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Dive Review of Sea Saba/Julianna's in
Saba

Sea Saba/Julianna's, Aug, 2004,

by Jeff Bloomer, KY, USA . Report 1909.

Reporter and Travel

Dive Experience 251-500 dives
Where else diving Throughout the caribbean.
Closest Airport Getting There

Dive Conditions

Weather sunny Seas calm
Water Temp 82 to 85 Fahrenheit Wetsuit Thickness 0
Water Visibility 80 to 100 Feet

Dive Policy

Dive own profile yes
Enforced diving restrictions Recreational limits but no time limit. Surface intervals were 1 hour minimum.
Liveaboard? no Nitrox Available? N/A

What I Saw

Sharks 1 or 2 Mantas None
Dolphins None Whale Sharks None
Turtles > 2 Whales None
Corals 4 stars Tropical Fish 5 stars
Small Critters 5 stars Large Fish 3 stars
Large Pelagics 2 stars

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

Subject Matter 4 stars Boat Facilities 3 stars
Overall rating for UWP's 4 stars Shore Facilities N/A
UW Photo Comments Not a lot of room on the boat specifically for cameras although there was a seperate bucket for cameras. No film developing on the island but we were shooting digital anyway.

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

Accommodations 4 stars Food 5 stars
Service and Attitude 5 stars Environmental Sensitivity N/A
Dive Operation 5 stars Shore Diving 1 stars
Snorkeling N/A
Value for $$ N/A
Beginners 5 stars
Advanced 4 stars
Comments I have looked into Saba for a very long time without finding anything compelling except for the obligatory pinnacle diving comments you usually see. Well either we were lucky or we've stumbled upon a conspiracy to keep Saba unspoiled. If your looking for casinos and hopping night life this is not your cup of tea. If your looking for great beaches better go in the summer when the only beach is available. If you are looking for a great experiance read on. Each day starts with a short taxi ride past the dive shop (just one more chance to make a reservation for dinner) to the docks. We dived the windward side the first few days. We were told that maybe 1 day a month that side of the island is available but lucky us, the coral was great. Our first check out dive with the crew and we seen a huge morray and the biggest crab I've ever seen. The crew, Bruno, Charlote, and Alex were great and worked very hard to make sure everyones needs were met. If you wanted to be guided around and shown critters that's what they did. If you wanted to go your own merry way, then that was fine too. Dived Diamond Rock, very cool dive, really too much see life for a single dive. Current can be strong even on the leyward side so there were some must do dives we didn't get to dive...next time! The dive operation is top notch and really do act as concierges. Ask for anything,dinner reservations, side trips, etc. and they will work it out. They even managed to get a restaurant to stay open late just for us so we could eat after the night dive. Ok, so diving is very very good and its not all about pinnacles, there is plenty of reef. Lets talk about the island. It is unlike any caribbean island I've ever been on. Lee and Lea,US transplant who divide there time between Saba and skiing in New Mex. said it best, "this island is european not caribbean". They are right. There is no poverty, everybody has a job and the entire island seems to be being swept constantly. The white walled, red roofed buildings (a requirement I was told) make an idyllic setting. Very hilly so be in shape but just super. One intrepid sole in our group hiked to the 3000 foot top on Mount Scenery to see the Cloud Forest. Sounded great but a bit of an altitude change for us dive addicts. Food on the island is reasonable and I probably had one of the best filets I've ever had at "My Kitchen", a neat little place that does remind me of a european cafe. Julianna's, our home on the island, was nice and peaceful, Wim and his wife (the owners), as well as the always attentive Stewart (aka Captain Stewy) were always there to make suggestions as to what was going on the various days of the week, different hotels have theme nights throughout the week. Don't pass up Paula's cooking right there at Tropics on the property. The Ecolodge presentation and meal are worth the trip too. The owner was involved in setting up Bonaire's and Saba's marine park and puts on an informative slide show on the 5 different ecosystems on the island. Too many good things to talk about so I hope everyone leaves Saba alone and that I'm the only one who gets to dive there! Ok, you can come too just be keep it to yourself. I guess that's why I ran into so many Americans who visited Saba and now make it their second home. Dive safe.
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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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