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Dive Review of Playa Blanca/Gaz Cooper/Playa Blanca Beach Resort in
Belize/Ambergris Caye

Playa Blanca/Gaz Cooper/Playa Blanca Beach Resort, Apr, 2005,

by Bruce Wallace, IN, USA . Report 1996.

Reporter and Travel

Dive Experience Over 1000 dives
Where else diving Aruba, Bahamas, Belize, Bermuda, Cancun, Cayman, Cuba, Florida, Greece, Guadeloupe, Saba, St. Barths, St. Maarten, Turkey, USVI
Closest Airport Getting There

Dive Conditions

Weather sunny, windy Seas choppy
Water Temp 81 to 84 Fahrenheit Wetsuit Thickness 3
Water Visibility 80 to 120 Feet

Dive Policy

Dive own profile yes
Enforced diving restrictions Stay with your buddy and back on board with 500 psi
Liveaboard? no Nitrox Available? N/A

What I Saw

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

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

Subject Matter 5 stars Boat Facilities 4 stars
Overall rating for UWP's 4 stars Shore Facilities 2 stars
UW Photo Comments Typical separate tub for "Cameras Only". No shore facilities for film or digital. This is an UWP "heaven" - it's all there for the taking!

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

Accommodations 3 stars Food 5 stars
Service and Attitude 3 stars Environmental Sensitivity N/A
Dive Operation 5 stars Shore Diving 3 stars
Snorkeling N/A
Value for $$ N/A
Beginners 3 stars
Advanced 5 stars
Comments Playa Blanca Resort is 5.5K from town (San Pedro) - water taxi is only way to town. Buy groceries when you arrive with resort pickup (Andy or Oscar). All rooms are suites with full kitchen. Resort has kitchen and 3 meals each day (inclusive available, but expensive). Several great restaurants within 5 minute walk from resort. But we came here to dive and that's what it is all about in Belize.

This was our 2nd 8day/7 night trip to Ambergris and Playa Blanca/Gaz Cooper. It was everything the first one was, but better. The barrier reef just off-shore from the resort is a 5 minute boat ride to the best diving in the Caribbean. Want sharks? They are all over the place. Want rays? Mantas and southerns are everywhere. Name the pelagic or other large fish, especially very friendly grouper, and you can swim with them all every dive. Reef fish abound in every imaginable color and size.

Special photos and video of juvenile spotted drums was worth the whole trip. Wife made friends with a very tame nurse shark who "played" with her for over 30 minutes - shark loved having her tummy rubbed with hand fulls of sand. Shark Ray Alley is to be dived once in everyone's life for pure excitement and joy of playing with these wonderful creatures.

Gaz Cooper runs the best small operator dive operation. Andy, Oscar and the rest of the staff is excellent, very professional and caring for each guest as through they were family. If you want casinos and night life, Ambergris/Playa Blanca is not your place. If you want to lay in a hammock and see the stars, relax, read, and dive, dive, dive - then Playa Blance is your resort and Gaz Cooper's is your dive operator.
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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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