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Dive Review of Ocean Encounters/Sea Aquarium Resort in

Ocean Encounters/Sea Aquarium Resort, Dec, 2007,

by Barbara Shively, MD, USA (Sr. Reviewer Sr. Reviewer 7 reports). Report 4112.

No photos available at this time

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

Accommodations 4 stars Food 3 stars
Service and Attitude 4 stars Environmental Sensitivity N/A
Dive Operation 3 stars Shore Diving 4 stars
Snorkeling N/A
Value for $$ N/A
Beginners 4 stars
Advanced 2 stars
Comments The best word I can use to describe my experience with this operation last December is frustration. As an underwater photographer I need time to set up and wait for a specific shot. I was diving with my husband and another couple -- all very experienced advance level divers but we were scolded if we dropped very far behind the group. Dives were limited to a max. of 45 minutes and we all had to surface at the same time. This meant we came up with over 1000 lbs from every dive (and had to wait on the surface for quite awhile as they got other divers onto the boat). The boats are fairly large and were quite full most days with about 18 divers. All these rules were enforced more stongly than a year ago. Also their policies on cancelling planned dives, even a day ahead are not friendly -- basically it was 'fine but you pay anyway'.

The positives are that they are very safely conscious -- sometimes to a fault; boats and facilities are in excellent condition; their divemasters very good at their jobs. Some were reasonably knowledgable about the marine life too. because we own a time-share we will be going to Curacao most years but will probably look for diving alternatives for next year.
Weatherwise it was beautiful one week with no currents and rainy the next week with ripping currents. This was the first two weeks of Dec.

Reporter and Travel

Dive Experience 251-500 dives
Where else diving Grand Turk many times, lots of other Caribbean islands, Florida, Hawaii
Closest Airport Getting There

Dive Conditions

Weather sunny, windy, rainy Seas choppy, currents
Water Temp 80-82°F / 27-28°C Wetsuit Thickness 1
Water Visibility 100-150 Ft/ 30-46 M

Dive Policy

Dive own profile no
Enforced diving restrictions Time, depth and staying together with group were all strictly enforced regardless of experience level.
Liveaboard? no Nitrox Available? N/A

What I Saw

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

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

Subject Matter 4 stars Boat Facilities 4 stars
Overall rating for UWP's 4 stars Shore Facilities 3 stars
UW Photo Comments A separate rinse tank on board was great and crew made sure it was used strictly for camera gear.
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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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