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Dive Review of Pirates Point Resort in
Cayman Islands/Little Cayman

Pirates Point Resort, Oct, 2003,

by S. Titus, VA, USA (Sr. Reviewer Sr. Reviewer 8 reports). Report 832.

Reporter and Travel

Dive Experience 251-500 dives
Where else diving Saba, Bonaire, Dominica, Belize, Roatan, Bequia, Vrgin Islands, FL Keys, Cozumel, Hawaii, Cayman Brac
Closest Airport Getting There

Dive Conditions

Weather sunny, cloudy Seas choppy, noCurrents
Water Temp 82 to 0 Fahrenheit Wetsuit Thickness 0
Water Visibility 60 to 100 Feet

Dive Policy

Dive own profile yes
Enforced diving restrictions First dive limited to 100', second Dive to 60'. Bottom time: as much as computer and air would allow.
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 5 stars Tropical Fish 4 stars
Small Critters 5 stars Large Fish 4 stars
Large Pelagics 3 stars

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

Subject Matter 5 stars Boat Facilities 5 stars
Overall rating for UWP's 5 stars Shore Facilities 4 stars
UW Photo Comments Boat has large table for cameras; separate rinse tank on boat and on shore for cameras. No film processing on site.

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

Accommodations 4 stars Food 5 stars
Service and Attitude 5 stars Environmental Sensitivity N/A
Dive Operation 5 stars Shore Diving 1 stars
Snorkeling N/A
Value for $$ N/A
Beginners 4 stars
Advanced 4 stars
Comments Pirate's Point Resort is a small (10 rooms in several separate buildings), very casual, cozy resort on a private sand beach with a wonderful relaxed atmosphere. A little funky and artsy, and totally comfortable. Large, clean, modestly furnished rooms, enough open space on the grounds for privacy, the place has a 'bed and breakfast' flavor. Rooms may or may not have A/C; we opted for natural air in a room close to the water and were quite comfortable with several fans and huge windows. It was wonderful to wake up looking at the sea from one's pillow!(October is the rainy season; we had a nice blend of sun and overcast with most of the rain at night).

With an inclusive dive package, all meals and beverages (as well as a wonderful variety of wines at dinner) are covered. And what meals they are!! (Be prepared to exercise and still gain 5-7 lbs in a week). Fresh, highest quality ingredients in amazing quantity and variety, turned into absolutely top notch gourmet dishes with great presentation. (We tried to smuggle chefs Cam and Diane home in our dive bags). The owner, Gladys Howard, is an entertaining, enthusiastic hostess as well as an accomplished chef and diver.

We overlapped with several different groups of guests during our 10 days at the resort. While we were all quite diverse in culture, home geography, occupation and lifestyle, it was always a pleasant blend with good conversationa and fun at the bar, meals, and on the boat.

Unusual also is that the staff (all dive instructors) rotate as dining room staff, office management and dive guides. Many of the staff have been there for over 5 years, some as long as 15 years. The level of service in all areas is unusually high and competent; no problem large or small stays an issue for very long.

The diving schedule is quite civilized for a vacation. After breakfast you leave for the boat at about 9:15 (a very short van ride away)and return home around 2PM for lunch. The boat is large and comfortable (it has a head) with room for multiple cameras. There are 2 consecutive dives, with surface intervals done on the boat. The first dive is limited to 100 foot depth, and the second dive is limited to 60 foot. Beyond those 2 restrictions, your bottom time is limited only by your computer and air consumption. We had many dives lasting well over an hour. The dive staff gives you as much or as little assistance as you desire while on the boat. Gear stays on the boat; wetsuits get taken back, rinsed and hung out overnight. Nitrox is available, and shore night dives are scheduled by request.

The diving is one of the ultimates in the Caribbean. Breathtaking vertical walls, expansive healthy corals and sponges, long continuous reefs, good species variety with plentiful juveniles and large adults. Reef, blacktip, nurse sharks and large southern rays were quite common, coming up close on both the walls and in the shallows; turtles of all sizes appeared on almost every dive; huge grouper and barracuda cruised through regularly. Our group had the pleasure of seeing a lobster with a head the width of a basketball...he was absolutely amazing. Our guides (Gaye, Coco and Steve) were incredibly adept at finding very unsual and tiny critters for macro shots (such as pipe horses, sailfin blennies, neck crabs, and leech headshield slugs) as well as being the first to alert us to incoming sharks along the wall.

What you might want to know? The resort is a true reality escape. No TV at all (in rooms or in clubhouse/bar); no room phones; plenty of books to borrow from the library, and a selection of videos in the club room if you need visual entertainment. Bring bug repellant to go beach combing, birdwatching (bring binoculars) or visiting the iguanas since there are some no-see-ums and mosquitoes. There are no taxis; bicycles are available to explore the island or to visit another resort or bar. Guests are encouraged to enter the annual "art contest"...entries must be made only from materials found during your stay. (There are a lot of veeerrry creative divers!)

For now, when flying between Grand Cayman and Little Cayman or the Brac, or flying out of Grand Cayman, make sure any batteries for cameras, lights, etc. are separated in a single baggie or taped together. This will save you time and headaches at the security checks.

Summing it up: one of the best places and experiences ever in 15 years of Caribbean diving. An unadvertised jewel; especially if you want a place with no pretensions, and low-key company.


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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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