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Dive Review of Explorer Ventures in
St. Eustatius

Explorer Ventures, May, 2006,

by Chris Cubbison, OH, USA . Report 2587.

Reporter and Travel

Dive Experience Over 1000 dives
Where else diving Florida Keys and Atlantic coast, Florida springs (many), central US freshwater quarries
Closest Airport Getting There

Dive Conditions

Weather sunny, cloudy Seas calm, surge
Water Temp 82 to 84 Fahrenheit Wetsuit Thickness 5
Water Visibility 70 to 100 Feet

Dive Policy

Dive own profile yes
Enforced diving restrictions Surface with 500 psi; stay with buddy unless certified as solo diver (they offered that certification); observe Nitrox depth limits
Liveaboard? yes Nitrox Available? N/A

What I Saw

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

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

Subject Matter 3 stars Boat Facilities 4 stars
Overall rating for UWP's 2 stars Shore Facilities N/A
UW Photo Comments Standard camera tables/charging station and rinse tank

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

Accommodations 4 stars Food 4 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 3 stars
Advanced 5 stars
Comments We departed from St. Maarten on the Caribbean Explorer II and dived 2 days at Saba (the best dives of the trip), 2 days at St. Eustatius and 1.5 days at St. Kitts. Five dives per day were offered (27 in all) incl. night dives each nite. Only 7 divers on a boat designed for 18 meant lots of space on the dive deck and attention by the dive staff. Crew was as nice and helpful as I could ever imagine. Briefings were good and guides always available. Several PADI classes available (I got NITROX certified - others took AOW class). Tanks always filled in excess of 3100 psi with absolutely no pressure to end dives early and no unreasonable restrictions. The best dives were at Saba with vertical walls and tons of colorful marine life. St. Eustatius was great too but less color. St. Kitts was the least interesting but I learned to find the small critters and cleaner shrimp stations which were everywhere. A hot, fresh water rinse awaited when we emerged and the crew had hot water ready to pour into our suits after night dives-hot chocolate and hot towls on the dive deck too. Entry was by giant stride (@5 ft) off the side with twin ladders and help from the crew at the stern. Grant, the S.African Captain, brought me to the bridge for the night passage to St. Kitts after I expressed interest in the navigation and communication eqpt. They used redundant GPS gear to drive directly to a buoy that was actually submerged at the time. Impressive! The food was mostly American but all of it was great. No requests went unaccomodated incl. unlimited milk with my meals. Lots of beverage variety incl. alcoholic at no extra charge when diving was done. Cabins were small but most had private heads. Definitely ask for dive deck cabins if available - much more convenient than lower deck. I would go again in a heartbeat.
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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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