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“Amazing diving,fantastic crew , Good food 7d6n trip 11/2 -2018”
Review of Mikumba Diving

Mikumba Diving
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Attraction details
Recommended length of visit: More than 3 hours
Owner description: Welcome to Mikumba Diving. We offer affordable diving trips in Komodo National Park and Raja Ampat area. We strive to provide an unforgettable overall experience for our guests on our diving trips in these legendary regions. With a focus on safety, service and good times we look forward to show you the wonders of Indonesia aboard our traditional wooden phinisi boats.
Useful Information: Activities for young children, Bathroom facilities, Stroller parking, Wheelchair access, Stairs / elevator, Activities for older children, Lockers / storage, Food available for purchase
Reviewed March 10, 2018

First of all I want to thank the crew, fellow passengers and Mikumba Diving for an awsome trip. Me and my girlfriend and two friends went for a 7d6n trip in Raja Ampat in the middle of February.

Here is how my trip with Mikumba was;

Diving; Rating: 5+
Absolutely amazing. I am not the most experienced diver but this is without question the best diving experience I have come across. Plenty of marine life all the way from nudibranches to huge manta rays, nice reefs covered in corals etc. Great DMs which was helpful, experienced, and really good at finding cool stuff to look at. A special thanks to Andy which was our DM during this trip.

Food; Rating: 4
I was a bit worried before this trip that the food wouldn't be the best but man was I wrong. It is not luxury dining but the variety and taste were good.

The boat; Rating 3
This boat is not a luxury boat but it does the job. The boat is somewhat smaller than the other vessels we saw during our trip, we got assigned to the lower 4-bed cabin which was cozy and plenty of space for our backpacks. We had some engine troubles during our trip but these problems were solved while we were diving.

Crew: Rating 5
The best! Helpful, friendly and experienced.

Summary;
If you are on a budget and wants to experience some of the best diving in the world and meet new friends at the same time I can recommend you to go for a trip with Mikumba Diving onboard the Ratu Laute! Now I need to get back to work so I can start saving for the next trip! Cheers

1  Thank Martin L
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Hugo M, Manager at Mikumba Diving, responded to this reviewResponded 4 weeks ago

Hi Martin!
Thank you for your review, we're very pleased to hear you're happy with your time with us! Hopefully we will meet again.

Kind regards, Hugo

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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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"raja ampat"
in 17 reviews
"grey reef sharks"
in 3 reviews
"limited supplies"
in 2 reviews
"varied and plentiful"
in 2 reviews
"big stuff"
in 3 reviews
"cruise director"
in 3 reviews
"three weeks"
in 2 reviews
"night dive"
in 3 reviews
"amazing trip"
in 3 reviews
"toast"
in 2 reviews
"boat crew"
in 4 reviews
"lunch and dinner"
in 2 reviews
"pygmy seahorses"
in 2 reviews
"marine life"
in 3 reviews
"amazing dive sites"
in 2 reviews
"liveaboard experience"
in 2 reviews
"special thanks"
in 2 reviews
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4 - 8 of 40 reviews

Reviewed February 25, 2018

I’ve dived all over the world and this was quite simply my best ever diving experience!

We completed more than the planned number of dives, each of which were awesome ... I’ve never experienced anything which comes even close! We changed route for safety reasons, which wasn’t a problem.

The crew were absolutely fantastic, nothing was too much trouble and any issues were sorted as quickly as possible. A great team, friendly, obliging, professional ... they actually made the trip the very best it could be.

On board food and drink was varied and plentiful ... they always asked if anyone needed any more and cooked this if needed. I’m a bit choosy in the food department ... so if I’m happy, most likely other folk will be too.

This is not a luxury vessel, as advised on the website ... it’s simply the best diving, on a liveaboard which has good food, fantastic staff and which is very good value for money. So much so, I’ve booked again for next year, I suppose that’s the best endorsement I can give.

I look forward to welcoming in the new year 2019 aboard the mikumba ... there was a fantastic atmosphere onboard for the whole trip and I’m sure it will be just as special next time.

3  Thank shl123
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed February 15, 2018

I did a 7d/6n live aboard with Mikumba and loved every second of it! Really wish we had just booked the longer trip!

The Crew:
During our stay all members of the crew - not just the dive guides - were fantastic and friendly, which is so important. They were knowledgeable about the dive sites and passionate about the marine live that they must have spent so much time with. The dive crew gave great briefings, and they led a fantastic trip. Making sure everyone saw the best marine life possible. The boat crew were also great. A special shout out the Erik who drove our speed boat - great hair, big smile and so polite (ladies first!).
The atmosphere on the boat was great. Relaxed and friendly, but also professional. Max was a great guide, who could talk about marine life all night and had great eyes for spotting those weird macro critters.

