Dive experience: The Bikini wrecks are at an average depth of 50m and suitable for technical divers only. All divers must be a minimum of PADI Tec 50 or equivalent, with wreck experience. The following certifications are also recommended: TDI - Advanced Nitrox and Deco Procedures, IANTD - Tech Nitrox, NAUI - Tech Nitrox and Deco Techniques, ANDI - Technical Nitrox. Closed-circuit rebreather (CCR) divers need to be minimum normoxic trimix certified.
Due to the very remote location, divers are recommended to complete a 10 minute 3-6m safety stop every dive in addition to the standard decompression stops. There is a minimum 4 hour surface interval between all dives. Wreck penetration is not allowed without a dive guide.
Cruise price per person includes: Cabin accommodation, breakfast, lunch, dinner, snacks, drinking water, hot drinks, soft drinks, dives (as detailed in the trips above), 3 experienced dive team members, deco-bar, weights and weightbelts.
Cruise price per person excludes (mandatory, unless customer provides own): Scuba equipment rental (see below, must be pre-booked), port and park fees (10-11 nights - US$ 500, 13-14 nights - US$ 600), appropriate diving and evacuation insurance. Unless otherwise stated, all the listed items need to be paid on arrival (cash or credit card).
Scuba equipment - 2 methods of buoyancy (redundant bladder/dry suit/lift bag), multi-gas dive computer, back-up dive computer or depth/bottom timer, 2 SMBs (1 orange/red, 1 yellow) with slates, 2 reels/spools (15m and 60m of line), additional dive slate, 2 torches (for wreck penetration).
Optional extras: Alcoholic drinks, additional scuba equipment rental (see below, must be pre-booked). Unless otherwise stated, all the listed items need to be paid on arrival.
Scuba equipment – backplate, harness and wing capable of carrying manifolded twin 80 cu.ft. aluminium cylinders and at least 1 40 cu.ft. aluminium stage tank, 2 DIN regulator sets (one with long-hose configuration), DIN stage regulator for use with up to 95% oxygen, 3-5 mm full length wetsuit (not available for rent), spare mask.
How to get there: The Pacific Master uses the dock at Ebeye Island for all its Marshall Islands expeditions. All cruises are planned around the scheduled flights to Kwajalein Airport (KWA) from Honolulu (HNL) with United Airlines. It’s 7 hours from HNL to KWA.
Ebeye Island - since Kwajalein Airport is located inside a USA military base, there are some specific arrival and departure formalities. During the flight to the Marshall Islands you will be given a white customs form and a blue immigration form. Your address in the Marshall Islands will be “M/Y Pacific Master Dive Vessel”. In the ‘Visitors Only’ section of the immigration form, select ‘Other’ and write: “Liveaboard Diving Vessel”. Then you will land and await your luggage. You do not need to complete the paperwork for entry in to the military base. Instead, go to the Marshallese official in the holding area and give them the printed copy of the Master Liveaboards sponsor letter that you received during the booking process along with the 2 immigration and customs forms.
Once the transport to the ferry port is ready, you will be taken to a hangar to retrieve your checked baggage. A shuttle bus will then take passengers from the airport to the ferry terminal (5-10 minute journey) where a military ferry will take you across the short distance (20 minutes) to Ebeye and off from the military base. Once at Ebeye Island, a Pacific Master representative will meet you and transport you by motorised tender to the liveaboard boat.
Boarding times are scheduled around the flights from Honolulu. The boat returns on the penultimate day and disembarkation on the last day is timed around the same flights. All trips are planned to allow at least 18 hours before flying after diving.
Note: all visitors to the Marshall Islands must provide proof of vaccination against measles.
Diving Environment: Bikini Atoll is part of the Marshall Islands, a nation which covers a huge expanse of crystal-clear water in the Pacific Ocean. It is a “one of a kind” diving paradise. Not only does it feature vivid coral reefs and staggering marine life, but it is also possibly the number one wreck dive destination in the world. After the end of World War II, the USA assembled a fleet of decommissioned naval vessels at Bikini Atoll in order to carry out atomic bomb tests. ‘Castle Bravo’ was the biggest man made explosion in history - a 15-megaton hydrogen bomb that was 1,000 times more powerful than the bomb dropped on Hiroshima; it left a 2 km crater in the lagoon. These days Bikini Atoll is a UNESCO World Heritage site and has re-opened, allowing divers to experience a unique collection of historic battleships, cruisers, aircraft carriers and submarines. The USS Saratoga is said the be the highlight, with its massive 900 ft/270m flight deck.
There are also some excellent sites near Majuro, including steep walls of Kalalen Pass which is excellent for drift diving, pelagics and encounters with tiger sharks and silvertips, a freighter, a seaplane, and a large military dumpsite at Ejit Island with trucks, jeeps, tug boats, that is perfect for macro dives and underwater photography.
Air temperatures range between 80-84F/27-29°C, all year round, with some rainfall and cooling trade winds in the evenings. Water temperatures are constant at 80-84F/27-29°C too. A 3 or 5 mm full length wetsuit is recommended for wreck penetration and prolonged safety stops.
Non-diver rate: 10% discount on published prices.
Single supplement (if you do not want to share accommodation): There are 2 dedicated standard cabins available on the lower deck for single travellers, although you can reserve an upper deck cabin instead if you prefer. The single supplement is optional - single travelers may choose to share a cabin or pay the supplement of 80% of the normal published price for their own cabin.
Dive clubs and group discounts: Pay for 7 guests and 1 extra person can join in the lowest priced cabin free of charge (total 10+ guests).
Whole boat charter rate (per night): Pay for 14 guests and 2 extra people can join in the lowest priced cabin free of charge.