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Dive Review of Two Fish Divers in
Indonesia

Two Fish Divers: "Two Fish Divers Bunaken Island, Sulawesi, Indonesia", Dec, 2015,

by Mike , MI, US (Sr. Reviewer Sr. Reviewer 8 reports with 1 Helpful vote). Report 8786.

No photos available at this time

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

Accommodations 3 stars Food 3 stars
Service and Attitude 5 stars Environmental Sensitivity 4 stars
Dive Operation 4 stars Shore Diving N/A
Snorkeling N/A
Value for $$ 5 stars
Beginners 3 stars
Advanced 4 stars
Comments Bunaken Island, Sulawesi, Indonesia
Two Fish Divers
Dec 12 to 19 / 15

We departed Singapore for Manado on the morning of Dec. 12 for a direct 3 hr. Silk Air flight to Manado. There are other flights (cheaper too) but you have to connect either in KL or Jakarta and it will take all day. You do need to arrive in Manado early enough for the boat transfer to happen before dark.

We were met at the airport with the usual name sign, loaded up the van and were driven to the water front for our boat pick up. The greeter was wearing a Two Fish shirt. The drive is normally ½ hr. but due to the Xmas parade this was a 1 hr. drive and traffic was so snarled it delayed the delivery of goods to the regular boat we were to take. Instead of waiting Two Fish sent over their fast boat to pick up the three of us waiting for a ride. Fast boat ride is about ½ hr. but could be longer if the weather was rough.

We arrived at Two Fish just after low tide so we were able to get into the boat ramp area. There is an opening in the costal mangrove that allows boats in. Checked in, did paperwork and were shown to our small bungalow. It had a small porch and the interior was completely protected by mosquito screen. It was fitted with a ceiling fan and an oscillating fan, no AC, and an attached bathroom, exactly as advertised on the web site. A plug in insect repellent was provided as well as mosquito coils for evening use outside.

All bungalows front on the mangroves, which is the tidal mangrove growth along the shore. There is very little open beach on the island. Most of the coast is overgrown by the mangrove. This is clearly visible on the Google earth view.

Dining is cafeteria style in a central dining hall and there is a nice beach bar. Food was local Indonesian fare and was good but with limited selection. They do eggs to order for breakfast and will accommodate vegetarians. The bar was surprisingly well stocked, and the staff provided music in the evenings. Wi Fi was OK in the office area but spotty in the bungalows. If you must stay in touch when traveling in Indonesia I suggest you stop in town and get a sim card for your cell phone or arrange an overseas package before you leave home. Cell phone is by far the most dependable communication you can have.

The PADI dive operation appeared to be well run and competent. I watched the teaching of a student with issues clearing the mask and was impressed with the time the instructor spent in the pool with her to get it right. The pool is ideal for training with four different depths. The rental equipment looked to be in good shape. Two Fish has dedicated technical dive instructors and staff available on site and we watched one gal do her first course while we were there. They were usually on the same daily boat as us.

Boat operations are with traditional mono hull high bow boat designed to deal with the ocean swell. There is a cabin area, a shaded deck and an onboard ocean toilet. Water entry is by back roll and it can be a bit of a ways to the water if you are on a bigger boat. Getting out of the water is up a ladder placed along the side for this purpose. You can hand up your weights and fins and also pass up the BC and tank if you do not want to climb the ladder with it on. Discuss what you are going to do with the boat crew before the first dive. Emergency oxygen, fresh water and snacks are on the boat, with ship to shore communication with cell phone as is normal for small boats in most of the western pacific dive operations.

Always have your booties or flip flops available when in the boat because if you arrive back at low tide for lunch you will have to hike back through the mangroves. The boat is left out where it still floats and you walk back to the boat after lunch for the afternoon dives. This all depends on the time of low tide. One good thing about this is the fact that no channel has been dredged through the reef to the resort which is what it would take to get the boat in.

The diving was all wall diving, drop in and down and then work your way up. Max time in the water 75 minutes and dive your computer profile. Students have one area on top of the reef to practice in. We saw all the usual critters, turtles, sharks, large tuna this trip, rays, eagle rays, travail, and all the usual small critters. This was a new camera flash and light trip for my wife so a lot of time underwater was spent learning this equipment. Probably the surprise sighting of the trip was three dugong on the top of the reef, even the locals were surprised and one even admitted they had never seen one. We did three dives a day with a night dive or morning dive also available.

This time period is the off season and the end of the rainy season, and without AC we found it hard to get things dry until we put the fan to use. The humidity cost me a tablet key board that I had to replace and the only other time this happened to me was in Raja Ampat in the same conditions. My “Surface” is now on its third key pad. There are bugs, both mosquitos and sand flies and we did use the spray on repellent morning and evening.
Last day we walked to the small town, about 20 minutes. Very quiet, everyone either is a fisherman or works at one of the SCUBA operations on the island.

We felt we received good value for money on this trip. The staff is mostly local and very helpful and attentive. Just remember to talk slowly and most importantly listen slowly to ensure you understand what you are being told.

For those of you who are nervous travelers there are a couple of things to remember when traveling to this area. This particular area of Indonesia is a mainly Christian area with the population about 60% to 70% Christian. Most people understand some English even if they are too shy to speak it. If you are nervous about mosquito born diseases check the CDC web site for recommended vaccinations or prophylaxis. There can be malaria in this area. We personally do not like the prophylaxis because we have taken it so many times so we use “deet”, wear long loose cloths and stay indoors at dawn and dusk if possible. Another thing to consider if you are nervous about getting met at the airport, get the operation that is meeting you to send a picture of who you will be meeting.
Websites Two Fish Divers   

Reporter and Travel

Dive Experience Over 1000 dives
Where else diving Eastern Pacific, Malaysia, Indonesia, Australia, Solomon's, Gulf of Mexico, Caribbean
Closest Airport Manado Getting There Flight, road drive, and fast boat to island

Dive Conditions

Weather sunny Seas currents
Water Temp 26-28°C / 79-82°F Wetsuit Thickness
Water Visibility 6-30 M / 20-98 Ft

Dive Policy

Dive own profile yes
Enforced diving restrictions 75 min. max in the water, dive your computer.
Liveaboard? no Nitrox Available? yes

What I Saw

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

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

Subject Matter 5 stars Boat Facilities 3 stars
Overall rating for UWP's 3 stars Shore Facilities 2 stars
UW Photo Comments Large fresh water bucket on boat, no shore facilities, work on cameras in room.
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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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