We Eat and bail to the Blue Lagoon Dive Shop to meet our Dive Guide for the week, Rio and boat driver Gladwin. Alan informs us that Rio has his own blog and is one of the best dive guides in the area so we are stoked. Being only 8 divers in the group gives us our own private boat for the week too – perfect!! We arrange our tanks and head for our first dive. With it being our first and “checkout” dive we don’t expect too much until Rio says we are going to the Fujikawa Maru. This wreck is one of the best dives and is a 160m long freighter sitting upright ranging in depth from 12m to 38m. It has loads of great things to see. All 8 of us have a camera or video set-up and we got some great pics of the deck guns, zero fighter planes in the holds, artillery shells, gas masks, saki bottles, the engineering rooms, telegraph, etc...
It was a brilliant dive and we did between 65 and 90 minute dive times. We have vowed to do this again for sure. Alan overheard Rio talking positively about our diving ability so he’s stoked with a small, hassle free group and were stoked with him wanting to take us to the better dive sites. We stop on the way home for a quick freedive on a Zero plane wreck in 6m close to a remote island airstrip. We could still see the bomb blasted retaining walls used to extend the airstrip on the waters edge.
We return for lunch and take off again in the arvo for a dive on the Yamigiri Maru. We get there and are the only ones there – perfect! This wreck is lying on its side so it is a little more challenging when penetrating deep inside the wreck. We do another 90 minute dive and get to see some more guns, plane spares and drop fuel tanks, huge artillery shells, the torpedo hole that sunk the ship and some beautiful soft corals.
That night we watch the sunset over the water and have a BBQ on the point with a special Saturday Night Traditional Stick Dancing performance by the local boys. They must get some pretty bruised knuckles practicing this time honoured tradition.
Make sure you check out our Facebook page for even more photos from this breathtaking experience.