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Dive Review of Hamanasi in
Belize/Hpkins, Stann Creek District

Hamanasi, Aug, 2007,

by Gary Kennerley, CA, USA . Report 3564.

Reporter and Travel

Dive Experience 26-50 dives
Where else diving Playa del Carmen, Cozumel, Monterey Bay
Closest Airport Getting There

Dive Conditions

Weather sunny Seas calm
Water Temp 86 to 86 Fahrenheit Wetsuit Thickness 3
Water Visibility 40 to 60 Feet

Dive Policy

Dive own profile no
Enforced diving restrictions All dives were conducted as drift dives with a loose group. Divers could vary profile withing line of sight. If low on air, ascend to 15' for safety stop and boat would pick you up.
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 3 stars Tropical Fish 4 stars
Small Critters 2 stars Large Fish 2 stars
Large Pelagics 3 stars

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

Subject Matter N/A Boat Facilities N/A
Overall rating for UWP's N/A Shore Facilities N/A
UW Photo Comments [None]

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

Accommodations 3 stars Food 3 stars
Service and Attitude 3 stars Environmental Sensitivity N/A
Dive Operation 4 stars Shore Diving 3 stars
Snorkeling N/A
Value for $$ N/A
Beginners 4 stars
Advanced 3 stars
Comments We were staying at a friend's house so this report and ratings only apply to the dive operation. We did hang out at the Hamanasi resort after dives and used the pool. Staff were friendly and food was good but approximately double the cost of the local restaurants in the village. We were there in the rainy season so lots of bugs. The diving was delayed as Hurricane Dean passed by with minimal effect. This reduced visibility to 40' and improved to 60' after a couple of days. As it was low season there was typically only 4-6 divers on the boat. Hamansai have three boats, two with covered bow and open stern, twin outboards (225 hp and 200 hp). The other was open with a fabric shade with twin 150 hp outboards. Trip out to the reef was about 25 minutes smooth sailing (an additional 10 minutes on the small boast). All dives were drift dives. Profile for first dive was typically 70' for 20 mins along the wall and then +25 mins at 40' on top of the reef. Second dive was 50' for +45 minutes.

Plenty of reef fish, spiny lobsters, barracuda and jacks. Generally saw 2-3 eagle rays and 1-2 turtles on each dive. Plenty of hard and soft corals but seemed somewhat colorless but that may be partially due to the less than crystal clear water.

Normally Hamanasi needed 8 divers to go out to the atolls but as it was low season, they agreed to go with only 6. Unfortunately, both times we had enough divers signed up, early morning lightening prevented the trips, although the regular 2-tank barrier reef dive happened.

My wife went through her OW certification. She was the only student so had to pay the higher private class rate and received little classroom instruction. As she had done a discover scuba class before in PDC she passed fine but felt the course was a little hurried.

On a return trip I would stay on the atolls where I assume the best diving is located. Overall, for the four days of barrier reef diving I would say the cost was very expensive for what you got (double of Mexico). The Hamanasi staff were very friendly, helpful and ran a safe operation.
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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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