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Dive Review of Manta Reef Lodge in
Africa/Pemba Island, Tanzania

Manta Reef Lodge, Apr, 2003,

by J. Allen, NY, USA . Report 479.

No photos available at this time

Ratings and Overall Comments 1 (worst) - 5 (best):

Accommodations 2 stars Food 2 stars
Service and Attitude 1 stars Environmental Sensitivity N/A
Dive Operation 1 stars Shore Diving 1 stars
Snorkeling N/A
Value for $$ N/A
Beginners 1 stars
Advanced 1 stars
Comments I do not recommend diving at Manta Reef Lodge. The owner gave highly misleading information about the dive conditions and facility during our exchange of several dozen rather detailed emails. Based on that exchange, I decided on a dive package of 10 dives, to include 2 night dives, and I prepaid for the package to avoid a surcharge for payment upon arrival. Upon arriving I was told that my dive package would not be possible and that it might not be possible to dive at all. At best, due to the tides, one dive per day might be possible, though not daily. Night dives, and even night snorkeling, were out of the question. The hotel staff and the dive master said that I would have to wait, day by day, to see what might be possible. Staff was unaccomodating and the dive master was rather new. Dive master told of going out in a boat a few days before and having great difficulty, due to the surge, getting a young and able couple out of the dive boat, which is kept in the bay. Dive master also told of taking a diver out recently to see whether something could be seen in the water only to find that it was necessary to hold on to the anchor line or be swept away, and that almost nothing could be seen due to sand and mud particles. When I told the key staff person that waiting day by day to determine whether it might even be possible to go out in a boat to consider diving where there might be zero visibility was scarcely the stuff of a dive holiday, much less the conditions of my dive package, he responded that one can dive in 1 meter of water and with zero visibility and that he was not responsible for my arrangements with the owner. In our correspondence the owner had stated that visibility on Pemba is "fairly consistent" with "50/100 feet minimum." This patently is not true. The owner refused to speak with me while I was at the lodge and later sent an email in which he refused to reimbuse me. According to the taxi driver with whom I, along with four snorkelers who were similarly disappointed and who felt that the conditions at the lodge had been misrepresented, road to the airport after staying only one night, there has been a turn over in dive staff at the lodge and many people leave early. Now, I have missed a dive vacation, I am out payment in full for the dive package, and I must wait for Visa or my travel insurance, Travel Guard, or the Tanzanian Embassy to intervene. I might add that PADI has contacted the lodge to remove its PADI logos and list of PADI courses, since the lodge is not currently certified by PADI.

Reporter and Travel

Dive Experience 101-250 dives
Where else diving Bali, Sulawesi, Caribbean
Closest Airport Getting There

Dive Conditions

Weather windy,rainy Seas choppy,surge,currents
Water Temp 0-0°F / -18--18°C Wetsuit Thickness 0
Water Visibility 3-1 Ft/ 1-0 M

Dive Policy

Dive own profile ?
Enforced diving restrictions [Unspecified]Note--no rating of corals, fish, etc., as they could not be seen.
Liveaboard? no Nitrox Available? N/A

What I Saw

Sharks None Mantas None
Dolphins None Whale Sharks None
Turtles None Whales None
Corals 3 stars Tropical Fish 3 stars
Small Critters 3 stars Large Fish 3 stars
Large Pelagics 3 stars

Underwater Photography 1 (worst) - 5 (best):

Subject Matter N/A Boat Facilities 1 stars
Overall rating for UWP's N/A Shore Facilities N/A
UW Photo Comments [None]
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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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