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Dive Review of Aurora in
Indonesia/Komodo

Aurora, Jul, 2011,

by James Jenkins, CA, US (Sr. Reviewer Sr. Reviewer 7 reports with 1 Helpful vote). Report 6183 has 1 Helpful vote.

Reporter and Travel

Dive Experience Over 1000 dives
Where else diving Caribbean, California, Cocos, Fiji, Galapagos, Hawaii, Indonesia, Malaysia, Palau, PNG, Solomons, Truk, etc
Closest Airport Getting There

Dive Conditions

Weather sunny, windy Seas calm, choppy
Water Temp 75 to 81 Fahrenheit Wetsuit Thickness 5
Water Visibility 30 to 100 Feet

Dive Policy

Dive own profile yes
Enforced diving restrictions None. We had many dives of 75, 80, 90 minutes or more.
Liveaboard? yes Nitrox Available? N/A

What I Saw

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

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

Subject Matter 5 stars Boat Facilities 5 stars
Overall rating for UWP's 5 stars Shore Facilities N/A
UW Photo Comments Large camera room for about 9 photographers; would be crowded with more than 10. Ample charging stations. On main deck.

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

Accommodations 4 stars Food 4 stars
Service and Attitude 5 stars Environmental Sensitivity N/A
Dive Operation 5 stars Shore Diving N/A
Snorkeling N/A
Value for $$ 4 stars
Beginners 1 stars
Advanced 5 stars
Comments Boat was comfortable and roomy enough. (We had 10 divers.) Cabins are a bit larger than average, but not the largest we've had. Nicely appointed; some have a small desk for your photo editing. There are no closets, but lots of drawers and cabinet space.

Diving was via two chase boats. The boats are perfect for 4 divers and one dive master. A bit crowded with 5 divers -- larger groups would need to run a shuttle program. We've done this and it works fine when only 4 dives are scheduled daily. Drops were very good on submerged pinnacles and boats were always nearby to pick us up on surfacing. Aurora has all divers put on tanks on the dingies; this makes for very easy diving. The boat drivers also hauled up our tanks at the end of the dive.

Our dive masters were Bawa and Nyoman, "supplied" by Kararu. (The crew, except these two, are employed by Aurora.) These guys are great. We've been on several trips with them (via Kararu -- see earlier reports for Raja Ampat and Komodo).

We did two, "short" trips back-to-back (9 and 7 nights). The first started in Bima and ended in Labuan Bajo; the second started and ended in Labuan Bajo. Many liveaboards are now based out of LBJ for the Komodo season which puts you right in the middle of the best diving in couple hours.

While the boat advertises NITROX, the membrane system was not working on our trips. The owners, knowing we were on for two cruises, brought on about 30 tanks filled on the Cheng Ho for our second trip so that we had 2+ NITROX tanks each day that week.

We enjoyed the boat, the crew were great. We met two of the owners and they were great hosts.

We love the Komodo area. There's a great mix of muck and wide-angle. Be sure to get down to Horseshoe Bay and be prepared for cold water.

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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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