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Dive Review of Isla Marisol in
Belize/Glover's Reef

Isla Marisol, Nov, 2007,

by jay gorry, va, usa ( 1 report). Report 3750.

Reporter and Travel

Dive Experience 501-1000 dives
Where else diving all over world
Closest Airport Getting There

Dive Conditions

Weather sunny, rainy Seas calm
Water Temp 81 to 82 Fahrenheit Wetsuit Thickness 2
Water Visibility 50 to 100 Feet

Dive Policy

Dive own profile yes
Enforced diving restrictions [Unspecified]
Liveaboard? no Nitrox Available? N/A

What I Saw

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

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

Subject Matter 4 stars Boat Facilities 4 stars
Overall rating for UWP's N/A Shore Facilities N/A
UW Photo Comments [None]The dive boat does not have a table for cameras but does have a fresh water tank.

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

Accommodations 3 stars Food 5 stars
Service and Attitude 5 stars Environmental Sensitivity N/A
Dive Operation 5 stars Shore Diving 1 stars
Snorkeling N/A
Value for $$ N/A
Beginners 5 stars
Advanced 5 stars
Comments [None]Eddie Usher, the proprietor of Isla Marisol, and his family have owned the former coconut farm and now rustic, laid back dive resort, for more than a half century. It is as good a land based diving experience as one will find in the Caribbean, assuming you are there to just dive and relax. The dive package includes 3 boat dives a day, not the customary 2; night dives are available. Most of the dive sites are a 3-5 minute boat ride from the dock. In spite of what may be written in some of the literature, the diving around southwest Caye is as good as anywhere else on Glovers. Kitty, our divemaster, was very enthusiastic and accomodating and good at finding marine life. The corals, hard and soft, are very healthy due in part no doubt to the fact it is 35-40 miles from the mainland and unaffected by run-offs and there is relatively very little diving activity on any of the cayes which comprise Glovers. We saw in our week long stay numerous nurse sharks, several out swimming, one 10' or more hammerhead, a rare sighting in Belize, eagle rays, southern sting rays, many turtles, lots of morays and the usual reef fish and critters which were in great abundance on every dive. There were particularly many varieties of grouper, some quite large. The diving here has the distinction of being fun and enjoyable for both beginning and experienced divers
The food is remarkable, assuming you like seafood. There is no menu - you sit down for meals and just wait to see what interesting and unique dish Ms Fel, the chef, has prepared. Nothing comes from her kitchen which she has not prepared herself. Pitchers of fresh juice, orange, grapefruit, tangerine, lemonade, are on the table for every sitting. So are plates of fresh fruits. Equally as fresh is the fish which is served, it having come from the local waters that or the previous day. Her dishes are Belizean and each is made from scratch, including all forms of breads, wraps, jacks, and something called journey cakes. You will leave no meal hungry.
The cabins would not be described as luxurious, but luxury is not the intended ambiance of Isla Marisol. They are comfortable and more than satisfactory. They do have a/c which we never used; overhead fans and open windows were plenty. The bar provides a great gathering spot, though you might want to take your own special brand of spirits if that is important to you. You should also take plenty of Deep Woods Off or other no-see-um preventitive. The staff at the resort is friendly and intent on doing whatever it takes to make your diving experience a hassle-free and memorable one. That includes asking for your input for diving sites and activities rather than forcing a pre arranged schedule on divers as some resorts do.
I am a veteran of 15-20 live aboards and this is the closest resort diving gets to the live aboard experience. Eddie had a dream or vision for Isla Marisol and has been successfully implementing it now for 6 or 7 years, quite an achievement considering the distances across water that all building materials and construction crews had to travel. This is as good as it gets for Caribbean diving
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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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