Author Topic: Beginner diving in Fiji  (Read 5069 times)

rockerdiver

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Beginner diving in Fiji
« on: July 21, 2008, 04:17:01 UTC »
Hi,
My wife and I are experienced divers.  Our kids are getting their PADI junior divers c cards this summer.  We'd like to take a family dive vacation to Fiji.
We've heard good things from undercurrent divers re Kai Vita, Qamea, and Mamanuca.  Does anyone have a favorite place, we're looking for world class but beginners shallow dives? 
Jamey   

DanR

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Re: Beginner diving in Fiji
« Reply #1 on: July 21, 2008, 12:19:12 UTC »
Hi Jamey,

We were there with our dive shop, Just Add Water, out of Cleveland, OH in early March this year.  One of the people in our group was a first time diver, after completing his OW certification.  He did great, and had a blast.  See my other post for where we were, but we enjoyed both.

-Dan
Dan

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Dane Foucher

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Re: Beginner diving in Fiji
« Reply #2 on: July 21, 2008, 23:28:05 UTC »
I would suggest you go to the island of Kadavu and stay at the Matana Resort.  There is diving there as good as anywhere in Fiji (I have been to 5 island resorts and 2 liveaboards) and yet you can definitely go to sites where beginners will not be intimidated.  The currents there are generally mild yet you will see all the good stuff Fiji has to see.  They even have a manta cleaning station dive, which is just about a sure thing.

scottgeo

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Re: Beginner diving in Fiji
« Reply #3 on: July 22, 2008, 02:17:16 UTC »
My wife and I went to Qamea and Taveuni 2-1/2 years ago.  The diving in the Somosomo strait was amazing and definitely world class, but it may not be the best choice for young, beginner divers.  The soft coral thrives because of the currents that flow through the strait, so most of the entries were direct descent.

DanR

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Re: Beginner diving in Fiji
« Reply #4 on: July 22, 2008, 13:41:29 UTC »
Scottgeo makes a good point that definitely should be considered.  But, we found that the current, when there was one, was primarily a surface current.  Following the line down you would find that once you got below 30' it was virtually calm.  Also based on our 2 weeks there, we only had 3 dives total where current was a factor.
Dan

In life, you only need two tools - WD-40 and Duct Tape.  If it doesn't move but should, use the WD-40.  If it should not move and does, use the duct tape.

scottgeo

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Re: Beginner diving in Fiji
« Reply #5 on: July 23, 2008, 02:34:16 UTC »
A current at or near the surface can be a challenge for beginner divers at a safety stop unless there is an anchor line (we did live boat dives exclusively in Fiji).  Even then, as new divers, I would expect them to still be working on buoyancy control.  Having a current definitely challenges buoyancy control.

Also, the current changes direction in the Somosomo strait.  You might start a dive at slack and have the current pick up mid-way through the dive .  This happens pretty regularly.  Also, I disagree that the current is typically above 30 feet.  We used reef hooks several times in Taveuni.  Also, the soft coral relies on current to bring food.  It the current didn't run regularly, the soft coral wouldn't be there.

I'm sure there are some locations in Fiji better suited to beginners.

ktdiveloco

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Re: Beginner diving in Fiji
« Reply #6 on: July 23, 2008, 06:12:04 UTC »
I don't think the Somosomo straights are for beginners.  We have had some massive currents there.  Crawling along the floor, pulling ourselves from rock to rock just to get to the wall; down current so intense our group had to cling to the wall and pull ourselves along; reef hooks, etc.  It is definitely worth it for the amazing soft coral, for someone with the experience to handle it.
KT

 

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