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Dive Review of Buddy Dive in
Bonaire

Buddy Dive, Oct, 2002,

by Pat and Charlie Nash, VA, USA . Report 261.

Reporter and Travel

Dive Experience 251-500 dives
Where else diving Kauai, G. Cayman, Roatan, Cancun, Florida, Virginia Capes
Closest Airport Getting There

Dive Conditions

Weather sunny Seas choppy
Water Temp 82 to 84 Fahrenheit Wetsuit Thickness 1
Water Visibility 50 to 120 Feet

Dive Policy

Dive own profile yes
Enforced diving restrictions General restictions for boat dives were 1st dive 100 feet 2nd dive 80 feet and 3rd dive 60 feet. All divers requested to be back aboard in 1 hour with 500 PSI
Liveaboard? no Nitrox Available? N/A

What I Saw

Sharks None Mantas None
Dolphins None Whale Sharks None
Turtles > 2 Whales None
Corals 4 stars Tropical Fish 4 stars
Small Critters 5 stars Large Fish 3 stars
Large Pelagics 1 stars

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

Subject Matter 4 stars Boat Facilities 4 stars
Overall rating for UWP's 4 stars Shore Facilities 4 stars
UW Photo Comments Rinse tanks on all boats and at dive shop. All boat crews very careful with cameras and helpful in getting them to/from divers in the water

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

Accommodations 3 stars Food 4 stars
Service and Attitude 4 stars Environmental Sensitivity N/A
Dive Operation 5 stars Shore Diving 5 stars
Snorkeling N/A
Value for $$ N/A
Beginners 5 stars
Advanced 5 stars
Comments This was our third trip to Bonaire and Buddy Dive. There was an unlimited boat dive package for Free in October. Our stay carried us into November also. The dive operation extended the boat dive deal into November. This required an additional $75/week from us per person since we hadn't signed up for the deal before leaving the states. The math was confusing, but overall it worked out to a good deal for an easy dive experience. Buddy Dive needs to simplify their pricing schemes so that guests can anticipate what they are spending as they go along.

The boat dives got us to places that we hadn't been to before and couldn't have accessed from shore. It was very interesting to see the differences from a dive site like Forest on one side of Kline Bonaire to the site called Munk's Haven. They are only a few hundred yards apart but on opposite sides of the island and two totally different dives.

Buddy Dive provides good cooking facilities and the Cultimara market has a nice supply of meats. Veggies are on a catch as you can basis. If you want lettuce this week, you had better grab it on the day that they have some. Our menus varied around what was available from day to day. We had the Buddy Dive breakfast buffet every day and Rosita makes a great omelet.

The rest of our room at Buddy Dive can be described as getting a bit shabby. The outside of all the buildings are being painted and our unit had a fresh coat of paint inside. The curtains and cushions were all threadbare and needed replacing. New Toyota trucks are in and the one I was issued only had 17Km on it.

Cudos to all the gang at the dive operation. They are the most important part of the trip and they went all out for everyone that they dealt with. I witnessed three different divemasters (Murphy, Alex, and Bart) lifting the tail end of a tank for the entire dive so that a physically impaired diver could still enjoy the sport. It also kept him off the reef, so they helped us all in that regard. Al the rest of the divemasters, Sandra, Ken, Rob, Martin, Marc and Haagen are outstanding as well. All of them really work at making the dive experience as easy on their guests as they can. They answer questions and try to share interesting critters with everyone. Sometimes a crowd can build up around special interest items like sea horses or frogfish. They try to keep us sorted out so that everyone gets their shot. It is a tough job sometimes. Alex can always be counted on for a surprise or two. Beware of the ghostly gorilla that inhabits the Hilma Hooker!

The boats were kept clean and whenever the demad went up so did the number of boats in service. As we left, there were three large groups checked in. Each group got its own boat and this involved Buddy Dive leasing a boat from Capt Dons. This is one of the safest boat operations we have ever dealt with and we will be back again.

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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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