- 18 dives, Advanced Open Water
- Open Water divers, or equivalent, are now limited to a maximum depth of 18m (60ft) on all dives. If you only carry this certification then we advise that you complete the Advanced Open Water course before joining to enjoy the diving to the full, as the structure of dive groups will not always accommodate for shallow divers.
- Tuamoto Archipelago are stunningly beautiful above water and the diving is spectacular
- Situated in the heart of the Pacific Ocean this island archipelago is home to some of the most wondrous dive sites, where hundreds of hungry sharks gather in schools to be joined by manta rays and bottle-nosed dolphins
- Our diving itineraries take you through the Tuamotu Island chain, from Rangiroa to Fakarava
- Dive sites are typically channel or “Pass” dives and the route planning for each trip is highly dependent upon the incoming and out-going tides for each island.
- Lagoons, ocean drop-offs, high octane drifts, ‘hook in and watch’ dives, walls, channels, beautiful coral reefs and manta cleaning stations
- This area is famous for ‘big stuff’ with lots of shark activity – hammerheads, tigers, grey reef, black tip, white tip, silky and oceanic white tips.
- Add to this the beautiful coral gardens alive with reef fish and all manner of small creatures and you have yourself a top class dive destination!
- Strong currents to be expected and it is therefore recommended divers have experience beyond beginner level to ensure maximum enjoyment.
- Knowledgeable crew to show you the wonders of the area.
- All divers are now limited to 3 dives per day whether diving on air or nitrox
Safety Briefing, Crew Introduction, Necessary Dive Paperwork, Cabin allocation and ship orientation will take place before departing the Harbour.
During the journey to our first dive site for a check dive, please take this opportunity to familiarize yourselves with the vessel and make yourself comfortable.
Please Note: This is a sample itinerary and nº of dives, dive sites, etc. may be subject to change due to weather conditions and other unforeseeable factors
DAY 2 – PENULTIMATE DAY
Your Cruise Director onboard the French Polynesia will schedule 3 dives per day; 2 day dives and either a sunset or a night dive.
Light Breakfast followed by a briefing & Dive 1
Relaxation followed by briefing & Dive 2
Relaxation followed by briefing & Dive 3
The following is a description of the dive sites you may visit during your liveaboard safari as the M/V French Polynesia Master cruises between Rangiroa and Fakarava.
This summary includes the highlights; however the yacht may also stop at numerous smaller islands along the way including Arutua, Kankura and Niau.
Tiputa Pass - Dropping in at the outer edge divers can hook in to the reef wall and watch the amazing shark display. Hammerheads, tiger shark and huge schools of grey reef shark are the main draw.
Drift on the incoming tide through The Canyons, where schools of big eyes hang out and mantas can be seen hanging in the cross current. End the dive at Shark Cave where white tips typically come to rest. Other common fish species are grouper and Napoleon wrasse.
Tiputa Reef -- On the ocean side of the pass the reef plateaus out at 20m into a magnificent coral garden. Schools of barracuda, turtles, white tip sharks, small wrasse and many colourful reef fish species can be seen. Mantas put in an occasional appearance, bottle nose dolphins too.
Deep Blue - Or simply ‘‘The Blue’’ is the deep water on the ocean side of Tiputa Pass. Here we drop divers directly from the boat to descend to 20m and hang in the blue as the sharks are tempted up to the shallower depths by dropping stones.
Expect to see grey reef, silky and silver tip sharks as well as bottlenose dolphins.
Nuhi Nuhi -- A shallow coral garden where angel fish, butterfly fish, anthias and all manner of small creatures can be spotted. Look out for leaf fish.
Mypristis -- The coral reef acts as a nursery for grey reef sharks in season. Typically divers can see large numbers of marbled grouper and many anemones with resident clown fish.
Avaturo Pass - Strong currents are to be expected but bring forth a wide range of pelagic species from reef sharks to tuna and the occasional sailfish.
