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Dive Review of Captian Don's/Captain Don's in

September, 2002, an Instant Reader Report by Michael Cleaver, OR, USA
Report Number 334
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Reporter and Travel
Dive Experience
26-50 dives
Where else diving
I was certified on the Oregon coast, and since then decided to go to warmer
waters.  My first trip was to kauai, then cozumel (which was great), then
Bonaire, and our most recent trip was to Roatan Honduras.
Closest Airport
Getting There


Dive Conditions

calm, noCurrents  
Water Temp
70   to 80    Fahrenheit  
Wetsuit Thickness
Water Visibility
75   to 150    Feet  
Dive Policy
Dive own profile
Enforced diving restrictions  
Captain Don's is the "home of diving freedom" so they gave a
profile at the beginning and told you to have fun.  As long as you find the
boat they did not mind.  
Nitrox Available?
What I saw
Whale Sharks
1 or 2 
Ratings 1 (worst)- 5 (best):
  3 stars
Tropical Fish
3 stars  
Small Critters
  4 stars
Large Fish
2 stars  
Large Pelagics
  1 stars
Underwater Photography  1 (worst)- 5 (best):
Subject Matter
Boat Facilities
Overall rating for UWP's  
Shore Facilities  
Ratings and Overall Comments  1 (worst)- 5 (best):
4 stars
1 stars
Service and Attitude
3 stars
Environmental Sensitivity  
Dive Operation
5 stars  
Shore Diving  
5 stars  

Overall Rating

Value for $$
2 stars   
4 stars    
When we arrived at Captain Don's we immediatly recognized that this was the
right place.  The diving was amazingly convenient as the Scuba lockers and
dock were 50 yards from our room.  The sign up system was also wonderful as
there were 3 chalk boards with tomorrows dive and you just wrote in your
tank number to reserve a spot.  The most amazing part was the shore diving
which Bonaire is famous for.  The rental pickups from the resort have handy
little tank racks and dive sites are marked along the side of the road.  We
found that it was more fun not to plan the site, but just find one that
looks interesting as the whole protected side is diveable.  If you dont
feel like shore diving I would recomend renting a car anyways and exploring
the other side of the island, hunt for flamingos, eat ice cream, and drive
through the national park.  
As with any of these destinations there are drawbacks.  The island is a
true desert island.  It looks like a piece of Arizona dropped in the
carribean with cactus lizards and all(which kind of adds to the charm). 
Also the rooms at Captain Dons are not all equal by any means.  Each 4 room
complex differs especially by it's age.  We were in the 300 complex which
was very new with a television and all of the comforts of home, but the
first night my room was occupied and the bathroom gave off an odd odor and
seemed a nest for bugs.  If booking a trip try and get one of the newer
built rooms.  Also dont expect wonderful food.  It's interesting to search
around the island for a place to eat, but it's very difficult to find good
food, (seafood is usually the best choice).  If you are a large fan of
mustard you may need to bring your own as strangely enough i couldnt find
any mustard on the island.  Beware of the yellow squeeze bottles because
they usually hide creamy and terrible mayonaise.  
The most entertaining thing on Bonaire was Captain Don himself.  He does
hillarious slideshows every tuesday.  He has women in the audience pick
from a bag "rings of memory" which coincide with a story. 
However the stories change nightly as they become rediculous with pirates
and reality television stories.  So if you are planning a trip to bonaire I
would heavily recommend staying with Captain Don for the convenient diving,
laid back atmosphere, and the Captain himself.  Also give yourself plenty
of time, most people that I met there were on a 2 or 3 weeks stay.  There's
always a new reef on down the road.
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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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