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Dive Review of Moody's Namena in
Fiji and Tuvalu/Namena

Moody's Namena, Jul, 2009,

by Jack Lipszyc and Wilga Kottek, Vic, Australia ( 1 report). Report 5067.

No photos available at this time

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

Accommodations 4 stars Food 4 stars
Service and Attitude 5 stars Environmental Sensitivity 5 stars
Dive Operation 5 stars Shore Diving N/A
Snorkeling 5 stars
Value for $$ 5 stars
Beginners 5 stars
Advanced 5 stars

Moody’s Namena is a unique dive island destination, in that the package you get is due to the vision of it’s longstanding owners, Tom and Joan Moody. We were lucky that they allowed us to bring our 3 children, aged 11, 15 & 17. The older two, who had just qualified, did their first diving in truly idyllic conditions. For the 7 days we were at Namena we were the only guests.
Dive routine is two dives a day, at 9 and 1:30, after meals, and no other options. They would dive if only one diver went. Aside from the checkout dive off the boat jetty (very good coral and clams), the launch always traveled 1-4 km to the coral ring surrounding the island (about 10-20 min trip, marine national park). The diving ranged from usually excellent, to occasionally just good. Great Fijian soft coral, the usual sharks, tuna, barracuda, turtles, sea kraits, stunning visibility etc. My younger daughter snorkeled in quite a few of the spots and often saw much of what we did. The dive guides, Nigel and George were excellent, as was the boat crew. Diving does not get much easier or better than this. We would often see the liveaboards or the launch from Cousteau at some of the sites, but they were easily avoided. Much effort has gone into conservation in the past years and we presume that what we experienced was a direct result of this. It probably helps that the island and it’s reef are 1-2 hours boat ride from the closest population.
The island itself is the more unique part of the package, being only a mile long, and having only footpaths and steps for transport. The resort, taking up only a small fraction of the island, with it’s dining room and well spaced bures, is about 100 steps up from the jetty unless you get a lift in Tom’s tiny van. But most guests will walk the length of the island for the views or to see the ancient stone ruins, or to get a closer look at the many great birds, bats, or sea kraits near the water…or to go snorkeling on the other side of island at Nautilus Beach, one of the most sublime in the world. All the staff are genuinely friendly and excellent at volley ball and the Moodies most hospitable.
The only “downsides” for some, would be the lack of “power” and thus aircon in the bures and dining area, and so the daily shuffle of iPods etc to Joan for charging in her office. Thus I surmise keen underwater photographers may not be taken seriously, a thought that does not particularly upset me (having seen their habits over the years).
The solar panels that Tom and Joan have set up over the years, long before green became trendy, are enough to power the small fans in the bures, and the wind and high positions of the bures and doors do the rest.
The last I heard, was that more panels are on their way. However we would all be happy to return regardless. This is a resort to savour for it’s nature, peace and the quirky nightly ritual of gecko wrangling (so that none fall from the ceiling during meals).
In contrast, the dive sites that we visited on the Tui Tai the week after Namena, were very good, but not as good as Namena. I would otherwise highly recommend the Tui Tai for parents of children of similar age to ours, who either could not get to Namena or where diving was not the highest priority. Namena is a superb idyllic hideaway but not for those who need a full wine cellar and hairdryer on tap.

Reporter and Travel

Dive Experience 251-500 dives
Where else diving Walindi, Sea of Cortez, Outer Great Barrier Reef, Palau, Truk Lagoon, Flores, Galapagos, Solomon Islands, Lord Howe Island, Nananu-I-Ra, Kadavu, Toberua, Ningaloo/Exmouth, Espiritu Santo Vanuatu, Port Phillip Bay!
Closest Airport Getting There

Dive Conditions

Weather cloudy Seas calm, no currents
Water Temp 77-°F / 25-°C Wetsuit Thickness
Water Visibility 30-45 M / 98-148 Ft

Dive Policy

Dive own profile no
Enforced diving restrictions 25 meters max, as we were with beginners
Liveaboard? no Nitrox Available? N/A

What I Saw

Sharks Lots Mantas 1 or 2
Dolphins None Whale Sharks None
Turtles > 2 Whales None
Corals 5 stars Tropical Fish 4 stars
Small Critters 3 stars Large Fish 4 stars
Large Pelagics 5 stars

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

Subject Matter N/A Boat Facilities N/A
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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