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“Lissenung, fantastic diving location, small piece of paradise”

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Lissenung Island Resort
Sydney, Australia
1 review
“Lissenung, fantastic diving location, small piece of paradise”
Reviewed August 4, 2010

My daughter and I have just returned from eight days spent on Lissenung Island, Kavieng, PNG. We both agreed that we had a fantastic time due to the warmth and hospitality of the owners Dietmar and Ange and the quiet, non- intrusive nature of the island that only accommodates a limited number of guests. Lissenung is a remote location (that indeed is a large part of its charm) travelling in developing nations requires flexibility and an understanding that things will not always go right., however on Lissenung any small inconveniences were dealt with in a positive, friendly and professional manner. The Dive staff particularly Peni, Igua, Benson and Manuel, made diving easy and enjoyable and the care that they took with my daughter and myself was just great. Diving at Albatross Passage, The Matrix and Helmuts reef were all very very impressive. I was also pleased by how great the food (my daughter a vegetarian was well catered for) and one must realise that a set menu for each meal is simply a reality in remote locations. (the lobster and seafood dishes were superb) We were also impressed as to how well organised and clean the rooms were. Again a great credit to the restaurant, kitchen and housekeeping staff, all of whom are from the neighbouring Enuk Island

The only real issue is that as my wife did not get to come to Lissenung on this
trip so I have had to promise to return to visit at some point in the future
and make sure that she can come as well.

For a small,remote, eco-friendly location, you would be hard pressed to better Lissenung. (dont expect 5 star and do check out the Lissenung Website, it is very honest in its presentation of the island and facilities)

I hope to make it back to Lissenung in the not too distant future

  • Stayed July 2010
    • Value
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Helpful?
Thank billotrav
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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85 reviews from our community

Traveler rating
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Rating summary
  • Location
    5 of 5 bubbles
  • Sleep Quality
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Rooms
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Service
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Value
    4 of 5 bubbles
  • Cleanliness
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (21)
Date | Rating
  • Dutch first
  • English first
  • French first
  • German first
  • Italian first
  • Any
English first
Madang
Level Contributor
8 reviews
5 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 25 helpful votes
Reviewed July 12, 2010

We spent 10 days at Lissenung and wished it could have been longer. The resort is set on a beautiful little island and is very quiet and peaceful. Everything fits in beautifully with the environment there and creates a wonderful sense of simplicity - without compromising on comfort. The food was great. Meals were varied, interesting and always delicious. We were offered more than we could eat at every meal and our vegetarian requirements were well catered for. The service was extremely friendly and welcoming, with just a nice touch of quirkiness. The diving was absolutely fantastic. All of the divemasters were both professional and enthusiastic and helped us to get the most out of every dive. For what we wanted from our holiday, we couldn't have done better.

  • Stayed June 2010, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
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    • Cleanliness
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Helpful?
Thank RobertMcK
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Melbourne, Australia
Level Contributor
36 reviews
28 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 34 helpful votes
Reviewed June 12, 2010

Despite previous critical reviews we had an enjoyable, peaceful and relaxing holiday. Scuba diving was excellent. Great fish and coral walls. Wreck sites just average. The house reef is excellent and perfect for snorkelers and divers. The accommodation was very good and above expectations although is not 5 star. The bungalows have all you need (other than telephones/TV/video), are clean and well serviced. The all inclusive meals don't offer choice but are well presented, enjoyable and substantial. They are fresh seafood oriented but that is to be expected. Special dietary needs were catered for.

The staff, both native and others were excellent. They responded to our domestic requests and whilst they don't mind you helping to load your own diving gear, they expect to do it for you. They are not in your face but aim to give you a good diving time. They cater for a small number of guests and consequently you get quiet friendly with the management staff during the stay. A great diving holiday for divers and non divers

  • Stayed May 2010, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
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Helpful?
Thank Francis J
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
QLD
1 review
Reviewed December 11, 2009

What a brilliant setting, so clean and pristine, which is not something you always find in PNG.
The service was personal from the owners and the staff, we were made to feel comfortable and at home. Read their web page what they offer is very honestly laid out there.
It is not 5 star and doesn't claim to be, but it is beautiful and unique.
It is an ideal island getaway.

  • Stayed December 2009, traveled with friends
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Helpful?
Thank QldWorldTraveller
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Barcelona
1 review
Reviewed December 9, 2009

This tiny resort really is at the end of the world - it's hard to get there but it's worth it - especially if you are a serious diver. It's a beautiful, small island - like Maldives - very natural and environmentally friendly, with palm trees and flowers. Don't expect nightlife or luxury - you don't have aircondition or television in the room and water in the shower might not be hot if the weather was not so good for some time (solar heated).

But for the experienced traveler this is the place to be - especially for the diving. Spots like Albatross Passage or Planet Channel belong to the best spots I have ever seen with lots of sharks, eagle rays, tunas, jacks, schooling fish and beautiful hard and soft corals. There are a lot of wrecks as well - especially impressive is Deep Pete, a plane sitting in the sand around 40 m, from World War II.

Referring to the other posting: It's a pity the big boat was out of order, the small boats were a little packed. But this can happen everywhere, especially in third-world countries with bad supplies. I had this in a lot of other places I visited, too. You can't keep a spare for everything, especially not a spare engine... I believe than in third world countries you have to travel with a certain amount of tolerance and willingness to improvise and be flexible, it's different than travelling in the Western countries... The crew did everything they could to make the divers comfortable. The boats weren't taking in water when I was there, this might be a wrong impression because some of the boats are self-draining? Dive safety was absolutely ok as far as I could see.

