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Dive Review of Black Sands, NAD Lembeh in
Indonesia/Lembeh Straits

Black Sands, NAD Lembeh: "Lembeh report for two resorts, Black Sands and NAD Lembeh", Nov, 2014,

by Deborah Berglund, MT, US (Contributor Contributor 16 reports with 4 Helpful votes). Report 8197.

No photos available at this time

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

Accommodations 2 stars Food 1 stars
Service and Attitude 4 stars Environmental Sensitivity 5 stars
Dive Operation 5 stars Shore Diving 5 stars
Snorkeling N/A
Value for $$ 4 stars
Beginners 3 stars
Advanced 5 stars
Comments These were my second and third trips to Lembeh. In Nov we stayed at Black Sands. It was only ok, the rooms nice but weird layout. The food was pretty bad even for Indonesian food. In general the diving was not as good as my previous trip but there were a few totally spectacular dives. The staff was almost unfriendly, the dive guides did not do anything to go out of their way. There was service for me that I needed for help with camera, gear etc. The resort was built on a steep hillside with restaurant on top, rooms cascading down and the camera and dive areas at the bottom. Since I had had an injury before the trip the hike up and down was difficult. Dive boats felt crowded. I would not return.

NAD Lembeh resort was very different. The resort is laid out very well at sea level. The camera room and facilities were the best I have ever seen. The staff was great, owners always available for help, very accommodating and most of the dive guides were excellent although my first guide left me behind alone several times while I took photos. Since I did not know the area and he did not return to find me I asked for and got a new guide. The dive boats were crowded, cameras placed in the middle between divers which is a good way to have equipment damaged. The rooms were small and crowded, more like one would expect on a liveaboard rather then a resort; I asked for and got my own room, but the bathroom had a backed up sewer and the stench was unbearable. When I asked they provided incense for a couple of days before repairing the drain. The showers were the type that splashes the entire bathroom, making everything feel damp all the time. The food was typical Indonesian food, overcooked, cold and pretty bad. One day we had a wonderful roasted chicken which we all raved about but it was not repeated. The owner went to town one day and brought back some requests. I lost 3 pounds. The meal on the plane was the best one I had on the whole trip, which says something. Because of the bad food and rooms I would not return.

Reporter and Travel

Dive Experience Over 1000 dives
Where else diving Indo, Phil, Red Sea, carib, Mexico, Sea of Cortez, Galapagos
Closest Airport Manado Getting There Through Manado, then long car ride.

Dive Conditions

Weather sunny, rainy, cloudy Seas calm
Water Temp 80-82°F / 27-28°C Wetsuit Thickness 3
Water Visibility 15-30 Ft/ 5-9 M

Dive Policy

Dive own profile yes
Enforced diving restrictions dives usually about 70 minutes, no deco dives
Liveaboard? no Nitrox Available? yes

What I Saw

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

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

Subject Matter 5 stars Boat Facilities 3 stars
Overall rating for UWP's N/A Shore Facilities 5 stars
UW Photo Comments Black Sands was good, the trip organizer was very helpful. NAD Lembeh had the best camera room I have ever seen. Vis terrible but one expects that for Lembeh. On each dive I saw a critter I had never photographed before. Owners are avid photographers and very helpful.
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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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