My girlfriend and I stayed at Froggies for 4 nights, 8 dives in February 2012. From the first email till the drop-off at our next hotel, this was a great experience! This is definitely a place to consider when you're diving at Bunaken. My girl called it VIP-diving, as the only thing u almost literally have to do yourself here is breathe :)
We had trouble contacting places by phone on Bunaken just before our arrival, due to bad weather the telephone lines were dead. So we mailed several resorts - living colors, village bunaken, cha cha etc. Of these places Froggies was the quickest to reac. We got a VERY complete mail with detailed description of everything, bungalow choices, diving, packages etc etc. We chose a 4 night 6 dive package with the premium bungalow (Barracuda or Eagle Ray) for € 305 per person (so that's € 47.50 per night for the double room and € 35 per dive per person) and one extra dive (€35 pp.) and one extra night dive (€25 pp.) . Equipment (15€ pppd.) Pickup €35 pp (from+to airport, car and boat). This included 3 meals a day plus afternoon snack.
Imo great value for money, this diving rate is fairly standard across Bunaken. We didn't bother to negotiate about the price (which we usually do - Can't help it, we're Dutch;) ). But as it was low season it was probably possible to get something of this price.
What makes this place great is firstmost the staff and especially manager Benny. Right of the bat you feel very welcome, and you notice that Benny and the crew do their utmost to make your stay pleasant and comfortable. Benny has a knack for detail, from the extra towels in the bungalow, to the umbrella's for the rain, everything is arranged to perfection. We were also very content with our bungalow (Barracuda) which is one of the two new bungalows. very comfy bed, spacious, a nice porch, a couch and a lovely Bali style bathroom. Dinner was also very nice, the chef cooks delicious & varied meals, which you eat together in the dining area (with view over the bay).
We apreciated the free WiFi and the 'magic basket' is really something else; you throw in your smelly dirty clothes in the morning, and presto! , you have nice clean, ironed clothes (with a gift wrap ribbon :) ) in the afternoon. I tried it at home, but somehow our laundry basket just doesn't get it.
And of course the diving was EXCELLENT. Our dive guide Steven must have 3 pairs of eyes, this guy notices everything, from tiny orang utang crabs to hiding leaf scorpion fishes. The amount of species and the coral walls are very spectacular.
The guys really take their time for you, my girl had some initial fears to dive again(+ hyperventilation, it had been 2 years). so we started slowly and they really made her at ease. Also all your gear is carried and set up for you, so it's just a matter of putting your gear on and dive. The gear is also in excellent condition. We ended up doing 8 dives incl 1 night dive - which included a view of mating mandarin fish (cool!). They also do PADI courses by the way. Steven took us for a walk around the island and to his village, which was really cool as well.
We had a great stay, definitely the highlight (together with Toraja) of our Sulawesi trip. I would recommend it to anyone who loves diving, good food and warm people!
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- Froggies Divers is a small dive resorts and eco-friendly PADI operation on Bunaken and Lembeh Island.We try to make it a home away from home and many of our guests also become friends. Our main concern is to offer a very personal service and exceptional diving. The groups are small, no more than 4 guests per guide . We take good care not only of our divers but also of preserving marine life. All our boats are equipped with Oxygen, First Aid and safety standard procedure.With the help of our experienced crew and our Indonesian English speaking dive guides we try to make the operation run as smoothly as possible.In order to show you all the riches of our underwater world we choose long, slow and relaxed dives; no need to go very deep, most of the beauties are well above the 30m, and we like to take long long safety stops, while admiring the upper part of the reef. Your dive time is limited by your air consumption, you will be underwater for at least from 60 - 75 minutes on most of your dives. ... more less