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Dive Review of Arenui in
Indonesia/Forgotten Islands

Arenui: "Diving in Paradise", Oct, 2018,

by Pierre Hurter, CA, US (Contributor Contributor 14 reports with 9 Helpful votes). Report 10658 has 2 Helpful votes.

No photos available at this time

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

Accommodations 5 stars Food 5 stars
Service and Attitude 5 stars Environmental Sensitivity 5 stars
Dive Operation 5 stars Shore Diving N/A
Snorkeling N/A
Value for $$ 5 stars
Beginners 5 stars
Advanced 5 stars
Comments This was our third time on the Arenui, a truly luxurious experience. Arenui means small waves in Polynesian. The boat is built in the classic phinisi style of Indonesian boats. In keeping with today's sensibilities the construction of the boat included 70% recycled wood. Each of the cabins reflects the art and culture of different parts of Indonesia. We were in the Legong cabin, showcasing the handicrafts and textiles of Flores, West Papua and Java. The cabin is named after the classical dance of Bali.

There were 16 of us and a crew of 22 to make sure we had everything we needed or wanted. The crew did a great job of doing just that. The routine was grueling. First breakfast was served at 6:00, it was a buffet affair, fresh fruit, yogurt, toast, jam and coffee, either Bali coffee, a finely ground “instant” coffee or Nescafe.

After the first dive of the day, there would be a made to order breakfast. My favorite was jook or congee, classic Asian rice porridge. Bread and pastries where baked fresh daily.

After breakfast, another dive and then lunch, a buffet affair almost always featuring fresh fish, beef and chicken dishes among other items; lots of fresh fruit, salads and again freshly baked goods.

After lunch, it was on to dive number three. After this dive, there were “snacks”, not quite a meal, but generally fairly substantial, pizza, brownies, nachos and the ever-present fresh fruit.

At lunch, we would be asked for our dinner preferences, always a tough choice and always delicious.

We would rotate both dive-guides and dive groups so that we got to dive with everyone. There were four divers per guide, so there was plenty of individual attention available. I am always amazed at how they are able to spot the smallest critters when all I see is a possibly moving piece of sea lint.

We were exploring the Banda Sea on the edge of the Ring of Fire an area of extensive volcanic activity. One of my favorite events was a visit to Banda Neira, the main island of the Banda Islands. It’s hard to believe that the nutmeg harvested here was so valuable that the Dutch traded the islands to the British for Manhattan.

The one dive site that I have mixed feeling about was at Tanjung Island. The place is full of sea snakes and not the relatively cute banded sea kraits, but the big, fat Chinese Sea snakes. These guys are the thickness of your arm and about six feet long and they appear to be very inquisitive. It’s a bit eerie to see dozens of snakes swim by as if in formation. We did four dives here and I think I have pretty much had my fill of sea snakes.
Websites Arenui   

Reporter and Travel

Dive Experience Over 1000 dives
Where else diving Alaska, Australia, Belize, Chuuk (Truk), Cozumel, Fiji, Galapogas, Indonesia (Forgotten Islands, Komodo, Raja Ampat), La Paz, Maui, New Zealand, Palau, Philippines, Roatan, Socoro, Tulum
Closest Airport Saumlaki Getting There Our journey began with a flight to Singapore; from there we headed for Jakarta. An overnight there and then it was off to Ambon, a stopover in Makkasar and then off to Saumlaki, a bit north of Australia, East of New guinea and south of the Equator. Just to keep us on our toes there was at least one, maybe two time changes along the way.

Dive Conditions

Weather sunny Seas calm
Water Temp 80-82°F / 27-28°C Wetsuit Thickness 3
Water Visibility 80-100 Ft/ 24-30 M

Dive Policy

Dive own profile yes
Enforced diving restrictions No hard time limits except for the sunset dives. They were limited to 60 minutes so that dinner could progress on schedule.
Liveaboard? yes Nitrox Available? yes

What I Saw

Sharks 1 or 2 Mantas 1 or 2
Dolphins None Whale Sharks None
Turtles > 2 Whales > 2
Corals 5 stars Tropical Fish 5 stars
Small Critters 5 stars Large Fish N/A
Large Pelagics N/A

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 I'm not an underwater photographer, but those onboard who were, pretty much ecveryone else, seemed to make do. My experience is that when it comes to photagraphers, there is never enough room or outlets for charging.
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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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