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Dive Review of Pirate's Point Resort in
Cayman Islands/Little Cayman

Pirate's Point Resort, Apr, 2005,

by Dean and Diane Levi, CO, U.S.A. . Report 1954.

Reporter and Travel

Dive Experience 101-250 dives
Where else diving Grand Cayman, Grand Turk, Cozumel, Southwater Caye Belize, Hawaii
Closest Airport Getting There

Dive Conditions

Weather sunny, windy Seas choppy
Water Temp 80 to 82 Fahrenheit Wetsuit Thickness 3
Water Visibility 50 to 100 Feet

Dive Policy

Dive own profile yes
Enforced diving restrictions Dive your computer, 100 ft max., dive as long as your computer, air, or stamina limit. Come back to the boat with at least 500 psi.
Liveaboard? no Nitrox Available? N/A

What I Saw

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

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

Subject Matter 3 stars Boat Facilities 4 stars
Overall rating for UWP's 4 stars Shore Facilities 4 stars
UW Photo Comments Boat included a large, carpeted camera table in the covered area of the boat. DM's were strict about cameras only on the table. The cooler used as a rinse tank was sometimes crowded.

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 4 stars Shore Diving 1 stars
Snorkeling N/A
Value for $$ N/A
Beginners 4 stars
Advanced 5 stars
Comments We came to Little Cayman to dive the world-famous Bloody Bay wall. During our first three days on the island north winds were 15 - 20 mph, which prevented us from reaching the north side of the island where Bloody bay and Jackson bay walls are. During the last half of week winds steadily dropped, allowing us to dive 3 days on the north side, which was fantastic diving. Pirates Point has a 42 Newton dive boat called the Yellow Rose with a capacity of 20 divers. The boat is comfortable with space to roam and there is a head on board. During the week there were never more than 9 divers on board. The total capacity of the resort is about 20 people in 10 cabins. As there are usually some guests who are not divers, it is unlikely they will ever have 20 divers on the boat. The resort staff does double-duty as dive masters, waiters, cleaning staff, etc., with a total of 5 DMs/instructors on staff. Most of the staff have been at the resort for five years or longer. They add DMs to the boat as needed to keep dive groups at 6 or smaller. All diving is done from mooring buoys. Generally dives are follow the DM, but once the staff becomes familiar and comfortable with your diving abilities, they are fine with you doing your own thing as long as you come back up with 500 psi, dont go into deco on your computer, and stay above 100.

Diving on the south side of the island consisted of tongue and groove reefs leading to the wall top at approximately 60 feet. The walls on the south side are cut with crags and canyons and are less vertical than the north side. There was healthy coral and lots of the standard Caribbean fish, with plentiful juveniles and frequent large groupers and turtles. We also found numerous fun swim-throughs on the southern dive sites. Diving Bloody and Jackson bay walls was spectacular. Some of the walls are perfectly vertical with such abrupt and sharp drop-offs that it felt like soaring out over the top of a skyscraper. Although fish life was not abundant on the wall, there were plentiful large, colorful sponges growing horizontally out from the wall. The topography was stunning. Another unique aspect of the walls in Bloody bay is that the wall top is in 20 25 feet of water. This allowed unprecedented bottom times, as we would start with about 25 minutes at 70 90 on the wall, then ascend to the wall top for another hour of diving. On one day I was five minutes short of three hours of bottom time in two dives. There was a myriad of fish action on the wall tops. Many turtles, a few eagle rays, a black tip reef shark out in the blue, a five-foot goliath grouper resting inside a swim through, and on one dive a team of three groupers waiting out an angelfish they had trapped inside a coral head. My favorite dive site was Mixing Bowl, which is marked by a large open bowl of sand at the point where Bloody bay and Jackson bay walls meet. This dramatic site is swept by a nutrient-rich current that brings lots of fish action to the area. Here we hung around with a school of swirling ocean chubs, and watched schools of french grunts, black durgeons, creole wrass, and the five-foot goliath grouper mentioned earlier. On one dive we returned to the dive boat to find a six-foot barracuda lurking under the boat.

The daily routine quickly became second nature and made for a very carefree and relaxing vacation. They ring a bell (actually an old scuba tank with the bottom cut off) for breakfast at 8:00, then again for diving at 9:15, then about 2:00 for lunch (often minutes after the dive van returns if we really stretched our bottom times), then happy hour with hdourves at 7:00 and dinner at 7:30. Because the dive staff also serve meals and are frequently around taking care of general chores, we quickly got to know them and felt like good friends in only a few days at the resort. Because of the small capacity of the resort and arrangement of the cabins, it never felt crowded or busy, even though the resort was near capacity the entire week we were there. It actually felt rather deserted most days. The dining room is cosy with 4 tables for 6 guests at each table and you sit wherever you want. We quickly got to know nearly all the guests, as the daily seating arrangement is a bit like musical chairs. The daily happy hour was also a great time to mingle and share photos and dive stories from the day.

One of the truly outstanding aspects of an overall outstanding vacation was the food. Owner Gladys Howard is an internationally known chef who has written cookbooks and run her own cooking school, and it really shows in the food. We have stayed at various resorts and spent time on live-a-boards, and the food at Pirates Point is far and away the best we have ever had. Breakfast included such goodies as eggs benedict, lunches always included several choices of freshly prepared hot and cold entrees, salads, etc., and dinners ranged from paella, to prime rib, to tuna steaks to fajitas to barbequed ribs and chicken; always with a generous array of delicious side dishes, salads, fresh fruits and vegetables and delicious desserts. The only reason I can think of you may not want to visit Pirates Point is if you are trying to loose weight.
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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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