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Dive Review of Komodo Dancer in

Komodo Dancer, Oct, 2013,

by Michael J. Millet, CA, US (Top Contributor Top Contributor 84 reports with 49 Helpful votes). Report 7364.

No photos available at this time

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

Accommodations 4 stars Food 4 stars
Service and Attitude 4 stars Environmental Sensitivity 4 stars
Dive Operation 4 stars Shore Diving N/A
Snorkeling N/A
Value for $$ 4 stars
Beginners 2 stars
Advanced 4 stars
Comments The port of departure for this trip was Labuan Bajo on Flores Island. I flew over from Bali after diving that island for a week. The Labuan Bajo is undergoing a major expansion that will completed in a year or so. Thereafter, the word is that this airport will be handling international flights from Singapore and Hong Kong eliminating the need to route thru Bali.

Upon arriving on board the Komodo Dancer (actually the Ombak Biru), we learned to our disappointment that nitrox would not be available due to a faulty generator. Apparently, this had been an issue for the prior dive trip also. So I adjusted to the reality of doing over 30 dives on air.

The cabins on the KD are the usual smallish live-aboard cabins -- spacious for one person and a bit cramped for 2. The cabins were kept clean and tidy with fresh towels a couple of times during the trip.

The food was average for a live-aboard. I have had worse and also much better. Breakfast is a continental before the 1st dive at 0730 then a made-to-order hot breakfast after the dive. The 2nd dive was at about 1030 followed by a buffet lunch that featured primarily Indonesian cuisine. The afternoon dive was at about 1430 with a nite dive at 1830. Dinner was served after the night dive at 2000. Dinner was a plated with no choice of entree. The beverages included the local Bintang beer and one glass of wine.

All the diving is from skiffs loaded from the main vessel. The crew loads the dive gear into dive stations on the skiffs where BCD's are donned. Most of the dive sites are but a 5 minute ride from the KD.
There are 2 dive skiffs so the divers were put into to groups each with its own dive guide.

The trip itinerary took us to Gililawa Laut, Batu Monco, Gili Banta, Rinca, Padar and Komodo islands.
The diving included a wide variety of underwater habitat from black sand to walls to coral gardens to sloping terrain. As a result, there were encounters with a myriad of marine life -- mantas, cuttlefish, nudibranchs, turtles, octopus, schooling fish, a variety of shrimp and crabs. The trip also included a wide variety of dive conditions from no current to easy drift to screaming current to big time surge.

Take note that the water temperatures in the southern reefs of Komodo and Rinca really drop off. It is definitely time for a 5mm with a hood.

This was a very good trip but I could definitely feel the effects of over 30 dives in some challenging conditions on air. Nitrox would have made a positive difference.

I would seriously consider diving this area again but perhaps on different vessel.
Websites Komodo Dancer   

Reporter and Travel

Dive Experience Over 1000 dives
Where else diving Galapagos, Solomon Islands, PNG, GBR, Vanuatu, Palau, Philippines,
Indonesia, Yap, Kosrae, Truk, Fiji, Socorros, All over the Caribbean.
Closest Airport Getting There

Dive Conditions

Weather sunny, windy Seas calm, choppy, surge, currents, no currents
Water Temp 74-83°F / 23-28°C Wetsuit Thickness 3
Water Visibility 40-90 Ft/ 12-27 M

Dive Policy

Dive own profile yes
Enforced diving restrictions No deco; stay with or in vicinity of dive guide
Liveaboard? yes Nitrox Available? no

What I Saw

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

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

Subject Matter 5 stars Boat Facilities 4 stars
Overall rating for UWP's 4 stars Shore Facilities N/A
UW Photo Comments This 10-day trip provided a wide variety of aquatic critters to photograph from mantas to nembrothas. The vessel has a camera table that can accommodate about 5 large camera rigs. There is a large dedicated rinse tanks for cameras. The crew is diligent and careful loading/unloading cameras from the dive skiffs. Towels are provided for the camera table along with a compressed air nozzle.

The camera table is located adjacent to the large dining table so at times this area can become a bit congested. The charging stations are located inside the salon.
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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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