobago.  They roads
in Tobago are good, but very twisty and I wouldn't want to drive them at
night and from the left side.  Our hotel included shuttle and that was
good.  However, it is nice to have a car to tour if you are adventurous.
FOOD IS OUTRAGEOUSLY priced on these islands. Typically very tasty, clean,
and lots of fruits and veges, but expensive. They typically charge 30-40US$
for dinner and that's just one course and not drinks.  Hotels are very
basic and really get the tourists on meal expense.  Local places are safe
and offer lunch for around $15ppUS without drinks, which is closer to
reality (usually fish, beans, rice and veges).
Locals are sometimes aloof and you have to take the initiative to chat with
them (esp the women).  Then they are sweet and wonderful.  Dialect can be
challenging, esp for europeans that know non-slang english.  They basically
drop the consonants, but can slip into nearly regular english for
If you spend time in Trinidad, go to the local fair up by the university at
night around 8 for great local food and for really cheap.  It's safe, good
and more of what you want to see.  Our first night we got into Hyatt at
Port of Spain later, so we hit the restaurant.  WOW!  $170 and that was no
drinks, no dessert, just two entrees.  Do go to the bird sanctuary where
the red ibis flock.
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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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