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Dive Review of Xanadu Undersea Adventures/Mayfield Beach and Tennis Club in
Bahamas/Grand Bahama Island, Freeport

August, 2002, an Instant Reader Report by Jody and Elissa Thompson, CA, USA
Report Number 203
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Reporter and Travel
Dive Experience
251-500 dives
Where else diving
Bimini, Bahamas, Cozumel, Akumal,Palau, Papua New Guinea, California
Channel Islands
Closest Airport
Getting There


Dive Conditions

sunny, dry  
calm, noCurrents  
Water Temp
84   to 85    Fahrenheit  
Wetsuit Thickness
Water Visibility
75   to 100    Feet  
Dive Policy
Dive own profile
Enforced diving restrictions  
Common Sense.  Dive times were kept to 45-50 minutes  
Nitrox Available?
What I saw
Whale Sharks
Ratings 1 (worst)- 5 (best):
  3 stars
Tropical Fish
3 stars  
Small Critters
  4 stars
Large Fish
3 stars  
Large Pelagics
  3 stars
Underwater Photography  1 (worst)- 5 (best):
Subject Matter
4 stars  
Boat Facilities
5 stars
Overall rating for UWP's  
5 stars  
Shore Facilities  
5 stars  
Each boat has a seperate camera rinse tank and shaded seat area which
easily served as a camera table.  The dive shop has a nice classroom with
some outlets available for recharging batteries.  It is also air
conditioned which allows for fog free film changes.  The shop has MX-10
cameras available for rent as well as videographers on staff who shoot the
shark dive as well as do custom videos.  Underwater photo and video courses
are available by arrangement.

The Mayfield resort were we stayed has plenty of outlets for battery
Ratings and Overall Comments  1 (worst)- 5 (best):
5 stars
4 stars
Service and Attitude
5 stars
Environmental Sensitivity  
Dive Operation
5 stars  
Shore Diving  
3 stars  

Overall Rating

Value for $$
5 stars   
4 stars    
This was our 7th year diving with Xanadu Undersea Adventures.  Each year
just gets better.  While other dive shops have stopped providing free hotel
pickups for guests, Xanadu still does (even if you are staying in Lucaya). 
This year they bought a nice new van for pickups.  They are very customer
oriented and run a good shop.

Don't get Xanadu Undersea Adventures confused with the Xanadu hotel. 
Though they are adjacent to each other, that is where the similarity ends. 
The Xanadu hotel is run down and in desperate need of repair.  Apparently
it is receiving some badly needed maintenance at this time.  Until it is
completed, don't stay there.  Instead, Xanadu Undersea Adventures offers
packages in association with the newly renovated Royal Oasis Golf Resort. 

We stay at the Mayfield Beach and Tennis Club, an older, very clean, well
maintained beachfront 2 bedroom condo timeshare across the channel from
Xanadu.  Sometimes condos are available for rent.  Email Christina at for availablity.

The reefs around Freeport are alive with fish and coral, but there are
areas covered with algae.  This year the visiblity was exceptional.  Our
favorite dive, Theo's wreck (max depth 110 feet, 200+ foot long
freighter)could be seen from just below the surface! This dive is usually
affected by currents but all week it was absent.  This site makes an awsome
night dive, but only for advanced, confident divers.  Enormous sleeping
parrot fish make their evening cocoons inside the wreck.  Cuttlefish and
crabs move about, and bristle worms crawl across the hull.  Since this
wreck has been down 20+ years it is encrusted with life.

A new wreck, the Sea Star II was sunk 4 months ago.  Sitting perfectly
upright, it is also a great dive.  Though not encrusted yet, it is
surrounded by schools of fish.  There are many interesting swim through
features for those so trained. 

With enough interest, Xanadu Undersea Adventures will take divers to the
West End, we did this a few years back, trying to discover new dive sites. 
We found a 40 F thermalcline produced by underground springs venting to the
ocean.  Dolphin pods are commonly encountered here.

This trip, We encountered eagle rays, eels, grey reef sharks, and a good
assortment of "caribbean reef fishes".  Only occasionally did we
see turtles.

Shark feeding dives are perfomed on Tuesdays and Saturdays in an area known
as shark alley.  This year marked our 15th such dive.  On the days between
shark feeds, we dove here, encountering several grey reef sharks, all of
which lazily swam around the reef.

Freeport is easy to get to; a half hour plane or 4 hour boat ride from
Miami.  The diving is consistenly good and inexpensive.  Many positive
improvements have been made to Grand Bahama Island in the past year.

See our website for more info and photo gallery.

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