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|Newsletter August 2013|
Komodo Family Trip July/August 2013 - Kids' comments
By Laura, Phoebe, Jacco, Sytse, Kevin and Jack, with photos by Jacco, Joost, Katherine, Rod and Eva.
On our recent Komodo family cruise we had 7 kids aged between 10 and 15 on board - all of them divers. Here are their comments...
The first day was full of adventures. We were woken up by the sound of the engine starting. Some were so excited that they got straight out of bed to watch as the sun rise over the horizon. Some of the things that we saw on the first dive were just amazing. Turtles, beautiful corals and big schools of fish. The next dive can only be described as a kingdom of color. On the last dive of the day we got to be the audience to an underwater feeding frenzy. It was amazing to witness the hunting behavior of the jacks and sharks working together.
Second day already! Highlights of the day must include going water skiing. It made me feel so free and made me think of how lucky I am to be back on the seven seas. Another highlight would have to be that some of us did our first dusk dive! The group was divided into our boat groups and we set off on this new adventure. With the sun setting just behind us we entered the water. There sure are a lot of weird creatures in the ocean after dark!
The following day we dived again in the morning and then some kids went to the "bat cave" and you could water ski if you wanted. When the night fell there was a night dive organized only a few people went and they were lucky because there was a lot of activity under the water. And we ended the day with a great meal and went to bed and looked forward to the next day.
Diving with the Incredibles, Part II
By Janice Nigro, janikiInk
I might have still had mask face. I definitely still had jet lag. Just days after my return from a trip to Komodo on the Seven Seas in May, the newsflash email arrived. "Last minute discounted trip to Komodo." Because my watch was still on Indonesia time, I knew that it was business hours there and contacted the Seven Seas directly about availability on this cruise. A response came back within a couple of minutes confirming that yes, there was availability, and furthermore, if I were to join the cruise, I would have a cabin with a large double bed to myself. How could I repeat a trip to Komodo so soon? I suppose the better question was how could I not. In addition to the obvious list of pluses about this situation, including the fact that the cruise would take place over my birthday, I have always wanted to dive a specific location (tropical) daily over consecutive months to experience seasonal changes in the marine life. A second trip to Komodo two months after the first was as close as I have ever been to achieving this diving goal.
On 14 July, the group of divers for the "last minute discounted trip" met at Denpasar International Airport. SEVEN divers. All were experienced divers, with the exception of Tim, the enthusiastic 14 year old on his first diving trip after open water certification. His father was a distinguished filmographer, who I would soon discover was using a not so ostentatious compact camera and housing to record underwater. It was raining terribly hard in Denpasar that early morning. So much so, that we had an umbrella escort to both the bus and the plane, and it was probably the reason that the electricity went out twice in the airport while we were checking in. Once we were seated on the plane, the announcement was made that our flight would be delayed until the weather improved. An inauspicious beginning. In the end, our flight was delayed only about an hour, but the truth is, that these dive trips pass all too quickly anyway.
One of the things I like about the Seven Seas is the crew gets right down to business with a dive plan on the first day. So even though our flight had been delayed, we still were able to have lunch on the boat and get into the water for a memorable muck dive by around 14:30. It was tagged as a "check out" dive, but in my mind, at Wainilu, one of my favorite muck dive sites, we were deep within the Komodo diving scene within a couple of hours of landing at Labuan Bajo. It was not even enough time for me to set up my also modest camera rig in anticipation of the usual characters, perhaps even some of the same guys I met two months before. This dive site makes me feel as if I am immersed in a black and white photo, low visibility and little sunlight, until suddenly whoever is your guide (or even you sometimes) will find something spectacular, like this time: a Halimeda ghostpipefish, a couple of tiny nudibranchs, and a mating pair of frogfish, with an exceptionally unusual looking female. I am curious what she did to get her guy. Our second dive, more or less a dusk dive, was also at Wainilu, and we were able to see some mandarin fish in the coral rubble.
The Seven Seas - Grahalia Tiying Gading 18, Suite 1 - Jl Tukad Pancoran
Panjer Denpasar 80225 - Bali - Indonesia