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Dive Review of Grand Komodo/Raja Ampat Dive Lodge in
Indonesia/Raja Ampat

Grand Komodo/Raja Ampat Dive Lodge, Sep, 2011,

by Barbara M Shively, MD, US (Sr. Reviewer Sr. Reviewer 7 reports). Report 6255.

No photos available at this time

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

Accommodations 1 stars Food 1 stars
Service and Attitude 4 stars Environmental Sensitivity 3 stars
Dive Operation 4 stars Shore Diving 4 stars
Snorkeling 3 stars
Value for $$ 1 stars
Beginners 1 stars
Advanced 4 stars
Comments My husband says it should be renamed the Raja Ampat DIET Lodge! The food was basically unedible -- and we are not real picky eaters. There was no choice, no menu, food was just set in front of you. Most meals were totally lacking in flavor with tough, overcooked meats, lukewarm unseasoned rice and flavorless, overcooked (or almost raw) vegetables. At dinner the soup course was the exception and was not bad. Butter was in a slab and tasted 'off', probably rancid. If you like a drink occasionally, beware, there is NO alcohol except Bintang beer. Accommodations were adequate if you don't need enough light to read by or otherwise see much. Interiors are dark wood paneling that absorb what light is given by the very low wattage bulbs. We did ask for and get one reading light. As for diving, I was led to believe mantas were there year round and that currents were mild (Undercurrent report was one source). Neither was true! I specifically went to see and photograph mantas -- not there, wrong season. Our dive guide, Jemi, was extemely nice and competant and tried his best. All dives were done along the tops of sea mounts out in the open sea between islands and the dive guide said currents are almost always strong to very strong. I found it impossible to do much photography while being swept along by 3 knot currents. We were not told to bring reef hooks and they had only one available. I don't like the damage they must do to the reef. I might have resorted to use it in desperation had I not come down with a cold that stopped me from more diving. Also, we were warned by the dive guide that we needed to be able to descend immediately upon getting into the water or risk being swept too far along the sea mount and possibly pulled very deep by the current at the end of the sea mount. Equalizing is often a problem for us so this was a frightening prospect. In summary, we were not young, strong or fit enough (nor willing) to deal with the challenges of this diving. That plus the minimal comfort level of the accomodations added up to the worst dive trip of our lives.
Websites Grand Komodo   Raja Ampat Dive Lodge

Reporter and Travel

Dive Experience 251-500 dives
Where else diving Around the Caribbean for 20+ years, Costa Rica, Hawaii
Closest Airport Getting There

Dive Conditions

Weather sunny, dry Seas currents
Water Temp 81-83°F / 27-28°C Wetsuit Thickness
Water Visibility 50-75 Ft/ 15-23 M

Dive Policy

Dive own profile no
Enforced diving restrictions Strong currents required staying with dive guide.
Liveaboard? no Nitrox Available? N/A

What I Saw

Sharks None Mantas None
Dolphins None Whale Sharks None
Turtles None Whales None
Corals 5 stars Tropical Fish 5 stars
Small Critters 4 stars Large Fish N/A
Large Pelagics 2 stars

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

Subject Matter 4 stars Boat Facilities 2 stars
Overall rating for UWP's 3 stars Shore Facilities 4 stars
UW Photo Comments There is a dedicated rinse tank for cameras on shore
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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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