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“Excellent Diving”

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Raja Ampat Dive Lodge
London, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
95 reviews
44 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 100 helpful votes
“Excellent Diving”
Reviewed 29 February 2012

We have just come back from a week in Raja Ampat Dive Lodge. We had a great time here.

The rooms are nice with air conditioning and fans. There are plenty of power sockets for charging electrical devices. There are hot water showers with ok pressure. The rooms all have balconies overlloking the ocean. The food was all tasty. It is served either in buffet style or in individual courses, depending on the number of guests. All the staff were very friendly. There is free wifi in the restaurant. Some people had a mobile signal but not my phone so I guess it depends on your network. There is no TV or any entertainment apart from diving so bring something to keep yourself entertained when you aren't diving, eating or sleeping.

The dive guides are all very professional and looked after us really well. I was struggling a bit at times with the very strong current but they made sure I was comfortable and waited for me when I struggled to keep up with the rest of the group. They are all incredibly good at finding the tiniest critters underwater. We saw pygmy seahorses of various types on almost every dive (plus a variety of nudibranchs, crabs and shrimps). I was really blown away by the fish life. There were large schools of jacks, barracudas, sweetlips and many others plus thousands of different colourful reef fish. We also had some great manta dives where they came really close. The mantas were about 5 metres across and were totally unafraid of the divers. We also saw some turtles and reef sharks. Our favourite dive sites were Cape Kri and Blue Magic (we chose to return to both these dive sites). They sent our group of 5 divers out with 2 or 3 dive guides which was great as it meant we could split up a bit. They also tried to avoid the liveaboards so on most dives we were the only ones in the water which was nice. The boat crew were really helpful with getting the divers kitted up and lifting gear out of the water at the end of a dive. I really enjoyed the diving here (even though I'm not usually a fan of strong currents). The night dives usually take place off the resort jetty and are really good. We saw toadfish, blue ringed octopus, an assortment of crabs, shrimps, pipefish, scorpionfish, lionsfish plus mandarinfish.

  • Stayed February 2012, travelled with friends
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
10 Thank WildlifeFan01
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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64 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
  • Location
  • Sleep Quality
  • Rooms
  • Service
  • Value
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Traveller tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (15)
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • French first
  • Indonesian first
  • Italian first
  • Japanese first
  • Russian first
  • Any
English first
Texas
Level Contributor
292 reviews
67 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 123 helpful votes
Reviewed 22 January 2012

I have been traveling to the Raja Ampats for 10 years, both land bases and on liveaboards. I have stayed at the Raja Ampats Dive Resort (RADL) twice. It is a two hour boat trip from the airport to the resort. Accommodations are in bungalows; two rooms with king or double beds, a/c, en suite bathroom, refrigerators and expansive lanais. All bungalows face the Dampier Straights. There is a central dining room, meals are served buffet style. The staff for the most part are from Bali, their goal is to please their guests. Diving in the Ampats is unequalled. The dive guides are well trained and familiar with the dive sites. If there is a "critter" that you really want to see; the guides will do their utmost to find it for you. The resort carries a full line of rental dive gear.

Room Tip: All rooms are good.
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  • Stayed July 2011, travelled with friends
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
15 Thank mantamoon
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Singapore
Level Contributor
13 reviews
12 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 51 helpful votes
Reviewed 30 September 2011

