Canadian Diver

Canadian Diver

My Dive Map

Reviews (6)

Bali

5
5
4
2

In late August/early September, 2011, I had the opportunity to dive in Tulamben, Bali. Overall, Tulamben is a great dive destination, and I have nothing but good things to say about scuba diving there.

The Diving: I spent my time largely focused on macro photography, which meant I stayed on the black sand sites such as Seraya Secrets for much of my trip. The critter life was good and some of the highlights included: large numbers of ghost pipefish, a wide variety of nudibranchs, pygmy seahorses, pipefish, and a sawblade shrimp. Aside from the good macro life, the Liberty Wreck is not to be missed. It is filled with healthy coral life, and resident fish. The highlight of the trip for me was swimming with the large school of resident jacks (photo below).

Dive Value: for me the Liberty Wreck and its resident fish are great value. The diving is similarly priced to other areas of South East Asia, which provides good value.

The Diving Conditions: the diving is done in warm water (~80 degrees on most sites), and during my trip the visibility was fantastic (35 ft+) on the dive sites in Bali where it mattered, such as the Liberty Wreck. Scuba diving in Bali is certainly for all levels. Do note that the beach in front of the Liberty Wreck is a rock beach, and boots are a must.

I did not take the time to explore the topside activities, and so am unable to comment!

Visited on 08/2011 - Submitted on 02/04/2014
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Anilao

5
4
5
2

I dove Anilao in April, 2009.

Conditions: all diving was done from traditional boats. The boats are comfortable, and most of the travel time was between 20-30 minutes, or less. Visibility ranged from good to great (20 ft to 43ft+), at least compared to the local conditions on the West Coast of Canada. Diving is easy, and applicable for all skill levels.

Marine Life: the diving is largely focused on small critters, and Anilao delivered during my stay. Some of the highlights include: wonderpus, peacock mantis shrimps (2) with eggs, a plethora of different nudibranch species, and frogfish galore.

Overall Value: flights are to Manila, and the transfer from Manila to Anilao is by car. Overall, the commute is relatively painless, and since the flight is to a major hub, and transportation is inexpensive, the value of Anilao is up there compared to other dive destinations in the region. Diving while I was there was some of the cheapest in the region.

I did not partake in any topside activities in Anilao, and am not really aware of any.

Visited on 04/2009 - Submitted on 02/04/2014
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Best Diving in Australia - Top 10

3
3
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5

I had the chance to dive a variety of sites across Australia in 2007.

In terms of Marine Life, Australia is a large country with a large variety of marine life depending on the location you are diving. I had the chance to both snorkel (no diving) with the whalesharks in Western Australia, and spend time in the Great Barrier reef. However, my favorite site in Australia is Fish Rock (photograph below), which this review will largely focus on.

EAST COAST: FISH ROCK

This dive site is located on the East coast of Australia, and is a bit of a train ride north of Sydney. However, the diving is great: 45ft+ visibility, and teeming with fish life. The water is not tropical, but a 5 mm wetsuit kept me warm. Also, there is a large population of nurse sharks that hover on the site, and allow you to get quite close. There were also large numbers of wobbegong sharks on every rock. Truly a wonderful shark dive.

Fish Rock is more suited to seasoned divers, who are comfortable in the water. The dive sit is best if you can go below 60 ft, and are comfortable with a bit of surge/current.

In terms of topside activities, Fish Rock is located in a small town, and I did not partake in any topside activities (nor am I away of any). Australia itself is a large developed country, and I do not think anything else needs to be said about the topside activities.

In terms of value, Australia is not cheap. The Australian dollar was doing quite well while I was there, and Fish Rock is in a relatively remote location. Nonetheless, I thought a weekend of diving was worth the cost, and would do it again.

Visited on 07/2007 - Submitted on 02/04/2014
Read all Best Diving in Australia - Top 10 Dive Travel reviews

Komodo

3
5
5
2

I spent 10 days diving Komodo, by liveaboard, in 2011.

