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Dive Review of Buddy Dive in
Bonaire

October, 2002, an Instant Reader Report by Pat and Charlie Nash, VA, USA
Report Number 261
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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 
Ratings 1 (worst)- 5 (best):
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  
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  
 
 

Overall Rating

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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