I totally agree with simmysammy. I just returned from an enriching vacation at this lovely resort alone last week and I thought I'd like to share my pleasant experience and hope you will find this useful in your planning. I did not opt for liveaboard as I wasn’t sure if I could take the long sea journey without seasick. So I decided to stay at a resort. I had difficulty with my research as there was very little information available on accommodation. There is another resort call Raja Ampat Dive Resort in Waisai Island which is not the same as this.
I flew Singapore-Makassar-Sorong. It was unfortunate that the unreliable Merpati Airlines cancelled my domestic flight from Makassar to Sorong due to "technical" reason. After much fight, they finally agreed to put me on a better airline, Sriwijaya the next day and I finally arrived in Sorong, a day later.
Booking/Transport:
This resort is owned and managed by Grand Komodo Tours office located in Bali. I booked a 1 week deluxe diving package that includes 22 dives. This package is a little less expensive compared to other resorts in that area and includes 2ways pick up from Sorong airport to the resort on Fri only. You must arrive Sorong no later than by 2pm on Friday so that they can arrange free pick up from airport and 2hrs speedboat ride to the resort before dark. Linda, the reservation officer has been very helpful and accommodating to arrange an alternative transfer for me due to my unexpected delayed arrival on Sat and even allowed me to stay at the resort till Sat.
Location:
The resort is remotely located in Mansuar Island. On arrival, I was greeted by the greenery of the thick forest that backgrounds the resort. Raymond, the manager, welcomed me warmly at the reception and restaurant area and briefed me on the facilities and showed me to my room. Basic toiletries and souvenirs are available at the shop next to reception. The resort has its private beach and sheltered jetty with lounger where you can simply enjoy the view of sunset after a day of diving.
Room:
There are 10 wooden bungalows in this resort each consisting of 2 units of room with sea facing pavilion and small lounger very close to the sea. Room is simple with no TV or radio. Bring your own entertainment if you are bored. Adequate lighting and bedding with mosquito net. Air-con is working well. There is a ceiling fan as well. This resort is about 1 year old, so rooms are new and well-maintained. Bathroom is clean and spacious with only standing shower and space to hang your swimwear and towels for drying. Only small soap bars are provided. Bring your own shampoo and shower gel if you cannot make do with the hard soap. Towels are decent and clean.
There is no internet/WIFI in room. WIFI is only available at the reception area free of charge. Mobile line signal is weak.
Diving:
This property is located very close to the best dive sites in Raja Ampat. Dive centre is neat and well maintained. Rental of equipment a little expensive and suggest you pre-book the equipment at time of booking due to limited sizes. There are shower points and separate basins for cameras. I was introduced to the friendly Dive Guide, Jemy. He is experienced and familiar in this area and brought us to the best dive site averagely 30mins away from the resort. He is highly concerned on our safety and ensures procedures are observed. He took many good pictures for me and of me. I am surprised by the good visibility despite the rain. Needless to say, I enjoyed the dives and colourful underwater sights of the rich coral and marine life, much more than anywhere I have dived. Sea water is 30 degree Celsius. There are indeed many species of fishes here including manta. On one of the seamount, I saw more than thousand, like an army of different species congregating at one time. I would say Raja Ampat is more for experienced divers due to the strong current, about 3knots. Reef hook or hand glove are must-have items. I didnt get to go to Wayag as this is 3hrs away and cost RP6million per boat per day
F&B:
Meals were included in the package. As there were very few guests at time of my stay, all 3 meals were served to us in courses instead of buffet style. Breakfast will be ordered from the menu the night before, after dinner. Snacks and coffee/tea will be served on boat or nearby beach after first morning dive. Food is of high quality and very fresh and tasty, thanks to Rico and team. Can drinks and beer is inexpensive about IDR30000 or USD3 per can, given the remote location. Coffee and tea served throughout the whole day.
I thank all the staff who are always so warm and friendly and had made my stay so homely and comfortable. I highly recommend this place to all divers who seek a good standard accommodation in Raja Ampat.

  • Stayed September 2011, travelled solo
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
17 Thank tommylim-sg
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Jakarta, Indonesia
Level Contributor
32 reviews
19 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 54 helpful votes
Reviewed 9 September 2011

I did a lot of research in planning my dive holiday to Raja Ampat. I couldn't find a lot of information about the different land-based options, but I went with my intuition and chose Raja Ampat Dive Lodge among the other options for my week of diving. I was definitely not disappointed. From the moment I arrived and was greeted with a welcome drink on the jetty, to the excellent service in the restaurant, to the great team who ensured I had a smooth, fun and safe diving experience, everything was of top quality and exceeded my expectations. I was lucky to be one of the only guests staying, but I don't think the quality of the food, serviece ect would differ even when busy. I would also recommend the deluxe diving package for those who are planning to dive for the week.

