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My husband and I will be on the 2019 Holland America South Pacific cruise in October.  We have 19 +/- island ports that we visit.  There are only 2 diving excursions offered by HAL.  I was wondering if any cruisers out there have self booked scuba diving tours during this type of cruise - i.e., is it realistic to think that you'd be able to get off the ship early enough in each port to participate in dive trips where available, dock proximity to diving facilities, etc.  I have already done some research and there is diving available at many of the ports of call, just not sure how easy it will be to accommodate?

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I almost always book my diving independently of the ship.  If it's a tender port, that is a slight inconvenience, but can usually be worked around.  If the ship is docked, it's generally no problem at all.  If I'm looking at the right cruise, I may have some recommendations for you.  Please let us know your ports. 

 

Harris

Denver, CO

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Thanks for answering so quickly.  We are on the HAL 51 day South Pacific and Fiji out of San Diego departing 10/28.  We would like to dive in as many as we can, since that's what the are is all about.  Some of the ports of interest:  Apia, Upolo, Samoa;  Savusavu, Fiji; Dravuni Island, Fiji; Loganville, Vanuatu; Port Vila, Vanuatu; Nuku Alofa, Tonga; Vava u, Tonga; Alofi, Niue; Rarogonga, Cook Islands; Bora Bora, FP; Raiatea, Society Isands, FP; Avatoru, Rangiroa FP;. Fakarava, Tuamotu FP;

 

Would appriciate any and all tips and recommendations.  Thanks so much.

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For all the Tahitian Islands, you should look to Top Dive.  They have operations on all the islands, and you can buy a package, that you can use at the different ports.  The diving there is expensive, but amazing.  The pre-paid package gets the price down to fairly reasonable.  (www.topdive.com)

 

In all cases, I would definitely prearrange your diving.  If it's a tender port, advise the operator.  In may of the South Pacific ports, even though they tender, the anchorage is very close to the dock, so tendering goes quickly. 

 

You're smart to start planning now.  My experience has been that responses to inquiries can be slow.

 

Again, the diving is amazing, so it's worth the hassle of planning.

 

Harris

Denver, CO

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Thanks so much for your insight.  You've given me some tools to get things rolling.

 

Marlo

Durango, CO

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In Aitutaki consider snorkeling with Teking as you really want to see and experience the lagoon.  +1 for The Six Passengers.

 

on Bora Bora the diving is good but not spectacular.  You may want to try a manta dive but seeing the mantas are a 50-50 proposition.  The area with the mantas has a sandy bottom with not great visibility.  If there are no mantas the dive is a bust.  There is great snorkeling.  We always use Pure Snorkeling (7th trip coming up in 2 weeks).

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