The Odyssey, diving the Rowley Shoals

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Overview

The Rowley Shoals is one of the most remote dive locations in Australia and diving the Rowley Shoals is seasonal with trips only available around October each year.

Accommodation

The Odyssey is a custom built 24m (78 ft.) expedition vessel with 10 cabins with a maximum of 20 dive guests.

Four are ‘Classic’ twin bed cabins and 6 are ‘Deluxe’ double bed cabins. All are well equipped with individually adjustable air-conditioning, storage units and bar fridges, and the deluxe double cabins also feature built-in desks, a vanity and basin. The cabins have no en-suites, but four spacious bathrooms are available for guests to share. Located on the mid-deck, each bathroom has a toilet, shower and vanity.

Facilities

The air-conditioned indoor dining area can seat all passengers comfortably for meals or presentations. Enjoy a drink at the bar located outside on the upper deck where all guests can be seated under shade for alfresco meals. There are 3 other comfortable outdoor viewing decks.

There are three large flat screen TV’s are to be found throughout the upper and lowers decks to keep you informed and entertained. Electricity on-board is 240v with Australian power sockets.

All inclusive 7 night itineraries start from AUD 4,300 per person in a Deluxe, and AUD 3,800 per person in a Classic cabin. Please enquire for trip dates from next October.

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Location

The Odyssey itineraries depart from Broome, Western Australia, which has its own international and domestic airport with frequent connections to the major cities.

What to expect

The spacious dive deck contains a central dive rack with stations for all 20 divers, which is the maximum number to be taken on excursions. There is ample under-seat storage for dive gear and hanging space for wet items. Up to 4 dives are offered per day, sometimes this includes a night dive (weather permitting). Prospective Dive Guests should note that dive gear rental and dive courses are not available on board.

The 12m (40ft) dive tender expedition vessel ‘Homer’ is one of the most luxurious dive tenders one can think of. ‘Homer’ carries all 20 guests in comfort and safety, whilst two quiet motors ensure that you don’t miss a word of the dive brief. ‘Homer’ has comfortable seating and lots of shade cover. ‘Homer’ also boasts an easy access ramp and stairs for landings and on-board toilet and water facilities. It makes an ideal dive platform.

Dive areas: The Rowley Shoals

The Rowley Shoals are about a day’s cruising from the shore, and the area is accessible only by liveaboards from Broome on the Kimberley Coast. Diving is seasonal and excursions are offered only between October and December each year. The Rowley Shoals is a chain of three spectacular pear-shaped pristine coral atolls – each covering 80 to 90km2and rising up to 400 m(1312 ft.) from the ocean floor on the very edge of the widest continental shelf in the world. Here you dive amongst the giant clams, shellfish, Giant Potato Cod and Maori Wrasse. Trevally, mackerel and tuna hover in large schools around you, and you can discover over 200 species of coral and over 650 species of fish. Visibility in excess of 60 metres (197 ft.) is common.

Rowley Shoals are among the few reefs in the world affected by a high tidal range. The dramatic 5m tides pour massive volumes in and out of the coral framework and have created unearthly and enchanting coral scapes. The turquoise lagoons are filled with coral bommies brimming with exotic tropical fish. Drift diving in and out of the atolls sweeps you through pristine reefs with turtles and sharks and more.

Monte Bello and Mackerel Islands

Occasionally, The Odyssey takes divers to Monte Bello Islands on the cruise from/to Exmouth in Western Australia. These waters offer some of the most colourful hard and soft coral gardens in the region, along with the opportunity to come face to face with giant potato cod, manta rays and turtles. You’ll enjoy brilliant tropical wonderlands with the pristine beaches and islands alive with numerous types of fish, flora and fauna.

Anchoring in secluded turquoise waters fringed by miles of untouched beautiful beaches guests can go ashore to watch hundreds of mating turtles, or catch your own seafood medley. All of the Islands hold their own special beauty, attractions and history, unique only to itself.

Non-diving tours: Kimberley Coast Excursions

In the long off-season, The Odyssey offers sightseeing and fishing excursions along the beautiful Kimberley Coast of Western Australia. Explore waterfalls, visit remote beaches, go for scenic bush walks and more.

We think…

Odyssey offers fantastic value for money in the Rowley Shoals where otherwise only more expensive excursions are on offer.

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