The accommodation are nice, new, spacious bungalows with a big double bed and mosquito net, and an ensuite bathroom. The bungalows also have a desk and cupboard, mini bar, plenty of plugs/sockets for chargers, laptop etc, and a front porch looking out over the water a few metres away. Clean, comfortable and roomy.

All meals were individually served in the restaurant/common area that also has free wifi. There was a good variety of choices for breakfast, and each dinner and lunch included three courses of delicious, healthy food. All staff were very friendly and helpful.

The diving was spectacular, and the divemaster Jemy is very expereienced and knowledgeable. He speaks great English and has 1000s dives under his belt, he knows the area very well, and took me out to all the best sites over the space of the week. A great dive guide! I brought my own equipment, but that available for hire seeemed to be well maintained and the dive centre is also well organised and looked after.

I have zero complaints about any aspect of my stay- even the transfers were smooth and staff in Sorong were very helpful and reliable.

Of all the land based options in Raja Ampat, I believe this resoort offers excellent value for money in relation to the quality of the resort service and facilities and have no quualms in recommending Raja Ampat Dive Lodge to dive enthusiasts or to those who just want to a relaxing stay in this beautiful area of Indonesia.

Room Tip: There are only 20 bungalows so book early in busy periods Nov-Feb
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  • Stayed September 2011, travelled solo
    • Value
    • Sleep Quality
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
18 Thank simmysammy
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Brussels, Belgium
Level Contributor
163 reviews
59 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 133 helpful votes
Reviewed 11 August 2011

I had a quick visit to the Raja Ampat Dive Lodge as I had time restrictions. This was all organised by the tremendously helpful Raja Ampat Tourist Board situated in the JE Meridien Hotel in Sorong and run by the Director Trendi Sendouw and the Accountant Sarlotha Rumbekwan who both speak fluent English. I travelled by public ferry to the island of Wasai where the Lodge motorboat collected me and took me to the Lodge. I was shown to my beautiful bungalow, a couple of metres from the seashore and the mangroves, and it was really excellent with mosquito net, fabulous bathroom, beautiful terrace overlooking the sea, done with a lot of taste albeit in Balinese style. The general areas i.e. lounge and dining room were a few paces away, the service was very good as was the food. Raymond the manager greeted me and was charming. I told him I was going to snorkel the following day and he asked if I wanted to join the dive boat - I agreed. The following morning he told me that it would cost me $50 for what was 3 hours following the divers - there is a difference between snorkel and dive sites. Even the instructor said that this was ridiculously expensive. The divers I was with were complained that the dive price was too high - again $50 and this was in the low season. He finally told me that head office had agreed to reduce my price to $45!! I told him that I still found this extremely overpriced but he would not budge. After snorkelling I took the motorboat back to Wasai to pick up the ferry. Unfortuntely for whatever reason it seems to have "disappeared" on that day which meant that the only way to return to Sorong was by private motorboat. We finally managed to telephone Raymond who told me that I would have to pay $400 and hung up. When I finally capitulated and asked the captain to confirm to Raymond that I would pay, the man had completely disappeared. The captain would not budge from where we were - wallowing off the pier!! I was becoming desperate and finally phoned Sarlotha from the Raja Ampat Tourist Board. She managed to telephone the Head Office and they agreed that I could have the motorboat return trip for $250! I have never heard from Raymond to this day - I would have thought that he would be a little bit more interested in his clients as I was still in his motorboat as well as a little bit more savvy vis-à-vis prices in order to get clients to return as this is a new Lodge. But no, I was wrong. Thank you so much Trendi and Sarlotha for all your help otherwise I would probably still be wallowing around in the motorboat!

  • Stayed July 2011, travelled solo
    • Value
    • Sleep Quality
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
15 Thank BaghdadSuzanne
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about Raja Ampat Dive Lodge

Property: Raja Ampat Dive Lodge
Address: Mansuar Island, Mansuar Island, Indonesia
Region: Indonesia > Papua > Mansuar Island
Amenities:
Hotel Style:
Ranked #1 of 1 B&Bs / Inns in Mansuar Island
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): £££
Number of rooms: 20
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Also Known As:
Raja Ampat Dive Lodge Indonesia/Mansuar Island, Papua

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