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1 week liveaboard from Bali


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#1 Alex_Mustard

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Posted 17 April 2006 - 11:05 AM

In August I am once again running a group trip to Bali. Running group trips is great fun - but my own photography is way down the agenda in terms of priorities. Ok, I still get nice stuff.

Anyway as a solution I was thinking about flying out a week early for my Bali trip and doing a 5-7 night liveaboard - to satisfy my thirst for images. I would want to head out towards Komodo, ideally.

First, are the boats running this way in August?

Do the liveaboards offer such 5-7 night trips? And if so, can anyone recommend a boat?

Thanks. Just idle spectulations at this stage.

Alex

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#2 MelBetley

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Posted 18 April 2006 - 02:44 AM

Hi Alex

Kararu run 7 night liveaboard trips to Komodo all year round departing Bali (www.kararu.com). I have been on 3 of their trips over the last three years and although all 3 have been dedicated u/w photography trips, I think their general trips would be just as good - great guides, friendly crew and very sympathetic to the needs of the u/w photographer. Divequest certainly used to be their UK agent, though they are easy to email direct.

This year they have switched the old traditonal schooner for a more modern vessel, which I haven't been on yet. Speaking to someone that has, it sounds great with internet connection in the rooms.

I (and those on trips with me) have found that the best sites are around Rinca island - the downside is that it's a fair steam out of Bali, stopping at sites along the way leaving you with limited time in Rinca before having to head back to Bali. Kararu do run trips from Bima to Bali, which reduces the time spent having to undertake that long steam in both directions, although I am not sure that you could do that trip in only 7 nights. Bima is a short internal flight from Bali.

You may also want to contact Dan Baldocchi (W/p member) who has chartered the boat for a week in August (although I don't know the dates) to run a 7 night video based trip to Komodo - I think there will also be u/w photographers on board and Dan has done more trips through this area than me and will be making sure that the better sites are visited.

Hope that helps

Mel

#3 MikeVeitch

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Posted 18 April 2006 - 03:14 AM

HI Mel!

Good to meet you the other day...

I am allowed to hijack Alex's threads in order to be social..... :lol:

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#4 echeng

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Posted 18 April 2006 - 05:59 AM

Did I just imagine this, or did Wetpixel member Mel Betley just post a message? This makes me very happy! :lol:
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#5 MelBetley

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Posted 18 April 2006 - 07:17 AM

Was good to meet you too Mike and sorry we didn't get a chance to chat more. Can't believe you're encouraging a rookie poster to stray off the straight and narrow so soon and participate in highjacked threads! Back in grey, wet and windy C Wharf and even the Channel without mantas seems an attractive option :lol:

And as for you young Cheng, after you did such a good job of "outing" me on the webcast, I figured it was about time I dipped a toe in the water. Great new shots of the mating mandarins and love the topside from the village

Now boys - back to liveaboards in Bali.........

#6 Drew

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Posted 18 April 2006 - 01:01 PM

Alex
There's a new boat called the Seven Seas run by Mark Heighes. Good boat and they have Tommy, the legendary guide from Ambon. I think Frogfish(Robert D) just finised a trip on it.
http://www.divekomod...liveaboard.html
PS ALWAYS start from Bima. The trip from Bali while nice, shortens your stay around RInca and the park itself.

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#7 davephdv

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Posted 18 April 2006 - 06:53 PM

It took a day and half each way when I went to Kommodo from Bali. One week seems like a long way to go for a modest amount of diving. Of course if it is just a bonus on a trip you are making anyway it might be great.
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#8 Marcelo Krause

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Posted 20 April 2006 - 06:19 AM

Have anyone been aboard the Komodo Dancer recently? I am also consedering a 7 days Komodo live aboard in September.

Thanks,

Marcelo Krause.

#9 dawhale

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Posted 23 April 2006 - 06:49 AM

I use Grand Komodo tours. They pioneered the diving in the Komodo area. Indonesian owned and operated. Not Aggressor class boats but defiantly a value with excellent crew, airconditioned staterooms and in suite bathrooms. I will be diving with them again this fall on a 16 day trip to the spice islands. dawhale

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#10 Alex_Mustard

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Posted 23 April 2006 - 07:33 AM

Thanks for the feedback - and sorry for the delay in replying - I have been away for the week.

Some good leads to follow. Thanks for the help and suggestions.

Alex

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#11 frogfish

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Posted 06 June 2006 - 02:53 AM

Alex, Drew, and everyone else,

Sorry, I was away when this query and discussion came up in April, in Komodo, as it happens, or I would have posted earlier. As Drew mentioned, this was the inaugural voyage of the Seven Seas, a newly rebuilt Phinisi schooner. All aboard were friends and we had a great trip, including hitting the mega-school of mantas at Karang Makassar. This is a good, well-run boat, well set up for diving and photographers. I haven't had time to post any images on my site for a long time, but there are a few up on the SevenSeas site, including pix of the boat.

The Seven Seas

Declaration: Jos and Lida Pet and Mark Heighes - the owners of the Seven Seas - are ery good friends whom I've done a lot of diving with over the years, all over Indonesia. Now they've built their dream boat, and I intend to spend as much time on it as possible over the next year - I'm booked on it again in July (back to Komodo, what can I say?), and November (Ambon-to-Sorong via the Bandas), and I'm hoping to squeeze in at least one more trip somewhere in between.

I did want to respond to DavePh's comment about the transit time from Bali to Komodo. A few boats do start and begin most of their trips in Bali, which means 1-2 days en route each way. (The usual practice is to to depart Bali about midday, cruise all night, dive north lombok the first real day, cruise all night again, and dive north sumbawa/sangeang island second day.)

The SevenSeas (and a number of other boats) start and end most of their trips either in Labuanbajo (on Flores) or Bima (eastern Sumbawa). From Labuanbajo, it's about three hours steaming to some of the best dives in the north of the park. From Bima, about a half day. I like it both ways: starting and finishing in Labuanbajo does maximize the time in the park, but I also like doing the macro dives at Sanggeang, which has some nudibranch species and other critters I've never seen anywhere else.

Alex - if you're still looking for a boat in August, email me.

Frogfish
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#12 yahsemtough

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Posted 06 June 2006 - 05:13 AM

Looks like a nice boat Robert. Glad to see you are getting a little diving in around all the work.

Cheers

Todd
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#13 frogfish

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Posted 07 June 2006 - 02:44 AM

Always time to dive. How are things in lumberjack-land?

Frogfish
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