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Dive Review of Small Hope Bay Lodge in
Bahamas/Andros

Small Hope Bay Lodge: "Small Hope Bay, a bucket list item success", May, 2018,

by Clem Clapp, AL, US (Contributor Contributor 18 reports with 4 Helpful votes). Report 10286.

No photos available at this time

Ratings and Overall Comments 1 (worst) - 5 (best):

Accommodations 3 stars Food 4 stars
Service and Attitude 5 stars Environmental Sensitivity N/A
Dive Operation 4 stars Shore Diving N/A
Snorkeling N/A
Value for $$ 4 stars
Beginners 3 stars
Advanced 4 stars
Comments After having my eye on Small Hope Bay for a number of years, we finally pushed the buttons to make it happen. My reluctance was due to previous unsatisfactory Bahamian diving experiences at Walker’s Cay, Harbor Island and New Providence. A friend suggested an out island experience and here we were.
Small Hope Bay’s mantra of “arrive a stranger but leave as a friend” was true in spades. Everyone from the taxi driver, to Anastasia and Nick from the office, to the kitchen folks, boat people and dms, owner , Jeff, and son, Brian, were so inviting and engaging. Although not overbearing at all, this is certainly not the place for introverts, the atmosphere is so social for the divers, fishermen and beach bums that made up our week in this 18 or so room resort. Meals were plentiful and variable with boarding house seating in the main building. It was a wonderful atmosphere to meet new friends and old hands on the island at happy hour, especially since they turn off wifi during that period thru dinner.
Our cabin #1 was an oldie with concrete block construction but recent major renovation. So nice and clean and modernized that surprised and pleased both of us. Although the bathroom was pretty small, the ac was good, the plumbing and electrical was recent and the bed was really comfortable.
The weather was absolutely atrocious for the entire week. Some monsoon-like system had settled over the area for the week before and was continuing during our week. The weather changed throughout each day from rainy periods, blowing winds, whitecaps and severe overcast to temporary blue skies. I ended up doing a dozen or so dives from their heavy duty pontoon boat which took longer than normal times to reach the outlying reef due to rough seas. I did not particularly care for the platform but the shallow fringing reef required such a boat for crossing at low tide.
That being said, the diving, although a bit chilly for an old fat guy who is a dedicated warm water diver, was varied from the follow the leader swim thru blue hole that took us to close to 142ft deep to some nice walls and top of walls. There were either gray reef and or nurse sharks on (I think) 9 of the 12 dives that I completed. Fish life and coral was a bit of a disappointment but it appeared as though the reefs were undergoing a revival. I wondered if more pleasant weather would have shown up a better variety of critters, etc.
Topside, we did little other than read or beach walk due to the rainy weather. The exception was a fun, educational and interesting trip to the Androsia Batik plant (originated by the SHB family) where our guided tour showed us the batik process and we were able to create our own t-shirt designs.
All in all, this was a very enjoyable destination with folks who originated the resort in the 60’s and were delighted to pass on heaps of local and family history supplemented by pretty good diving. I really see a repeat for this one desination someday.
Websites Small Hope Bay Lodge   

Reporter and Travel

Dive Experience 251-500 dives
Where else diving Mostly Caribbean
Closest Airport Fresh Creek/Andros Town Getting There Short hopper with LeAir Charter Services from Nassau. No problems.

Dive Conditions

Weather windy, rainy, cloudy Seas choppy
Water Temp 78-79°F / 26-26°C Wetsuit Thickness 3
Water Visibility 50-75 Ft/ 15-23 M

Dive Policy

Dive own profile ?
Enforced diving restrictions Follow the leader on blue holes and swim throughs, other wise, buddy up. Safety conscious folks. On the boat with 500. Last diver up was always a dm. Perhaps a bit regimented for some but these folks have been at it since the late 60's. No nazi dms. lol
Liveaboard? no Nitrox Available? yes

What I Saw

Sharks Lots Mantas None
Dolphins None Whale Sharks None
Turtles 1 or 2 Whales None
Corals 3 stars Tropical Fish 3 stars
Small Critters 3 stars Large Fish 2 stars
Large Pelagics 5 stars

Underwater Photography 1 (worst) - 5 (best):

Subject Matter N/A Boat Facilities N/A
Overall rating for UWP's N/A Shore Facilities N/A
UW Photo Comments [None]
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Note: The information here was reported by the author above, but has NOT been reviewed nor edited by Undercurrent prior to posting on our website. Please report any major problems by writing to us and referencing the report number above.

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