Komodo is split between dive sites in the North and the South. While Komodo National Park comprises a big area, there are also lots of liveaboards that operate in the region - and some of the most popular dive sites, especially in the North (i.e. Crystal Rock), did get crowded.

The sites I experienced in North Komodo were dominated by open ocean pinnacles. The diving here is filled with currents, and for experienced divers. But the sites are filled with fish, and some pelagics...and then more fish (photograph below)! In terms of larger animals, we saw lots of turtles, and three large manta rays on a manta focused dive. Unfortunately, we saw only saw few sharks in the North (a couple of whitetips, and a nurse shark). The visibility at the sites in North Komodo was wonderful (40ft+ on every dive). The water in the North is colder, and a 3mm wetsuit was not enough. A 5mm suit, or layered steamer + 3mm suit was enough to keep me warm on these sites.

South Komodo is filled with critters, and aside from Cannibal Rock (which is a truly spectacular site), is also less crowded. Some of the critter highlights from my trip were: candy coral crabs, mating blue ring octopi, and pygmy seahorses. The diving here is easier than North Komodo, and appropriate for a wide range of skill levels. The dives in South Komodo were critter focused, and so the visibility was not a concern. However, on most sites visibility was good (25ft+), with the worst visibility I experienced being approximately 15ft, and still great for macro photography.

Top-side, the main attraction are the Komodo Dragons, which are impressive animals - however, they are a small part of the trip. Komodo is a truly great dive destination. But it is not a top-side destination.

Komodo is almost exclusively a liveaboard destination, and accordingly, is not inexpensive. However, the diving is worth the cost.

Visited on 08/2011 - Submitted on 02/04/2014
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Bahamas

3
5
3
4

I had the opportunity to dive the Bahamas in the Summer of 2009.

By far the highlight of my diving was doing a shark feed with Stuart Cove. This dive offered a chance to swim with, at times, 30+ Caribbean reef sharks - which is a truly adrenaline filled experience. That said, at no time did I feel unsafe. Doing this shark dive is something that I would highly, highly recommend.

The diving in the Bahamas is suitable to all experience levels. The water is warm and clear, and there was little to no current on the dives that I did. While the highlight for me was the shark diving, the other dives that I did (albeit only a couple) were enjoyable - the life in the shallows was healthy and abundant.

Topside, the weather was always warm, though we did experience one heavy storm in the week we were there. As far as topside activities goes, the Bahamas has a well developed tourism industry with plenty to do for all ages.

Visited on 07/2009 - Submitted on 03/03/2014
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Liberty Dive Resort Tulamben

5
5
5
4

Objectively, Liberty Dive Resort offers truly great value for the price. I stayed with them for three nights in 2011, and was highly impressed with the value that I received.

The room, and the resort in general, were both clean and well maintained. The rinse area is not ideal, but the rinse tanks are looked after and there is a hose to rinse out your items. I did not use the resort pool, or take advantage of any of the "spa" type services, so cannot comment on these. Instead, my focus was on the diving, and Liberty Dive Resort delivered. Everything that I asked to do was arranged, and arranged well - all of the diving, at the dive sites and times I wanted.

Due to the resorts location, you can dive the Liberty Wreck with ease - which is truly ideal, as this is the most popular site in the area. In order to dive many of the other sites, the resort arranges transport (short drives, under 15 minutes) for you and your gear.

The divemaster I dove with was professional, and well trained at finding the small critters I was interested in seeing. He showed me tons of nudibranchs, ghost pipefish, sawblade shrimp, etc. He was also able advise on the correct time of day to go to the Liberty Wreck and look for the schooling jackfish - which delivered. Being surrounded by that school was a great experience, that Liberty Dive arranged.

I ate all of my meals at the resort restaurant, and have no complaints. I enjoyed the Indonesian food they served, and don't demand a great deal of variety (and I am not sure there was much) as long as the food is good - and it was.

Overall - great value for money. This is a resort I would recommend.

Visited on 03/2014 - Submitted on 03/03/2014
Read all Liberty Dive Resort Tulamben Dive Resort reviews

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