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Dive Review of St. George's Lodge in
Belize/St. George's Caye

March, 2003, an Instant Reader Report by Dave & Joanne Farrel, WI, USA
Report Number 422
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Reporter and Travel
Dive Experience
51-100 dives
Where else diving
Cayman Islands, Provo, Roatan, San Salvador, Bonaire, Key Largo
Closest Airport
Getting There

		

Dive Conditions

Weather
sunny, windy, dry  
Seas
choppy, surge  
Water Temp
75   to 80    Fahrenheit  
Wetsuit Thickness
5
Water Visibility
50   to 80    Feet  
 
Dive Policy
Dive own profile
no  
 
Enforced diving restrictions  
Divers were divided into groups of 2-5 people, each with a guide.    
Liveaboard?
no 
Nitrox Available?
N/A 
What I saw
Sharks
None 
Mantas
None 
Dolphins
Schools 
Whale Sharks
None 
Turtles
1 or 2 
Whales
None 
Ratings 1 (worst)- 5 (best):
Corals
  4 stars
Tropical Fish
3 stars  
Small Critters
  3 stars
Large Fish
3 stars  
Large Pelagics
  1 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  
Comments
[None]
Ratings and Overall Comments  1 (worst)- 5 (best):
Accommodations
5 stars
Food
5 stars
Service and Attitude
5 stars
Environmental Sensitivity  
N/A
Dive Operation
5 stars  
Shore Diving  
1 stars  
Snorkeling
N/A  
 
 

Overall Rating

Value for $$
N/A    
Beginners
5 stars   
Advanced
4 stars    
Comments  
     We like small, relaxed off-the-beaten-path resorts, and were very
happy with our 2 recent choices - St. George's Lodge for our dive resort
and Ek Tun for our "jungle lodge" experience.  
     A driver and mini-van were waiting to take us from the airport to the
boat dock.  Carlos picked up the groceries and us for boat ride out to St.
George's Caye.  The resort is one of few properties on the island.  It has
frontage on both sides of the island with the cabanas on the calm leeward
side, and the lodge and dive boat pier on the windward side.  Lodging is
mostly in over-water cabanas which were roomy and comfortable.  Each one
has a shady front porch where juice and tea/coffee are delivered every
morning.  The cabanas are on a circular boardwalk, which provides an
interesting place to find and watch small critters.  The main lodge has an
open, very informal lounge/bar area for visiting and enjoying the great
appetizers before dinner.  Meals, served family-style at long tables,
consist of several choices and more good food than you can eat.  Fred and
Fran are wonderful, accommodating hosts who do everything they can to make
everyone feel welcome.
     Dive sites were chosen to meet the divers' wishes.  The dive boat was
uncrowded and unhurried, with crew taking care of your dive gear and
bringing your BC to you when you were ready to jump in.  The divers were
divided into smaller groups of 2-5 people with each group led by either
Fred, Fran, or Jose.  Although we had never had a guide before, it relieved
us of having to find the boat on our own and also made it possible to see
things we would have missed.  This would be a great place for younger or
beginning divers, as Fred is a very patient instructor and spends a lot of
individual time with them.  He also is interested in helping everyone
become a better diver and is always available to answer and discuss dive
questions.  
     The water was fairly rough while we were there, so visibility was
somewhat affected.  Sea fans were especially abundant and colorful, and
dolphins often accompanied us on boat trips.
     One day, when many of us chose not to dive because of the weather,
Fran arranged and led a trip into Belize City for sight-seeing, shopping,
and visiting the zoo.  
     After a too-short time on St. George's, we went to Ek Tun near  the
western border.  Phyllis is the owner of this beautiful property.  Remo
picked us up at the boat dock and provided us with lots of information
about what we were seeing on the Land Rover ride to San Ignacio and beyond.
The last stage is a boat ride across the Macal River.  Ek Tun has stunning
grounds which are well-kept but in a natural way, not manicured-looking. 
There is a natural mineral pool where you can swim in surroundings that can
rival any tropical movie scene.  The whole place had a great feeling of
privacy with only 2 thatched-roof cabanas and the sound of the river always
in the background.  Meals were wonderful, served in the open-air dining
room at Phyllis's home overlooking the river.  There are several choices of
activities, including hiking up to and through a Mayan cave and
kayaking/canoeing down the river.  When we kayaked, we stopped at the home
of Remo's in-laws, where his wife Louisa gave us a tour of their farm and
served us lunch.  It was a rare opportunity to visit with local people and
learn more about the area.  Phyllis arranged activities for us, and we
really enjoyed our time with her, whether she was leading us through the
jungle or shopping in Guatemala.  We were happy that we brought everything
on her suggested list.  For hiking and for the caves, you really do need
hiking boots with gripping soles, good flashlights with extra bulbs and
batteries, water bottles, and long pants and sleeves.  There were
absolutely no mosquitoes when we were there.  We had brought DEET but
didn't think we needed it, until we got home and found out that we had
gotten chigger bites, which made for several itchy days.  Next time we'll
use DEET, but will definitely go back to this beautiful place.        
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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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