Tehere Pass -- The strong currents through the pass mean divers can literally hang like a flag in the breeze! Reef hooks are essential if you want to stay and enjoy the hundreds of grey reef sharks hunting on fusiliers. Tuna, dolphins and swordfish can also be seen.
The seabed and wall is more rubble than coral reef so simply drift in the current and enjoy the large pelagics.
Pakaka Pass -- A more gentle drift than the Tehere Pass brings you through a pristine coral garden with table and staghorn corals.
Silver tip and black tip reef sharks are seen darting in about the shallow corals, whilst numerous eagle rays are frequently sighted.
Otugi Pass -- The 400m wide channel is best dived on an incoming tide for the schools of grey reef sharks and silvertips.
Teahuroa -- The outer reef wall is where huge schools of snapper congregate. Reef sharks, Napoleon wrasse, barracuda, surgeon fish and big eyes join them, whilst manta ray sightings are possible too.
Garaue Pass -- The northernmost channel of Fakarava Island and arguable the best site in the region for consistent shark sightings. The pass itself is 1600m wide and should only be dived at slack water due to the very strong currents.
Starting at the outer wall we encounter the huge ‘‘wall of sharks’’ where hundreds of greys congregate. Black tip, white tip, hammerhead, tiger, silky and oceanic white tip are amongst the other species seen.
Napoleon wrasse, surgeon fish and the typical schools of big eyes and yellow snapper swarm over the reefs, joined by turtles, morays and lionfish. In June and July, large numbers of grouper aggregate to spawn, a truly spectacular sight. Manta rays also visit.
Maiuru -- A submerged plateau on the outer edge of the pass, levels out at 18m into a lovely hard coral garden.
At the ‘drop off’ you can encounter shark activity, whilst over the reef paddletail snapper and barracuda form large schools.
Manta rays and eagle rays come by for cleaning and a quick meal and there are plenty of smaller creatures including nudibranchs and crabs to spot amongst the corals and sponges.
Ohutu -- The second plateau starts at 12m and drops to 30m with vibrant corals this is a superb place to watch manta rays.
Restaurant Pier -- This shallow site is perfect for an afternoon dive where schools of snapper, black tip reef sharks and Napoleon wrasse are common with a stunning atmosphere for photography
Tumakohua -- The southern pass of Fakarava is just as dramatic as the north, though only 200m across, it can be dived with both incoming and outgoing tides.
Big schools of grey reef sharks can be seen in the deeper water whilst along the shallower reef black tips dart about. Manta rays and leopard whiprays are also frequently seen.
In 1987 Jacques-Yves Cousteau dubbed Tikehau as ‘‘the richest atoll on the face of the earth’’, and it is easy to understand why with schools of sharks, manta rays and lovely corals.
Tuheiava Pass -- A channel dive providing predictable encounters with grey reef and white tip reef sharks, schooling snappers in huge numbers and dolphins. Turtles and solitary barracudas are also seen.
The Shark Hole - Diving down a vertical break in the reef brings you through schooling sharks onto even bigger schools of snapper. The archway at 50m is adorned with anemones.
The Old Pearl Farm -- is THE place for watching mantas as they come to the reef for cleaning.
Outer Wall -- The sloping outer wall of Kauehi Island is encrusted with huge hard coral formations and sponges. Butterfly fish, surgeon fish, banner fish and snappers all form large schools over the reef.
Puffer fish, morays, tuna, barracuda, wrasse and lionfish are a common sight, whilst mantas, grey reef shark, eagle rays and the occasional hammerhead make up the larger visitors. Great for spotting leaf fish and nudibranchs.
For your final full day aboard we schedule 2 morning dives
Plenty of time for off - gassing before disembarkation the following morning and your flight home.
Once you have had breakfast transfer will take you to the Airport or local hotel.
If you are not remaining in French Polynesia for additional nights after your cruise, please allow plenty of time for the transfer to the airport and for check-in.