Friday, January 25, 2013

Bali, Indonesia

This was the third time we had been to the Alam Anda Dive Resort, so it is a resort that we know and love. The Dive Worldwide end - booking, communication and ticketing - could not have been smoother or easier, and we would have no hesitation in recommending Dive Worldwide to anyone in our circle of diving friends.

We stress that we cannot say enough good things about the Alam Anda Dive Resort. The accommodation is fantastic; the staff are friendly, warm, welcoming and genuine; the food is fantastic (including the pizzas - but the local dishes are to die for); the bar was lovely - staff, cocktails and the local beer - Bintang; and the Werner Lau dive centre was so efficient, it was incredible.

The dives were great - so much macro life, but enough bigger stuff to make the whole experience memorable (we did 20 dives during our two weeks). In fact we hold the dive centre up as a centre of excellence and a model of efficiency.

The spa was relaxing and very reasonable in terms of price. Our villa - Bahari 2 - was peaceful, spacious and we absolutely loved it!

The management of both the resort and dive centre are visible, friendly and very approachable. We were very touched by the efforts made for our 35th wedding anniversary (which we celebrated while we were there). If there's a better run and more friendly resort on Bali, then it must have exceptionally high standards!
Viv and Bill B, Oct '12

South Pacific Explored

Our consultant was fantastic. Nothing was too much trouble. This was a very complicated trip and everything worked. We spent a month visiting New Zealand, the Solomon Islands and Papua New Guinea. It was fantastic!

Out of the four diving resorts we stayed in, Lissenung was undoubtedly the best. A beautiful private island fringed with a white sand beach, you can walk around it in just 20 minutes. It's in New Ireland, just a short boat journey from Kavieng and we visited in the middle of June - the start of the dry season. However, it can still rain and a thunderstorm is not uncommon.

The diving was great - quite challenging at times. The two best dives were Albatross Passage with sharks, rays and colourful corals on the walls and Deep Pete, a plane wreck at 40 metres. This was an amazing sight as you descended because it was completely covered in shoalds of sweetlips and other fish, including lion fish. The resort has a very photographer friendly set up, so snap away!

The owners, Ange and dietmar are lovely - we felt so welcome. Their dog, Chivas, entertained us by swimming with Lissy the turtle who returns annually after laying her eggs somewhere safe!
Paula & Dougie N, Jun '12

Musandam, Oman

Just wanted to let you know that I had a good trip to the Musandam, Oman.
Sandra and Kurt (as well as Ed and Camilla), were excellent hosts and VERY well organized. The driver was rather late picking me up when I arrived in Dubai, but otherwise it was like clockwork.

The hotel was actually better than I was expecting and I had no complaints, other than one day when my room did not get serviced.

The diving was about the same as Muscat – same sort of viz, more rays, less eels – but the water was so warm I wished I had a skin rather than a wet suit with me!
Jacqueline S, Sep '12

Costa Rica

Our holiday went very well, Costa Rica and its people are very very nice, the landscapes fantastic and nature abundant.  Charlotte and her team were very helpful, though not needed much as all ran smoothly - a good sign of a job well done, they were very helpful clearing up a couple of minor items. 

The locations were very good - people always nice and food good.  The tours at Tirimbina were unexpectedly excellent, the guides superbly well informed, and very enthusiastic about their topics, my only real regret is not to have spent more time in Tirimbina, La Selva, Sarapiqui area. 

The diving was good with  sharks, some good shoals and octopus.  Friendly and the sea to ourselves, no crowding at all, few other boats even on horizon.  Ralph our dive leader was very good.

We will definitely go back to Central America - for diving and for land based aspects, and are looking at options for Belize in 2013.
Fergus S, Aug '12

Socorro, Mexico

Our holiday was fantastic - thanks very much for organising! 

The Solmar V liveaboard people thought we were very lucky with the visibility around Roca Partida and with the number of manta ray sightings around Isla San Benedicto.
I got plenty of photos, but there will be loads of better ones around - there was some pretty impressive photo kit on that dive boat!
Honestly can't think how it could be improved.
Colm V, Aug '12

Sao Miguel, Azores

It was great! Really nice hotel (Caloura), good people and service and loved the diving. 

Would definitely follow a multiple island itinerary next time to get a wider flavour, but this time was everything I hoped for on the island of Sao Miguel. Weather was changeable, but always hot for at least half the day.

Loved the volcanic underwater scenery - caves and lava tubes and the wreck was pretty special too.

