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Dive Review of divingDR/private arrangement in
Dominican Republic/Bayahibe

divingDR/private arrangement, Jan, 2009,

by Terri Feinblum, MD, USA (Reviewer Reviewer 4 reports with 3 Helpful votes). Report 4733.

No photos available at this time

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

Accommodations N/A 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 $$ 4 stars
Beginners 5 stars
Advanced 4 stars
Comments Vladi Heger runs a great, small operation. His diveboat, Sharkey, has a canopy for sun protection and a ladder to easily re-enter the boat. My husband and I were the only divers, and more could have been accommodated. We entered the boat from the beach, and did an easy backroll entry at the dive sites. We were pleased with the whole experience. We did two dives each day for five consecutive days and one night dive. The crew (Vladi and son Vlad) was willing to assist us in any way necessary to give us the best dive experience ever. This included trips to less explored sights where no other divers were around. We appreciated having our tanks set up and carried, and also a secure place to clean and stow our gear each night. We took our dive computers and cameras with us, as advised. Two day trips to Catalina and Saona Islands did not disappoint. We were unable to dive at Catalanita, as the channel currents were very strong the whole week. The Aquarium site at Catalina had abundant schools of fish. Saona was more peaceful, and the reefs more pristine. On the way to Saona we were awed by hundreds of flying fish skimming above the waves; it was a beautiful sight to behold! We had a scrumptious lunch on the islands, between the morning and afternoon dives, mostly home made. We returned through the mangroves, and saw starfish scattered across the shallow bottom. On all other days we did a.m. two-tank dives; snacks and beverages were supplied and enjoyed. The night dive, a 5 minute boat ride away, was great, and we recommend that as well. One morning dive of interest: The St. Georges Wreck was sunk about 12 years ago and has settled in as an artificial reef, at about 130 feet (140 on the sand). Many side and top panels are open, and there is much to be seen without penetrating the wreck. Most of the dives were less than 80 feet deep, and we saw wonderful critters: a loggerhead turtle, big squids, octopuses, crabs, lobsters, 2 large morays, an enormous ray, and other great macro. Vladi did not rush us, as I take UW photographs, often of tiny creatures. He was also helpful with the camera, and had an exclusive camera rinse tank on the boat, and another one at the dive shop. Vladi arranged our airport transportation from Santa Domingo to Viva Dominicus in La Romana( a Euro resort), and his family members transported us to the dive shop and back each day. We recommend diving with Vladi. It is not inexpensive; it was a private dive of total quality. They are English speaking, and you donít hear much English in Bayahibe. We had a blast! We are staying in touch and plan on exploring new sites with Vladi in the future. The best way to contact Vladi is at info@divingDR. Denise Heger will answer your questions and make the reservations.

If I realized how cold the water was, I would have worn my 3 mm wetsuit, with a 3mm shorty on top, and a hood. We had a great time, and would have been more comfortable with more protection.

I learned later that the cab rates are negotiable. For your safety and clarification purposes, if you arrange your own transportation, write down the final amount on a piece of paper and have your driver sign it. In case of dispute, cabbies rule, and it is frowned upon to cheat cabbies.

Reporter and Travel

Dive Experience 101-250 dives
Where else diving Cozumel, Mx, Puerto Aventura, Mx, Sosua Bay, DR, Key Largo, FL USA,
Closest Airport Getting There

Dive Conditions

Weather sunny, windy Seas choppy
Water Temp 76-78°F / 24-26°C Wetsuit Thickness 3
Water Visibility -60 Ft/ -18 M

Dive Policy

Dive own profile yes
Enforced diving restrictions We followed a safe plan.
Liveaboard? no Nitrox Available? N/A

What I Saw

Sharks None Mantas 1 or 2
Dolphins None Whale Sharks None
Turtles 1 or 2 Whales None
Corals 4 stars Tropical Fish 4 stars
Small Critters 5 stars Large Fish 2 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 N/A
UW Photo Comments Vladi had a rinse tank on the boat for the camera, and also one on shore, filled with clean water.
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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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