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Dive Review of Zen Dive /Alila Manggis, Candidasa in

Zen Dive /Alila Manggis, Candidasa: "Great diving in Eastern Bali", Aug, 2015,

by Graham McGregor, Kilmacolm, GB (Top Contributor Top Contributor 39 reports with 22 Helpful votes). Report 8331.

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 5 stars
Dive Operation 4 stars Shore Diving 4 stars
Snorkeling N/A
Value for $$ 4 stars
Beginners 4 stars
Advanced 4 stars
Comments I was on holiday with my wife (non diver) and son (who dives).
We had three days of two tank dives with Zen Dive based in Candidasa.
One morning we had two dives at Padang Bai, about a 30 minute panga ride from Zen's own dock. The dives at Blue Lagoon and Jepun were actually very nice. Blue Lagoon yielded eel gardens, morays, stingray, frogfish, cuttlefish and many nudibranchs. Jepun has the added bonus of a small wreck. Zen is run by a Dutchman, Jos, and Jelena. They were very helpful. We got picked up and dropped off at our hotel and they took care of washing and hanging our gear back at their shop between dives. They had nitrox and a 15 ltr tank for me. Be warned the water canbe chilly in August in Bali. You wll probably be more comfortable in a 5mm wetsuit. I dived with a 3mm full suit on two diving days and I was OK in 25C water. The water on the second day of diving at Nusa Penida was coller still and I put a 3mm shorty under my 3mm full suit and was fine. Zen didn't have a huge selection of rental wet suits, although they found a 5mm full suit for my son.

Our second day of diving was off Nusa Penisa an island about a 50 minute speedboat ride from the port at Padang Bai. Zen picked us up at our hotel and drove us round to Padang Bai where they had organised a fast boat. Our first dive was at Manta Point which cerainly lived up to its name with several large mantas on the cleaning station during the course of our 1 hour dive. Really magnificent. The downside is that the site was very very crowded, with divers and snorkellers. After an hour or so surface interval we dived Crystal Bay and went looking for Mola Mola in very strong currents. Unfortunately no Mola Mola appeared but it was a really nice site.

Our final dive day was at the USAT Liberty wreck at Tulamben. This is abut an hour's drive north of Candisasa and, once again, Jos picked us up at our hotel and he took me and my son up to Tulamben. The Liberty Wreck is world renowned and it is a great dive. It is a shore dive and the entry and exit over a stone/shingle beach is tricky but Jos was great, briefing us well and helping us get in and out safely. The Liberty Wreck starts at about 5m and slopes down the reef from (shallow) stern to (deepest at about 30m) bow. It's a really nice wreck and although it bo longer has the swim throughs it one had it still has several. The wreck was teeming with marine life.

We stayed near Candidasa at the Alila Manggis and it was good, with a decent restaurant and a nice pool area. There is also a small spa. The hotel arranged a car and driver to take us on various sight seeing trips to the many temples and palaces in eastern Bali.
Websites Zen Dive   

Reporter and Travel

Dive Experience 501-1000 dives
Where else diving Galapagos; Maldives, Malapascua; Sipadan; Komodo;
Red Sea; Caribbean; Cozumel; Cuba; Florida; Hawaii
Closest Airport Denpasar, Bali Getting There Straightforward from Europe with dirst KLM flights to Bali and good connections with Emirates and Qatar Airways

Dive Conditions

Weather sunny, dry Seas surge, currents, no currents
Water Temp 24-28°C / 75-82°F Wetsuit Thickness 5
Water Visibility 15-3 M / 49-10 Ft

Dive Policy

Dive own profile yes
Enforced diving restrictions We dived each time with a divemaster to a plan. However, they were flexible and every dive was more than one hour long
Liveaboard? no Nitrox Available? yes

What I Saw

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

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

Subject Matter N/A Boat Facilities N/A
Overall rating for UWP's N/A 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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