Diving:
I won't talk about the diving too much, but it was INCREDIBLE!! Such beautiful diversity, from majestic manta rays to wee little pygmy seahorses (3 different species!!). We experienced very little current, the dives were relaxing and exciting all at the same time! We saw devil rays, turtles, nudibranchs, mantas, stunning corals, barracuda, eels, trevallys and so much more! The diving is famous for a reason.

Food & Accommodation:
The food was DELICIOUS! Everyone knows that diving makes you hungry, and we got more than enough food. A light breakfast before the first dive (cereal, toast), a larger breakfast (eggs, sausages, fried rice, fried noodles) after. I'm vegetarian and I was given a separate option on each meal (I felt a little guilty about the extra work for the chef, but it was so tasty!) Lunch after the second dive, snack after the third, then dinner later on.

It's Indonesia, so expect Indonesian food (After all, it's what the chefs will know best!), but half way through the trip we did have a pasta / pizza night that we all loved!
The cabins are comfortable and clean, with a/c (we did spend one night sleeping on the roof because the sky was so clear we could see ALL THE STARS!) there are hot water showers (amazing after the night dive where we saw the awesome walking shark!)

We also had a presentation on manta rays from Barefoot (a manta ray conservation organisation) - great to dive with a dive centre that care about the marine life they see!

All in all, it was a great trip, and we're already looking to book to dive around Misool with Mikunmba!

Thank Lydia D
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Hugo M, Manager at Mikumba Diving, responded to this reviewResponded February 18, 2018

Thank you, Lydia.
We're happy you enjoyed your time with us in Raja Ampat! We had a great time with you and you're more than welcome back!

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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed February 8, 2018 via mobile

Had a first class experience from start to finish with Mikumba Diving! Fred the owner was very professional and helpful in helping me to plan and organise the trip. The crew on the boat, led by instructor Max were really helpful and friendly for the week I spent on their liveaboard, Ratu Laut. Finally, the diving in Raja Ampat is out of this world with an amazing selection of sea life and probably the best and healthiest coral you will see anywhere in the world! Would thoroughly recommend Mikumba Diving!

Thank Mark G
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Hugo M, Manager at Mikumba Diving, responded to this reviewResponded February 18, 2018

Thank you for joining us on a diving trip in Raja Ampat, Mark!
We're happy to hear you had a good time and you're always welcome back anytime.

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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Reviewed February 8, 2018

My mistake was to choose Mikumba diving for the trip.
Before buying a trip, I saw a few negative reviews in the internet and did not take them seriously. I thought that people were picky. So, I have been on a New year 2018 trip on Ratu Laut. I write a review of my experience of traveling with Mikumba diving. I hope it will help people make the right decision.

I agree that the boat is a budget "flash packer" liveaboard. I have something to compare with. A year ago I was in Thailand on a budget boat with 20 divers + stuff, a huge selection of tasty(!) food and fruits, small clean(!) cabins, wonderful organization of space on board, food and diving, everything works and fix very well. On Ratu Laut offers everything is exactly the opposite.

First day of our trip we had problems with the generator. We stay in harbor until late evening and in few days came back to harbor again to fix this problems.
Ok. It`s can happen on any boat. This was not the most serious problem on this boat.

It was raining and the problem was that the water was leaking into the cabins through the cracks, which were due to the extremely poor technical condition of the boat.

The food was very monotonous, every day the same, not tasty and there was no choice. For breakfast was eggs, sausages, the first five days even(!) bacon. Lunch: rice, some meat, stewed vegetables were not bad, but a fresh salad was with old bitter cucumbers. For dinner was soup puree, pasta and meat again. Get a few pieces of fruit per person was a huge happiness. Even two times for all trip we had snacks: once a pizza, in which was a lot of dough and a little stuffing, the second time fried bananas with nutela and peanuts.
You can certainly argue about the delicious food or not, but when the products bad-quality (stuck together pasta, a lot of spices and salt, there were some exterior objects in the soup, in the sausages there was no taste of meat), probably the cheapest and insufficient amount, then sorry, there is simply nothing to eat.

Before the trip with Mikumba diving I did not observe any diets. I eat all products. Now I have gastritis and I really can`t eat everything. On board, after 6 days I simply could no longer eat noodels, rice and meat which were cooked not tasty. There was no choice and variety of food.
For 6 days I was full of all this. From what thay could offer from food, I could eat only fish, carrots and eggplant (1 small fish and 1 eggplant or carrot for 1 time). It was not enough to be full and have enough strength for diving, but it was better than anything else.

In one cabin was bedbugs.
Usually when change travelers do the cleaning. If detects insects, then they are annihilated. Obviously, the cabins did not carry out an elementary cleaning, which is also confirmed by the presence of mold on mattresses and pillows.

As for the first aid kit, they really have it and there are even some medicines. But there were no medicines for the throat, the cold, seasickness which I needed one time. I had strong ears pain. All they had was the mixture of vinegar, alcohol and water which prepared boat stuff and it did not help.

