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Dive Review of FRENCHIES in
Belize/CAYE CAULKER

FRENCHIES, Feb, 2008,

by DAVE BENSON, CO, USA (Reviewer Reviewer 4 reports). Report 3869.

Reporter and Travel

Dive Experience Over 1000 dives
Where else diving THROUGHOUT CARIBBEAN AND PACIFIC.
Closest Airport Getting There

Dive Conditions

Weather sunny, windy Seas choppy
Water Temp 80 to 80 Fahrenheit Wetsuit Thickness 3
Water Visibility 35 to 50 Feet

Dive Policy

Dive own profile no
Enforced diving restrictions DIVEMASTER LED THE DIVES LOOSLY.
Liveaboard? no Nitrox Available? N/A

What I Saw

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

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

Subject Matter 2 stars Boat Facilities 1 stars
Overall rating for UWP's 2 stars Shore Facilities 1 stars
UW Photo Comments I WAS ALLOWED TO BRING MY OWN SOFT CAMERA "TANK".

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

Accommodations 1 stars Food 4 stars
Service and Attitude 2 stars Environmental Sensitivity N/A
Dive Operation 3 stars Shore Diving 1 stars
Snorkeling N/A
Value for $$ N/A
Beginners 4 stars
Advanced 2 stars
Comments TROPICS HOTEL - NOT GOOD - was quoted one price on the Internet web site, $55.00/night, and my credit card was charged a higher price, $59.99 plus taxes. When questioned on this via the Internet no response was received. Cabana poor, shower ran continuously and management could not be bothered to fix it. Hot water sometimes. Toilet loose on the floor, that seal was broken thus sewage leaked onto the bath floor continuously. Rooms cleaned and beds made when they wished to and not every day. No mirror in the bath. Noisy location at night. Not really a beach front Cabana as it is across Front Street and the mobile BBQ stand often sets up on the beach side giving us the aroma of BBQ chicken and pork. We walked away from several prepaid nights. On the plus side the food on the island was very good. We can recommend Wish Willies even though it looks strange and the tiny Coffee Shop on Front Street.

Dive operations: two recommended to us:
Frenchies (we dove with them) very conservative profiles. Small boats but ample size for a small group. They talk of having cover but will not let anyone sit under it to stay out of the sun. No lunch with a two-tank day, we were given a slice of watermelon on one day. They do take good care of customers equipment and have it ready for the next day washed and dried. Abel (a bell) the owner is a good source of information on tours of the Maya Ruins as he is proud of his Mayan heritage and has visited the sites himself. He is bringing in NITROX. I would recommend his operation.

On several occasions I spoke with the owner of Black Durgon Scuba, Simeon Young. www.blackdurgondivers.com He seems to be a very nice and straight young man who is just getting started. Has O2 with him for dives, will only work with small groups not more than six. He is a PADI divemaster.

Dove Spanish Point
Poor. Vis about 45 feet. Water temp about 80°f, spur and groove but covered in algae. Largest fish seen were a two-foot grouper and an eighteen-inch Cuda. All the usual tropicals, French and Queen Angels, several Butterflies, Wrass, Ferry Basslets. Did see one Southern Sting Ray, Turtle and two Octopus.

Dove the Local Reef - nice formation of spur and groove but covered in algae. Vis about 35 feet. Saw a turtle and the usual small tropicals. It could be a nice dive if the light had been good and the vis better.

The islands motto seems to be Go Slow and they do. It is very laid back nice friendly island to visit and we did see several nice hotels. If we go back we will look at the Seaside Cabanas, wwwseasidecabanas.com

With the quality of diving at $50/tank and the poor hotel we cut our time on Caye Caulker short and returned to Belize City to see some ruins.

Went to Lamini Ruins with Greenwood Adventures. Nice day trip.

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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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