Tufi Resort

Bilikiki is a 125-foot liveaboard which pioneered luxury diving in the Solomon Islands. Onboard you will find ten cabins with a full double lower and a single upper bunk in 8 of the cabins and 2 cabins with two twin beds (no bunks) . All cabins have private bathrooms, air-conditioning and plenty of storage. Large decks with both sunning and covered areas and a salon with an entertainment center give lots of room to spread out. Bilikiki’s dive deck has a separate photo room, rinsing bins and two fresh-water showers. Food is island fair with international twist, and fresh produce is purchased from villages along the way daily. 

Bilikiki’s trips depart from Honiara and vary between 7- and 14-nights in length. Dive itineraries include Florida Islands, Russell Island, Mary Island and Marovo Lagoon. Diving is done from two 21-foot skiffs. In addition to diving, you will have opportunities to visit local villages and learn about Solomon Islands culture. Bilikiki offers Nitrox.

The walls, reefs, pinnacles and coral gardens of Solomon Islands support an amazing variety and quantity of sea creatures. The varieties of fish are staggering. Within a few yards of each other, individually or in schools can be seen anemone fish, angel fish, butterfly fish, humphead parrot fish and other reef dwellers while just a short distance away schools of barracuda, big-eye trevally and other pelagics cruise in the blue waters.

Popular with underwater photographers and those with a keen eye for the small and unusual critters are "muck dives". The amount and variety of sealife is astounding. Manta shrimp, ghost pipefish, and pygmy seahorses are only a few examples of what you may find.

 

Russel Island Group
Leru Cut 

A channel back into Leru island forms a breathtakingly beautiful reef formation which when dived at the right time of day has amazing beams of light and fantastic photo opportunities. Surface at the end and see the vine covered cliffs and jungle before descending and exiting onto a sheer wall of fans and soft coral.

White Beach
The site of an American WWII base where trucks, bombs and ammunition was dumped into the sea, both a fascinating historical dive and a fantastic macro site in an unusual mangrove location.

Mirror Pond
A stunning pond reflecting the jungle overhead. Outside on the reef is a sheer wall where snappers and travels hunt and pygmy seahorses hide in gorgeous gorgonian fans. The shallows host a stunning coral garden where crocodile fish, cuttlefish and anemone fish live.

Lologhan’s Rolling Green Hills
The rolling green hills of hard corals at this dive sites are like nothing you have seen before. Miles of healthy hard corals and packed with schooling fish, this site has to be dived to be believed!

Karumolun Point
The Chief of Karumolun has ban all fishing and collecting on this dive site for 5 years, creating a local marine protected area. This point is covered in soft corals, has a big school of jack, barracuda and lots of sharks. Often eagle rays are seen here. The macro side of this dive side is fantastic as well with disco clams (electric file shells), nudis galore, cuttlefish, crocodile fish and ghost pipefish to name a few things usually seen here.

Mary Island
Divers often refer to Mary Island as the “best” dive of a trip. It is an uninhabited  island with a stunning amount of hard corals and fish life. The schools of fish are amazing here, along with grey reef sharks, white tip reef sharks and black tip reef sharks.

Florida Island Group
Twin Tunnels

A large sea mount in the middle of the channel between Guadualcanal and the Florida Islands, the top of the sea mount has two tunnels which drop vertically straight down from the trop of the mount at 12m and exit in a cave at about 35m. Swimming out of the cave to the sheer wall of the sea mount you can see schools of fusiliers with grey reef sharks cruising by. The seamount is home to cuttlefish, octopus, pygmy seahorses plus schools of snapper hiding from hunting travellys, grey reef sharks, black tip reef sharks and hundreds of tropical fish.

Devils' Highway
The best place in the Solomons to dive with manta rays. A channel between two islands funnels water forming strong currents and an adrenaline filled dive. Drift along the reef top, duck under the reef wall and watch as up to a dozen mantas swim close by in formation to feed. They are often joined by sweetlips, jacks and bumphead parrotfish.

Maravagi Bay
A macro divers delight! A clam protected bay offering all sorts of great macro subjects such as nudis, demon stinger scorpion fish, cockatoo wasp fish, various pipefish, cuttlefish, juvenile batfish, various anemone fish, shrimps and crabs. Plus a bunch of giant clams and a small wreck packed with batfish and bream.

Japanese Mavis Seaplane
A Japanese Seaplane sunk during WW2 which sites upright on the bottom on 30m and is still in tact. A large impressive plane.

