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Dive Review of Dive with Martin/El Cid La Ceiba in
Cozumel and the Mexican Yucatan/Cozumel

September, 2006, an Instant Reader Report by Tonya Zander, NC, USA
Report Number 2928
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Reporter and Travel
Dive Experience
101-250 dives
Where else diving
8 times to Cozumel, several Bahamas, Florida, NC coast, quarries
Closest Airport
Getting There


Dive Conditions

Water Temp
83   to 86    Fahrenheit  
Wetsuit Thickness
Water Visibility
100   to 120    Feet  
Dive Policy
Dive own profile
Enforced diving restrictions  
first dive, 80-90 feet deep, 2nd dive of day varied on depth (shallower
than 1st dive), 3rd dive of day shallower than 2nd dive. Begin ascents
around 700psi for 3 to 5 min. safety stops. 1 hour to 1 hour 30 min surface
intervals at beach area.  
Nitrox Available?
What I saw
Whale Sharks
> 2 
Ratings 1 (worst)- 5 (best):
  5 stars
Tropical Fish
5 stars  
Small Critters
  4 stars
Large Fish
4 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):
5 stars
4 stars
Service and Attitude
5 stars
Environmental Sensitivity  
Dive Operation
5 stars  
Shore Diving  
1 stars  

Overall Rating

Value for $$
4 stars   
5 stars    
This was our 8th trip to Cozumel and our first time using Dive with Martin.
 DWM is a very small operation that I will return to over and over because
of the personal attention that we received while diving with them for 5
days of 3 tanks this past week.  The owner greeted us almost every morning
making sure our dive week was progressing well.  He has fast small boats
with some shade. You do backwards entry rolls, and there is a ladder to
climb back onboard after handing up your weights, BCD/tank, then your fins.
 We dove with the same divers all week (5 total), had the same excellent
dive master (DAVID), and only changed boats/captain once the whole week! We
were offered cold gatorade, bottled water, watermelon, cantelope, papaya,
freshmade guacamole and/or tuna salad each day with chips, and granola
bars.  We also were given a loaf of bread, packs of ham and cheese with
mayo and mustard to make our own sandwiches.  

Divers pick the dive sites of the day (if it is within the group's
experience level), and if the current is not too swift, then that's where
you go.  The deep dives like Palancar Caves and Bricks, Columbia, and Punta
Sur Cathedral, had awesome swim throughs that allowed us to marvel at the
huge formations which had not been damaged from last year's Hurricane
Wilma.  There was some sand deposited, but the view was still
magnificient!.  The 2nd/3rd dives of the day like La Francesa, Palancar
Shallows, Santa Rosa Shallows, Las Palmas, Paradise, and San Juan each had
broken areas from last year's Wilma, but instead of focusing on that we
just kept watching for the next turtle, nurse shark, barracuda, king crab,
lobster, huge Rainbow Parrotfish, massive sized Groupers, Eagle Rays, Sting
Rays, Scorpion fish, and/or the infamous Cozumel Splendid Toadfish.  The
coral reefs are absolutely mesmerizing as you glide with the wonderful
easy/lazy drift diving.  DWM goes to a gorgeous beach area where the boat
can tie up for your hour to 1 hour 30 minute surface intervals.  We loved
that 3 dives could be completed from 7:30AM boat departure to around 1:30PM
to 2:00PM return times.  Our DM also made us 2 DVD's to bring home. Over 5
days of 16 dives, I averaged 53 minutes bottom time that was so enjoyable
due to the small dive group and excellent DM.  We are so glad we chose DWM
this trip to get away from the cattle boat operations we had used on
previous dive trips to the island.  His shop is currently located just
inside the damaged International Cruise ship pier while their shop is being
reconstructed.  We'll definitely be back to enjoy their services!

The La Ceiba was fabulous too.  Our welcome with Gabby was a pleasant
treat.  Our room was spacious with a kitchenette, 2 balconies, a king size
bed, huge garden tub, separate shower area, and 2 sinks.  The resort has
made great strides in reconstruction to the restaurant/beach area after
Hurricane Wilma.  The quiet walk in beach with the waterfall into the ocean
is a tranquil area, plus they have a jacuzzi with swim-up bar, nice size
pool, hammacks in the shade under the pool deck, a big man-made beach area
with sun/shade areas, beach volley-ball, and steps into the ocean with hand
rails.  The plane wreck is still out there, but much smaller now.  The
hotel's  dive boat pier was still being reconstructed, so for this dive
week we simply walked next door to board our dive boat.  It's a $4 taxi
ride into the town square area for dinners at our favorite local
restaurants, but $5 back to the hotel.
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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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