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Dive Review of Green Monkey/Bunkum Beach Guest House in
Caribbean (General)/Montserrat

March, 2008, an Instant Reader Report by Timothy A. Kolakowski, PA, USA
Contributor   (12 reports)
Report Number 4464
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Reporter and Travel
Dive Experience
251-500 dives
Where else diving
Florida Keys, Grand Bahama, all 3 Caymans, Saba, Curacao, Bonaire, Hawaii,
St. Vincent, Provo, Grand Turk, Salt Cay
Closest Airport
Getting There


Dive Conditions

sunny, windy  
Water Temp
76   to 78    Fahrenheit  
Wetsuit Thickness
Water Visibility
75   to 100    Feet  
Dive Policy
Dive own profile
Enforced diving restrictions  
Stay with divemaster  
Nitrox Available?
What I saw
Whale Sharks
1 or 2 
Ratings 1 (worst)- 5 (best):
  5 stars
Tropical Fish
2 stars  
Small Critters
  3 stars
Large Fish
Large Pelagics
Underwater Photography  1 (worst)- 5 (best):
Subject Matter
3 stars  
Boat Facilities
3 stars
Overall rating for UWP's  
3 stars  
Shore Facilities  
Bucket on boat
Ratings and Overall Comments  1 (worst)- 5 (best):
5 stars
5 stars
Service and Attitude
5 stars
Environmental Sensitivity  
5 stars
Dive Operation
3 stars  
Shore Diving  

Overall Rating

Value for $$
3 stars    
3 stars   
3 stars    
     Montserrat is one unique place. They don't have much tourism. Most of
the visitors are US & Canadian ex - pats who live there in the winter,
friends & relatives of those ex - pats, and scientists checking out the
volcano. There's only one dive shop, the Green Monkey, and they wear many charters, travel agents, boat rental, island boat tours
land tours, etc. 
     The dive sites are along the shoreline, 1/4 to 1/2 mile out. If on
shore waves kick up, you're done diving until it settles down again.
Unfortunatley, that's what happened the week we were there. I was lucky
enough to make the 15 mile trip out to an uninhabited island called
Redonda, between Montserrat and St. Kitts. It's considered the best diving
that Montserrat has to offer. It was a nice morning 2 tank dive. Better
than average vis, good fish life (typical Caribbean). Thanks to a weather
front that sent huge surf crashing on shore, it was the only diving I got
to do. 
     It left lots of time to explore the island. Driving around the island
on the narrow roads is great fun with steep hills, hairpin turns and
switchbacks. There are small grocery stores with a decent selection. The
restaurants are tiny, charming and awesome.          The lava flows the
make more than half the island uninhabitable are surreal! You can actually
drive across one big flow that covers a river valley, golf course and
beach. At one edge is house buried up to its roof, and another buried up to
the second floor. You can go inside it and see kitchen utensils, furniture,
books, etc. that were left behind. We roamed around the deserted Vue Pointe
Resort, kicking up lava dust as we walked around.
     The people are amazing. It's incredible to watch the locals live day
to day as the smoking volcano looms just a few miles away - a gray - brown
monster that has risen out of the lush, green hills. 
The ex pats seem thrilled to have visitors - we were treated like family.
One morning we stopped a retired gent on his morning walk to ask
directions, and he ended up getting into our car and spending two and a
half hours showing us around! At a restaurant (actually a deck off the
owner's house) we stopped to say hello to a couple we recognized from the
airport. After a few minutes' visit a lady with them invited us to her
house - she has a dance party one night a week where she teaches different
kinds of dances! This led to an invite the next night to the monthly full
moon party at the edge of a lava flow, getting us an invite the next day to
a hike up a hill to the edge of the restricted zone, overlooking the buried
capital city of Plymouth.
    Plymouth is a must - see. The Green Monkey will take you on a boat trip
down the coast to see it. Buried up to 60 feet in lava, it looks like like
an apoctolyptic science fiction movie. Buried buildings as far as you can
see. leading up to the volcano's hillsides.
    Try Montserrat as someplace different for a dive trip. Here diving is a
bonus along with the above ground wonders.   
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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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