DIVE SITES - TULAGI (Central Province)
USS AARON WARD II
Discovered in 1995, it is the only diveable Destroyer in the country. Mortally wounded by Japanese aircraft on 7th April 1943, she limped as far as Tinete Point where she went down with 27 of her crew. This impressive wreck is sitting upright and intact on the sandy bottom. Possessing an extensive arsenal of guns it is a highly specialist dive at a depth of 53m-70m.

KANAWHA
A huge American oil tanker weighing 14500 tonnes. This was sunk in the harbour of Tulagi on the same day as the Aaron Ward. As a warship, it was heavily armed with guns on the bow, bridge, midships and stern. Sitting upright on a flat bottom, the deck is strewn with artifacts, debris and wreckage.

THE MOA
Located in Tulagi harbour, this is the only diveable New Zealand ship in Solomon Islands. It was well known for its influence in the sinking of Japanese submarine and is now sitting upright at a depth of 35m-45m.

TWIN TUNNELS
The tunnels are actually ancient lava tubes that start on top of a patch of reef and drop vertically to about 35m. They then join into one tunnel that exits the reef wall at 40m. You are then greeted by a mass of fish that swarm around the reef including a lot of pelagic action along with sharks, dogtooth tuna, giant trevally and barracuda.

KAWANISHI SEA PLANE
The H6K5 was the largest Japanese plane at the start of WWII. They flew between the far reaches of the Japanese empire, but were no match for fighter attacks, despite its defensive armament. The Kawanishi was an excellent, well built airplane that was arguably the most advanced flying boat in the world at the start of the war.
It now rests upright and nearly completely intact at a depth of only 20m-30m. The right wing is broken off and sitting in front of the plane. The nose is slightly bent, caused likely from impact at the bottom. The left wing, fuselage and tail are in excellent condition and intact, with some portions of the outer skin corroded away to allow divers viewing inside.

TAMA MAU MARU
A Japanese mine sweeper lying at a depth of around 70m. This wreck was originally up on the islands reef, but has slipped off due to siesmic activity which caused it to be lost again until 1995. Only a handful of divers have been down to see her. There are many artifacts on this wreck including lanterns in the rear hold and mines mid-ship.

MANTA GAP
This region is renowned for its wreck diving, but it is also one of the few places on earth where you can dive with giant manta rays. Washed by some very strong currents, these graceful creatures, measuring 3m-5m in diameter, feed over the shallow reefs. This high speed drift dive is at a 9m-22m sandy bottom with long fingers of rock, barrel sponges and anemones.