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Dive Review of Bottom Time/Banyan Bay in
Belize/Ambergris Caye

Bottom Time/Banyan Bay, Apr, 2004,

by Dennis Brower, MD, US . Report 1009.

Reporter and Travel

Dive Experience 501-1000 dives
Where else diving Marshall Islands, Australia, Pohnepei, Hawaii, Florida, Caymans, Cozumel, Galapagos, and Bonaire
Closest Airport Getting There

Dive Conditions

Weather sunny Seas choppy, surge, noCurrents
Water Temp 80 to 82 Fahrenheit Wetsuit Thickness 0
Water Visibility 40 to 80 Feet

Dive Policy

Dive own profile yes
Enforced diving restrictions No significant restrictions applied. No more than 130 first dive and do reasonable depth restriction second dive.
Liveaboard? no Nitrox Available? N/A

What I Saw

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

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

Subject Matter 2 stars Boat Facilities 2 stars
Overall rating for UWP's 3 stars Shore Facilities 2 stars
UW Photo Comments The dive crew was great and they handled the cameras very well as you got in and out of the boat. However, there were no camera tables, containers of rinse water, or anything similar, on the boat. You had to hold the camera the entire time or risk having it slide around. There were rinse tanks at the dock.

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

Accommodations 5 stars Food 5 stars
Service and Attitude 5 stars Environmental Sensitivity N/A
Dive Operation 5 stars Shore Diving 3 stars
Snorkeling N/A
Value for $$ N/A
Beginners 5 stars
Advanced 3 stars
Comments We dove the first week of April 04 and the dive crew of Captain Eddie and dive master Chocolate were first rate. The boat was a single engine inboard with plently of speed with seating for about 8 with a small cabin and head up front; approximately 28 feet. It had sun protection over 1/2 the boat. The crew picked you up at the dock where you stayed and took you out through the reef openings to moorings on the other side of the reef. The trip only took 5-10 minutes with the channel a bit rough. There were 3-4 foot swells at the moorings and you did a back roll off the back side of the boat. The divers did not come back to the moorings, but the boat followed the divers whereever they went. This was a nice touch. The visibility was generally good and usually improved as you move to the 60 foot depths. The surge was evident anywhere above 50 feet. There was plently of soft corals and great cliffs, ledges, and valleys; very little hard or colorful corals. There were plently of tropical fishes there, but you had to look for them and there was not a great volume. Saw several nurse sharks and large groupers which were very friendly due to feeding and interaction with the local divers. The diver operations were excellent (except for the on board camera care)and the tanks were routinely filled with 3200+ PSI. You were encouraged to use all your air as long as you could do so safely and get in your no decompression dives. Chocolate always lead the dives and attempted to guide you to interesting sights. If you needed to linger he would wait-he was never demanding or pushy. There were never more than a total of 6 divers on board throughout our 10 dives (5 days). After the first dive the boat went back to the Bottom Time dock at the town of San Pedro (5-10 minutes) and you did your interval wait there. This was nice as there was no rocking and you could get something to eat or just lay on the dock in the sun. The staff always changed our tank setup and if you dove with them consecutively they kept your tank gear and rinsed it each night and brought it back at pickup already set up. A very pleasant diving experience. If you want a lot of fish you need to go to the further out islands/cayes in Belize or do the live-a-board.
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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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