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paolobl65

Member Since 14 Mar 2009
Offline Last Active Aug 10 2018 11:49 AM
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Gorontalo ( Indonesia ) April 2018 - trip report

23 June 2018 - 07:42 AM

I was in Gorontalo ( Sulawesi - Indonesia ) for a 8 days dive trip last April 2018 with Miguel's Diving Gorontalo ( Dive Gorontalo, Sulawesi, Indonesia with Miguel's Diving )  

Unfortunately I lost 4 days diving because a tracheit , so with only 4 days diving I had just an idea of what the place has to offer .

Logist is very easy : Garuda Indonesiua connect every day Jakarta to Gorontalo ( 4 hours flight with a tecnical stop in Makassar ) , resort arrange pick up in airport for a 50 min drive to the town.
Accomodation is in Gorontalo City ( Grand Q hotel : GRAND Q HOTEL GORONTALO • GRAND Q HOTEL GORONTALO ) so do not expect any idilliac resort on unspoiled beach , anyway the hotel is big and quite confortable ( air con , hot shower , great breakfast buffet ) .
Dinner at hotel is good and it is also possible to go outside in many local suggested restaurant , anyway be aware a little bahasa indonesia is needed !

Every morning Rantje Allen ( Miguel Diving owner ) pick up me 07:30 AM for a short drive to the dock . Back more or less 04:00 PM . 
Dive boat is confortable , with toilet on board . Dive sites from 20 to 40 min away .  
3 dives per day , lunch on board ( lunch box from a local restaurant … very good ) .

Underwater scenario was very interesting and really unspoiled : incredible big sponges ( and the famous Salvador Dalì sponges as well ) , big sea fans , dramatic sea scape with many holes , cavern and deep splits.
Fantastic visibility , warm water ( 28-29°C ) , mild to none current made the dives very relaxing . Good fish life , but nothing big .
Good macro life as well even nothing to compare to the real macro destinations like Tulamben , Lembeh , Anilao , Ambon .
Unfortunately whale shark are no more regulary seen here because the local shrimps factory closed and so no more organic waste is flushed in the sea to attract the whale sharks .
What I dislike a bit was the too much plastic garbage on the surface …. 

As underwater photographer I take advantage of the skilled dive master for macro shot and the professional dive models for wide angle shots .
All in all a very interesting place , nice place to vist if you are in Sulawesi area ( Manado/ Lembeh ) and have some spare days . 

Here some photos from this trip  .

( Canon 80D  in S&S housung  -  Canon 8-15 FE  with ZEN DP170   -  2 x Inon Z330 )

( more photos and better quality on my flick gallery : https://www.flickr.c...157669429671268 )

 

 

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Macro Dive in Tulamben-Bali : where Dive Guide can make the difference .

17 April 2018 - 12:08 PM

I spent 9 day diving  in Tulamben ( Bali ) last August  and  I hired   Ajiex Dharma  as my private dive guide .

Ajiex  is a skilled  and  expert freelancer dive guide , worked many years in Villa Markisa , is very knowledge in nudibranches  and  a talented  underwater photographer  as well .

 

The  feeling was  perfect  :  above and  below  water . 

We usually make 2 dives in the morning  , lunch  together  ( fantastic  have a lunch on the beach  with super fresh grilled fish )  , and  another  dive in afternoon .

All shore dive , pick up from my resort … all perfectly organized .

 

We  split  our underwater  photography   in two session  :   macro  with snoot    and    reverse ring macro ( extreme supermacro )

 

 

Macro with snoot  .

 

We used  mostly  a  Fabio Iardino snoot (  fiber optic + sealed optical lens  custom snoot  )  on  a slave  Inon  Z240  triggered   to   have  the  maximum  flexibility  in  targeting the light  to  create some side light and  back light  ( and  not  the  standard  spot  light  )  .  

The goal was to create a light  that  give a  great result to the  subject  but , sometimes ,  do not completely  dark the  background  .  

Just  as  less light as  possible  in the  “right place “ to create te effect "we like"  :   this is  the way  we used the snoot .  

( btw :  “right place “  is  a subjective  meaning  of  course  ….  anyway  hope you like  the  following photos )

 

Here  are some  shots  we  taken  .

(  if you like  to see more  , and  in high resolution ,   here is the dedicated Flick gallery : https://www.flickr.c...th/36874751275/

 

 

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Second Trip to Triton Bay !

16 April 2018 - 11:07 AM

I came back again to Triton Bay last January 2018 .

