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

Aldora/Villa Aldora, Feb, 2008,

by Glenn Gill, MO, USA ( 1 report). Report 3835.

Reporter and Travel

Dive Experience 101-250 dives
Where else diving Unspecified
Closest Airport Getting There

Dive Conditions

Weather sunny, windy, rainy, cloudy, dry Seas calm, choppy, surge, noCurrents
Water Temp 78 to 81 Fahrenheit Wetsuit Thickness 3
Water Visibility 60 to 100 Feet

Dive Policy

Dive own profile yes
Enforced diving restrictions Divemaster always the leader. Depth limits were highly suggested. Used 120cu.ft.HP steel tanks,signal divemaster with 1000 psi. When two divers are @ 1000 psi dive ends & group surfaces to 15'for safety stop and exit the water together.
Liveaboard? no Nitrox Available? N/A

What I Saw

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

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

Subject Matter N/A Boat Facilities N/A
Overall rating for UWP's N/A Shore Facilities N/A
UW Photo Comments [None]

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 4 stars
Comments Villa Aldora is a superb facility. The managers Kay and Greg are most helpful and go the extra mile when you need them. The Villa is north of town but in walking distance if you wish. They have bicycles for you to use or, just go to the street and wave a taxi down within minutes. You will need to take money for the bill because they do not accept credit or debit cards. Kay or Greg will explain when you make a reservation. I used Aldora Divers for our diving. They pick you up right at the Villa Aldora. This makes for very easy access to the boat every day. If the weather is bad enough that the boat can not dock at the Villa Aldora (norte) which we had a couple of days, Aldora will make arrangements to have you taken to the perspective marina for departure. We did get to use Aldora's new 40' boat the "Falicity". Very comfortable and fast for the size. The norte set in and the harbor master declared no boats under 40' leave the harbor. Aldora had this boat made just for this situation so we were able to dive that day. Aldora is a first rate operation. They are not cheap but you get long dives and personal service, so with that in mind they are not so expensive either. I had an equipment malfunction on one dive. They had it fixed and ready the next morning. They will have you equpipment set up and ready when you get on the boat. And it will be rinsed and hung to dry everyday. They only have six divers per diveamster so it is not a cattle boat operation. Angel is the boat captain and is very helpful and careful with the handling of your gear.If you dive with Aldora though, I would suggest that you are nitrox certified or get certified while there. The large tanks give longer dive times plus depth of dives will make your computers angry pretty quick on the second dive when using air. We had two divemasters Mateo,and Edgar. Mateo was the best of the two. Very aware of the surroundings including divers. He uses two different types of dive computers at the same time. Suunto and Oceanic, making him aware of what a conservative and more agressive computer will be reading. Therefore when he looks for the "ok" sign he also has an idea what your computer is reading and keeping you out of deco. Mateo also uses air on most dives verses nitrox depending on the group he has that day. Edgar was not as aware and used nitrox on every dive. Also had to take off his bc, and drop two wetsuits down to his waist on every dive to urinate, then put it back on, while underwater. Almost like a circus act so ladies beware even though he is very discrete and usually moves slightly away from the group. There are other divemasters with the Aldora fleet but, these are the only two we personally had. Aldora also has another person that is most helpful and super to work with. She is an instructor and just all around asset to the operation. Her name is LeeAnn. Cozumel is still recovering from wilma and will be for some time. You can see signs of new coral growing yet, there are still areas that are very damaged. The small marine life seems to be good but, the large animals were almost extinct. The only large animal encounter was a dolphin,a couple of nurse sharks, and three large moray eels. We did not experience any strong currents. Even at the northern dive sites. All in all Villa Aldora and Aldora Divers are first class operations.
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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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