What else can we tell you?
Here are some common questions our guests have about the diving.
Diving Facilities and Schedule
Our diving facilities are second to none. We have a large dive deck with individual storage for gear, racks and hangers for suits, warm freshwater showers, separate rinse tanks for photo gear. Tanks are filled at the end of each dive, then rigged for the next one. Our crew are trained to expertly handle your tanks and other gear. The only time you have to touch your tank is when you’re diving and it’s on your back!
A briefing will precede each dive, and our Trip Director will outline the type of dive, what you can expect to see and recommendations regarding current, depth and activities. Divers set their own profile in conjunction with their buddy, their computer and their previous diving activities, and are welcome to discuss their plans with the crew for assistance and advice. The first dive of every trip is always guided and we offer at least three guided dives each day. We usually schedule 4 dives per day and you can often find our staff in the water for all of them. You are free, however, to explore our dive sites at your leisure (within the confines of your training and experience).
The dive schedule is set by the Trip Director and will be posted each day. We do our best to take your requests for sites or marine life into considerations, however, safety factors must always be a priority. An evening briefing usually outlines the plans for the next days diving.
The reefs start very close to the surface which means there is little need for deep dives. Often the reefs drop off gradually allowing you to explore extensively at relatively shallow depths. You will find walls, however, often in close conjunction to a reef, making it excellent for computer assisted diving. Computers are mandatory for all divers - so if you do not have your own, we will organize a rental for you.
Nitrox is available at a cost of $10 per fill. We offer a flat rate when you choose to dive Nitrox for the entire trip. If you wish to use Nitrox, be sure to bring your certification card with you. If you are not yet certified, we can offer you Nitrox training on board.
Dive Equipment Rental
There is a full range of dive equipment available to rent on board, either by the day or for the whole trip, however to ensure you receive correct sizing, it is best to book gear rental before your trip. Current Rental Equipment Rates are available on our Rate Sheet.
Illness or Injury
No one plans to get injured, but diving is a sport that carries some risk and we want you to be as safe as possible. In the event of an emergency, you should be aware, while there is a recompression chamber in Honiara, it is manned by volunteers and not always available. The nearest reliable recompression chamber is about 1,500 miles (2,400 km) away in Townsville, Australia. In a diving emergency, a light aircraft or helicopter will be required to evacuate the patient from the ship to Honiara, then evacuation to Townsville is in a recompression chamber aboard a light low level flight. Cost will be at least USD $30,000.
It is mandatory that divers aboard our vessels carry medical evacuation insurance. Please note - without insurance, you will be refused diving services. We recommend you contact Divers Alert Network (DAN) for information on Evacuation and Travel insurance. Remember you’ll be doing a lot of diving, probably three or four dives per day, and that adds up to a lot of nitrogen. Pace yourself, and consider sitting out a dive every now and then.
Water temperature will be in the 28º C - 30º C (82ºF to 85ºF ) range. Plan your exposure gear appropriately. Many divers find they need a bit more than they expect, only because they are spending so long in the water every day. Our staff wear 5mm full suits but many of our guests find 3mm full suits, shorties or even board shorts plenty warm!
Visibility will range from 25m to 40m (75 to 125 feet), with occasional sites with much better visibility, and yes, you will have dives with visibility less than 25m (75 feet). The Solomon Island waters are very nutrient rich. They support the entire food chain from microscopic creatures to major predators. Because of this, visibility may be less than that of some other world famous dive sites, but for this same reason you will find a multitude of large and small critters to observe and photograph. In some cases visibility may only be reduced because of all the fish blocking your view!