Marovo Lagoon Area
Kicha

Not only is this dive site a truly stunning example of hard corals and sea fans, it is teeming with fish life. Friendly batfish follow divers around, schools of jacks and barracuda circle around the point, while giant bumphead parrotfish chomp on coral. All this amazing colour and beauty passing by to an underwater sound track provided by the underwater volcano Kavachi which is only 15 miles away.

Mbulo Caves
A series of interconnecting caves and swim throughs with beautiful sun beams and a magical atmosphere. There is also staggering hard coral and tropical fish on the reef out side.

Wickham Island
There are a lot of amazing dive sites around this Island. It has something for everyone with soft coral points, the largest sea fans ever seen, sharks and rays. Plus great places to look for the small stuff such as pygmy seahorses, cuttlefish, crocodilefish, snake eels, many different species of anemone fish.

Japanese Maru #2
A Japanese cargo vessel sunk by American bombers in WW2 this is a a stunning photogenic wreck covered in black corals. A deck gun lies hanging over the side of the ship and trevallys and groupers now hunt the decks.

 

Boat Specifications

Year built: 1966

Year renovated: 2013

Length: 38m/125ft

Beam: 7.5m/25ft

Top speed: 11 knots

Cruising speed: 9 knots

Engines: 350 HP Caterpillar diesel

Max guests: 20

Number of cabins: 10

Number of bathrooms: 10

Tenders: 2

Water capacity: 25000ltrs

Fuel capacity: 12000ltrs

Freshwater maker: 3000 ltrs a day

Boat navigation, communication and safety features

Radar

Depth Sounder

GPS

Radio VHF/DSC/SSB

Emergency Rafts

Life Vests

Fire Alarm & Fire Extinguishers

Oxygen

First Aid Kits

Fishfinder

Satellite & mobile phones

Bilge pump alarm

Search light

Crew trained in first aid

Emergency flares

The Bilikiki does not offer set itineraries but features trips that are 7, 10, 11 or 14 nights from March through December. The Solomon Islands consists of hundreds of islands and groups of islands. There are 3 main island groups that you will dive: Florida Islands, Russell Islands, and Marovo Lagoon in the New Georgia Group. Each of these island groups consists of dozens of islands and a vast array of dive sites. You may also dive an isolated island known as Mary Island.

The 7-night trips will generally dive Florida Islands, Russell Islands and Mary Island, while 10 night and longer trips will also travel to Marovo Lagoon. There are so many dive sites in each area that we are able to go where the best diving is at any given time, and also cater to the type of diving that the guests on board prefer. In all cases rest assured that we will do our utmost to offer you the best diving available at the time.

Sample Solomon Islands 10 night itinerary

The Bilikiki 10 night trip will start and finish in Honiara, the capital city of the Solomon Islands. The three main island groups that the Bilikiki 10 night trip will dive are the Florida Islands, Russell Islands, and Marovo Lagoon in the New Georgia Group. Each of these island groups consists of dozens of islands and a vast array of dive sites. The trip will also dive an isolated island known as Mary Island.

Diving the Solomon Islands

The Solomon Island waters are very nutrient rich, and they support the entire food chain from microscopic creatures to major predators. You’ll have a good opportunity to see a variety of sharks, mantas, dolphins, and turtles, and barracuda in uncountable numbers. In shallower waters you’ll see almost every tropical fish imaginable, and some that will stretch your imagination. There are cuttlefish, octopus, schooling lionfish, and amazing numbers and varieties of anemone fish, anemones and corals.

Underwater terrain varies from walls to reefs, to passages to “bommies”. You’ll visit caverns with shafts of sunlight illuminating the interior. You’ll swim 200 feet into a split in an island, and when you surface you’ll be under a jungle canopy listening to the parrots and cockatoos. You’ll enter a tunnel on a pinnacle and exit minutes later in the deep blue ocean.

The Solomon Islands were the site of major World War II naval battles and Bilikiki offer wreck dives on every cruise. Wrecks dived include The Ann in the Russell Islands (a more recent wreck, not WWII) and WWII Japanese transports in Marovo Lagoon. Divers still find ample evidence of the war action that sunk these vessels, lots of ammunition and machinery in the holds, as well as dishes, bottles and other evidence of onboard activities.

Bilikiki arrange a village visit at least once on every trip. You’ll have a chance to meet the Islanders, see and purchase carvings and baskets and visit their schools and churches. If you’re anchored off a village the Islanders will come out in their dugout canoes to market produce and carvings, or just watch what’s going on. The children are a real delight and they are naturals in the water swimming!

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