Stuart S, Jul '12

Cocos Island

We had a fantastic time at Cocos Island, so thanks very much to you and your colleagues for organising it!
The shark sightings were amazing, with great views of scalloped hammerheads, galapagos and hunting white-tip reef sharks, plus a very close tiger shark encounter in the dark!
We saw a total of 62 fish and shark and 9 bird species (that I managed to identify), plus a humpback whale on the crossing and bottlenose dolphins around Cocos Island.
The Wind Dancer was great – the food was very nice and the staff, very professional and made us feel at home. Cocos Island was a spectacular backdrop to our dives!
Rocky C, Dec ’12

Wednesday, January 23, 2013

Bite-Back - Defending the high seas on the high street

Bite-Back's Graham Buckingham on why YOUR support really does make a difference...

As firm believers in taking proactive steps to protect our marine wildlife, we are delighted to continue our partnership with Bite-Back Shark and Marine Conservation throughout 2013 to help raise awareness and vital funds for their work.

"Raising funds for shark and marine conservation isn't the easiest task in the world so it's always exciting when a switched-on dive company recognises the issues facing the oceans and wants to support Bite-Back's work. By combining its passion for scuba diving in the most beautiful locations on the planet with a desire to protect these fragile eco-systems, Dive Worldwide has marked itself out as a leader in the global dive holiday industry.

For that reason, Bite-Back is delighted to be working with Dive Worldwide and its clients to raise awareness and vital funds for its key campaigns through the introduction of a voluntary donation scheme.

All the money raised will allow Bite-Back to keep running its innovative series of campaigns to safeguard threatened marine species - including shark, swordfish, marlin, monkfish, skate and rays - by challenging retailers and restaurants to put conservation before commerce and no longer sell them.

Since 2004, the charity's pioneering programmes have helped prompt the UK's very biggest fish retailers - ASDA, Sainsbury's, Morrisons, Tesco and Waitrose - to end the sale of a number of these key species. As a result it is now no longer possible to buy shark or marlin from any UK supermarket.

And, as part of Bite-Back's ambition to eliminate retail opportunities for any shark products, it is also responsible for ending the sale of shark cartilage capsules in 550 Holland & Barrett health food stores. Without doubt thought, the catalyst for all these victories has been the support of like-minded divers from around the world. Simply by taking part in Bite-Back's online campaigns these divers have helped create a movement that can confidently demand a change in the way retailers buy and sell seafood. 

But it's Bite-Back's latest campaign - to end the sale of shark fin soup in Britain - that is most likely to resonate with divers. And this is where new support and funds will be crucial in helping the charity achieve success. Already, the first stage of this new project is underway. Thanks to the help of Bite-Back supporters the charity has identified and exposed more than 80 restaurants in the country currently selling the controversial dish. Sadly, as more reports come in, the list is expected to reach 100.

It's therefore uplifting to know that this campaign has already found support from Hugh Fearnley-Whittingstall, Gordon Ramsay, Bear Grylls, Martin Clunes and Monty Halls plus the top London advertising agency, Ogilvy & Mather. Considering this is only one of a number of campaigns due to be launched in 2013, it's going to be an exciting year for Bite-Back."

Every booking made in 2013 includes a £5 per person opt-out donation. We have also identified some ‘shark-infested’ itineraries which include a £10 per person opt-out donation. Find these on our website by searching for Bite-Back.

For more information:

For regular updates:
Please 'Like' Bite-Back on Facebook

Sunday, January 6, 2013

SAVE 13% on our 'Favourite Five'

Happy New Year - 2013 could be lucky for you!

Dive Worldwide are offering an amazing discount on our 'Favourite Five' destinations. What's more, for a limited period, this is combinable with existing special offers featured on the website.

SAVE 13% on our 'Favourite Five' destinations -

Contact us now, to find out more and create your personal holiday.

OFFER EXTENDED! Find out more.

Terms and conditions apply, see below.

Dive Worldwide Conditions, January 2013
SAVE 13% 
  • The discount applies to land-only packages to our ‘Favourite Five’ destinations – Indonesia, Oman, Maldives, Galapagos and Bonaire. Land-only includes accommodation (resort or liveaboard) and dive packs. Your consultant will advise on what is applicable at time of booking.
  • The discount is only applicable if the full holiday package is booked with us (must include flights, accommodation and dive pack).
  • Whilst flights must be included in the package, the discount is not applicable to flight prices. Your consultant will provide you with the best possible flight price at time of booking. Some flight prices are subject to change until tickets have been paid for in full and issued.
  • The discount can be combined with other current special offers featured on our website, to our ‘Favourite Five’ destinations.
  • The discount is valid for direct bookings only.
  • The discount is valid for new bookings only, booked 07 – 31 January 2013.
  • The discount excludes marine park, port fees, fuel surcharges and other obligatory payments.

