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Our readers submit stories about unique diving experiences that you ought to know about. Here are some diving destination tips you ought to consider, as well as some liveaboards you might want to avoid.
Great Land-Based Diving at Resorts
Undeveloped Guanaja is just a short hop from Roatan, Honduras, where the old Caribbean reigns. Gregory S. Bruce (Washougal, WA), who has more than 1000 dives, was there in February and was delighted with G&G's Clearwater Paradise Resort. "It is definitely a bit of a step back in time, and I love that. Food is healthy and plentiful. Most vegetables are grown in their garden. The rooms are nice, with huge balconies and spectacular Caribbean views. The reefs are quite stunning and healthy. Beautiful steep/vertical, as well as sloping walls. Lots of overhangs, caverns, and swim-thrus. Lots of juvenile fish, many nurse sharks out and about, angel fish, and small parrotfish. Macro subjects like nudibranchs, flamingo tongues, and fire worms. At the Pinnacle, I dropped to 100 feet and slowly wound my way up to 30 feet. Stunning and full of fish. The Jado Trader wreck, covered nicely with coral and sponges, sits in about 110 feet of water. Diving in Guanaja differs in so many ways from much of the rest of the Caribbean. Their website very well represents the experience. One of the best values in the Caribbean." www.clearwaterparadise.com
French Polynesia and Tahiti are an eight-hour flight from Los Angeles, and Rangiroa, with incredible diving, is a short hop away. Gail King (Daytona Beach), who has logged more than 1000 dives, went out with Top Dive in February and said, "Wish we'd started going here years ago. Diving at Rangiroa is all about big stuff and a large variety of tropical fish (an occasional turtle and large morays) along the reef. Friendly dolphin interactions seemed to be why most divers were drawn to Rangiroa. Dolphin interactions occurred on 5 out of our 21 dives, and we saw dolphins on most dives. At Tiputa Pass, the current takes you through the pass, so there is a variety with every dive, which might include reef, black tip, hammerhead, tiger sharks, eagle and manta rays, and large schools of fish. We stayed at Maitai Rangiroa, which was on the lagoon with a restaurant/bar/pool and individual Polynesian-style bungalows at water's edge. Top Dive provided shuttle service." www.topdive.com www.rangiroa.hotelmaitai.com...
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