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Dive Review of Carpe Vita Explorer in
Maldives/N & S Male N & S Ari, Vaavu

Carpe Vita Explorer, Apr, 2013,

by Thomas H Lopatin, NJ, US (Reviewer Reviewer 5 reports). Report 7427.

No photos available at this time

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

Accommodations 5 stars Food 2 stars
Service and Attitude 5 stars Environmental Sensitivity 4 stars
Dive Operation 4 stars Shore Diving N/A
Snorkeling 4 stars
Value for $$ 4 stars
Beginners 4 stars
Advanced 4 stars
Comments The Carpe Vita Explorer is a beautiful boat. Largest cabins I've ever enjoyed on a live aboard. Great crew with great attitude. Only downside was the food was the worst of any live aboard. Nice bunch of guests, with just a couple of 'buoyancy snobs' who critiqued and complained about one newer diver's skills and that some of us had cupped some water from the camera tanks to rinse our masks….Fortunately, they were easy to steer clear of topside thanks to this roomy well appointed boat.
Having been all over the Caribbean, as well as the Pacific and Indian Oceans, I would rate the diving as very good and a worthwhile trip. There were many opportunities to dive with manta rays, and we had one extended snorkel with a 30 foot whale shark. 34 dives were offered, as were night dives, one with mantas. I observed a number of interesting behaviors among the varied marine life, including giant trevally feeding on their juvenile siblings during a night dive, unicorn fish using diver's bubbles to tickle themselves, a clownfish attempting to drive a porcelain crab from their common home, and a huge school of 100's of parrot fish that swarmed the hard corals, generating a huge cloud of sand, while mass feeding on 20 foot sections at 15-30 second bursts….then moving 20 yards and repeating the process.
Some dive sites had very strong currents, perhaps not suitable for beginner or poorly conditioned divers, though it was permissible to gently anchor yourself with a finger or two (or with a reef hook) in a patch of dead coral...but keep an eye out for Bandit Morays… I found out, they will nip a finger that comes too close to their den, as they are very territorial.
Having already dove in both the Eastern and Western Indian Ocean, the Maldives are a very worthwhile destination and the Carpe Vita Explorer a great boat to do it on. If they could improve on their selection, preparation and diversity of meals (lunch and dinner in particular) they would get a 10 out of 10 from me.

Reporter and Travel

Dive Experience 501-1000 dives
Where else diving Worldwide
Closest Airport Getting There

Dive Conditions

Weather sunny Seas currents
Water Temp 80-90°F / 27-32°C Wetsuit Thickness
Water Visibility 50-100 Ft/ 15-30 M

Dive Policy

Dive own profile yes
Enforced diving restrictions 100 foot maximum depth
Liveaboard? yes Nitrox Available? yes

What I Saw

Sharks Lots Mantas Squadrons
Dolphins Schools Whale Sharks 1 or 2
Turtles > 2 Whales None
Corals 3 stars Tropical Fish 4 stars
Small Critters 4 stars Large Fish 4 stars
Large Pelagics 4 stars

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

Subject Matter 4 stars Boat Facilities 3 stars
Overall rating for UWP's 4 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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