It was my second time there ( first time you can read here :   http://wetpixel.com/forums/index.php?showtopic=60852  )

The place is still wonderful above and below the water .

What is changed from my first time ?
Now Garuda fly from Jakarta to Kaimana so it is easy ( and reliable ) to get there .
The resort has two more bungalow ( now 6 ) anyway the atmosphere is still intimate and friendly .
There is one more boat ( now 3 ) so group are still maximun 4 divers per DM .
Bungalow , food , great beach , amazing landscape ... all as my past trip .

 

 

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the resort house reef :

 

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Triton Bay area is one of the best place for pigmy sea horse , and this time finally I saw the Satomy Pigmy .
As small as pontoy ( 1 cm ) , live in the seaweed and often move from one point to another .

Have a look at these two photos and see the kind of arm on the back he use to balance himself during is Flying ! Fantastic creature !
 
 
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Again many other pigmy and macro subject . Usually the afternoon dive ( 3 ° dive ) was macro oriented . The guide are very good spotter for elusive and mimetic critters .

Here some pigmy denise :

 

 

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can you see the second pigmy ??

 

and a very small hairy shrimp :

 

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Triton Bay - trip report - December 2016 / January 2017

19 October 2017 - 09:52 AM

 I was in Triton Bay - West Papua - Indonesia ( Triton Bay Dive Resort ) last December 2016 for a dive vacation and I'd like to share my experience .
( .. I just beg your pardon for my English .. )

Getting There :
the trip begin many months before with a good e-mail comunication with resort owners ( Jimmy and Leeza ) to receive all the info about the location and diving and to set up the flights to get there .
I arrived from Italy in Jakarta in the afternoon and then a night flight Lion + Wings Air to Kaimana via Ambon . I arrived in Kaimana airport h 10:00 AM , Jimmy , the owner , is waiting for me and other guest and than half hour drive to the pier and 2 and half hours to get the resort . Long but not difficult .
Same for the way back : starting in the morning from resort and landing in Jakarta h 4:00 PM .
Actually Wings Air seems do not fly anymore to Kaimana , but there is now Garuda : so for getting there next time ( ... ah , yes I already planned next Christmas again in Triton Bay ... ) I will fly Garuda from Jakarta to Kaimana via Ambon ( arriving in Kaimana H 9:45 AM ) but way back Garuda has orrible connection in Ambon , so better Kaimana to Jakarta via Sorong ( Wings + Batik Air , landing in Jakarta h 7:00 PM )

Location and Resort :
Triton bay is in West Papua , south-est from Raja Ampat , a very remote and still untouched area for diving . Only one resort actually ( Triton Bay Dive resort - Home ) and very few liveaboards .
The resort is in a quiet and amazing bay .

This was the view from the door of my bungalow :

 

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and this the view of the beach from the restaurant :

 

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and this the bungalow and the diving from the beach :

 

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I loved very much this resort : so small , intimate and well organized .
The room was very nice , well ventilated even without aircon , with a big open air bathroom , and just a step from the beach .

The restaurant offered buffet breakfats and family style lunch and dinner . Always delicious .
One per week a wonderful barbeque on the beach .

The electricity run from 6:00AM to 11:00 PM , this was my main concern before to arrive there , but really no problem at all , just a little planning to charge all the battery camera , strobe , laptop, and remember to have a little flash light on my bed during the night just in case .
Maybe the only issue is the slow wifi connection : whatsapp worked but no e-mail , FB .... anyway sometimes is also good in this way to better enjoy the holiday !
Be aware No mobile signal as well .

Again about location : I was really fascinating about the surrounding area , every morning the short boat ride to dive site gave me amazing view and after the first dive we always spent the surface interval in a unspoiled beach .... fantastic .
Just few example :

 

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and I was very impressed to not see anyt plastics in the water and to the beach !


DIVING :
the main reason to get there !

Just few words about the diving operation : there were 3 very skilled Dive Master from Manado , and this was the mailstone to have a very good experience !
The boat leave 8:00 AM for two dives in the morning , diving time 60-80 min , then back for lunch in resort . As I already said : surface interval in a fantastic and desert beach for relax and some snack .
Third dive 3:00 PM and night dive h 6:00 PM if you like ( I made only one time and it was beyond expectation )
Even with only 5 guest the resort always used two boats , so very relaxed and enjoible diving . Someimes I was with private dive master for better opportunity in phothography

As underwater photographer , I can divide the diving in three section : MACRO , WIDE , Whale Shark experience .