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Dive Review of Ocotal Resort in
Costa Rica

September, 2004, an Instant Reader Report by Diane May, CO, USA
Report Number 1442
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Reporter and Travel
Dive Experience
101-250 dives
Where else diving
Closest Airport
Getting There


Dive Conditions

Water Temp
80   to 0    Fahrenheit  
Wetsuit Thickness
Water Visibility
40   to 60    Feet  
Dive Policy
Dive own profile
Enforced diving restrictions  
Nitrox Available?
What I saw
Whale Sharks
Ratings 1 (worst)- 5 (best):
  3 stars
Tropical Fish
3 stars  
Small Critters
  3 stars
Large Fish
3 stars  
Large Pelagics
  3 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):
3 stars
3 stars
Service and Attitude
3 stars
Environmental Sensitivity  
Dive Operation
3 stars  
Shore Diving  
3 stars  

Overall Rating

Value for $$
3 stars   
3 stars    
I'll never return to Ocotal, but if you choose to stay there, REVIEW YOUR
BILL THOROUGHLY!!  The room charge is billed to your card shortly before
your arrival date, and the onsite charges are settled at check out.  I
didn't review my room charge until after I returned home, only to realize
that I had been over-charged.  I e-mailed the manager (owner?), Barbara, to
explain the discrepancy and request that the difference be credited back to
my card.  I was quoted a total price at the time I made the reservation,
have received an e-mail from Barbara confirming the exact amount that I
SHOULD HAVE BEEN billed, but have still been refused a refund.  I sent her
a print-screen of the charge to my VISA to prove to her that I was billed
more than the mutually agreed upon amount.  She further went on to insult
my intelligence to suggest that the difference was a variation in the
exchange rate, which is a completely ludicrous argument because a) the room
rate (yes, plus taxes) was quoted in US dollars, so any fluctuation in the
exchange rate is the hotel's problem, not mine, and b)there was no
fluctuation in the exchange rate between the time I made the reservation
and the time I was billed.  Furthermore, we were in COMPLETE AGREEMENT as
to what the bill should have been.  Nevertheless, Barbara has still refused
to refund the difference.  Barbara gets a HUGE THUMBS DOWN!

The dive shop was friendly and acceptably efficient, but the diving was
pretty boring.  We did dive Bat Island to see bullsharks.  I didn't see
any, but some others in the group saw one.  The dive briefing, I might add,
scared the neoprene off me!  "If you see a bull shark, don't follow it
because it will lure you into its territory and you'll be attacked...
People have died at this site..."  The land tours, on the other hand
were great.  Land tour prices are published, but don't hesitate to haggle. 
I found Costa Rica to be a wonderful, warm, and welcoming destination. 
I'll definitely return to CR, but not to Ocotal.  
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Diving Guide to Costa Rica
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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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