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Dive Review of ITZA Resort in
Belize/Lighthouse Reef Atoll

ITZA Resort: "A gem of a dive vacation resort!", Apr, 2015,

by Howard Lewis, CA, US ( 2 reports with 1 Helpful vote). Report 8186 has 1 Helpful vote.

No photos available at this time

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

Accommodations 5 stars Food 5 stars
Service and Attitude 5 stars Environmental Sensitivity 5 stars
Dive Operation 5 stars Shore Diving N/A
Snorkeling N/A
Value for $$ 5 stars
Beginners 5 stars
Advanced 5 stars
Comments I first noticed the mosquitos after I was bitten. There was some rain about a week before so the mosquitos were out in force. I used a combination of several wipes successfully. If you are sensitive or reactive to their bites-be warned. Pack carefully and bring what you will need.The closest market is 50-60 miles away. My wife's 2nd stage failed her after 6 dives so we swapped out with a spare 2nd stage.
If you have a major medical problem the helicopter comes from Belize City and returns there. JOIN DAN!
I did not snorkel because I did not bring a rash guard bottom with the 50spf top. Sun was very strong and a sunburn would ruin the trip. I used a 50spf Nature's Gate sunscreen for my face and arms and was not burned while diving.
A small land flashlight and your dive light (s) are needed.
If you are allergic to fish, conch or fresh fruit let the manager know before the trip. We ate a lot of that great food for dinner and lunch. The mango and papaya were great along with the fresh coconut juice, pineapple and watermelon mixes.
My wife went kayaking on the west side which was out of the wind. We walked around the accessible parts of the island one day.
You might bring a fish ID slate on the boat. At the lodge they have several and at least on copy of
REEF FISH Identification by Paul Humann and Ned Deloach. There is internet in the dining area but it is slow. If you are like me and do not wear watch anymore, remember to bring one! Might even include a battery or windup alarm clock for short naps.
There was a very strong east wind with blew all day and night. It caused coconuts to fall and several times we heard the dull noise of Aggressor's motors as the live aboard moved around during the night. Otherwise it was really quiet. There is the possibility of a "live band" there for entertainment and there might be a lot of cigarette smokers present. There were none while we were there. All we did was dive! With our package we dove 3 dives a day. You might have a different dive boat operator as Itza contracts with several operators for service to divers.
You will probably dive many of the same places as we did. So enjoy. We want to return and next time bring our daughter.
If you are thinking of certification please do it before you come. It really wastes your time to get certified in such a beautiful dive spot.
We brought 3mm shorty suits but only used lycra skins. Bring both just in case. And check the local weather seasons!
I might bring a small spinning rod to play with the schooling fish off the 2 docks. Some people bring equipment to hunt Lion Fish.
Websites ITZA Resort   [same]

Reporter and Travel

Dive Experience Over 1000 dives
Where else diving Channel Islands, Santa Barbara. Monterey Bay and Northern California, Guadalupe Island, Cozumel. Belize.
Combined Scuba and Free Diving...
Closest Airport Belize City Getting There SFO to DFW. DFW to BZE and return on AA
2 hour boat ride to Itza.

Dive Conditions

Weather sunny, windy Seas choppy, no currents
Water Temp 76-78°F / 24-26°C Wetsuit Thickness
Water Visibility 25-50 Ft/ 8-15 M

Dive Policy

Dive own profile yes
Enforced diving restrictions The DM would let you dive after evaluation on your own within limits. The usual 700psi and safety stop were expected.
He did not hover over the advanced divers and let you dive around the plan, but was alert to the one diver that had some issues.
Very pleasant dives with him.
Liveaboard? no Nitrox Available? no

What I Saw

Sharks Lots Mantas Squadrons
Dolphins None Whale Sharks None
Turtles > 2 Whales None
Corals 5 stars Tropical Fish 5 stars
Small Critters 5 stars Large Fish 5 stars
Large Pelagics 5 stars

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

Subject Matter 5 stars Boat Facilities 4 stars
Overall rating for UWP's N/A Shore Facilities N/A
UW Photo Comments Do you want to see grey Reef Sharks up close? OK! Lots of them, some curious and not shy, others would just cruise around and observe. Up to 7'-8'.
There were more Black, Nassau and Tiger Groupers then you could count from petting distance to 20-25' away. Almost all the fish on the Guide to Reef Fish except the Puffer and Porcupine. There were 2 Goliath Groupers seen at a distance. Did not see the resident Hammerhead Shark the DM talked about. In the grass we saw many Sand Divers. I saw only 1 Black Sea Urchin.
There were Spotted Eagle rays, Stingrays, several nurse sharks, Green sea turtles and 1 Loggerhead turtle, medium sized Green Moray and Spotted Moray Eels, some of the largest Trumpetfish I have seen. Octopi, many large Barracudas, schools of Horse Eye and Crevalle Jacks, Plumas, Yellowtail Snapper, Grey Snapper, Chub and several schooling fish I did not ID. It got to be a bit overwhelming...
There were many lobster, large crabs. One dive site was called Lion's Den for all the Lion Fish. Large Cero, Tarpon and maybe a Wahoo would be seen over the edges of reefs. In the shallow reef dives there many small crabs and tiny shrimp. I saw many almost translucent globes of spawned fish drifting around.
On any of the dives near the Half Moon Monument, a no fishing area, you could see hundreds of live Pink Conch. I saw 1 live Horse Conch there. On 1 of our 14 dives we saw another group of divers on a dive site in the preserve. On the assents there was only our boat shadowing us. No other boats nearby.
Most of our dives were the 6 of us from Itza and Huracan, 2 Americans, 2 Canadians, 2 Germans and the DM and boat captain.
You carried your camera on the very short boat trips. After your backward roll over the rail, it was handed over by the boat captain and retrieved by him when you came up. Smaller camera units were set in a saltwater filled bucket by him while you were boarding. Safety line with a buoy were always used because of the wind and wind caused large chop when you surfaced. Between dives you usually return to the dock for your down time. Both DM and boat captain were very good with their help and operation of the dives.
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Report currently has 1 Helpful vote

Subscriber's Comments

By report author: Howard Lewis in CA, US at Apr 25, 2015 19:57 EST  
The title should read Itza Resort. They used their neighboring resort as the contract for diving operations for us. Huracan has their own dive boat; Itza contracts with several companies. We stayed at ITZA. Great place to stay! We will go back to stay at ITZA. Huracan is a smaller resort best suited for a small group that wants to dive together as a group. They have their own boat....
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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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