As compensation Mikumba diving offers a trip on a new boat. However, my previous experience of traveling on an old boat raises doubts about the quality of a trip on a new boat. Because a significant part of the problems on the old boat was caused not only by the bad condition of the boat, but by the bad organization of the trip.
In particular, savings on everything: food, medicine, maintaining the technical condition of the boat and cleaning in cabins. The worst savings on food. Not only on the quality of products, but also on their quantity.
And these are questions of the organization of the trip and the economy of Mikumba diving.

I have been many times in Asia. I love it and defenitily will come back. But I`m sure that I`m not going to Indonesia with Mikumba diving. Trip was bad not because the boat was bad. It was bad organization of boat maintenance.

Raja Apmpat is a wonderful place for diving, the diversity is amazing.

2  Thank soulpoint
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Hugo M, Manager at Mikumba Diving, responded to this reviewResponded February 18, 2018

Hello Alla.
We're sorry that our trip didn't fulfill your expectations. We take your opinions very serious and we've let your dive guide and trip leader George respond to some of your comments as we feel they are unjust.


To start we did have some major issues with the generator which could have impacted the trip heavily as our compressors are electric. This is very obviously not the usual case and it was corrected by renting another compressor on the first day. We didnt miss a single dive because of it, we offer 25 dives during the trips, more if we can manage. On this trip we completed 26 dives.

In regards to the intinery change, our planned route was south to Misool. If you recall the incredible storm we hit on route to Misool that first day and later in the week the futher storms, you will no doubt see that this was what they call 'an act of God'. It would have been unsafe and irresponsible to have stuck with the original planned route. Instead we followed the Northern route and did some incredible dives. A number of other liveaborads also were forced to change their plans due to weather. The intensity of the storm is why the forward cabins leaked that first night, as you will recall it was quite extreame. This is not the usual case and while we could do nothing but apologise at the time for the inconvenience of the generator issue, intinery change and the leaking cabin on night one the owner not only gave unlimited alcoholic and soft drinks for the duration of the trip but also gave every guest a free 10 day trip onboard in Raja or Komodo. I feel that was adequate compensation considering we did 26 dives and just covered an alturative equally spectacular route.


Regarding bed bugs. Firstly this issue did not effect you at all. It was confined to just one cabin. This is not an issue we have had before and it is believed that it was infact bought aboard by a guest. It was one guest that was affected until the end of the trip where other beds were infected in the same cabin. The whole boat was treated after this trip and it has not reoccured. Naturally we took this very seriously.


Regarding food. I am afraid I can not but feel this was your own mistake. On both the booking form and in the initial boat brief we ask if anyone has dietary needs. We have two cooks/kitchen staff aboard and it is our pleasure to provide a mix of western and local dishes as well as to cater for peoples personal dietary needs. We love food and understand how important it is. But it was not until day 6 of a 10 day trip that you informed me that you didnt eat meat, gluten/bread, rice/complex carbs, salad or any 'non European vegtables', in your words you eat only fish and carrots. With all due respect firstly you should have informed us at the beginning of the trip, and secondly we state very clearly that we do not serve fish aboard. With thousands of tourists now exploring Raja Ampat we do not want to create a situation where the reefs we have traveled so far to see and dive become over fished due to a unnatural sudden increase in population. That said, our all local crew live on fish and so they kindly let me use their food to feed you fish, carrots and egg plant. A basic plain diet but exactly what you requested. 


Lastly regarding medical issues. We have an extensive first aid kit aboard due to the remoteness of our safaris, but we are not pharmacists or doctors so do not carry antibiotics. We do have alcohol and vinegar and a pre made mix aboard for ear care which you did make use of but only after you were suffering with swimmers ear. If you had informed us of your sore throat there was cold and flu medication on board which I handed out to other guests.


Our traditional Indonesian dive boat is a budget 'flash packer' liveaboard. We offer the most competitively priced trips and I feel some of the best diving. We are not limited by company rules such as no current diving and no negative entry's etc unlike many other operators. It means with our judment, some 80 years between guides, we can do the best diving suited to our current dive groups. With four dive guides to 12 guests we can also offer very small groups to divide experienced and inexperienced divers. We are all about the quality of the diving. Our trips are cheap and liveaboard quite small which means there are sacrifices, one being space. Yes the toilets are on the upper deck near the dining area, we have two dingies to dive from, with a full boat they can be busy but we organise it well to avoid congestion. All of this is reflected in our price.


You made it quite clear you felt the trip was not to your satisfaction and you turned down the offer of another free trip aboard our newly built liveaboard stating you will never return to Asia. With that in mind the owner offered you a 50% refund in lieu of your free trip. Your response of 'I want it this week, I know your sort and will write bad reviews if I dont get it', were both unwarranted and inappropriate I feel, especially given the owner was out of the office attending a family funeral in another continent. 


We wish you all the best and fortune in your future dives. Please consider the points I have made in this response and think carefully as to whether your review honestly reflects your experience diving with us.


All the best,


George

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