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Dive Review of Club Cantamar/Club Cantamar Resort & Sports Cente in
Mexico (Western)/La Paz, Baja Calif Sur

Club Cantamar/Club Cantamar Resort & Sports Cente, May, 2005,

by Sheryl O'Connor, CT, United States . Report 1826.

Reporter and Travel

Dive Experience 101-250 dives
Where else diving My husband and I have been diving in Australia, the Red Sea, Honduras, Belize, New England, Florida and various islands in the Caribbean.
Closest Airport Getting There

Dive Conditions

Weather sunny, windy Seas choppy
Water Temp 63 to 72 Fahrenheit Wetsuit Thickness 5
Water Visibility 15 to 30 Feet

Dive Policy

Dive own profile yes
Enforced diving restrictions Basically, there were three dives per day and the sites and limits coincided with recreational dive table limits.
Liveaboard? no Nitrox Available? N/A

What I Saw

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

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

Subject Matter 5 stars Boat Facilities 2 stars
Overall rating for UWP's 3 stars Shore Facilities 3 stars
UW Photo Comments There were no special facilities for cameras on the dive boats we were on - only one fresh water bucket that was not restricted to cameras.

Ratings and Overall Comments 1 (worst) - 5 (best):

Accommodations 3 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 3 stars
Advanced 5 stars
Comments Club Cantamar is a family-run hotel and dive/sport operation and they are extremely customer-focused. Although the hotel accomodations were a little on the rustic side (warning-the mattresses are extremely hard and you need to bring your own hair dryer), the rooms were clean and well-kept and only a few steps from the dock. Breakfast at the restaurant and lunch on the dive boat were included in our pkg. price and were both excellent. You can also get a pkg with dinner included, but we went into La Paz every night since we had a rental car. It is a 10-minute ride into town and there are a lot of excellent restaurants and shops there, as well as a wonderful seaside walkway from which to view the sunsets. Our favorite restaurant was Carlos n' Charlie's where they make salsa fresh at your table.
We were only able to spend two days diving since this trip was tacked onto the end of a business trip, but we would definitely go back to the area and this resort in the future. The first day we went to the bay of La Paz and snorkeled with whale sharks. Since the larger whale sharks don't come in until early Fall, these were younger, smaller whale sharks and they tended to swim quickly away from us, so,unless you're an Olympic class swimmer, you may not get too close to one. Our second dive was at Los Islotes, the main home of sea lions in the area. What an incredible experience, full of amazing photo-ops! Not for the feint of heart, though. The sea lions are very comfortable with divers and will play with you as soon as you get into the water. Be advised that their "playing" does include nipping at your fins, legs, arms, camera, etc.- not hard, but enough to startle the first few times. Our third dive was a Mexican navy wreck at about 50-feet; it hadn't been there very long, but there were some fish and small critters around it. The second day we headed out to El Bajo, about 6 miles from Isla Partida. El Bajo is a seamount about 70-feet down in open sea and is supposed to be the premier site for seeing large pelagics. Unfortunately, when we got to the end of Isla Partida we were turned back by heavy winds and choppy seas and ended up spending the day at closer sites off the islands. We got the feeling that this may happen about 50% of the time. Overall, the dive crew was extremely friendly, attentive and helpful, providing excellent briefings and offering guided dives.
Advice to remember for future Baja trips: 1) bring your 5- or 7-mm wetsuit and a hood since the waters are pretty chilly and don't really get much warmer later in the year; 2) the really cool stuff the Sea of Cortez is famous for can be seen mostly in the Fall - hammerheads, large whale sharks, and whales - so schedule your trip between late Sept. and late Nov.; 3) the sea lions tend to give birth in late May and early June, so this is not the time to visit them; the females stay on shore with the pups, while the bulls are in the water and, judging from the size of these bulls, you do not want to be in the water with them while they are on patrol duty guarding their young; 4) definitely rent a car - we drove up the west coast from Cabo San Lucas and took the east coast road back down to the airport in San Jose; the country-side is spectacular, especially the east coast road down through the mountains; and, 5) if you're into fishing, definitely reserve at least one day to go out sport fishing; the first day we were there, we saw a huge Wahoo on the dock that someone had just brought in - the chef was going to turn it into some nice souvenir steaks to take home, and the rest was going to be served at dinner that night in the restaurant.
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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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