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BUDMAN
11-14-2012, 00:49
11817118161181511814just got back from GC

going to add a report later but here's some pics

11813

BUDMAN
11-14-2012, 12:17
11821118201181911818

snagel
11-14-2012, 17:01
Great pics! Will be in Grand Cayman next month. (One day excursion on a cruise) Got my mouth watering already!

Snagel

BUDMAN
11-14-2012, 17:08
dolphin point and trinity caves were the two best dives we did on the SMB side. I highly recommend Deep Blue Divers as a dove op real close to the cruise ship landing.

BUDMAN
11-15-2012, 18:16
I'm going to give a very brief report on trip to Cayman because this was my 1st time there so I'm no expert but maybe this info can help.

We stayed in WestBay at the Shangri La B&B highly recommended away from the SMB area but very close to everything within 10-15 minutes of George Town.

Dove with Deep Blue Divers in Geore Town. Excellent dive op allowed you to dive your computer and air provided what assistance was needed but no hand holding if you didn't need it. Small,fast boats we had a max of 7 divers on a given day. 1st dive usually to 100 fsw 2nd dive 40-50 fsw.

Dive sites in order of best to worse (IMHO)

1.Dolphin Point
2.Trinity Caves
3. Kittiwake
4.Eagle Ray Pass
5.Armchair Reef
6.Eagles Nest
Two more I forgot the name of.

Eating places.
what we found is you could spend a whole lot on meals if you chose to do so but it wasn't required to have a good meal. We spent less than $100 per day for 2 on food. We did have a breakfast provied by the B&B but I only had one as the dives started early. Also we limited ourselves to one beer and one mixed drink apiece so that keeps the price down.

1. Chicken Chicken- great little restaurant for lunch $23 for two
2. Triple Crown Pub- a little loud but great fish and chips and meat pies for lunch.
3. AlFresco- great little place in Westbay that has a deck right over the beach and fantastic food at very reasonable prices.(we ate there 3 times)
4. Agave Grill- wonderful Mexican food in a industrial area
5. There is a Texas Roadhouse type place on SMB that I can't remember the name of that was very good.
6. Copper Falls.

If you like cars there is a great little car museum out past the Turtle farm. If you want the history of the island the tour of Pedro's castle will provide that.

overall a great trip we are already planning a return trip.

snagel
11-15-2012, 18:41
Thanks for the information Budman! Can't wait for our trip although not so sure about the whole cruise thing, but we'll see. I'm excited about diving Grand Cayman because I never have and what you are describing is Awesome! Because we are new the cruise thing, I'm thinking we are booking through the cruise line and at their mercy for dive ops. But, if we have a choice we will definitely use your information to pick a good dive spot.

On the bright side, I'm going to be able to dive Coz, Belize, Roatan, and Grand Cayman all in one week.

Snagel

John Yaskowich
11-16-2012, 08:25
The cruise line will try to scare you with horror stories about being left behind if you book with an outside OP. Don't believe them. First, the OPs have a LOT of experience dealing with divers from the cruise ships and know the importance of getting back in time. Second, a typical port stop is 8 to 12 hrs, departing about supper time. It would take an "SS Minnow" scale problem to extend a 2 tank morning dive beyond that. So find Ops you like and book on your own. You will save money and get away from the cattle boats full of "once a year, only on my cruise vacation, so hold my hand" divers.

BUDMAN
11-16-2012, 10:39
Deep Blue Divers left out at 7:30 am and got back at 11:00-11:30 am

rfreddo
11-16-2012, 11:42
The cruise line will try to scare you with horror stories about being left behind if you book with an outside OP. Don't believe them. First, the OPs have a LOT of experience dealing with divers from the cruise ships and know the importance of getting back in time. Second, a typical port stop is 8 to 12 hrs, departing about supper time. It would take an "SS Minnow" scale problem to extend a 2 tank morning dive beyond that. So find Ops you like and book on your own. You will save money and get away from the cattle boats full of "once a year, only on my cruise vacation, so hold my hand" divers.

Another thought that has worked form me many times in the past. With a little homework, you can figure out which operator the cruise contracts with in each port. If you call ahead and make a reservation with the dive op before the cruise sells out it's spots on the boat, there's a good chance you will be diving alongside your cruise mates, at a lower cost. The downside being that you may have to pay your own way to the dive boat. But if you can do that, you have additional assurance that the ship won't leave without you.

But not to take anything away from John's post. I've always found that the dive ops based in port towns are very conscious of the cruise schedule and "ship's time." No guarantees, but I can't imagine ever having a problem with a local operator located near a cruise ship port.

Clernix
11-16-2012, 12:37
Worst case your stuck in the Caymans in January. It could be worse.

rfreddo
11-16-2012, 13:35
Worst case your stuck in the Caymans in January. It could be worse.

+1 indeed

John Yaskowich
11-16-2012, 14:04
I've always found that the dive ops based in port towns are very conscious of the cruise schedule and "ship's time." No guarantees, but I can't imagine ever having a problem with a local operator located near a cruise ship port.

That reminds me - some ships do not adjust to local time so, even though the publish schedule shows an arrival / departure time of X, it might be +/- an hour from local time. Can be confusing if you are not ready for it but most OPs will have encountered it before and can advise you accordingly.

BUDMAN
11-16-2012, 20:34
11823

spotted scorpionfish

BUDMAN
11-16-2012, 21:53
11824

snagel
11-17-2012, 07:56
Did you see a lot of Lion fish while in Grand Cayman?

Snagel

BUDMAN
11-17-2012, 08:24
11828

not like Curacao but they were killing them quite a bit. this is a local only ones allowed to carry a spear

snagel
11-17-2012, 09:59
Yea, Cruacao was full of lion fish last December when we were there. Seemed like every nook and cranny I looked into had them. Just wondering how GC was affected.

Snagel