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Dive Review of St. Andrews Divers Cove in
Mediterranean/Malta, Gozo

September, 2012, an Instant Reader Report by Michael Joest, Kehl, DE
Sr. Contributor   (21 reports, with 4 Helpful votes)
Report Number 6702
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Reporter and Travel
Dive Experience
Over 1000 dives
Where else diving
Closest Airport
Getting There


Dive Conditions

Water Temp
20   to 26    Celsius  
Wetsuit Thickness
Water Visibility
20   to 40    Meters  
Dive Policy
Dive own profile
Enforced diving restrictions  
Nitrox Available?
What I saw
Whale Sharks
Ratings 1 (worst)- 5 (best):
  2 stars
Tropical Fish
1 stars  
Small Critters
  1 stars
Large Fish
Large Pelagics
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
5 stars
Service and Attitude
5 stars
Environmental Sensitivity  
3 stars
Dive Operation
5 stars  
Shore Diving  
5 stars  
2 stars  

Overall Rating

Value for $$
4 stars    
5 stars   
5 stars    
Malta, Gozo                                                                
                  Sept. 2012

My big plan (Coiba + Malpelo) didn´t work, mine was the only booking
they had, so no go. On rather short notice I looked for some good
alternative. Gozo, the little sister of Malta, looked inviting to me with
wrecks, caves, warm water and only an enjoyable short flight from Frankfurt
(2:20 h). On a dive show I had met St. Andrew Divers Xlendi, they looked
like a reliable and competent partner to me. I booked accommodation and all
dives with them. Got a huge apartment with 2 bedrooms, 1 living room, a
large kitchen and balcony with sea view for 45 /day. For transfer from
Malta airport they charge 80  (car, ferry, car) roundtrip. I included
breakfast at a nearby hotel for 6 /day. For all other meals I checked out
many of Xlendi´s restaurants and got pampered with lovely meals and
reasonable prices. Local specialties, fish, mussels, pizza and pasta were
served. I was surprised to notice, gluten free meals are no problem at all.
On some menus gluten free was marked, they even had pasta and pizza in
store for me. Gozo is a rather dry island with little and strange
vegetation. The island is out of limestone, you will find bizarre forms,
which wind, water and erosion created here. A famous spot is the Azure
Window, a spectacular nature monument which easily can compete with Zion
and Bryce N.P. The dive shop was only 3 minutes and x stairs from my room.
They have an office/shop room, tanks + compressor place, a large area for
rental gear and storage of your own stuff in boxes, showers + restroom. In
front of the shop are water tanks to wash your gear in,  long thigh high
stone benches, ideal to assemble your gear on. For a ten dives package they
charge 234 , boat dives are plus 15 . When I saw their tanks, ranging
from 8 to 18 l steel, I knew, I´m in for some serious diving. I
choose a short 12 l tank, so I could go without additional weights with my
5 mill. This volume would safely get me through one hour of diving with
ample reserve. Normally they offer one morning and one afternoon dive, more
on request. With small groups it´s either a four wheeler trip to some
shore entry or boat rides to the many sites all round the island. Booties
or reef shoes are a good idea, often you had to walk across rough cliffs to
reach the water. Friends had warned me not to expect too much fish life
around. Sometimes we had hundreds of smaller fish around the entry point,
we saw some medium sized small schools of Bonitos, Amberjack, Barracuda,
few groupers, once in a while a lonely octopus, moray eel or lobster. The
main attraction of Gozo is it´s underwater topography with boulders
forming fingers, chimneys, tunnels, crevices, swim through, caves, windows
etcetera. It´s adventure diving cruising around here. The wrecks and
some  penetration dives  are additional challenge, which I love. Once in a
while this is a nice change to diving colourful tropical reefs. Where
elsewhere it appears to be a mortal sin to pass the recreational diving
limits of 30 to 40 m or dare to do a deco dive, here it´s the average
dive profile each day. Most dives went deeper than 40 m, I had 3 of around
65 m, on a British submarine we went to 55 m, it was worth it and really
awesome. There I ran into 28 min. of deco, a first for me. Water
temperature on the surface was 26 C deep down still around 20 C. Visibility
ranged from 20 to 40 m. One day we had jelly fish in the bay. It´s no
fun to get in contact with these guys. Even with vinegar applied right
after my ankle burnt all afternoon. If mosquitoes love you, better bring
some no bite, you can´t see them but sure feel them in the morning.
All together I did 26 deep dives most with deco without a day off in
between. This went without incident, which does not prove anything, but
surely shows, being in good shape and well hydrated, your body can adjust
to such diving. Mark, Joe, Diana are doing an excellent job organizing and
managing the whole operation, their staff is friendly and helpful, you soon
are a friend among good buddies.  
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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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