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Dive Review of Little Cayman Beach Resort in
Cayman Islands/Little Cayman Island

Little Cayman Beach Resort: "High quality Caribbean diving", Jan, 2016,

by Marilyn Walker, CA, US (Sr. Reviewer Sr. Reviewer 9 reports with 12 Helpful votes). Report 8823.

No photos available at this time

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

Accommodations 4 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 $$ 3 stars
Beginners 4 stars
Advanced 3 stars
Comments Read the fine print when you make your booking. The Little Cayman Beach Resort and Reef Divers sell packages, which are not refundable and are not changeable.

Reef Divers' two-tank morning excursion has a different price per dive than the one-tank afternoon dive. Do not suppose that you'll be able to substitute two afternoon dives for two morning dives. You will save yourself some heartburn, and personal intervention from the affable general manager, by sticking exactly to your dive program. Theirs is a no-change policy, whether for bad weather or personal inclination. If you are uncertain about how much diving you are realistically going to do, I recommend against prepaying any dives, as you'll probably lose money.

The scuba air compressor is located way too close to the guest rooms, pool and beach. The noise is horrendous all day long. No chance for a siesta or peaceful beach hammock due to the roar. At other resorts, the compressor is well away from the public areas, to minimize the racket. The compressor is usually off at 5pm, when the dive shop closes, but not always.

Be aware that the ocean view rooms, in the 300-block section of the resort, are a premium price for the view. However, room 305, on the top floor, and room 301, on the first floor, are immediately adjacent to the scuba compressor building so the noise is as loud as possible. We were first assigned room 305, but rejected it as unacceptably noisy. They obliged by reassigning us for the first two nights to room 207, which is farther away from the compressors, and sound-proofed enough that closing the door and turning on the air conditioning provided us with peaceful quiet. We were not refunded the difference in price: no refunds even for an unsatisfactory situation. On the third day, another room, 307, was available, which is farther away from the noise, with several more walls to absorb it. That room, again with door closed and a/c on, was quiet enough during compressor hours.

The ocean view in that entire block is occluded by palm trees. This year, our view was of the palm fronds tossing, and in a few years you'll see just the trunks, like utility poles, but not particularly much ocean. They are coconut palms, not date palms, with many bombs growing. I recommend against placing your deck chair under a coconut palm here or anywhere.

The garden view and ocean view sleeping rooms are spacious, with lots of drawers and closet space to unpack everything. There are many electric outlets to charge the multitude of electronics that we seem to travel with. The wi-fi and electricity and air conditioning are reliably available all day and all night.

The dive boats and dive guides are high quality. The guides take excellent care of their guests. The safety procedures are sensible and consistently in place. Nobody walks across the deck wearing tank and weights, which invites falling. Instead, the guests are seated on the stern platform, on the two small benches fitted for the purpose, or on the deck between the ladders if you don't mind standing up again with all that weight. For those of us with knees, backs, etc, to be mindful of, the seated arrangement was outstanding. The crew brings our gear to us after we've put on fins, then haul us upward by the tank valve or present a braced knee to push against, for a very easy giant stride overboard.

The two stern ladders are very easy to climb back up. Most people handed up fins and cameras, then wore tank and weights for the climb, but if you want to doff the BCD in the water, they're good with that. One especially rough morning, five-foot swells made the return to the boat exceptionally tricky. Marcus jumped into the water, helped get my BCD off, made sure I had a good grip on the ladder, then donned my BCD (with 16 pounds of integrated weights) to climb out himself.

The boat engines are powerful and reliable. They never hesitated to start and pushed through the swells grandly. The waves at the entrance to the lagoon can pitch the boats around, so the crew made sure everybody was seated before punching our way in. The boats never faltered.

We liked the roll call before the boat departs and after every dive, plus head counts, to assure everybody is accounted for.

The boats are wet, even under the sun roof. Bring a good dry bag to keep watches, glasses, topside cameras, etc, from harm. The windows leak badly from the spray, which goes with the punching through the waves.

The marine head has no holding tank.

We chose to rent dive gear. Our own dive gear is very old and we don't like the weight or cumbersome luggage for hauling our own stuff anymore. The rental BCDs and regulators are high quality and work perfectly. The integrated weights, while cumbersome for the staff, were comfortable for the divers.

The resort is justifiably proud of the dining experience. Every meal offers a big variety to choose from, buffet style, including salads and vegetables and fruit, three entrees of chicken or pork or beef or lamb or fish. The sauces tend to be rather salty, but only medium spicy. The pastries are wonderful.

