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Dive Review of Dive Paradise in
Cozumel and the Mexican Yucatan

Dive Paradise, Dec, 2006,

by joe DelGuidice, mA, united States (Reviewer Reviewer 3 reports). Report 3657.

No photos available at this time

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

Accommodations 3 stars Food 4 stars
Service and Attitude 3 stars Environmental Sensitivity N/A
Dive Operation 3 stars Shore Diving 3 stars
Snorkeling N/A
Value for $$ N/A
Beginners 5 stars
Advanced 3 stars
Comments My third visit to Cozumel was terrific, just like all the others ('86, '01,'06). Yes the place has changed and then the Hurricane .....But the diving is still very good with abundant fish life. I saw the Splendid Frog Fish on 3 separate dives! You feel that Diving is still the King there, even though the high end Condo boom and Resorts are all around. I went solo which allows immersion into diving and a sense of freedom that makes a week seem longer. Travelnotes had great deals.....
I stayed at the Barracuda Hotel (for the first time), and it was perfect, low money.... great views... lots of divers.......hard bed, but ok.....small one has cannot buy ice, even supermarkets...the ice tray was tiny, so I made ice around the clock and kept the ice in a gallon baggie. The No Name Bar at Cuda is very interesting and gets quite crowded with younger , wilder types than the middle aged divers , like me who are actually staying at the Hotel. I would go down there and have a drink and seafood soup & watch the scene. Like something out of Miami Vice. Very difficult to get a piece of land to lay a towel down. And the music is blasting , appealing to the young patrons with money to burn. They all clear out by late afternoon.
I rented a car at "Less Pay Car Rental", they are next to the Barracuda and the price was great for the week, with airport transfers, AND you can call the States with their cordless phone for free! Very Cool!

Dive Paradise is on the premises which make things convenient and the package was great, but it's a big operation, and I had different DM'S most every day. Last time I was in Coz I dove with Aldora Divers and i regret not spending the extra $$ to dive with them. With DP I did have the fast boats and had very good diving and 1 or 2 DM's were very good –Jorge was great. I could not have found the Splendid Toad Fish w/o them. There were days I got stuck with a few obnoxious divers and DM’s who were disinterested. The Coral and sea life in general was good…but of course not like 20 years ago. The night diving off the pier at the barracuda is lotsa fun. You get your tank right there with DP. In 20' of water I saw numerous Octpus, Eels, Lager Flying Gurnards with wings extended radiating brilliant greens and blues. With my light I could mesmerize Squid in 4' of water and have the turn colors , moving back and forth and they even let me rub their bellies. VERY COOL! You also see lots of rebar and crap off there . It's mostly big boulders and a sandy bottom. I did see quite a few fish night & day. The step entrance to the water is also Very Cool! I would go back to the Barracuda...It's so close to town. The restaurants i sought out were very good at each price level. At the best places the prices were similar to the States, but the Lobster, and Seafood in general is worth it. I like to look at them during the day and them eat them at night. Capi Navaganti Restaurant stood out for Seafood.
I planned a day trip to do Cenote Diving I took the ferry to Playa del Carmen and then a $3 public bus ride south for an hour to Hidden Worlds Cenote Diving. Just traveling down there was interesting. Once there off the coast road they gave me a buggy ride in the jungle to a '4 X $' hole in the ground. I descended a 2 story ladder into a Cavern and it was truly a hidden world! Once in the cavern we put our gear on and submerged in cool 78 degree water – a hood woulda been good. I cannot really describe how other-worldly it was. Matt was my DM , and he was top notch! I had him to myself the first dive. Buoyancy is key here. You glide thru tunnels around 6’ in diameter for 50 to 75 feet or so…..a little freaky..pitch black and no escape but forward or backward. It’s not tech diving because you cannot make a wrong turn and get lost .The tunnels always lead to a cavern with open surface. Bat Cave (25’ for 45 min.) was the first dive – the stalagmite and stalactite formations were unbelievable. I enjoyed keeping my light off and letting Matt’s light do the job and getting the glow. The best part was approaching a cavern and the natural light increased as we got to the center – SO BEAUTIFUL! The 2nd dive was dos Ojos and 2 other diver joined us, which was deeper and had less natural light ..but the environment was like snow and ice. The web site pic’s canot compare to the real thing. The for a brief moment you pass through the fresh/salt water mix (halcyon), and it is trippy! The fresh water is crystal clear! I want to go back soon!
Cozumel is a divers’ location…… I love the people…the local food and the nightlife. Carlos & Charlies has been replaced by a hard Rock Café..The music was good!

Reporter and Travel

Dive Experience 101-250 dives
Where else diving All Caribbean: 23 years.....12 years of snorkeling before that.
Roatan in '05 was great with my 15 yr. old son at AKR; Grand Cayman (3X); Dominica; Curacao; St. Croix;Tortola; St. John; Martinique; St. Lucia; St. Vincent; Key Largo; T&C.
Closest Airport Getting There

Dive Conditions

Weather sunny Seas calm, surge
Water Temp 80-0°F / 27--18°C Wetsuit Thickness 3
Water Visibility 60-100 Ft/ 18-30 M

Dive Policy

Dive own profile yes
Enforced diving restrictions we stayed as a group......and could go up when we were out of air...
fairly flexible.....
Liveaboard? no Nitrox Available? N/A

What I Saw

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