Food was good, especially the desserts! I loved the buffet night with the crabs and lobsters - delicious. The restaurant also has a nice sitting area and acts as a library as well. The rooms are quite big and are built traditional style - on stilts, facing the sea, and are scattered all over the island. There is a nice couch on the terrace in between the bungalows (there are two bungalows built together) perfect for a nap or reading inbetween dives.

All the staff was very friendly and helpful. I enjoyed my stay a lot.

  • Stayed September 2009, traveled as a couple
    • Value
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    • Cleanliness
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Helpful?
Thank BarcelonaAnna70
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
South Africa
Level Contributor
304 reviews
168 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 248 helpful votes
Reviewed December 4, 2009

This resort is located on its own idyllic island, near to the small village/town of Kavieng on New Ireland. It is a terrific setting for those wanting to get away from the stresses of the modern world.

The rooms are pretty comfortable and clean. There is no TV but that was a blessing to us. The facilities could be improved with hot water but I suppose that is an issue with power generation on such a remote island. However the resort does advertise free wifi internet throughout, yet the router is not strong enough to receive a signal in any of the rooms except the main office.

The resort itself is quite simple, with a main sand-floored dining area. There are no other facilities to speak of, except for the dive centre and house reef. The food was generally well cooked and is all-inclusive. Though the resort generally offers only 1 main dish per sitting so if you don’t like it, tough! I found the food not to my own taste – rather bland and western orientated, generally with no sauces (very dry). The selection of vegetables is low quality and poor variety. Again, I’m sure this is a result of the remoteness of location, but customers are paying a high price for food and board and so one can expect a little better.

The main problem with the resort though is the dive operation – an integral part of the resort. The divemaster is Japanese and does not speak enough English to be able to deliver any kind of useful briefing. Nor does she point out much on the dive so one gets the feeling that the diving could be that much better if only the DM service was up to scratch. The dive boat too is very small and uncomfortable. The dive ladder is a rickety affair that tore a great hole in one customer’s wetsuit and is just a more serious accident waiting to happen. At US$ 65-75 per dive, this is very much over-priced. The diving itself was mixed – we had 1 excellent dive (Planet Channel), 1 good dive, a few average dives, and 1 poor dive.

The resort staff are friendly, but the management make the resort staff uneasy and could do a lot more to improve guest relations.

  • Stayed September 2009, traveled as a couple
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Helpful?
1 Thank Zambezikid
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
san diego
Level Contributor
5 reviews
5 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 18 helpful votes
Reviewed November 16, 2009

We stayed there for a week and wish we would have spent our entire vacation elsewhere in PNG. This resort is completely overrated. Best thing about the resort was leaving.

Grievances:
1. dive boats were in terrible condition with nails sticking out, causing several us to get holes in our wet suits; big boat was out of commission the entire time we were there and had been out of the water for at least two weeks prior to our arrival (why can't they keep spare sparts in such a remote location?)
2. the boats took in water
3. many of the tanks leaked
4. at one of the dives, Bottleshop-a critter dive, the DM was looking for discarded fishing hooks instead of critters
5. food was very small portions and kitchen often ran out of seconds
6. DMs were not actual certified DMs
7. no hot water for showers
8. no A/C
9. paper thin walls meant no privacy; we could hear our neighbors going to the bathroom
10. there were too many divers on the boat (10); on a small boat
11. short staffed; one captain per 8-10 people and no one to help the divers when returning to the boat
12. no shower near dive shop
13. no facilities for photographers
14. dirty water bins for wet suits and cameras
15. poor attention to dive safety: when DM removed regulators from the tank, the O-ring fell out and he proceed to close the cap without the O-ring before I instructed him to "hold off" and find an o-ring
16. when they met us at the airport, they had one car and one person (a small japanese DM) to help us with our luggage. the car was totally full and the small japanese woman struggled to get the luggage into the van by herself, not to mention the car was so full with all of us plus our luggage
17. no amenities provided- no shampoo, no power adapters, no soap

If the diving had been spectacular, we would not have minded, but they insisted on taking us to the dive sites "near" the resort. Also, the extra dives cost about $100 USD per dive, more expensive than any other resort we have ever visited. Having travelled so far for "great diving," we were truly disappointed. We travelled to another resort in PNG which was far better than Lissenung.

  • Stayed October 2009, traveled with friends
    • Value
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    • Service
Helpful?
3 Thank sdalias
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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Additional Information about Lissenung Island Resort

Property: Lissenung Island Resort
Address: P.O. Box 536, Kavieng 631, Papua New Guinea
Location: Papua New Guinea > Islands Region > Kavieng
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Restaurant
Hotel Style:
Ranked #2 of 4 Specialty Lodging in Kavieng
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$
Hotel Class:3 star — Lissenung Island Resort 3*
Number of rooms: 7
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Imagine a small tropical island covered in palm trees, surrounded by a white sandy beach, a beautiful house reef and some of the best diving, snorkeling and surfing in the world. Lissenung Island is located just a 20-minute boat ride from the airport in Kavieng, New Ireland Province. Nestled amongst natural surrounds traditionally-built bungalows accommodate a maximum of 14 guests. Forget your high heels, suits and ties; barefoot, tropical attire is our dress code. The open sided restaurant is where local and international cuisine is served, with local seafood featuring high. Breakfast, lunch & dinner are included in the rates, which are per person. At Lissenung Island Resort, personal service is guaranteed and a visit here is truly exclusive! ... more   less 
Also Known As:
Lissenung Island Hotel Kavieng
Lissenung Island Resort Papua New Guinea/Kavieng

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