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Kenting or others

Discussion in 'Taiwan' started by Centrals, Apr 3, 2019.

  1. Centrals

    Centrals Barangay Pasaway

    # of Dives:
    Location: Hong Kong
    6,177
    1,520
    113
    Green Island was very good so I want some more from this Island Nation(中華民國).
    Kaohsiung is just over an hr away from HK so I am considering anywhere south of this city. BTW, its new mayor, Mr. Han, really gets the Green Party on their toes!!!

    Walking with full gear on rocky shore line is detrimental to health so I am looking primarily for boat dive. And it seems Kenting can fulfill such requirement. So any recommendation for an reliable operator as well as budget Homestay?

    Cheers.
     
  2. Makhno

    Makhno Divemaster

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    Centrals, most dive centers in Kenting are awful. I mean really, truly horrible.

    I usually use Dive New World. 墾丁帶福新樂園潛水訓練中心 Dive New World | PADI 5 Star IDC PADI 5星教練發展中心
    I only go there a couple times a year now that I live up north, but they have always been professional, safety-oriented, respectful of the ocean environment, etc. They are capable of supporting tech diving as well as recreational, although deco diving, gases, etc., would need advance preparation.

    I also refer visiting recreational divers to CT Divers, run by a nice couple of professional, responsible, friendly and eco-friendly divers.
    About Us

    At New World, Yi-Nen's English is limited, and I doubt he speaks Cantonese. But he is a nice guy and a serious tech diver who brings to Kenting a level of professionalism that's usually lacking. Xiao G speaks pretty good English, and she seemed to be managing the place most of the time when I was last there. Also a tech diver, a serious professional, etc. Again, I doubt that she speaks Cantonese. (I haven't been there for a year, so not sure they're both still there. Other staff members tend to be shorter-term, like DM candidates, newly-certified instructors, etc.)

    At CT, both Carrie and Tony (their English nicknames: both are Taiwanese) speak excellent English.

    New World has its own dorm at the dive shop, with beds (in a room of ~10) for nt$500ish. The shop is near a 7-11, and on the main road, and doesn't have much else nearby. You can rent an electric scooter or take a taxi. Honestly, though, Kenting Town isn't much of an attraction …

    Carrie and Tony will put you up in a hostel in Hengchun, the small city about 15 or 20 minutes away, unless you have chosen another place to stay.

    New World's boat was not ultra-comfortable last time I was there, but they at least were focused on good dives rather than crowding lots of suckers into cattle-boat dives with 40-minute surface intervals, like much of the competition.

    Not sure whose boat CT uses. That's worth asking about, because as much as I like and respect them both, on the boat, it is the captain who has all the power.

    I have in the past upset some people when commenting on the Taiwanese dive scene, so I'll end this post here and do the rest by private message.
     
    Wantonmien and Centrals like this.
  3. Makhno

    Makhno Divemaster

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    There are a couple quite comfortable dive boats in Kenting.

    I quite liked the dive boat I was on the last time I went to Seven Stars. My buddy Andy Gray arranged that trip for us. He occasionally posts here, so maybe he can refer you to the folks who operate that boat. (It ain't a cheap ride, though …)
     
  4. Centrals

    Centrals Barangay Pasaway

    # of Dives:
    Location: Hong Kong
    6,177
    1,520
    113
    I should be alright with my broken Mandarin, worst comes to worst I can communicate with writing since both Republic of China and HK write proper Han Chinese.
    I will contact both operators in due course.
    CT would require min of 4 divers for boat dive not sure about New World.

    What is the best time of the year to dive Kenting? I have two periods in mind, end of May and beginning of Sept.

    BTW, since I am flying in and out from Kaohsiung. Is it worth while to visit Xiau Liu Chiu? Any recommended operator?

    Cheers.
     
  5. Centrals

    Centrals Barangay Pasaway

    # of Dives:
    Location: Hong Kong
    6,177
    1,520
    113
    The two operators are separated by a Nuclear Power Plant!!! Now I have second thought of diving the immediate area!!
    I didn't realize that nuclear waste is being stored in Lanyu(Orchid) Island. My original plan is to visit the Island after diving as there is direct ferry from Houbihu Port.

    Dive New World has one room with 6 bunk beds while CT has two rooms with 2 bunk beds each. I know which one I prefer.
     
  6. hsinhai

    hsinhai Nassau Grouper

    # of Dives: 200 - 499
    Location: Taipei, Taiwan
    101
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    28
    Good thing about diving by the power station is water is always warm as well you don't need a light when doing a night dive.. lol

    Be a little careful in DNW if you are a light sleeper, the private rooms are on the front side, meaning right on the main road (only road in and out of Kenting), poor quality Taiwanese windows and traffic 24hrs a day gets old quickly :)

    I think the 6 bunk dorm is on the backside

    I never get as far as KT these days, XiaoLiuQiu is so much easier to get to and i've fallen for the turtles. It has an island feel, that said 95% shore diving for me when there, though they do have a couple boats. I think DongGang ferry terminal would be 30mins from the airport + 20min ferry

    Its so easy to get to we often go down sat am on the HSR, stay overnight and catch the last ferry back at 5:30pm
     
    chillyinCanada likes this.
  7. Makhno

    Makhno Divemaster

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    Yes, one of Taiwan's two functioning nuclear power plants is there in Kenting. If you are concerned about possible radioactive contamination, don't go to the popular dive site 出水口 (although the more important reasons to avoid it are the jet-skis and banana boats, which speed around precisely the places where open water course students are surfacing …)
     
  8. Makhno

    Makhno Divemaster

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    Rumor has it that the Taiwanese government told the (non-Chinese) people on Lanyu/Orchid Island that they would build a tuna fish cannery … got the local leaders to sign a contract they couldn't read, and then dumped a bunch of barrels of radioactive waste into the ocean.

    It's a pretty cool getaway from Taiwan, with a laid-back vibe and a local culture that isn't ethnic Chinese (the local people are not actually indigenous, but came from the northern Philippines a few hundred years ago).

    The diving at Lanyu is hit-or-miss. Sometimes it's got great viz, but no fishes to see. Other times, a school of tunas or barracudas and jacks, or a family of bumphead parrotfish will show up and make the day. Green Island is better for diving, though, in my opinion. Orchud is better for getting away from the many ills of civilized society.
     
    Centrals likes this.
  9. Makhno

    Makhno Divemaster

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    I don't often go to Xiao Liu Chiu, mostly I guess because my buddies in Kenting trust us, and will hide a key so we can open up the place and let ourselves in and sleep if we arrive at 1 or 2 in the morning.

    XLC, on the other hand, has a last ferry leaving around like 5 or 6 pm on Friday evening, way before we can possibly get there. So, that means renting a hotel room or crashing at a buddy's place in Pingdong … either way, taking a Saturday morning ferry over and not diving very early.

    Apart from turtles, no better than Kenting, and generally more expensive. A couple ok wrecks, though, add value (scuttled; not real wrecks…)
     
  10. Makhno

    Makhno Divemaster

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    Centrals, back to your question, May is much, much better diving than early September.
     
    Centrals likes this.

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