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Dive Review of Top Dive/Hotel Kaveka in
French Polynesia/Moorea

Top Dive/Hotel Kaveka, May, 2006,

by Edward Leibowitz, NJ, USA . Report 2508.

Reporter and Travel

Dive Experience 251-500 dives
Where else diving Dominica, New Guinea, Australia, St Eustatius, Yap, Boanaire, Palau, Fiji, Tortola, Cayman
Closest Airport Getting There

Dive Conditions

Weather windy, rainy Seas surge
Water Temp 75 to 78 Fahrenheit Wetsuit Thickness 0
Water Visibility 30 to 70 Feet

Dive Policy

Dive own profile yes
Enforced diving restrictions [Unspecified]
Liveaboard? no Nitrox Available? N/A

What I Saw

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

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

Subject Matter N/A Boat Facilities 4 stars
Overall rating for UWP's N/A Shore Facilities 1 stars
UW Photo Comments [None]

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

Accommodations 3 stars Food 3 stars
Service and Attitude 3 stars Environmental Sensitivity N/A
Dive Operation 3 stars Shore Diving 1 stars
Snorkeling N/A
Value for $$ N/A
Beginners 2 stars
Advanced 4 stars
Comments Diving was very good. It rained in Moorea on the first three days. On the third day,seas were very rough. Top Dive does not charge extra for Nitrox. They use EAN 36. On some of the dives, we went to 90 feet using this mixture. Would have felt more comfortable if we stayed at 70 feet using EAN 36. You entered the water by doing a backroll and go down the anchor line. Almost as soon as you entered the water the blacktip sharks greet you. Divemaster feeds smaller fish. However the sharks do not approach divemaster to be fed. Saw at least one or more lemon sharks on most dives. Saw beautiful corals, large moray eels, few triggerfish,clown fish, and yellow stripers. Usually visibility on second dive was better than first. Returning to the boat was somewhat of a problem. When you reenter the boat after completing a dive, you place one foot on one rung and the other foot on a higher rung. Ladder rungs were slippery and TOP DIVE told divers wearing slipper fins to keep the fins on when going up the ladder. TOP Dive returns to the dive shop between dives and shows a video of the first dive dubbed with music which can be purchased. Nico the photographer does an excellent job. It's worth buying. Another thing that bothered me was the fact that on some dives we were diving to a deeper depth on the second dive. Example we would go to 70 feet on the first dive and ninety feet on the second dive.
French Polynesia is very expensive. The restaurants only serve bottled water. Exchange Rate: 1 US Dollar= 90 Polynesian Francs. If you stay at the Hotel Kaveka, have a thin crust pizza at Allo's, ten minute walk from the Hote. For you Brooklynites, it tastes as good as DiFarra's World Class Pizza in Midwood.
One thing concerning UNDERCURRENT annoyed me in planning this trip. Reading the horror stories in Undercurrent about dive travel agencies that bilk divers, I asked Undercurrent for an opinion on a Tahiti based travel operator,"Dive Tahiti Blue". They had given me a much better trip price than a US based diving agency. I both emailed and called Undercurrent regarding this agency. I never received any reply from Undercurrent. I've been a subscriber to Undercurrent for roughly twenty+ years. If Undercurrent had replied to me saying they knew nothing about this agency, that would have been acceptable. However, ignoring my request was rude and inconsiderate. I will weigh this when Undercurrent sends my subscription renewal notice in 2007.
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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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