Diving Ambon with Maluku Divers
Though the resort is comfortable and offers a pleasant backdrop for diving, the team recognises that the chief attraction is the incredible creatures making their homes in Ambon Bay and the surrounding areas. As a result the Resort Management has developed and continues to improve the facility. Muck diving may be the focus of the resort, due to the proximity of some of the world’s best muck diving sites, but there are also interesting topographical sites, coral slopes, fish soup sites in addition to the large shipwreck in Ambon.
The majority of dives in Ambon are boat dives, predominantly due to the convenience of diving different sites away from the resort. Divers drop in with their guide, complete the dive, which, depending on depth, experience and air consumption is generally a period of around 75 minutes, before surfacing and being picked up by the dive boat. Usually sites are relatively shallow and guides will only bring divers past 30 metres if specific critters have been located. As critters such as the flamboyant cuttlefish inhabit the slopes of the twilight zone up to the surface, even the safety stop can be considered part of the dive.
What is the Muck Diving Experience?
It should be reiterated that the muck diving experience is a little different to the reef dive experience, where different scenery is integral to the choice of sites. In Ambon, the focus of the muck diving is to search for interesting and unique creatures that make their homes at the sites. This means that the same site can be explored several times during a trip, and still throw up different photographic opportunities. This means that, although there are more than 30 sites within Ambon Bay, due to the density of the critters in some areas, as well as the seasonal movements of the marinelife, divers may repeat sites during a week stay, especially if specific unique critters are located. Once images have been downloaded and examined, divers often want to return, to a site to see the same critter, in order to try a different technique to photograph it. This is the nature of the muck diving in Ambon, where the focus is more towards the photography and the animal, than it is about the dive site.
In a week long package at the resort, consisting of six dive days, it would usually be the case that five of those dive days would be within Ambon Bay. Trips to the further sites can be arranged at any opportunity, and should be discussed with the Resort Manager, who then arranges the trip with any other interested divers at the resort. The trips to the further sites are subject to fuel surcharges and require a minimum number of participants. As the trips to further sites are quite a distance from the resort, they are usually three dive departures, divers take lunch on one of the pretty beaches in the vicinity of the dive sites.
The Dive Day
A normal day of diving at Maluku Divers consists of a two tank departure in the morning, which usually heads out of the resort at around 08:30. Dive one is followed by a surface interval spent on the dive boat, where divers enjoy some snacks and drinks, before diving again at a different site.
After these two dives, the boats will return to the resort, for charging and downloading requirements, as well as a healthy lunch.
The third dive of the day usually departs around 15:00 and is a single tank departure, after which guests return straight to the resort.
Prebooked dive packages are usually three dives each day, but Maluku Divers does offer night dives each night as well, but will consider conditions and safety before arranging these. There are also unlimited unguided shore dive packages at the resort, these dives can be taken as shore night dives too.