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Dive Review of Ocean Encounters Diving/kura hulanda (sp?) in
Curaçao/North end

Ocean Encounters Diving/kura hulanda (sp?), Jun, 2010,

by Mark Reckman, OH, US (Reviewer Reviewer 4 reports). Report 5661.

No photos available at this time

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

Accommodations 4 stars Food 4 stars
Service and Attitude 1 stars Environmental Sensitivity 3 stars
Dive Operation 5 stars Shore Diving 3 stars
Snorkeling N/A
Value for $$ 4 stars
Beginners 5 stars
Advanced 5 stars
Comments After nearly 10 trips to Bonaire and Aruba (Aruba is not great for divers), we decided to try Curacao. I did not expect the diving to be much different than Bonaire. I was wrong - and what a pleasant surpise. The diving at the west end of Curcao is much better than Bonaire - healthy, flourishing and largely unbothered. In fact, the coral and small/medium sized sea life was as good as Little Cayman and Cozumel. I especailly loved the coral - but there were also schools of fish on most dives. The underwater topography is not as interesting as Little Cayamn or Cozumel (Curacao's reefs slope gradually like Bonaire), but the sealife is as good as I have seen anywhere in the Caribean. Surprise, surprise.
The island is not set up for shore diving as well as Bonaire - that is certain. But the house reef off of the resort is the best house reef I've seen - even better than the house reef at Deep Blue in Utila (because the high fish count is better). And there are not as many dives sites as Bonaire - just enough for a full week of diving. Also, there are not as many dive shops (althougth it was a plus to see so few boats on the water - we saw maybe two other boats working those same west end waters).
The island itself is significantly more developed than Bonaire, with something like 8x the people (I think). The populaton is centered at the east end of the island, so make you plans accordingly. I liked the peace and quiet of the west end and there were not many divers. But, if you like shopping, resturants, resorts, markets and nightlife, the east end is for you.
Curacao is much easier to get to than Bonaire, with flights from the US almost every day. I don't think I will get back to Bonaire anytime soon.
Websites Ocean Encounters Diving   

Reporter and Travel

Dive Experience 501-1000 dives
Where else diving All over the Caribean as well as the Great Lakes, Mirconesia and Galapagos
Closest Airport Getting There

Dive Conditions

Weather sunny, dry Seas calm, no currents
Water Temp 83-85°F / 28-29°C Wetsuit Thickness 2
Water Visibility 60-80 Ft/ 18-24 M

Dive Policy

Dive own profile yes
Enforced diving restrictions No significant retrictions - dive your computer
Liveaboard? no Nitrox Available? yes

What I Saw

Sharks None Mantas 1 or 2
Dolphins None Whale Sharks None
Turtles > 2 Whales None
Corals 5 stars Tropical Fish 4 stars
Small Critters 4 stars Large Fish 2 stars
Large Pelagics 1 stars

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

Subject Matter 4 stars Boat Facilities 3 stars
Overall rating for UWP's 4 stars Shore Facilities 2 stars
UW Photo Comments Photo ops are great - but not much in topside photo resources at the west end.
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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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