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Dive Review of Aldora Divers/Villa Aldora in
Cozumel and the Mexican Yucatan/Cozumel

August, 2005, an Instant Reader Report by David Sifre, ny, us
Report Number 1876
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Reporter and Travel
Dive Experience
26-50 dives
Where else diving
Cayman Islands, Jamaica, Belize
Closest Airport
Getting There


Dive Conditions

Water Temp
80   to 82    Fahrenheit  
Wetsuit Thickness
Water Visibility
95   to 120    Feet  
Dive Policy
Dive own profile
Enforced diving restrictions  
Were asked to keep the divemaster in site.  
Nitrox Available?
What I saw
Whale Sharks
> 2 
Ratings 1 (worst)- 5 (best):
  3 stars
Tropical Fish
4 stars  
Small Critters
  4 stars
Large Fish
3 stars  
Large Pelagics
  1 stars
Underwater Photography  1 (worst)- 5 (best):
Subject Matter
2 stars  
Boat Facilities
2 stars
Overall rating for UWP's  
2 stars  
Shore Facilities  
5 stars  
Unfortunately, at this time the boat was too small to accommodate a dunk
tank for the camera.  The captain and/or divemaster were good enough to
hand the camera after a backward roll entry, and the divemaster was eager
and able to point out macro critters to be photographed.
Ratings and Overall Comments  1 (worst)- 5 (best):
4 stars
3 stars
Service and Attitude
5 stars
Environmental Sensitivity  
Dive Operation
5 stars  
Shore Diving  
3 stars  

Overall Rating

Value for $$
3 stars   
4 stars    
Aldora Divers is one of the most expensive operators on Cozumel.  The
philosophy appears to be to keep the prices high, and the number of divers
low.  I was never on a boat with more than 4 other divers, including my
buddy.  In other words, 5 divers, one dive master.  Unlike any of the other
operations I have dived with, there is no food included.  Just bottled
water.  However, the surface interval is done on land, at a
"resort" type place where food can be purchased. There is also a
swimming pool to relax in as well.  This beats sitting on the boat for the
surface interval, and may account for some of the cost (the resort costs
$15.00 for tourists to get into, but is included in the price of the dive).
 The boats are small, without a marine head.

Most importantly, you don't have to set up your own gear.  Its set up when
you get on the boat, they switch tanks between dives, and they keep your
gear as long as you are diving with them.  They also include the din
adapter for your regulator.  Bottom times are extraordinarily long -- 1
hour 20 minutes not that uncommon.  This makes it particularly important to
watch the decompression limits of your dive computer but otherwise, the
drift dive is a long leisurely drift -- sometimes you can drift through
several dive sites, and more often than not, you are diving much longer
than with other dive operators -- another reason why it is worth more to
dive with these guys.  Divemasters were very friendly and knowledgeable, as
well as protective of the reefs.

The Villa Aldora is very nice. You must go into town for all meals except
breakfast, which costs $5.00.  Town is a $3.00 cab ride (3 minute drive/15
minute HOT HOT HOT walk).  They are very friendly and accommodating. FREE
internet access (high speed wireless, so bring the laptop); free telephone
calls to the US, and a NYC area code complements of an internet phone in
the room); and free snorkel gear is provided on request so that you can
snorkel out front of the Villa Aldora without having to take your dive gear
off the boat.

No swimming pool, and exit from the ocean is by way of ladder, so
handicapped or mobility challenged folks can't really get wet here.

I will dive with these folks again, and I will stay at the Villa Aldora as
well.  Boat picks you up right outside your door, at 7:30 am, unless
breakfast is late, in which case they wait for you to eat. :)

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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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