The main dining room has plenty of tables and air conditioning. Large groups can reserve a long table and couples and singles have small tables to themselves. The screened front porch is especially pleasant for lunch. The wait staff learn your name, greet you warmly, keep your ice tea glass well filled.

The drinking water is especially delicious. They make their own water from brackish well water with marvelous reverse osmosis processes.

Do not be taken in by the black and white cat who mews pitifully at the restaurant door. The cat is well cared for by the bar staff, who provide cat food and water. The cat's name is Flip, but should be Spare Change for its begging technique. Flip tolerates petting, but will shrug you off if you don't pay with a tidbit.

The pool area would be more comfortable if the deck chairs had cushions, but it is pretty and very clean, thanks to the bar staff picking up drink glasses quickly. The area is very tidy, because they mostly do not use paper napkins, which are particularly prone to blowing away as litter.

The pier has underwater lights, colored blue, which attract many tarpon. They hang out from dusk but nobody stays up late enough to see them leave again. Presumably they hope to catch smaller fish that are attracted to the light, but we never saw any come in. The dive staff tell us they often see tarpon out on the reef during the day.

The diving, in January 2016, was affected by wind. For six of our nine dive days, the dive boats were pinned down to the south shore by the 20 knot wind, with only three dive days on the famous Bloody Bay Wall located on the north shore. The dive staff say that the wind is seasonal, with strong wind in January to be expected. Another group of guests told us they were here the same week last year and enjoyed glassy calm. Many guests from the USA endured severe travel difficulties in the Atlantic states from a winter blizzard. The cold came all the way to the island so that a fleece top and even long pants were welcome some days.

The Weather Channel app and the Windfinder app were especially useful for anticipating the day. Both seem quite accurate to me. Several times the weather app predicted showers at a certain hour, and sure enough, the sky sprinkled down at the right time. The Windfinder app was developed for surfers, so 25 knot winds were colored green and lighter winds were blue. Surfers have different expectations than divers. The strength and direction of the wind prediction seemed accurate to me.

The weather underwater was pleasant, 82 degrees on my dive computer, generally pretty good visibility, but never the clarity that shows you big pelagics hanging off in the blue. One day upwelling from the very deep trench mixed chilly water with the warm and brought turbidity to decrease the viz. Sometimes there was mild surge but no current.

We saw a few reef sharks and nurse sharks, numerous barracuda and stingrays for predators. Several kinds of parrotfish, creole wrasse, durgon and tangs decorated the reef walls. Occasionally turtles swam unconcerned past us. In the protected park, conch roam around on the sand.

The groupers were an exceptional experience. Those within the marine park are old, large and as friendly as Labrador dogs. They approach divers to be petted, not fed, pushing themselves into your hands. Our visit coincided with the 2016 Grouper Moon. As many as 2,000 Nassau grouper come together at the “Grouper Hole”, a kilometer offshore, to spawn a few days after the January or February full moon. The fish we saw the first week, during the January full moon, were absent the second week, having left their home reefs to join the aggregation. The Department of Environment has boats on site, to monitor the progress and to fend off fishermen, who used to take excessive, greed-based catches.

In all, we enjoyed our stay, despite our unlucky windy topside weather. The marine park's protection provides a healthy reef and many tropical fish for our enjoyment.

Websites Little Cayman Beach Resort   

Reporter and Travel

Dive Experience Over 1000 dives
Where else diving Indonesia, Caribbean, Australia, Malaysia, Solomon Islands, Micronesia
Closest Airport On the island Getting There Figure on three airplanes, from home to a gateway city (we used Miami) then to Grand Cayman then to Little Cayman. The only fuss was the very long line through the security gate at Grand Cayman. Baggage allowance is generous.

Dive Conditions

Weather sunny, windy Seas choppy, no currents
Water Temp 80-82°F / 27-28°C Wetsuit Thickness
Water Visibility - Ft/ - M

Dive Policy

Dive own profile yes
Enforced diving restrictions The first dive of the day is always 90 to 110 feet. We do not like to go that deep, so we dove nearby in 50-60 foot depth, which was more comfortable.
Liveaboard? no Nitrox Available? yes

What I Saw

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

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

Subject Matter 4 stars Boat Facilities 3 stars
Overall rating for UWP's 3 stars Shore Facilities 3 stars
UW Photo Comments They handled the cameras carefully. No rinse bucket on the boat, but a big tank back on the dock. It was okay.
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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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