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Dive Review of Octopus Diving/Private Residence in
St. Maarten

June, 2010, an Instant Reader Report by Cameron Cole, GA, US (2 reports)
Report Number 5539
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Reporter and Travel
Dive Experience
0-25 dives
Where else diving
Boynton Beach, Fl
Closest Airport
Getting There


Dive Conditions

sunny, windy, rainy, cloudy  
calm, choppy  
Water Temp
86   to 86    Fahrenheit  
Wetsuit Thickness
Water Visibility
30   to 40    Feet  
Dive Policy
Dive own profile
Enforced diving restrictions  
First diver to reach 1500psi marks halfway and has everyone heading back to
the boat.  Our dives over 40' had a 3 minute safety stop.  
Nitrox Available?
What I saw
1 or  
Whale Sharks
> 2 
Ratings 1 (worst)- 5 (best):
  2 stars
Tropical Fish
3 stars  
Small Critters
  4 stars
Large Fish
2 stars  
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):
Service and Attitude
Environmental Sensitivity  
4 stars
Dive Operation
4 stars  
Shore Diving  
3 stars  

Overall Rating

Value for $$
3 stars    
4 stars   
2 stars    
Octopus Diving is what I would consider a good operation with excellent
owners.  They take your gear to one of their two small 6 pack boats for
you.  You do a short 3' or so deep wade to their boats so careful not to
take anything that can get wet or make the proper precautions.  Divers sit
in the bow in a comfortable, clean and well organized but open area while
the crew connects all your gear.  On sunny days, a hat is advisable as
finding a shady spot isn't easy.  Snacks are provided in a small cooler. 
The first day we got a nice variety the second day of diving only two water
bottles were in the cooler so you may want to bring along your own goodies
if you need them between dives.  Dive plan on both days was straight
forward, thorough and simple.  The first day we did the French side and
found it to be somewhat barren of corals and quite silty.  Lots of fish and
we did get right next to a large sting ray, turtles in the distance,
several barracuda and a seahorse.  Lots of fish expected for the region and
a nice variety of terrain including an interesting rocky area with lots of
crevices to swim through.  Between dives they change the gear over to the
other tank and help you don your gear.  The second day, we went over to the
Dutch side for some simple wreck diving in 45' or so of water.  We went to
this side due to the rough seas on the French side.  The first dive site
had four small wrecks with some interesting creatures most of which we saw
the first day including a large group of lobsters and a close encounter
with a barracuda cutting a fish in half.  Still lots of silt and not many
corals.  The second dive of the day and final dive for us was on a larger
cargo ship.  More of what we saw earlier with a big eel and small shark but
still enjoyable.  Currents at the surface were moderate and light towards
the bottom.  I would classify the diving as easy for most divers.  One
thing to note is that the ladders are pretty short on their boats.  I don't
think it is a significant issue but it does require some lifting if you
decide to keep your gear on while boarding the boat.  In calmer seas, it
was easy to hand them the BC rig then come aboard but the second day in
rough seas had us keeping our rigs on as we were in 3'-4' seas.  They do
help and again not a huge concern if you are reasonably fit or calm seas. 
When the dives are done, they carry your gear back to the shop where they
have a nice big rinse tank for an easy soaking.  If we ever get back their
way, I would use them again.
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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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