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Dive Review of Dive Damai/Damai I in
Indonesia/Banda Sea

Dive Damai/Damai I: "Boutique diving", Oct, 2014,

by Marilyn Walker, CA, US (Sr. Reviewer Sr. Reviewer 9 reports with 12 Helpful votes). Report 7876 has 3 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 $$ 4 stars
Beginners 2 stars
Advanced 5 stars
Comments It's expensive, but the eat-sleep-dive cruise aboard Damai I was very rewarding. Dive Damai offers a wide variety of destinations, covering the many islanded seas between Sulewesi and West Papua, south to the main Indonesian chain and west along them as far as Komodo and Bali. We had been calling our tour “diving Raja Ampat” but the itinerary of this trip was more focused on the Banda Sea. We started in Sorong, had our first dive right at the south end of Raja Ampat at Misool, continued south into the Banda Sea and Kun, Banda, Nusa Laut and finally Ambon. Most of the cruising was at night and we had favorable weather so the bit of roll cradled us to sleep and (after a little acclimation) the engine and generator roar receded into background and, as a privacy barrier, was even welcome in shipboard quarters.

But one isn't cramped; cabin 3 is gigantic, the camera room more than adequate for our nine guests, the dive deck well set up with individual assigned stations having each a camera rinse tank and bootie stowage. The crew is very attentive and helpful in getting in and out of dive gear and you never have to carry a tank or your camera between deck and tender.

There were two dive tenders and as many as three dive shifts each site. The three dive guides were rotated among the diver groups. Gusti, genial and highly competent, Suleman (alt spelling Soleman) as wise as the Solomon he was named for, and sharp-eyed Yanto, who spotted the highly prized rhinopius.

Each dive guide would lead no more than four divers and on this trip, the guests were veteran enough that the stated policy was “you manage your dive as you wish, stay as long as you want, but no solo diving”.

Disappointing, the nitrox generator was out of commission and repeated attempts didn't bring it on-line for the duration of the trip. Not a big deal to us: we always like to stay shallow where the light and critter are most available and hardly ever dive to 164 feet.

We ate like hobbits: first breakfast, second breakfast, elevenses, lunch, tea, dinner. Food is good and fresh baked croissants and cookies and treats are frequent. The guests on this tour expressed a range of dietary requirements which were easily accommodated. Some wanted vegetarian, some “no fish”, some “chicken, no beef”. Some frequently opting for “crew food”.

Beer and sodas are included in the price; wine and spirits not included and not cheap either.

We dove on many wonderful pristine coral walls and reefs, had hammerheads and a manta and even had a little muck where mandarinfish and flamboyant cuttlefish were seen.
Websites Dive Damai   

Reporter and Travel

Dive Experience Over 1000 dives
Where else diving The tropical Pacific, the Caribbean and California
Closest Airport Depends on the tour Getting There Might be two or three flights, depending on where the tour starts.

Dive Conditions

Weather cloudy, dry Seas calm
Water Temp 79-81°F / 26-27°C Wetsuit Thickness
Water Visibility 30-50 Ft/ 9-15 M

Dive Policy

Dive own profile yes
Enforced diving restrictions [Unspecified]
Liveaboard? yes Nitrox Available? yes

What I Saw

Sharks 1 or 2 Mantas 1 or 2
Dolphins None Whale Sharks None
Turtles > 2 Whales None
Corals 3 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 5 stars Boat Facilities 5 stars
Overall rating for UWP's 5 stars 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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