hi there,
Now that we've migrated to beautiful Sydney, wifey and I are considering to fly our rEvos to dive a week in February 2019, considering going to one of the South Pacific islands (never been to any).

Could you share experience and help me find where to go?
Here are my main choice criteria:
-possibility to get close to big marine creatures for photography (sharks and/or dolphins and/or mantas). Close = 1 meter distance, i don't care having these guys 3 meters or so away, that's not good for photos.
-option for good, loooong shore dives (we like to do 3+ hours). Happy to do some shorter boat dives, but for us to be happy, we need to spend a lot of hours wet
-Reasonably priced: many rebreather-friendly dive centers are expensive, but in 2015 we dived with Villa Alba in Bali and paid 40$/night for accomodation (a room on a less fancy block) and diving was very cheap (15$ for a self-guided 3 hours shore dive, where we were driven by pickup). I am not expecting as cheap, but wish we can avoid those 500$/night type of resorts.
-Not looking for depth: 15 meters is fine if there are lots to see, and we won't go beyond 45 meters (although i have 300+ hours on my unit, i am still MOD1, my usage of rebreathers is for photography, not too interested to go deeper)
-3L tanks and bailout for rental, sofnolime available

Hope there are some spots which qualify, thanks in advance for your help :)

I know there are a number of very good places worth diving in Australia itself, some within a few hours drive reach - and i am also considering those - but for these i don't need much advise, easier to organise myself.