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Bunaken Cha Cha Nature Resort
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Reviews (185)
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Reviewed November 16, 2009

I just returned from a 2-day diving trip in Bunaken. First and foremost: the diving is "as good as advertised", definitely worth the trip. Staying at the Cha Cha resort added an extra dimension to the trip. The resort is quite basic, it is not a 5-start resort and neither pretends to be one. It is just the sort of thing you would expect when you go on a dive trip with some friends. The service is excellent, I have been to a few dive-resorts in my life but never been to one before where they rinse & dry the dive equipment for you -> "kings diving"! The food is good and eaten family style with other guests and the owners (Raf & Reiko) which makes for interesting conversations. No big nightlife on Bunaken, but as I said, the sort of things you expect on a dive-trip: exchanging diving stories over a few beers and G&T's and then a good night sleep to be ready for next day's diving!

  • Stayed: November 2009, traveled with friends
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Thank TripleV
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed August 26, 2009

We spent five days at Bunaken Cha Cha and were extremely sad when we had to leave.

Cha cha is a very nice place and is extremey well managed by Raf and Reiko. Bunaken is a faboulous place and it was good to be based on the island expecially as all the diving sites are at your doorstep. The diving operation is very professional and, with only few guests, the experience was extremely personalised and it felt like being with friends all the time.

The meals at the communal table were something different from the usual and very enyojable. It has been easy to make new friends and share stories with them and with the owners and divemasters.

The reasons why I am not giving five stars are basically two:
1. the sound insulation of the cottages is practically non existent, which means that if you are unlucky and have noisy neihbours your holiday is in jeopardy. On our first night we had a very noisy family staying next to us and became really scared about the rest of our stay. Fortunately they left and everything was fine, but our memories could have been a lot worse if they stayed.
2. the food could be more varied, but, again, you are on an island in the middle of nowhere and the supply chain is challenging. Still, they have a fixed time for dinner (7:30pm), at which time ALL the food is layed on the table REGARDLESS of the presence of the guests. This means that, if you keep your good manners and wait for everybody to be seated, you end up having to quickly eat your lukewarm food before it becomes completely cold: not an enjoyable experience.

The place and the atmosphere make up for the drawbacks and I look forward to the day I will be able to make it back to Cha Cha.

  • Stayed: August 2009, traveled as a couple
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3  Thank mav71
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed July 20, 2009

I stayed six days at the resort with my brother ; we thought we would get basic comforts but instead we were pleased to find an excellend room with air-con, very good & varied food served at the table ; the diving is excellent and the guide, 'Solomon', and occasionally the owner, Ralph, do make the dive and short boat trips to adjacent islands, or the other side of Bunaken, very interesting. I had the best night dive ever.
The 'house' reef is very nice and the atmosphere at the resort very relaxed and friendly. I would strongly recommend for 'non-diving' families and divers alike. Because the owners, a couple (Ralph & live there they take great pride in making the place look at its best and, more importantly, they are very helpful and try to accommodate any request.
They have wire-less broad band for a small fee if you need to remain connected to the world but you should make the most of beautiful place if you go.

Stayed: April 2009, traveled with friends
4  Thank gypsyseahorse
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed July 13, 2009

I stayed 5 days at Bunaken Cha Cha and enjoyed every minute of it. The bungalows are very nice and spacious and equiped with hot water and air-con. The rooms are clean and the bed is great ... All the meals are included and are served at the table (not buffet style). The food is a mix of asian and western. And the quality is good!
Everything is included in the price except wine, beer, sodas and the "advanced" coffee creations ... yes, you are hearing correctly, you can get your daily cappuccino fix here and it's a good one .
You can also come with your family. the place is perfect for non-divers and non-snorklers. The snorklers are also on the same boat and will be followed by a guide as well. So, bring your kids and families. They will be happy as well.
The diving: the dive operation gets 5-stars. everything is setup by the very helpfull staff on the boat already. you just go out there and dive. Staying on Bunaken has the advantage of very short distances to the dive sites. Even if you go around the island, it's not gonna take longer then 15-20min. the dive guides at Cha Cha especially Solomon are great. Solomon can spot anything worth seeing. Also, at Cha Cha safety is first. Some of the places the currents can be quite strong but the guides take good care and precaution to keep you safe. When we set out for the sunset/night dive. Solomon found mandarin fish within a minute. The night dive was a great experience.
The dive sites are amazing. I really like the different wall dives with amazing corals and sea life. My favorite sites are Raymond's, Mike's point and Cha Cha 2. There is not too much big fish but lot's of hard and soft corals and their regular citizens :) it's simply amazing.
All together: Stop looking around and visit bunaken cha cha.

  • Stayed: May 2009
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4  Thank IjonTichy69
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed June 25, 2009

We spent the month of May at Cha Cha, this was our third visit in 4 years and it was better than ever. Many of the staff have changed but the new personnel are first class, especially the new Chef, In four weeks we hardly had any repeated menus at dinner, so we did not get bored with the asian food, it was all delicious. The hotel was undergoing some major refurbishments while we were there, but this did not detract from our enjoyment in any way. There was no ubtrusive noise and everything went on just as before. The work while we were there was mainly on the staff accommodation and this should all be finished by mid June at the latest. The SCUBA diving and snorkeling is even better than before. There are now many more fish on the reefs, especially pelagics, the massive Bump Head Parrot Fish are spectacular and well worth the visit alone. The coral is without equal, as I often quoted, "If Disney did Coral, then this is how they would do it". Another first class holiday in a value for money quiet resort with great service from friendly staff. We are already planning next year's visit.

  • Stayed: May 2009, traveled as a couple
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4  Thank noelandbarb
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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