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zippybossrock
10-22-2007, 19:50
I'll be going on a Carnival Cruise to Grand Cayman, Cozumel and Ocho Rios. I plan on diving in GC and Coz. Can you give me opinions/suggestions on dive ops.......or is it best to go through Carnival? I'm newly OW certified and these will be my first blue water dives.:smiley9:

fire diver
10-22-2007, 20:35
being as new as you are, I would suggest picking from the dives offered by the cruise ship. You won't have to worry about missing the boat, or missing the dive op. It's safe, easy, and fun.

After you've got your feet wet on this trip you can try researching and booking onyour own next go around.

FD

Defman
10-22-2007, 21:14
I've met cruise ship divers with Papa Hogs in CZM. Make sure they know you're on a cruise ship and they'll make sure you get back in time.

bversteegh
10-22-2007, 23:45
I'm not current with Dive ops in either place - but I highly recommend trying to find a dive op with smaller boats( 6-10 divers) so you can get some more personal service. When my daughter was newly certified (about 6 years ago), we dove with Pepe's in Cozumel, a six-pack boat with only 4 divers. The DM buddied with her, and her confidence and skills grew quickly. I would rather pay a little more and have a more pleasing experience.

A lot of the "cattle boats" that service cruise ships/resorts give lousy service - they dump a ton of divers in the water all at once, have a very restrictive "follow the leader" dive profile, and usually pretty limited dive time - plus all the divers can stir up the sand and ruin visibility pretty quickly.

diversteve
10-23-2007, 00:42
I'm pretty certain Don Foster's (http://www.donfosters.com/) has the cruise ship contract on Cayman now if you'd like to check them out.

I agree with the previous post. You'll get more attention on a smaller boat. Contact some of the other diveops on Cayman, some of them are based in Georgetown or will pick you up at the cruise ship pier.

Try Divers Down (http://www.diversdown.net/cruise.htm), they do small group Cruise ship dives. Also Neptune's Divers or Red Baron, not sure if they can meet the cruise schedule though. Some boats leave fairly early in the morning.

Most every diveop in the Cayman Islands is listed here (http://www.caymanislands.ky/activities/diving.aspx).

After diving Cayman and Cozumel on your first trip, everything else in the Caribbean might be a little disappointing. Except for Bonaire..:)

zippybossrock
10-23-2007, 15:40
Thanks for the info. I'll check them out.

mitsuguy
10-23-2007, 15:53
In Grand Cayman, there is some really interesting shore diving within a few minutes walk from the boat... this past April, I was on the same cruise...

In Jamaica and Cozumel, we did the ship operated tours - the one in Jamaica was first class, awesome deal - good stuff to see, great DM's, everything... Then in Grand Cayman, we did some shore diving - a little shop called Eden Rock is on the waters edge, a 1/4 mile from the dock... There is some awesome swim thru coral, and we saw a decent variety of fishies too... best thing was cost - it was super cheap... Then, in Cozumel, we did the ship offered excursion as well... Not entirely a horrible deal, but they were definitely not up to par with jamaica's offerings. We had to wait, then take a taxi to god knows where, then get our gear, then on to the boat, and then take a taxi back... Granted, the taxi rides were free, but in Jamaica, they picked us up on the dock right next to where our ship was docked... It was just a lot more hassle in Coz... There are some other great dive shops in the area, but timing can be ****ty due to the fact that you have to deal with the ships schedule too...

here is a link to eden rock: Cayman’s best shore and boat diving Eden Rock Diving Cente (http://www.edenrockdive.com/)

CaptainRon
10-23-2007, 18:50
If this is your first blue water dive, I would also recommend trying the shore dive at Eden Rock in Grand Cayman. It is easy to get to and your never out of sight of the cruise ships. If you want, you can just rent whatever you need from the dive shop there or you can even make arrangements with them to have a guided dive through them. This was my first blue water dive also after many years of diving lakes and rivers. Now I'm hooked on the blue water diving. I will be back in Cayman diving Eden Rock with my kids in January as well as a couple of boat dives in Cozumel with "Dive with Cristina." She is willing to work around the cruise ship schedule. If you will be in Grand Cayman before Cozumel, the shore dive would be a good intro to diving in the Caribbean before you do Cozumel.

Big Mike
10-23-2007, 20:00
If you use the cruise line tour, you will probably use Sand Dollar Sports. Decent operation, small boat, converted pontoon, a bit slow. Dive masters are good, they will show you a lot of stuff. There will be a videographer on the dive as well, don't get talked into buying the video ($55 bucks), poor quality, bad editing, bad DVD creating. Everyone on the dive will be from cruises. Enjoy Coz.

Ocho Rios has been a few years, as I remember, good dives, good dive leader, again, all the divers will be from cruises