How to Find A Dive Resort or Liveaboard For Vegan Divers

Silver Sands Dive resort Philippines

Silver Sands, a completely vegan dive resort in Dauin, Philippines.

When traveling it can be hard sometimes finding a place that caters especially to Vegans. They may have the odd salad or dish that is vegan, but that can get a bit dull, and is often unhealthy.

To find a vegan dive shop/area that has all of your needs you need to contact the businesses directly or have a service arrange it. Having a trusted agent is the easiest way since they rely on repeat business.  If you do it yourself, ask specific questions and don’t accept “maybe, or I don’t know.”

Now we all know how to use Google or Ecosia  to search for places and that is a good start. I will outline what to search for and how to go about getting more information so you don’t have to live off french fries and beer. 

Things to Consider for a Vegan Dive Trip

These are not in any specific order, you choose which are most pertinent to you, but read through, there may be things you have not thought about while others are common sense. 

  • Set a Budget- There are always options for you to be able to dive near and far. But setting a budget for diving and also food and lodging is the first thing to do. For me decent food and amazing diving are fine but I always want the option of great food.  If you go inclusive this solves a lot of issues and you know how much you will spend.

    Tasik Ria boat pier

    Stunning dive boat jetty @ Tasik Ria, Manado. Tasty Indonesian vegan cuisine and great dive service.

  • Liveaboard or Shore Diving- Depending on where you live and how far you want to travel shore diving is usually cheaper and you stay in resorts. While a liveaboard can get to those remote places, you need to choose wisely to make sure the operation is vegan friendly. Either way resorts and liveaboards have spectacular staff and chefs alike. 
  • Choose a Location- It is a dive trip, so the main focus would be on diving. I have never been to a place that has had no vegan options. Some are limited, but with a little time and effort, you will be able to sort yourself out location that encompasses all of your eating and diving needs. 
  • Agent or DIY- Just as eating is important to divers, it is essential to find a resort or liveaboard that caters to your dietary needs. Infinite Blue can take care of everything for you.

    For all your vegan dive travel needs.

  • Mind the Season- Often in Asia there is a rainy season, and that might not be the best time for a liveaboard. You may want to travel to Taiwan, to shore dive when the schools of hammerheads pass. Weather and wildlife vary from season to season make sure you do your research. 
  • Food, Diving, or Both-I am a diving type of person, but I want solid food and drink at the end of the day. For breakfast and lunch, I am fine with a simple meal. A lot of dive operations
    Sea View bungalow at Dive into Lembeh

    Gorgeous bungalow @ Dive into Lembeh, Lembeh Strait. Mind blowing Indonesian vegan fare.

    work like this but now there are a lot of operations that will assist you and get you fantastic meals anytime. There are even resorts with a 24/7 kitchen waiting for your order.

  • Do Your Research- This sounds simple enough, but doing just a quick search doesn’t usually suffice. Check multiple sites and talk to the staff, use Trip Advisor, Trivago, etc. Try to do everything you can to learn about your dive destination including your travel. Airports are notoriously bad for vegans, this site lists the best ones Vegan-Friendly-Airports. 
  • Ask Lots of Vegan Specific Questions-  This ties to research but should be mentioned on its own, here are just a few.
    1. Where are ingredients sourced from? 
    2. How are meals prepared?
    3. Are there separate cutting boards and areas?Handmade vegan soaps 
    4. What type of oil is used (some areas often use pig fat to cook with)?
    5. Are vegan snacks available outside of mealtimes? 
    6. Is the soap and other washing products vegan? 
    7. Can nut milks be provided? 
    8. Will I need to order in advance, or can I order right on the spot? 
  • Speak to Other Vegan Divers- This one is key. Ask your friends that have dived there before. Some establishments have fancy photos and pictures of the vegan food, but when you get there and the food arrives, it’s completely different (usually they just take a photo off the internet). 
  • Be Demanding(within reason)- The days of not caring about vegans are over. We are paying customers, and often pay more for food that is cheaper and easier to source locally. Ask if they can make something extra, or substitute the regular sides with vegan ones. Although it can be frustrating, in a lot of cultures and places veganism is not commonplace and is not understood, so do keep your temper.,

    Vegan customer base is growing. Some dive resorts realize this and you might even find some of these in your bungalow refrigerator.

  • Get to Know the Staff- Becoming friendly with the staff is not just the right thing to do, it usually gives you extra perks, and they don’t mind going a bit out of the way to help you. Learning a bit of the language/phrases to ask about veganism is great as well, I have an app below to help you with that. 
  • Be Patient- There are other people on your boat or at your resort. Even if all the guests are vegan, it takes time to prepare these meals and get them to you. The kinder you are the easier things will be. 
  • Use Apps- These apps will help you when you are on your trip, some of these work better than others and are available only on certain devices so you will have to figure it out for yourself. 
    1. V Cards With V Cards you’re vegan in over 100 languages, just select the language you need and how to say you’re vegan. Traveling lots? It works offline too, and here is the site to get the PDF of all translations. 
    2. Happy Cow   Your go-to app to figure out what food is there and reviews. Since Covid started, a lot of places have closed or are selling limited menus, so may be a good idea to message them first. 
    3. VEGANAGOGO – This one is a way to eat vegan anywhere worldwide, and is another translation app made for vegans. It has common phrases so you don’t have to worry about where to eat, how to order, or how to communicate. 
    4.  Google Translate– Make sure to download the offline version as well, as many dive locations have spotty internet.                                                                                                                                                                                                                             
  • Are you traveling with non-vegans- As people think we are picky, it is often the other way around. I know some people refuse to eat fully vegan and want to have other options. So best to check if the place or places nearby offer other options for our omnivore friends. 

Just remember the more you prepare and the kinder you are from the start the easier and more enjoyable the trip and diving will be. Make a good name for us vegan divers.

Post by Teagan