We reserve the right to withdraw the discount at any time without prior notice.
The discount will only be honoured for confirmed bookings made during the above stated limited time.

Lounge Pass Offer

YOU are the VIP!

When you're off on holiday, there's one essential you shouldn't forget from your checklist... an airport lounge pass. Escape the crowds and pamper yourself with complimentary drinks and snacks, relaxing whilst you wait for your flight.

Dive Worldwide are delighted to make you a VIP - offering a Lounge Pass for bookings made in January 2013. This offer excludes the 'Favourite Five' destinations (Indonesia, Oman, Maldives, Galapagos and Bonaire).

Lounge Pass currently features over 150 Airport VIP Lounges at over 110 airports throughout the world, including 22 in the UK. 

Terms and condtions apply, see below.

Dive Worldwide Conditions, January 2013

Lounge Pass Offer
  • The offer is applicable to all full holiday packages to destinations other than our ‘Favourite Five’ destinations – Indonesia, Oman, Maldives, Galapagos and Bonaire. Full holiday packages include flights, accommodation (resort or liveaboard) and dive pack.
  • The offer is for a maximum of two airport lounge passes per booking for the outbound journey from the UK only, including regional airports where available.
  • Airport lounges are subject to availability. Your consultant will advise at time of booking.
  • Airport lounge passes are booked and provided by our affiliate company, Lounge Pass, whose terms and conditions must be adhered to during your stay in the associated lounge.
  • No cash alternative or discount available.
  • The offer is valid for direct bookings only.
  • The offer is valid for new bookings only, booked 07-31 January 2013.

We reserve the right to withdraw either offer at any time without prior notice.

The discount/offer will only be honoured for confirmed bookings made during the above stated limited time.

Friday, January 4, 2013

An amazing Caribbean adventure in Dominica

Diver Award Winner, Toby Nowlan, reflects on his week in Dominica ...

Our week in Dominica was superb. Instructor Michael took us out every day on the Anchorage Hotel boat to a variety of stunning and colour-crowded reefs. We would typically wake up in our ocean front room and after a coffee on our balcony overlooking the pancake-flat, azure Caribbean sea, head up for a refreshing cooked breakfast. On and out with Michael. We would closely trace the rainforest-clad coast, joined occasionally by incredibly playful Atlantic spotted or Fraser's dolphins. Upon reaching the dive site we would dance whilst kitting up to reggae tunes emanating from skipper Philly's radio.

Then the three of us would descend into that warm and brilliant blue, ordinarily with exceptional visibility of 25 metres. With the entire reef to ourselves we felt like we had been granted VIP access to the Caribbean's last marine wilderness. We might weave between the towering volcanic pinnacles covered in colossal barrel sponges, often home to the largest crabs or lobsters I have seen.

On other occasions we might lie in the bathwater-hot sediments around the bubbling jets of dive site 'Champagne'. Here, as is famously known, the reef fizzes with volcanic gases. By turning over a few of the hot rocks we found beautifully marbled young conger eels as well as an array of bizarre starfish and nudibranchs.

The great coral cliff drop-off here in the south-west of the island is surely one of the best on earth. I found it difficult to watch my depth closely thanks to being mesmerised by the whip coral-encrusted wall dropping below us into the deep blue.

Once, as we curved over the top of the wall back on to the shallows of the reef, we came eye to eye with a two metre-long barracuda. It flashed silver as it thrashed and spun in frustration at its accompanying pilot fish. I approached him and he approached me fearlessly with open jaws from half a metre away.

On our final day we headed deep into the rainforests of Dominica's near-pristine interior in search of parrots found nowhere else on earth.  As we drove and walked we climbed to 2000 metres into cloud forest to find our quarry. As the sun rose at dawn we saw noisy parties of the bright green parrots bursting out of the mist above the forest then settling to feed on fruiting trees.

While Dominica is not the destination island for those looking for wide sandy beaches, plenty of commercial development and tight hotel management, those in search of spectacular diving, undisturbed rainforest, incredibly friendly locals and rum punch by the ocean-view pool have found their ideal tropical rehab.
Speak to one of our specialist consultants today to tailor made your diving holiday to Dominica, or drop us an email and we will contact you.