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“Great experience - Mana is fantastic!”
Review of TOPDIVE Fakarava

TOPDIVE Fakarava
Ranked #3 of 15 things to do in Fakarava
Certificate of Excellence
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Owner description: The best of scuba-diving in Fakarva. 2 Diving centers in Fakarava located in Rotoava village, and on motu Penu close to the south pass. 4 Dives a day - Fun dives, introductory dives and certifications. Free Nitrox and free pick up.
Reviewed 13 January 2018

Of the three locations we dived at in French Polynesia, Fakarava was the best.

Mana played a huge part in ensuring we had a great experience. He is an amazing mix of professional and fun (no other DMs have made us laugh hard during a dive!) and his passion for diving and the underwater world is contagious. He really made sure we felt comfortable and safe at all times and made a big effort to help us appreciate what we were seeing, both above and below the water!

We did four dives in the North Pass and loved every minute of it. The staff were professional and the equipment was good.

Thank kalimg01
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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"dive sites"
in 8 reviews
"dive master"
in 10 reviews
"strong currents"
in 6 reviews
"north pass"
in 16 reviews
"ali baba"
in 6 reviews
"french polynesia"
in 8 reviews
"great dive"
in 5 reviews
"fish"
in 14 reviews
"day trip"
in 4 reviews
"in advance"
in 4 reviews
"my wife and i"
in 5 reviews
"boat ride"
in 4 reviews
"top notch"
in 4 reviews
"world class"
in 2 reviews
"loved diving"
in 2 reviews
"mind blowing"
in 2 reviews
"dive package"
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3 - 7 of 296 reviews

Reviewed 9 January 2018 via mobile

We had a very mixed experience with Top Dive Fakarava

Good:
-Mana the local DM is fantastic! He was the perfect mix of fun and professional. He constantly is checking on you, which for the first time in the Nth currents, is exactly what is needed safety wise. Over our 12 dives we witnessed how comfortable he made everyone feel underwater - particularity a few in the group that were a little anxious. He also points out a lot of things, which I felt other DMs didn’t in FP. He is passionate about Fakarava and super keen to make sure you have a great experience. Everyone we spoke to loved diving with him. He is a star and Top Dive is lucky to have him.
-Irene in the office is super lovely.
-The boats were very good, as were the equipment.
-The diving was fantastic - the pass and Ali Baba never got boring. The currents are great fun, schools of sharks, mantas on 3 dives, fish life is incredible, and vis fantastic. (We actually liked it more than Rangiroa)
-The fact that they offer Nitrox is a real plus as you really want to stay longer when you have such incredible dives. However it is more pricey than other places.

BAD
-You sometimes go with larger groups than the smaller operators, but Fakarava is a lot less crowded than Rangiroa.

UGLY
-We booked 16 dives with Fakarava Nth and Sth. When we arrived first in the Sth we were told that they had cancelled as they were closed (although we sent multiple emails confirming)?! Apparently there are big problems with the guy in the Sth (Eric) and we heard very bad reports from people who dived with him later on. We were very lucky Tetamanu Divers could accommodate us at the last minute.
-In the Nth we had one dive with a French DM Louie. He was the total opposite to Mana - very aloof, didn’t really check safety wise, didn’t point out anything etc I was not too bothered until a French girl in the group panicked in the strong currents. Underwater he didn’t not try to comfort her or calm her down. Once we got on the boat an enormous fight broke out between them in French. She was hysterical and in tears and just needed to be comforted. But he was totally arrogant in his approach, got in her face yelling and was apparently very insulting. You could tell by his manner that he didn’t put her concerns as the customer first. It was pretty appalling.
-Our last 4 dives in the Nth the Mgr came out with us. He didn’t even bother to introduce himself (only 10-12 people on the boat) or apologise for what happened in the Sth or apologise for ‘the incident’ with Louie. I would have expected this from the ‘manager’ of the shop.

Over the course of our trip we became less impressed with the Top Dive brand. The more we experienced and heard it was not favourable (note: apparently in Rangiroa they are encouraging shark feeding). I am glad we didn’t dive with them in Rangiroa as the groups were too big and they seemed very commercial.

1  Thank Dikiwi
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 30 December 2017 via mobile

Mana is a wonderful dive master, very dedicated to his divers and very thoughtful on the boat and underwater. He pays attention to everyone and gives good briefings. I had a wonderful time. Tane, the captain, and Helen at the desk, were also wonderful.
Other dive masters there were not quite that good so be aware of who you are diving with.

1  Thank Malo66
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 29 December 2017 via mobile

If you want a great dive in Fakarava North and you’re not a confirmed diver with at least 500 dives experience, avoid the instructor Loïc like the plague.
I went into panic mode under water and not only he had a go at me for not using the proper hand signal, but he then went on making me feel like a piece of dirt even though I had just gone through panic mode. This guy is horrendous, he has no care for his more junior clients. He cannot take a single criticism and gets angry and aggressive when you try explaining why you felt so bad. I will never dive with him again, he is just the rudest instructor I’ve ever met.
On the other hand, I dived with Mana the day before and he was excellent. He noticed when I was getting a bit worried and he found the right gesture and attitude to make me feel at ease under water despite the strong currents. He really made me feel safe the whole time. I did not panic once because he managed to anticipate my anxiety. Another fellow diver felt the exact same: Mana managed to make us both feel fine.
But Loïc is simply a no-go.
TopDive should keep their customers at the heart of their concern, yet Loïc just made me feel awful. I sincerely do not value him a single bit, his attitude is vile and arrogant.

2  Thank Julie K
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Reviewed 4 December 2017

I spend 5 days in Faka and dove with top dive in the North pass.
The dive center is very nice, the taff is very friendly and prod, and very accommodating
Nitrox is free
The dives are great, very nice coral, wall of sharks, Mantas.
It was a great experience

1  Thank alex_surfeur
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC

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