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Explore The Solomon Islands Aboard MV Bilikiki

 

BilikikiOU by MattSmith

The Bilikiki above a healthy reef. Photo Matt Smith

Bilikiki Cruises has been operating dive trips through the Solomon Islands for 28 years and has a well-deserved reputation for comfort, safety and service

Remote and truly beautiful, the Solomon Islands is a diver's dream destination. Part of the Coral Triangle with a staggering diversity of marine species, coral and dive sites, it remains one of the least dived areas of the world.

Consistently great visibility and year-around water temperature of 28-30° C (80-86° F) means divers can enjoy an amazing array of colourful tropical fish, mantas, sharks, schooling jacks, barracudas and great macro life. There is a great variety of dive sites with huge drop-offs, coral gardens, caves, sandy critter dives, seamounts, points teeming with fish and stacks of World War Two wrecks. 

Bilikiki Cruises offers trips from seven to 14 nights around the Florida and Russell Islands, Marovo Lagoon and Mary Island, with five dives a day plus great food and an attentive crew. There is accommodation for up to 20 guests in 10 air-conditioned ensuite cabins and all of the trips start and finish in Honiara the capital of the Solomons and home of the international airport.

Bens Point Mary Island 0088 by Matt Smith 2

Ben's Point, Mary Island. Photo: Matt Smith

1000Bilikiki Tinny by Ellen Husain

Guest head back to the Bilikiki aboard a 'tinny'. Photo: Ellen Husain

Dive sites include:

  • Amazingly healthy hard coral gardens
  • Sheer walls covered in fans, sea whips and soft corals
  • Caves, caverns and cuts with light beams shining down through clear water
  • Vast school of fish with predating sharks, tunas, trevallies and mackerel
  • WW2 ship and plane wrecks and dump sites complete with underwater trucks
  • Mantas feeding in the current
  • A seamount riddled with tunnels that exit through a cave onto a sheer wall deep below
  • Great macros sites packed with cuttlefish, octopus, nudibranchs, tiny pygmy seahorses,  scorpion and crocodile fish as well many types of shells, shrimps and crabs.

Sometimes the hardest dive decision of the day is what lens to use…

Floating market by Kellie Oldfield

Floating market. Photo Kellie Oldfield

Credit Jo OShea

Macro delights. Photo Jo O'Shea

1000Wrecks plane Peter Pinnock

One of the many WWII wrecks. Photo Peter Pinnock

It is not only underwater that the Solomons is a unique place to visit, there more 990 islands that range from tiny coral specks in vast blue seas to jungle-covered volcanos fringed with lagoons. Each island group has a different culture and visiting a village to see the intricate wood carvings or traditional music, dancing and lifestyles of the locals are a highlight for many.

The history is rich and colourful and the Solomons were home to head hunting in ancient times and some of the fiercest battles of World War Two.

The people today are friendly but shy and still predominantly live a life little changed in hundreds of years. Bilikiki is happy to operate in a way that benefits people in local communities by both paying to dive on the ancestrally-owned reefs and by buying local produce from islanders. Bilikiki has been providing agricultural seeds for years and buying back excess produce so that we have fresh fruit and vegetables the whole trip, it is a win/win for everyone.

 

See more videos from Bilikiki guests

1000Bilikiki high res by Jo Oshea

The Bilikiki at anchor. Photo Jo O'Shea

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