I am reviewing this as a dive resort, The hotel is fine--it is clean, relatively quiet. It isn't fancy, but hey you're not here for interiors. Truth is, it reminds me of an Eastern European hotel I've stayed in-- you never worried about the cleanliness, because you could see where they'd scrubbed the paint and varnish off everything. I booked two dives a day with my room. Note there is a fake site out there for the hotel, which does not respond and advertises for liveaboards and other dive locations. Be sure and use http://www.dive-truklagoon.com/
The hotel is located just on the south end of town, and as of my visit, the paved road ended about 5-10 minutes before you got to the hotel. Visitors who had been there before all celebrated that at least some of it was now paved. Right now the hotel is about 20 mins from the airport and there are spectacular potholes between the hotel and the paved road. Some of htem seemed like they might contain heretofore undiscovered wrecks. But I digress
The real reason to stay at this hotel is the dive shop. They're great. The equipment is top notch and they can rent everything you need or merely take you out. They're expert guides who know the wrecks and the lagoon well. They read my abilities and tailored my dives to them, at the same time growing my skills. While I was there, most of the time there were only three dive guests, one day there were four and on the weekend it got busy, so they divided the 6 of us onto two boats.Staff is helpful and instructive without ever being judgmental or talking down to you. Some diver instructors in my experience can be too cool for school or gearheads. These guys are mellow and helpful but still keep you safe and well looked after.
Unlike some dive resorts, you prep your equipment and it is brought to the dive boat for you. I recommended this place to a friend with a bad back who only like liveaboards because he desn't have to carry equip. Like the TV commercial--you set it and forget it. The boat staff will help you checkout/adjust what you have, pass you what you need and always make sure you're hydrated. I have been on liveaboards where you traveled longer distances to the dive site than you do from the hotel dock. They even have access to a private island landing so you can use the toilet between dives
The guides I worked with were great at showing me the wrecks, pointing out sea life (One guide even spun me around to see a black tip shark!) and taking you around and through ships. During a particularly memorable dive we came across a green turtle who was "guarding" an opening into a ship. Curious, when we went inside (not the originally planned route) my guide was checked to see that I was comfortable and took me onwards showing me everything planned from a new approach
The wrecks are exceptional. From what they contain--tanks, trucks, planes, bottles, phones, operating tables, everything really--to their condition and their coral covers. Many of the wrecks were like doing a coral wall dive. There are over 40 sites, and you can get in up to 4 dives a day. Some sites are shallow, many are in the 80-130 foot range and a good number even deeper. It is a smart idea to get Nitrox certification while here if you do not already have it. The dive shop will blend Nitrox for your depth each dive.
OK the downsides: The food at the restaurant might be the best on the Island (the Sushi was certainly good) but it will not be why you visit. The best dish I had was the short ribs, the Pizza was bad--Boboli-type crust, sweet sauce too much cheese (I'd been warmed not to order extra cheese and I didn't!). The only food on the Island is what is importted, and things run out. WiFi is erratic (had to ask for a reset at least once a day) and in public areas only.I don't watch TV, but I think it is an extra charge. There is no elevator so you have a one or two flight of stair walk. Water in sink is not potable, but every room has a replenished water dispenser. Oh shower was really large and pleasent
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- All our rooms are tastefully decorated with air conditioning, ceiling fans, en-suite bathroom, private balcony, telephone, TV & DVD player, refrigerator, hair dryer, hot water kettle & fresh drinking water. Safety deposit boxes are available, free of charge at the front desk. Our kayaks are free for hotel guests, you can even take a dive off our private dock. Besides conference facilities, the VIP dining room, and restaurant, we have 2 bars (one indoor and one outdoor). Get a jet lag special massage for half the price! ... more less
- Also Known As:
- Truk Stop Hotel Chuuk, South Pacific